Does your organization rely on text messaging to communicate with members, employees, students, patients or customers? Chances are, you can benefit from an API SMS Gateway. This makes your communication channels work flawlessly with the devices owned by your message recipients, helping translate text messages sent from a software system into a format that is compatible with most cellular phones.

What is an API SMS Gateway?

To understand what an API SMS gateway is, it's best to know a little bit about what the acronyms and terms stand for. There are many differences between the common messaging services, platforms and software used to send messages between devices.

What is an SMS API?

Text messages are made possible by SMS messaging technology. SMS stands for "short message service." This is an extremely common and standardized communication protocol, which is typically used on mobile devices like phones or tablets.

This is different from messaging within a single platform using a completely software-based application like Facebook Messenger. That kind of messaging is all in a single format, whether you are on your computer or your mobile device.

When you use an SMS gateway, you take advantage of an API (application programming interface) which allows integration between different devices and applications, even if the format is different. This helps ensure your text messaging runs smoothly, no matter what device you or the recipient are using at the time.

What is an SMS API Used For?

An SMS API can be used for many different purposes. Each purpose may have rules and regulations that apply to text messaging. Making sure you are compliant with these regulations can prevent you from being saddled with heavy fines or having your SMS campaign or mass text messages left undelivered.

How Does an SMS API Work?

An SMS gateway allows every device, web application and message type to share data by transforming the format into something intelligible to the receiving device, even if the message didn't start out that way. A good example is using your laptop or desktop PC to send a text message to someone's mobile phone.

The message starts in a software application on your computer, travels through an SMS gateway, and is translated into a format the mobile device is capable of understanding. The messaging gateway API makes this SMS integration possible and ensures that incoming messages are swift and ungarbled.

An API SMS gateway can also work in reverse; a mobile device can send a text message that may be opened and read on a personal computer. The gateway does the heavy lifting, ensuring the format is correct when the SMS message or even bulk SMS messages reach the recipient.

Woman sitting in a cafe reading a text message on her smartphone.Using an API SMS gateway allows you to send texts to customers from a variety of devices, including computers and tablets.

Functions of an SMS Gateway API

The base functionality of the SMS Gateway API is to provide that connection between the gateway and your own platform or application, delivering an interpretive value to ensure all different systems and devices work seamlessly with one another.

What Other SMS API Functions Are Available?

Other functions include the ability to automate messages based on triggers in your system; for example, when an appointment is made, a text message can be automatically sent to remind the recipient 24 hours before their appointment. 

You can also send SMS messages to groups of people from lists for marketing or groups within your organization's membership rolls. In this case, you might create a list of phone numbers belonging to people who can receive SMS notifications, then use the list to create an SMS marketing campaign by distributing mass text messages.

Incoming SMS can be supported to allow for tasks like identity verification or two-factor authentication. Mobile devices are often the preferred method of verification when trying to join a new group or change a password. The user can respond to a text with one of their own, submitting a code or typing an answer to a question to confirm or reject it.

Benefits of an SMS Gateway API

Using an SMS gateway API allows your organization to seamlessly send individual and bulk SMS as needed for any of the following purposes:

Organization Member Updates 

An SMS gateway can be used by organizations that want to be able to send out many text messages at the same time, or staggered to their member body. With an SMS API, this can be accomplished from a computer that holds the entire membership database, and the text can be sent individually and arrive in readable format, no matter what device the recipient is using at the time the message comes in.

Company Employee Communications

Likewise, if you are an employer, you may want to be able to communicate with employees across a range of devices and know that your SMS texts are being reliably delivered. This can allow you to carry out tasks like sending schedules, resetting passwords and enabling two-factor authentication to improve security.

Student Body Alerts

Another space where an API SMS gateway can prove useful is for use with students. Text messages can be used by teachers to send reminders when papers are due to an entire class, or as a way to send individual messages like grade updates or requests for a one-to-one meeting. They can also be used by administrators to stay in touch with students about meal plans or room assignments.

Patient Scheduling and Reminders

Doctors' offices can stay in touch with patients and manage scheduling using SMS. This facilitates easy reminders, rescheduling and follow-ups on the patient's preferred device. It's an ideal solution for patients who are hard to reach. You can add functionality to let patients reply with a simple Y/N in response to a reminder.

Marketing to Customer Lists

Finally, you can use text messaging to send customers wanted advertisements, such as offers or promotions keyed to their interests, past order history and even location. An API SMS gateway can handle a large volume of such text messages, and help turn one-time customers into repeat customers.

Implementing an SMS Gateway

Adding an SMS gateway API to your SMS service is easy if you integrate using Swift SMS Gateway. The Swift SMS API supports full database integration, custom message handling, scheduling and reporting, all under a single master dashboard, even if you need several sub-accounts.

You can achieve maximum SMS capability, with the functionality to send an SMS text message manually or automatically, individually or in bulk, as needed to service your organization's needs.
 
Are you ready to take text messaging to the next level with an API SMS gateway? Contact Swift SMS Gateway for a free demo today.