How to send automated appointment reminders
Most businesses will want to send an SMS or email reminder to customers before their appointment starts, which helps to keep customers in the loop and reduce no shows.
Reminders in Timely are completely automated, you just need to turn them on! This guide will step you through the process of getting an SMS and/or email reminder set up.
Important information about booking reminders
- You can set up one email and/or one SMS reminder for your business.
- Email reminders are included in your plan at no additional charge.
- SMS credits can be purchased in packs, from 100 to 10,000 SMS credits.
They never expire and carry over month-to-month, so you only pay for what you need. Full SMS pricing details for your country can be found on our website.
Create a new reminder message
To turn on your reminders head to Setup > Customer messages and click Add new message in the top right corner.
At the top of the page, you will see a list of customer messages. Choose Customer reminder from the options:
Select the type of message you'd like to send
You can choose to send either an SMS or an Email reminder, or setup one for each.
SMS and email reminders will need be set up separately, so it's possible to set different reminder intervals/setting for each type.
Select which reminder type you'd like to set up:
Choose when you'd like to send reminders
Once you've selected which type of reminder you'd like, you can choose when you'd like it to be sent.
There are two different options:
Set the reminder to send X hours before the customer's appointment starts
You have a number of options available, from 2 hours up to 1 week before:
E.g. When 24 hours is selected, a customer with an appointment at 3pm on Saturday will receive a reminder at 3pm on Friday.
Send your reminders at a set time, a couple of days before the booking
First, choose the day you'd like the reminder to be sent:
If you choose the 1 day prior setting, then only bookings added at least 24 hours before the appointment start time will be sent reminders.
Then, choose the time of the day:
Set reminders for "Pencilled in" bookings
If you have reminders turned on you also have the option to enable/disable reminders specifically for 'Pencilled-in' appointments:
- SMS reminders: check the box next to Send SMS reminders to customers with pencilled-in appointment under the SMS reminders section (see above).
- Email reminders: check the box next to Send email reminders to customers with pencilled-in appointment under the Email reminders section (see above).
For more information on how they work, check out our How to use Pencilled in bookings guide.
Set up your SMS reminder templates
If you're setting up an SMS reminder, you will also be able to set the template for your SMS reminders:
Our How to customise the SMS templates guide steps you through that entire process.
At the moment, it isn't possible to completely customise the content of your email reminders. Check out our How to customise your email messages guide for more information.
You can see an example of an email reminder below, which will be automatically populated with the customer and booking information:
Adjust your SMS and email settings
To make sure your reminders send without any issues, make sure to check your SMS and email settings.
Our How to adjust your SMS and email settings guide steps you through that entire process.
Things to remember:
- By default SMS reminders are only sent between 8:00am and 9:00pm in your local time. You can adjust this in your SMS settings (see above).
- Any SMS reminders generated during outside of the sending window will be delayed until the message start time on the following day. These will be shown as Pending in the messages tab.
- Emails are sent 24/7 at any time of the day (or night), so be mindful of this when selecting a reminder time.
- We won’t send a reminder if you place an appointment after a reminder would have been sent e.g. if your reminder time is 48 hours and you place an appointment within 24 hours of the appointment start time, the system won’t send a reminder.
- Customers can have their own reminder settings, that differ from the business. Check out our How to set individual reminder settings for customers guide for more information.