Support Guide

Notifications (Twilio SMS)

  1. Setup in Twilio
  2. Setup in Checkfront
  3. Creating a Notification
  4. SMS Message Variables
  5. Staff Notifications
  6. Customer Notifications
Where do I access this in Checkfront?
Your booking details are accessible via your main menu bar at Booking > Index

 

With SMS notifications you can send short text messages to customers and staff. You can remind customers about a booking date, follow up with a quick post-booking thank you and update staff on the status of a booking.

Twilio is a cloud communication service that makes SMS and voice services a breeze, not to mention affordable. SMS messages cost just 1 cent per message (USD).

SMS notifications in Checkfront work similar to email notifications. You can select staff and/or customers as recipients, and trigger an SMS based on the status of a booking. You can even schedule your notifications based on the booking start or end date.

The SMS text can include dynamic details using booking variables. For example:

Hello! This is just a reminder that your booking for {$BOOKING_ITEMS} is on {$BOOKING_DATE}.

Setup in Twilio

To enable the Twilio add-on, you’ll first need to create a Twilio account, including a Twilio phone number (this is used as the from number in your notifications).

You’ll want to note down your Twilio phone number, Account SID, and Auth Token.

To find your Twilio Account SID and Auth Token, look at the top of your dashboard when logged in to your Twilio account as demonstrated below:

 


 

Your Twilio Number(s) can be found under the Numbers tab in your main Twilio navigation menu:

 

twilio-numbers

 

 


 

Setup in Checkfront

When you have the credentials noted, login to your Checkfront account. Go to Manage > Add-ons, select Twilio and supply the credentials in the appropriate fields.

 

Twilio Select

 

Once activated, you can go to Manage > Notifications > SMS and create your SMS notifications.

 
 


 

Creating a Notification

Notifications can be managed at Manage > Notifications in your Checkfront dashboard. To create a new Twilio notification, navigate to the SMS tab, then click on the + New Notification button in the left sidebar.

 

2015-09-01_09-53-28

 

You should now see the edit screen for your notification. This is where you choose the options to define how your notification will function, how it will be scheduled and what it will say.

 

Twilio New

 

Booking Event

The status that triggers the notification. You can create multiple notifications for a single status. Notifications are based on the status of the booking, for example PAID or CANCELLED. See booking statuses for a full list. When a status is changed on an invoice, the appropriate notification will be triggered.

Deliver

By default, notifications are sent as soon as the event is triggered. If you’d like to schedule the notification, select scheduled and choose either before or after the start, end or creation date of the booking. See scheduled emails below.

Recipient

Set the recipient of the e-mail notification. To send the notification to the customer, select Customer. To deliver the message to your staff, select one of the available accounts, or All Staff.

Notification Name

This will not be seen by the customer, but is simply a way for you to identify your notification when making any changes later on.

Message

Type the notification message here. You can use any of the variables listed below to dynamically include particular booking details.

 
 


 

SMS Variables

Dynamic SMS variables can be included in your text messages to supply important information to the recipient.

{$CUSTOMER_NAME} Name of the customer.

{$CUSTOMER_EMAIL} E-mail address of the customer.

{$BOOKING_ID} Unique booking ID.

{$BOOKING_URL} URL to the receipt of the booking, along with links to PDF and Payment pages.

{$BOOKING_PAYMENT_URL} Link to payment page for this booking. If no balance is due this will redirect to receipt (BOOKING_URL) page.

{$BOOKING_TOTAL} Total amount for the booking. Will include currency formatting.

{$BOOKING_ITEMS} Name of item(s) being booked. Multiple items will be comma separated.

{$BOOKING_DETAILS} Details of item(s) being booked. This is from the details box provided in the item setup. Multiple items will be separated by a new line, and includes the item name.

{$BOOKING_DATE} Date of booking. May include a date range or time depending on the booking.

{%COMPANY_NAME} Name of your company.

Staff Notifications

To send notifications to your staff members, they need to have a mobile number configured in their Checkfront account profile. You should include the area code, but not the country code. For example 250-555-5555.

 
 


 

Customer Notifications

If you have the customer_phone field configured in your field editor, Checkfront will use this for mobile notifications. You may wish to change the label for “Phone number” to “Mobile Phone”, and add a new paragraph that explains that you will be sending an SMS to this number.

This add-on is free to all plans, not including fees from Twilio. Please note SMS notifications are currently one way only.