Salesforce SMS Text Messaging Integration
Integrating SMS Text Messaging into Salesforce makes the world’s most popular CRM even better. Lightning-fast SMS text messages help enterprise businesses generate more leads, boost productivity, and increase sales. However, choosing the right SMS Text Messaging platform to integrate with Salesforce can be tricky. Here’s what you need to know.
When it comes to Salesforce® SMS text messaging integrations, there are dozens of options to choose from. Each one offering a different look, feel, and feature set. Yet, SMS providers and their view of what ‘integrated’ means can vary widely.
The best Salesforce SMS integrations with the highest ROI are built using Salesforce development tools and operate seamlessly within existing CRM environments. Top SMS integrations also include enterprise-grade features built for scale and reliability in a truly native integration that operates inside of your Salesforce CRM.
If you’re selecting a Salesforce SMS texting solution, insist on the following features:
Native Salesforce Integration
When adding SMS text messaging to Salesforce, interoperability is paramount. Native Integration means that applications are built directly within Salesforce’s own development environment. Using their proven CRM framework and tools ensures compatibility, high-performance, and rock-solid security.
While some SMS messaging providers promote “Salesforce Integration” it’s important to clarify exactly what is being offered. Often these integrations are merely data connections that sync contact info between your Salesforce account and the vendor’s application.
Some companies use behind the scenes automation tools like Zapier or Boomi to link Salesforce to their messaging services. Although highly useful overall, these 3rd party applications are seldom the best option for SMS text messaging.
Because each request (both inbound and outbound) counts as a transaction, the total cost of ownership can add up quickly. Zapier and other automation platforms do make custom integrations easier but may introduce other, unexpected consequences.
Depending on the service plan, “zapped” messaging delays can be upwards of 15 minutes or more. Timeframes that can be deal breakers for enterprise-grade businesses.
The vast majority of these solutions are NOT native in Salesforce and require you to send SMS messages via the provider’s infrastructure – not your own. True Native Integration eliminates these vulnerabilities/delays by sending and receiving messages from directly within your existing database.
Native integrations offer a host of other advantages over 3rd party solutions. For example:
Ease of Use
When apps are natively integrated, there’s no need for additional accounts, logins, or training. Users acquainted with Salesforce can take full advantage of native SMS integrations without the steep learning curve associated with a separate 3rd party solution.
Native integrations help employees increase productivity and reduce workloads on IT staff.
Native design also includes robust security features and granular control over user permissions and sharing rules. These are enterprise-grade SMS texting features designed with large organizations in mind. Native integrations must abide by the strict security standards that are part of the Salesforce CRM platform.
With native integration, information is never saved on 3rd party servers. Data storage and processing happen within the confines of your existing Salesforce instance. Local control significantly reduces the risk of a security breach or other data containment issue.
Native apps (those built on the force.com/lightning platform) also share Salesforce’s legendary uptime and performance metrics. Because native applications live entirely within the user’s Salesforce instance, they operate more efficiently and are less susceptible to errors or incompatibilities.
Businesses selecting a native SMS integration hosted in a cloud environment also reduce the risk of downtime from provider outages. Since native apps coexist in your existing Salesforce environment, database exchanges are NOT necessary between your IT infrastructure and 3rd party platforms.
As long as your local Salesforce instance is operational, so is your data.
However, to take advantage of these capabilities, it’s important to make sure your SMS provider is also hosted in a secure cloud-based environment with similar uptime and performance metrics.
Built using the same software development platform, native apps integrate effortlessly with other Salesforce applications. Additionally, powerful API and custom-coding features offer access to near limitless possibilities.
You’re free to connect with existing CRM applications and solutions or create your own. Knowing that each will “play” nicely with one another in any Salesforce environment.
CRM Services as Custom Objects
One of the most useful Salesforce capabilities lies in its data processing method. Using native apps, Salesforce classifies each data type as a separate object. Contacts, phone calls, and email messages all exist as unique entities in the CRM database.
When selecting a Salesforce SMS text messaging provider, choose vendors where SMS custom objects are natively incorporated. Doing so improves system performance, enhances data security, and makes generating reports, event triggers, and custom actions a breeze.
Additionally, should you ever decide to switch SMS messaging vendors, custom objects make the process easy. Whereas 3rd party integrations linked to your Salesforce instance can make uninstalling a nightmare.
Long Code vs. Short Code Options
An often-misunderstood element in SMS text integration is the use of Long Codes Vs. Short Codes. Yet, this single factor is one of the biggest differentiators.
Long Codes are 10-digit numbers traditionally associated with cell or landlines and behave in much the same way. These numbers are used for direct 2-way communication with two or more individuals – whether that be through voice calls, faxes, or texts.
The main benefit of long codes is calling and texting from the same number. Customers have direct access without being routed through different points of contact.
Long Codes are intended for a more familiar, personalized experience and provide for seamless two-way conversations.
However, using Long Codes to send Mass SMS Marketing Messages is not compliant with carrier restrictions. Doing so may result in forfeiture of the code and possible legal action against the owner(s). Thus, illustrating why Short Codes are necessary as well.
Short Codes are 5 to 6-digit numbers used specifically for marketing, alerts, and mass one-way communication. Unlike Long Codes, Short Codes are designed for Mass Notifications and SMS Marketing Messages. While somewhat impersonal, Short Codes allow businesses to send millions of messages at once to clients or subscribers.
Yet, Short Codes have their drawbacks as well.
Most SMS text messaging vendors provide shared Short Codes. Meaning, they are allocated to multiple brands at the same time. Each business chooses a different keyword to connect with customers using the same “shared” number.
For example, Short Code 27880 could have the keyword “Pizza” attached for a restaurant and “Weights” linked to a fitness center.
Shared Short Codes cannot engage in 2-way dialog using the same channel and retain conversational data for administrative use. Some claim to be able to do this, but it simply does not work well enough for an enterprise that is serious about customer service.
This often means businesses must jump to an alternate contact method to keep a customer conversation going. Switching numbers creates an additional hassle and makes the experience less personal.
Dedicated Short Codes can alleviate this problem but can be expensive (depending on volume) and still do not allow a customer to call back on the same number. Additionally, many SMS vendors don’t offer dedicated Short Codes.
Ideally, you want to find a provider who offers all three options at once. Long Codes, Shared Short Codes, and Dedicated Short Codes to fit an array of business use case scenarios.
SMS Text Messaging Service and Support
Incorporating SMS texting into Salesforce adds tremendous value. However, proper initial setup and ongoing support are crucial for leveraging your investment.
Look for SMS Providers who have built their own technology rather than simply plugging into another SMS API. True enterprise-grade SMS vendors maintain direct carrier connections and offer their own fully documented SMS API. Not only does this ensure high performance and optimal pricing, but also guarantees that your technology team can communicate with a seasoned developer to properly integrate the SMS solution.
The right SMS vendor provides dedicated installation teams to help integrate new services or transition away from old ones. Enterprise SMS solutions should also have built-in software wizards to step users through everyday tasks and help administrators troubleshoot common problems.
The best options include US-based support agents who understand the needs of large businesses and organizations.
Many times, overseas support options can have language barriers and support hours that don’t align with US business standards. This can result in problems going unresolved longer than necessary and causing needless headaches for customers and clients.
Enterprise Scalability & Pricing
If you are going to integrate with an SMS provider, it is imperative to select a vendor that has experience with large enterprises, direct carrier connections, and volume pricing as you scale.
Many SMS texting vendors primarily serve small businesses and are not as familiar with the unique issues that come from mass SMS volume – including mass deliverability and queuing issues from competing campaigns. Be sure to select a vendor whose core platform is built to handle mass volume with cloud-based capabilities to surge bandwidth and processing speed.
Pricing varies greatly as many SMS vendors build a simple software interface on top of another provider’s SMS API, so they are essentially resellers that have limited ability to offer deep volume discounts as you scale. The best SMS providers for enterprise businesses are those with direct carrier connections.
TrueDialog – Salesforce SMS Text Message Integration Experts
If you’re searching for a provider with all these capabilities TrueDialog is the perfect solution. Our Five-Star-Rated Enterprise-Grade SMS Texting Software is Built for Big Business, yet Made Easy for Small Business.
With an ISO 9001 database, 99.9% service uptime, direct carrier connections, and true native Salesforce SMS integration, TrueDialog is the perfect Salesforce texting solution for managers serious about personalized customer engagement at scale.
Our proprietary “TrueDialog” feature enables seamless texting with both Short Codes and Long Codes all combined in the same thread, so businesses can send mass text messages and then effortlessly engage in one-to-one texting conversations at scale.
Unlike many other solutions, TrueDialog has invested in building direct carrier connections which eliminate the middleman and provide our customers with two huge benefits: 1) improved deliverability by reducing potential points of failure and reliance on third parties and 2) a lower cost structure which allows us to price our service significantly lower than the competition.
Additionally, we offer local US-based tech support (in tech-savvy Austin, Texas) from knowledgeable staff and developers who understand the unique needs of enterprise businesses. Our industry-leading features are state-of-the-art yet still provide the best value in SMS text messaging.
No other SMS platform compares.
Interested in learning more?
If you’re ready to add integrated SMS Texting capabilities to your existing IT infrastructure, give us a call today at 512-501-5940 to schedule a demo of our Salesforce SMS integration and let us show you why we have the best SMS enterprise-grade platform on the market. Contact Us Today to Learn More