Messaging • Last Updated 9/29/2023

3 tips for crafting outstanding SMS payment reminders

Outstanding SMS payment reminder messages are a powerful payment collection tool. Use our templates and tips to get started.


By Emily Bowen

SMS payment reminder example

Are you tired of chasing overdue invoices? Discover the power of SMS outstanding payment reminders and transform your collection process from a headache into a breeze. This guide will show you how to craft effective payment reminder SMS messages that get results.

What is an outstanding SMS payment reminder?

An outstanding SMS payment reminder is a text message sent to customers to remind them of an unpaid invoice. These reminders can be personalized and timed according to the invoice's due date, making them a highly effective method of prompting customers to settle their debts.

Though users receive the reminder via SMS, the actual payment method can vary. Some reminders may include a prompt to sign into an external portal or website, while others may enable users to pay directly via SMS.

The benefits of SMS payment reminders

SMS payment reminders offer a unique blend of benefits, making them an outstanding choice for businesses looking to improve their collection process. From the personal touch they offer to their high open rates and cost-effective delivery, SMS reminders are a powerful tool for managing overdue invoices. By leveraging the benefit below, businesses can improve their cash flow and maintain positive relationships with their customers.

Personal touch

SMS is a conversational communication channel. Most people use text messaging for one-to-one conversations, which gives SMS a personal, conversational feel. This personal touch can make a significant difference when dealing with a delicate issue like reminding someone about an unpaid invoice.

With SMS, you can craft your messaging to sound like your reminders come from a person, not a company. This approach makes customers feel like someone is reaching out to remind them of something they've forgotten rather than a business demanding payment.

Audience segmentation

Just like an email list, you can segment your phone database. This segmentation allows you to send messages to customers based on how long their invoice has been overdue and what action you might take if the invoice remains unpaid.

Increased open rate

Getting people to open your email can be challenging, and caller ID makes it easy to dodge phone calls. Email open rates are generally under 20%, whereas SMS open rates hover around 98%. It only makes sense that users are more likely to make payments if they see your reminder in the first place.

Cost-effective, efficient delivery

Collecting overdue payments should maintain the profit from the invoice. Bulk emails aren't free, and phone calls require significant time and resources with no guarantee of success.

In contrast, sending SMS messages costs less than a penny per message, depending on your provider. Telnyx only charges $0.004​​ per message part. Plus, SMS boasts better open rates, click-through rates, and responses than email or voice. These results make SMS payment reminders a more cost-effective choice for businesses, ensuring the cost of collection doesn't outweigh the value of the invoice.

Tips for crafting effective SMS payment reminders

Crafting effective SMS reminders requires a thoughtful approach that considers the customer's perspective, the message's timing, and the invoice's specific details. Here are some key elements to consider:

1. Personalize to the situation

Personalization goes beyond just including a customer's name in the message. It also involves tailoring the message to the specific situation. For instance, if the invoice is only a few days overdue, a gentle reminder may suffice: "Dear [Customer's Name], just a friendly reminder that your invoice #[Invoice Number] is due in three days."

However, if the invoice is several weeks overdue, a more urgent tone may be necessary: "Dear [Customer's Name], your invoice #[Invoice Number] is now overdue by [number of days]. Please make a payment as soon as possible."

2. Pick the right time

The timing of your SMS reminders can significantly impact their effectiveness. It's often a good idea to send the first reminder a few days before the invoice is due. Sending a reminder before the due date gives the customer ample time to make the payment and can prevent the invoice from becoming overdue in the first place.

For example, "Hello [Customer's Name], just a heads-up that your invoice #[Invoice Number] is due in three days."

3. Provide specific details

Include specific details about the invoice in your reminders. You can include the invoice number, amount due, date, and a link to where the customer can pay. These details make it easier for the customer to act on your reminder.

For instance, "Dear [Customer's Name], your invoice #[Invoice Number] for [amount] is due today. Please make a payment at [payment link]."

Crafting effective SMS reminders is a strategic process that requires personalization, careful timing, and the inclusion of specific invoice details. By tailoring your messages to the customer's situation, sending them at the right time, and providing all the necessary information, you can significantly increase the effectiveness of your reminders.

Remember, your goal isn’t just to get your invoice paid. You also want to maintain a positive relationship with your customers. With thoughtful and well-crafted SMS reminders, you can achieve both.

Outstanding SMS payment reminder examples

Here are four more examples of personalized SMS reminders for different stages of the payment process:

Pre-due reminder

SMS payment reminders 1

"Dear [Customer's Name], just a heads-up that your invoice #[Invoice Number] for [amount] is due in three days. You can make a payment at [payment link]. Thank you, [Your Business Name]."

On due date

SMS payment reminders 2

"Hello [Customer's Name], your invoice #[Invoice Number] for [amount] is due today. Please make a payment at [payment link]. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. Best, [Your Business Name]"

Late reminder

SMS payment reminders 3 Hi [Customer's Name], we noticed your invoice #[Invoice Number] for [amount] is overdue by [number of days]. Please make a payment ASAP at [payment link]. If you're experiencing issues, please contact us at [customer support number or link to support site].

Final reminder

SMS payment reminders 4 "Dear [Customer's Name], despite our previous reminders, your invoice #[Invoice Number] for [amount] remains unpaid and is now [number of days] overdue. Please make a payment immediately at [payment link] to avoid further action. If you need assistance, please contact us at [customer support number or link to support site]. Sincerely, [Your Business Name]"

To maintain a positive relationship with your customers, remember to keep your messages professional and respectful—even when dealing with late payments.

Complying with all relevant laws and regulations is essential when sending SMS reminders. Always obtain consent from your customers (ask them to opt in) before sending them SMS messages, and provide them with an option to opt out of receiving messages. Consulting with a legal professional is always a good idea if you need clarification on the legal aspects of sending SMS reminders.

For an overview of SMS compliance, check out our SMS compliance guide and checklist.

Get more invoices paid with Telnyx

It's clear that outstanding SMS payment reminders are the key to getting your invoices paid on time. Ignoring the tips outlined in this post could result in overlooked reminders and unpaid invoices. On the other hand, effectively crafted reminders delivered via SMS can streamline your collection process, boost customer satisfaction, and significantly improve your cash flow.

To fully experience the positive impact of these tips on your payment collection process, it’s critical to have a reliable communication partner by your side. With Telnyx’s next-generation SMS API, you have the power to send personalized, timely, and actionable payment reminders that resonate with your customers. Our automation features ensure you send out reminders consistently, while our segmentation capabilities enable you to tailor your messages based on the overdue status of an invoice.

Plus, our global network, comprehensive API support, and dedicated team of SMS experts make the transition smooth, enabling you to seamlessly port your existing numbers and start sending automated SMS reminders. Additionally, Telnyx offers competitive pricing, ensuring that the cost of sending payment reminders doesn’t exceed the value of your outstanding invoices.

Let Telnyx empower your business to craft outstanding SMS reminders that ensure efficient payment collection and foster strong customer relationships. Start your journey towards better financial operations and customer satisfaction today.

Talk to a Telnyx SMS expert to find out how your business can get more invoices paid with Telnyx.

Looking for more information on SMS? Check out some of these other resources:

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