60% of consumers respond to texts from businesses within 1-5 minutes of receiving them – which shows how much people rely on quick text communication. 

But what happens when customers send a text during off-hours or on a busy holiday when your inbox is overflowing? That’s where autoresponders come into play. 

Autoresponders do much more than send out automatic replies. They can be set up systematically to handle communications from the first point of contact and ensure that every potential customer receives timely, tailored information.

In this article, we’ll explore how businesses can use autoresponders to improve their lead management and customer engagement efforts.

What are SMS Autoresponders?

An SMS autoresponder is an automation tool that helps businesses send text messages automatically in response to incoming messages. It works by setting up specific rules that trigger responses based on certain keywords in the messages received. 

Businesses can benefit from using an SMS autoresponder to:

  • Provide instant answers to common inquiries.
  • Maintain continuous interaction.
  • Automate confirmations, reminders, and rescheduling to keep operations smooth.
  • Respond to high volumes of messages quickly during busy periods.
  • Simplify gathering customer details for personalized communication.
  • Automatically reply to customers about order statuses and delivery times.
  • Deploy promotional texts and handle related queries with less manpower.

How Do SMS Autoresponders Work?

SMS autoresponders rely on automation rules to perform their job. These rules are guidelines you set up to respond to specific words or phrases in incoming texts. 

Here’s how it works in a real-world scenario:

A customer sends your business a text that includes the word “appointment” because they want to schedule one. Since you have already set up an automation rule in your SMS system that looks for the keyword “appointment,” the system sees this word in a message. 

It knows exactly what to do next—it triggers a response you’ve already prepared, such as, “Thanks for your message! To book an appointment, please visit our website or let us know a date and time that works for you.”

This setup ensures that every message is answered promptly and appropriately without needing someone to type out each response. It keeps up with customer needs while keeping your replies consistent and professional.

How Businesses Use SMS Autoresponders

SMS autoresponders are incredibly effective for keeping customers informed and engaged with timely updates and reminders. Here’s how businesses use this tool:

Order Confirmations and Updates

An SMS autoresponder can send a confirmation message right after a customer purchases. As the order moves through various stages, such as packing, shipping, or out for delivery, autoresponders can send progress updates. 

Typical keywords that could trigger order-related auto responses might include “order status,” “delivery,” “track order,” or simply “order.”

Autoresponse: “Good news! Your order has shipped and is on its way. You can track your package here [link].”

Event Reminders

Setting up a series of SMS reminders for your event is a great way to keep it on your attendees’ minds and build up the excitement as the big day approaches. 

You can use trigger keywords for this setup like “Event,” “Reminder,” and “RSVP.”

Autoresponse: “Hi [Name]! It’s almost time for [Event Name] – tomorrow’s the big day! We start at [Start Time], so don’t be late. Need to double-check any details? We’re here to help!”

Promo Codes

Implement an auto-response when a customer exits your website without buying anything. This can be tied to their session activity, which is tracked if they are logged in or have agreed to cookies that monitor engagement.

Autoresponse: “Hi [Name], we noticed you checking out our [Product/Service]! We hope you found what you were looking for. As a thank you for visiting us, here’s a special 10% off promo code: THANKYOU10. Come back anytime to redeem your offer. Happy shopping!”

Newsletter Subscriptions

An SMS autoresponder makes it easy for customers to sign up for your newsletter. They can simply send a text like “Subscribe” to a designated number, and the autoresponder can reply with a confirmation message.

Common trigger keywords for this auto-response include “Subscribe,” “Join,” or “Newsletter.”

Autoresponse: “You’re in! Thanks for subscribing to our newsletter. You’ll be the first to know about our latest news and special offers.”

Opt-in Responses

When customers show interest in your service or promotion by sending a specific keyword, confirming that you comply with regulations is essential. This ensures they fully understand their subscription choice.

You might use a simple keyword that indicates agreement or confirmation, such as “Agree,” “OK,” or “Confirm.”

Autoresponse: “Hello [Name], you’re almost set to receive exciting updates from [Service Name]! Please reply with ‘OK’ to confirm your subscription, or text ‘STOP’ to cancel anytime.”

Customer Support

Setting up autoresponders to quickly handle common questions makes it easy for customers to contact you with more specific issues. 

Some useful trigger keywords to consider include “Help,” “Order,” “Account,” “Return,” “Hours,” “Location,” and “Payment.”

Autoresponse: “That sounds frustrating, [Name]. Let’s troubleshoot this together. Could you describe what’s happening, or would you prefer a call to guide you through the fix?

Feedbacks and Surveys

If you’ve just provided a service or sold a product and want to know what your customers think, you can set up an SMS system that makes it easy for them to share their experience.

Trigger keywords you could use include “Feedback,” “Survey,” or “RateUs.”

Autoresponse: “Hey there! We’d love to hear about your experience with us. Could you rate our service from 1 (poor) to 5 (excellent)?”

Texting example and reply

After-Hours Responses

When customers send after business hours texts, it’s important that they know their message hasn’t been overlooked. An SMS autoresponder can help by letting them know when they can expect a reply.

Trigger keywords that work as auto responses include “Help,” “Hours,” or “Support.”

Autoresponse: “Hello! Thanks for reaching out. We’re currently closed, but we’ll be back at 9 AM and will get back to you first thing!”

Out-of-Office Texts

You can set up specific trigger keywords commonly used in queries to ensure your customers receive a response even when you’re out of the office.

You can use these trigger keywords as auto responses: “Help,” “Question,” “Appointment,” “Order,” and “Support.”

Autoresponse: “Thanks for your message! We’re currently out of the office but will get back to you as soon as we return. If it’s urgent, please check our FAQ or contact us via email at [email protected].”

New Product Launch

To effectively announce a new product launch via SMS, you can set up an autoresponder that reacts to specific keywords related to the event. This allows customers who are already interested to get the information they need instantly.

Some triggers you could use include “New Release,” “Unveil,” and “Latest.”

Autoresponse: “Hey [Name]! We’re excited to introduce our newest addition, [Product Name]! Ready to revolutionize your [relevant experience or problem it solves]? Join us for the launch on [Launch Date]. Hit ‘MoreInfo’ to dive deeper or visit us at [Website Link] to stay ahead of the curve!”

Additionally, instead of just plain text, you can use MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) to capture customer’s attention in a way that text alone might not, which helps bring your message to life. You can include a vibrant photo, a fun video clip, and a message.

Benefits of Using SMS Autoresponders

Here are some of the key advantages of using autoresponders in your business:

Immediate Responses

One of the standout features of SMS autoresponders is their ability to respond instantly to customer inquiries. This lets your customers know they’re being heard right away, which helps make them feel valued and cared for.

24/7 Availability

With SMS autoresponders, your business is effectively open around the clock. You can provide that continuous touchpoint and reassure customers that they can always reach out and expect a timely reply. 

Saves Time & Reduces Repetition

Many customer inquiries are routine and can be addressed with standard responses. Autoresponders can manage these common questions effortlessly and reduce the redundancy of typing the same answers.


Personalizing your messages can make your auto-responses feel tailor-made for the person receiving them. Use what you know about their preferences, interests, and past interactions to create a genuine and engaging connection.

Cost-Effective Marketing and Support

SMS marketing cost is generally cheaper than many other forms of communication, such as phone calls or physical mail. Autoresponders reduce the manpower needed for repetitive tasks, which can also help save on labor costs. 

Plus, SMS text messages have a high open rate of 98% compared to emails, which makes them a more effective tool for reaching your customers directly with promotions, updates, or even personalized offers.

How to Set Up Auto-Replies on an iPhone

If you want to set up auto-response to let clients know you’re driving, you can use the “Do Not Disturb While Driving” feature:

  1. Start by opening the Settings app on your iPhone.
  2. Scroll down and find the “Do Not Disturb” mode.
  3. Click “Activate” under the “Do Not Disturb While Driving” section. When connected to a car’s Bluetooth, you can activate this feature automatically or manually.
  4. You can choose who receives your auto-reply. You can select “No One,” “Recents,” “Favorites,” or “All Contacts.”
  5. Scroll to the “Auto-Reply” section and tap it. Here, you can customize the message sent automatically while driving. 

How to Set Up Auto-Replies on Android

Android has no built-in feature for setting up SMS auto-replies, so you must use a third-party app to manage your automated text message response. 

  1. Go to the Google Play Store on your Android device and search for “SMS Auto Reply.”
  2. Download and install the app on your device.
  3. Once the app is installed, open it. Tap the Add/Edit button on the home screen to create a new auto-reply rule.
  4. At the top of the settings screen, you’ll find a dropdown list of templates. Tap the dropdown list and select another option to use a different preset template.
  5. To create a custom message, tap on the plus (+) sign to create a new template. In the ‘Message’ field, enter your desired auto-reply message.
  6. Once satisfied with your message and settings, tap the Save button to activate your auto-replies.

However, many businesses find that typical autoresponder features don’t cut it—they need something more reliable without using their phones for professional communications. A specialized solution like Textellent provides greater flexibility and advanced features for managing auto responses.

Why Use Textellent for Automated Text Responses?

If you’re exploring solutions to boost your lead management, Textellent’s innovative feature – Speed to Lead system, isn’t just any autoresponder. It’s designed to make managing and nurturing leads as efficient as possible. 

If someone fills out a web form or sends a keyword-triggered message, it immediately whips up an automated response. But what if the conversation ends there, and customers don’t reply? That’s where Speed to Lead comes into its own.

Textellent cleverly links drip campaigns to your initial response. If the prospect does not follow up, the system keeps the dialogue alive with carefully crafted text messages. This ongoing engagement helps nurture potential leads further and gives them a nudge here and there along their customer journey.

How to Set Up Autoresponders With Textellent

Here’s how to get started and make the most of Textellent’s features to ensure your business maintains a professional and consistent image.

Step 1: Get Started with Textellent

First, sign up for a Textellent account.

Textellent offers flexible pricing plans tailored to the unique needs of different industries. If you’re looking to find the right plan for your business, simply use the ‘Select Industry’ feature to explore the options available specifically for your sector.

For those in the Accounting and Tax field, a unique calculator will help you estimate your costs effectively.

Here’s a quick look at Textellent’s pricing options:

  • Lite Plan: Costs $29 a month and provides access to one user and 250 SMS credits.
  • Essentials Plan: Costs $49 a month and includes access to one user and 750 SMS credits—great for growing businesses.
  • Standard Plan: Costs $99 a month with access for two users and 2,000 SMS credits—perfect for larger teams.
  • Premium Custom Plan: Need more flexibility? This plan lets you customize everything from the number of users to the number of credits.

Step 2: Integrate Your Tools

Textellent seamlessly integrates with your business tools. Whether through a Chrome extension, Zapier, or directly via APIs, setting up is quick and tailored to fit your business needs.

Step 3: Craft Your Message

Now, let your creativity flow and compose your SMS. Take inspiration from the examples provided earlier and incorporate trigger keywords effectively. 

Step 4: Select Your Audience

It is important to choose the right recipients for your message. Segment your audience based on their interactions, such as past purchases or sign-up details. Textellent’s advanced tagging system helps you pinpoint the perfect audience.

Step 5: Schedule Your Message

Decide when your future messages should be sent out. Textellent allows you to plan automated campaigns that trigger based on specific customer actions—perfect for keeping your engagement timely and relevant.

Step 6: Analyze and Adjust

Finally, monitor your text messages’ performance. Textellent’s detailed analytics let you track everything from response rates to engagement levels. Use these insights to refine your strategy and ensure your texts always resonate with your audience.

Best Practices for SMS Autoresponders

When setting up text message autoresponders, remember a few key practices to ensure your communications are effective and appreciated by your audience. Here are a few key practices:

Keep It Clear and Concise

SMS messages should be short and sweet. Avoid fluff and start with the most important information. Stick to plain language that’s easy to understand and skip the jargon and complex words that might confuse them. 

Also, clearly state what action, if any, your customer needs to take. Whether visiting a website or confirming an appointment, make the instructions clear and easy to follow.

Personalize Your Messages

Even though messages are automated, they don’t have to feel robotic. Use the customer’s Name if you have it, and try to tailor the content to their interactions with your company.

Textellent allows you to use various tags to track different events, past interactions, client preferences, and each customer’s journey. For example, if someone has just bought a product from you, Textellent lets you follow up with a message that does more than just check in.

You could ask how they enjoyed their purchase and even offer some handy tips or suggestions about what they bought. 

Respond Promptly

When using SMS autoresponders, it’s important to ensure that your replies are sent immediately after a customer reaches out. Moreover, if there’s a specific situation where an immediate follow-up isn’t possible—for example if a customer’s inquiry requires more detailed attention—make sure your autoresponder lets them know when they can expect a response. 

For instance, you could set up an autoresponder message that says, “Thanks for reaching out! We’re looking into your query and will get back to you within 24 hours.” This would help set clear expectations and keep communication transparent.

Lead Nurturing Made Easy with Textellent Automated Solutions!

With Textellent, you can easily save time with smart replies, personalize your customer interactions, and improve your SMS marketing efforts to new heights. Don’t let another day pass with anything less than stellar engagement.

Benefits of Textellent

Never miss a lead! Sign up for a Free Trial or request a Demo consultation today.

FAQs About SMS Auto Responder

What kind of analytics can I expect from an SMS auto-responder?

You can typically track message delivery rates, read rates, response times, and user interactions, which can help you adjust your messaging strategy for better results.

How can I measure customer satisfaction from interactions with SMS autoresponders?

Include quick survey links or satisfaction rating requests at the end of your inbound SMS auto-responses to gather direct feedback from users about their experience.

Is it possible to personalize auto-responses based on customer behavior or purchase history?

Advanced SMS autoresponders like Textellent can dynamically insert personalization tokens and tailored content based on past interactions, purchases, or user behavior tracked by your CRM.