SMS character limit

The SMS format limits the length of a message to 160 characters. If your message is longer than 160 characters, it will be sent as a multipart message. Most mobile service providers send multipart SMS messages as one message, however, some providers do not follow this practice and send them as separate messages.

If an SMS message contains any special characters, the length of the message will be limited to 67 characters.

When entering your SMS message, check the Messages indicator below the SMS TEXT box to see how many SMS text messages will be necessary to send the entire message. You can also check the Characters remaining indicator to see how many more characters you can enter in total. A multipart message can be up to 980 characters long.

When using Message Center, keep the following information in mind as it can affect the character count of your SMS message:

  • WellnessLiving uses Twilio to send SMS messages. Twilio will automatically encode your messages in the most compact encoding possible. In some cases, messages will be encoded in UCS-2 in place of GSM-7, which reduces the character limit from 160 to 80 characters. For more information, see Twilio Docs.
  • Avoid copying and pasting content from a Microsoft Word file into an SMS message template.
  • Avoid using special characters in your SMS message.
  • If you include an SMS variable in your SMS message, the result of the variables will be different from the variable name, which affects the character count of your SMS message.
    • For example, if your business name is Testing123, the variable [BusinessName], which is 14 characters long, will be replaced with Testing123, which is 10 characters long.
  • If you include a URL in your SMS message, it will automatically get shortened to use fewer SMS characters.

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