We can all agree that hyperlinks are everywhere. They lead visitors from one web page or site to another, and it’s how site crawlers like Google and Bing find and index websites.
They’re the <a> tags found everywhere, and in HTML code, they look like this:
<a href=“https://www.burstsms.com.au”>Visit our website!</a>
Next, we have email hyperlinks. Instead of taking you to another web page, it opens your default email client with the email address field preset. Optionally, the subject line and body copy can also be preset.
They look like this:
<a href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org?subject=SMS Marketing&body=Looking for some ideas for my next SMS campaign">Contact us</a>
What are SMS hyperlinks?
Now back to the main topic of this post: SMS hyperlinks, which are also known as click-to-text links. Despite being an easy setup, not many businesses use it as part of their mobile marketing strategy.
Here’s an example of an SMS hyperlink in HTML code:
<a href="sms://+1234567890?body=Your%20prefilled%20message%20goes%20here.">Send us an SMS message</a>
Like an email hyperlink, the mobile number is preset, and you can optionally do the same for the body copy.
Why use SMS hyperlinks?
If you paid attention to the mobile trends recently, then you may already know how quickly mobile traffic grew over the past several years.
Adobe Analytics reported an 89% increase in smartphone web traffic since 2015, so it’s more important than ever to find mobile-friendly ways for customers to contact you. Consider adding it to your:
Product, service, or listing pages
Consumers also want more personalised experiences from businesses, according to Accenture. They want 1-to-1 digital conversations—and having a click to text link makes it very easy to personalise their web experience and for them to get in touch with you.
Note: If replying via text is not your style, check out our Email to SMS feature.
How to set up an SMS hyperlink
Though SMS hyperlinks are very similar to email hyperlinks, there's a caveat. Presetting the message field is tricky. What works for Android phones doesn’t necessarily work for iPhones.
The difference is in one symbol (? vs &).
For an Android Device: <a href="sms://+61459333444/?body=hello%20there!">Text us!</a>
Text us! (for Android)
For an iPhone Device: <a href="sms://+61459333444/&body=hello%20there!">Text us!</a>
Text us! (for iPhone)
If you’re really keen, preset the body copy with an SMS keyword that they can use to opt-in to your mobile database.
Presetting the message body is optional. But if you really want to include it, we recommend that you:
Put your message into an URL encoder to encode the message. As you can see above, there’s a %20 between ‘hello’ and ‘there’. This represents a space in a URL. There’s more to it but we won’t get into it here.
Create two SMS hyperlinks (one for Android and the other for iOS), and have your developer hide and show the link depending on what device your visitor uses.
If you can’t be bothered by the technical details or don’t have a developer, then presetting the number field is all you need to do.
For both devices (recommended):
<a href="sms://+61459333444/">Text us!</a>
Here’s an important tip. Have your developer hide your hyperlink for desktop visitors.
Bonus: click-to-call links
Last but not least, we want to introduce you to Call hyperlinks.
They’re similar to SMS hyperlinks, except that they open up your visitor’s dialer app with your mobile number preset.
<a href="tel:+1300-012-004">Call Us!</a>
Most modern browsers can recognise phone numbers on a web page, but this hyperlink is useful for buttons.
As you can see, adding an SMS hyperlink to your website is easy, and it can make it more convenient for your customer to get in touch with you. Give it a try and let us know how it goes.