The SMS Platform

In this article:


Suggested next article: SMS Platform Customization

Introducing SMS surveys

Premium feature

The SMS platform is a premium feature that is in the process of being deprecated. If you do not have access to SMS surveys and are interested in this distribution method, please reach out to

The SMS platform provides a convenient way to collect feedback from your customers on their mobile devices. SMS surveys are fast, highly visible, and engaging.

Even better—smartphones are not required. There is no special app for your participants to download or special site to visit. With delivery occurring on a customer’s phone as a standard text message, you can be confident that your surveys will receive front and center treatment rather than getting lost in a busy inbox.

Note: If you are using our SMS platform, SMS should only be sent to people that have opted in to, or otherwise validly consented to, receiving communications from you. You must honor opt outs received from respondents. Your use of the services must be in compliance with applicable law.

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How SMS surveys appear to respondents

SMS surveys are delivered in three successive steps:

Score question (NPS, CSAT, etc.)
Open-ended Comment question
Thank you message
Each step appears in an SMS thread one at a time, allowing the customer to respond and move the survey along easily.

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Setting up the SMS platform

To set up your SMS platform, click “Survey People” to navigate to the Platforms page, then choose "Set up" under the SMS platform. You can then customize your survey. More information about what customization options are available can be found in the article Survey Platform Customization.

Can I change my SMS settings after setting them up?

Yes! Click on the "Gear" icon to the right of the SMS platform and choose "Review appearance" to view or edit that customization. (See SMS Platform Customization.)

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Testing the SMS platform

Sending yourself a test SMS message is a great way to experience SMS platform surveys like your respondents will.

To send a test SMS message:

Click on "Survey People" to head to the Platforms page
Click on the gear icon to the right of the SMS platform
Choose "Customize appearance"
Under Basic customization, enter your phone number and click "Send test"

These test SMS messages will take you through the entire survey flow, but your responses will not be saved to the Dashboard.

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Sending from the SMS platform

There are two options when it comes to sending your SMS surveys:

One-time Surveys can be sent immediately or scheduled for sending in the future with the One-time survey feature
Autopilot Repeating or recurring surveys can be scheduled with the Autopilot feature

As with the Email platform, these options can be combined by first sending a one-time survey, and then importing that same list of recipients to the Autopilot tab.

With SMS, there are a few details that are critical for a successful send:

Use the phone number header This should be the title of the column including the phone numbers (can also be lowercase or written as “phone_number”)
Format the numbers in E.164 The number value should start with + followed by the country code and then the number. The value should contain only + and digits, no spaces or other punctuation (ex. +17605555555)

We also recommend including the email address even when sending via SMS, so that you have a unified profile for the customer if you do ever want to send them email surveys.

Here’s an example of the required formatting for those phone numbers:

Name Phone Number
Ellie Newman +17605555555
Richard Nguyen +17605555556
George Vargas +17605555557

If you're seeing an error message like this:

Make sure your phone numbers are formatted as above. If you’re still having trouble after confirming the formatting is correct, please send us a note and we can help out!

A note about sending SMS surveys with the API

You can schedule SMS surveys using our API with just a few tweaks to the Sending to people endpoint. Just be sure to include the following parameters when sending:

  • channel: This parameter must be set to SMS to designate the survey channel
  • phone_number: Format the numbers in E.164, just as when you’re passing phone numbers within the platform

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SMS Smart Scheduling

SMS surveys sent while your customers are sleeping can result in negative experiences, less-than-positive feedback, and lower response rates. Delighted’s SMS platform leverages our Smart Scheduling to ensure surveys are only sent during reasonable hours (7am - 7pm). If you send an SMS survey during off-hours, Smart Scheduling will queue it up until the following morning!

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What does "SMS approval pending" mean?

If you’re seeing “SMS approval pending” after attempting to send SMS surveys, please reach out to our Customer Concierge team. We can get that approval pushed through manually so that you can get to sending!

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Are there limitations to who I can survey with SMS?


Due to strict spam policies around SMS communications, please ensure you have the correct privacy policies and terms of use in place on your side to allow you to communicate with your customers via SMS. These rules vary by country and region. If you aren’t already communicating with customers via SMS, we don’t recommend starting with Delighted SMS surveys.

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Can I set a local phone number to use when sending SMS surveys?


We can localize the number from which the SMS messages are sent to a specific country or region. Send us a message and we can specify a local number for your account.

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Why am I not receiving SMS surveys?

There are a couple of things that might be preventing your surveys from sending:

1 Phone number format Confirm you added a + and your country code (E.164 format)
2 Smart Scheduling Smart Scheduling avoids sending in the middle of the night, so if you are testing late at night (for the timezone of the country code and area code of the target phone number), the message will be queued for later delivery
3 Location We may not have support for SMS in your country yet

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Why am I not receiving the comment prompt?

The Delighted SMS platform works with two-way SMS, which is not supported by all countries. 

If you’re not receiving the comment message after providing a score, let us know and we can confirm whether two-way SMS is supported in your region.

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