Standard SMS (text messaging) has a well-known limit of 160 GSM text characters. Other characters, such as emoji and/or foreign language characters, can further reduce that limit to just 70 total characters. (See this article for more info about non-standard text content and SMS.)
Naturally, this can be an obstacle to clear communications.
If an outgoing SMS message will exceed the maximum length for SMS, Omnilert will automatically truncate the message and insert a URL to view the full message.
Omnilert will display an on-screen notice that your message exceeds the allowable length for the text message format.
This notice just informs you so that you can edit your message if you want it all to be seen in the text body and not require a link.
The resulting text message will appear on subscribers' devices with a URL inserted to view the full content.
Most mobile phones will automatically turn the URL into a link that the subscriber can tap to view the full message in their phone's web browser:
Tips and Tricks
- Beware of Emoji! Emoji (aka "smiley faces" 😀 ) are everywhere. If you want to use them in your messages, that's fine. Just know that this will usually result in truncation of the message and a link being sent out via SMS since emoji are not part of the standard GSM character set used for SMS! (See this article)
- Don't "Bury the lead" Not everyone will click the link and read the whole message. So, be sure to put the most important parts of your content at the beginning of the text to ensure that your main message gets read.
- Edit your messages when possible. It's almost always preferable to not need a link to see the whole message. If your total message is just a little over 160 characters, you might want to take a moment to edit the content down to just under 160 characters.
- Truncation tip: Omnilert will attempt to truncate the message at the nearest word that still allows the link to fit inside the 160 character payload. This usually happens roughly 120-130 characters in a message's content.
- Text variables can affect character counting: The use of text variables can often affect the character count of a message. Of course, that variable nature of inserting external text into an outgoing message can/will affect the overall length.
- Image URLs will automatically display: If your longer text includes an image URL, the resulting web view will automatically display the image along with a clickable link to that URL.
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