Designing Textlocal’s SMS API around simple integration

Query code screenshot 2The new API opens the doors to being able to use more of the Textlocal messaging platform within your projects – whether it be a mobile application, a brand new web based CRM, a desktop application, or even popular products such as WordPress, Joomla and much more.

The key to successful integration is not to over complicate things. This is where I feel the API is most successful. Its been developed over the last 18 months, and will continue to be improved, adding new features as we create them, from the humble ‘send sms’ to more advanced features such as contact management and message delivery statuses.

If you are wondering if you can integrate Product X with Textlocal, then the answer is more than likely yes, as long as you can make a web request, or a plugin is made for it- This may sound daunting to most, but the key to it is not to over complicate it. Once you think about all you need is a text message and a mobile phone number, and coding-wise, all you need to do is get the message and number, make a web request, and do something with the results of the request. The result is always a JSON encoded object, and its easy to understand. The majority of languages have native support for JSON and if you are unsure how it works, you will find a near endless supply of information in any language to help you on your way. When you consider your solution with this approach, you will find its really simple to get your software Textlocal-enabled.

The API is not there just for sending messages – you can have fun with it too.

Query code screenshotWith Messenger, you can forward messages sent to either a keyword or a long number to a script, this script can then process this message, and then spit things back to the sender, you are really only limited to your imagination. I have myself hooked up the new API to a PHP chatbot using a dedicated inbound number, which is always a great laugh for people who have had a little too much to drink, or as a way for people to play games – like Text roulette – people can text in their bets, their bet is shown online, and everyone can have some fun.

On the flipside, the API can be used for enhancing the customer experience – we have many customers who SMS enable the ordering process on their site – when customers place an order, a personalised text message gets sent to them to confirm the order – emails can get lost, deleted, marked as spam, but SMS tends not to be deleted, and you get a delivery receipt so you know when people got the message – something that is not easy with email. Customers can then get dispatch notifications by text, or reminders for an upcoming appointment.

When you think about it, as little as one simple line of code can improve communication to your customers, more personal and more reliable than email, or it can be used for fun and profit. It’s down to your own imagination on what you do with it, we just provide the tools, and the tools are easy to use.