The SMS Responder Bot is an enhanced version of the SMS Directory Bot that allows users to program automatic replies in response to incoming  SMS messages. To do this the bot works by responding to keywords. Upon receiving an SMS message with a recognized keyword, the Responder Bot will send an automatic reply with a pre-configured message. If the Bot receives a message that does not match any keyword, it may try to match the message contents to a name in your company’s phone directory, and connect the sender to the corresponding person.

The SMS Responder Bot also lets you see a history of messages for a number and gives users the ability to send messages from within.  This guide will help you navigate, use, and configure the SMS Responder Bot.

SMS Responder BOT is priced per User assigned within a Domain and the number of keywords configured.  Please contact your sales representative for pricing details:


Setting up the SMS Responder Bot

To use the SMS Responder Bot, follow these steps:

1. Route a DID to the Responder Bot

In order to use the SMS Responder Bot application, you must route the SMS service for at least one DID. This can be done in the Manage DID portal with the following steps:

  1. Select a DID and Manage the SMS Service

  2. If SMS has not been enabled, then click the control to do so. Note that it can take up to 1 hour for SMS to be fully provisioned. The status will say "pending" while the SMS service is not yet provisioned.

    Note: SMS enabled DIDs will be charged as stated in your MSA.

  3. Route the SMS to the SMS Responder application by:

    1. Selecting the Directory Bot option in the drop-down selector beneath the Assignment section;

    2. Selecting the domain for the service to be associated with; and

    3. Clicking the Save icon.

After the routing has been saved it will show Directory Bot under the Assigned To column.

2. Assign an Entitlement for the SMS Responder

Follow the steps below on how to assign an Entitlement:

  1. Select the "Entitlements" menu option from the User menu in the SkySwitch dashboard.

  2. Select the SMS Auto Responder option from the drop-down selector of Offerings.

  3. Select the Domain.

  4. In the Overrides Only tab click on the Add Entitlement button.

  5. In the Add Entitlement dialog choose as Subscriber the PBX user to receive the entitlement and you may optionally override the Default Entitlement or leave it to the default offering value.
    Entitlements to choose from are Unavailable, Responder Bot 20, Responder Bot 50 and Responder Bot Unlimited. Note: Choosing Unavailable is equivalent to having no entitlement.

  6. Click the Apply button.

SMS Responder Bot is priced per User assigned within a Domain and the number of keywords configured.  Keyword configuration options are 20 keywords, 50 keywords, and Unlimited Keywords.   Please contact your sales representative for pricing details or send a message to

3. Log in to the SMS Responder UI

As a Reseller, you can access the SMS Responder UI directly from the Dashboard by choosing SMS Responder in the drop-down menu that appears when mousing over Manage PBX in the menu at the top.

MISSING SMS RESPONDER?   If you do not have this option available in your Dashboard, please ask the Control Tower to add it for you or email and state your request to have it added.

Branded SMS Responder Bot Portal

Users with Basic, Integrations Only, and Office Manager scopes may be directed to your branded SMS Responder Bot portal for them to log in and manage the bot for their DIDs. If a user is unable to login to this UI, it is likely because the user does not have the correct PBX User Scope and Entitlement.

For a guide to the branding process, you may read the article Branding the SMS Responder Portal.

Below are downloadable guides for you to be able to distribute to users.

Managing the SMS Responder Bot


Upon opening the SMS Responder UI, you will see the Dashboard which shows you usage statistics for the SMS Responder Bot. The statistics shown are an aggregate value of the statistics of all the phone numbers in your reseller account. Your statistics, therefore, is an aggregate of all your domains’ statistics.

Use the items on the left navigation pane to show statistics for Today, Last 7 Days, or Last 30 Days.

Responder Configuration

To manage the configuration settings for a phone number that has been set up with the SMS Responder Bot follow the instructions below.

  1. Click on the shop icon on the left menu pane to see the list of domains under your reseller account.

  2. Click on the Eye icon beside the domain you want to view.  You can use the search box to narrow down the domain under which number that you wish to manage is listed.

  3. In the list phone numbers under the domain, click the Eye icon beside the phone number that you would like to manage and you will then be brought to the Details page where you will see the settings and details for the chosen number.

Details Page

The Details page is divided into three sections: Settings, Info, and Tabs. Below are descriptions for the content of these sections.


In this section you can configure the following settings:

  • Default Response: This is the default reply to an incoming message that does not match any keyword (discussed in the Tabs section) or name in the PBX Directory. Edit the Default Response text to best suit your business. Tip: Make this generic but not vague so that it will properly guide both old and new senders to your bot.

  • Send Default Response checkbox: This is checked by default.  By unchecking the box, you will disable the sending of the Default Response when an incoming message does not match any keyword or name in your PBX directory. 

  • PBX Directory toggle button: This is enabled by default. When set to disabled, the bot will NOT search the PBX Directory for a matching name after it fails to match the sender’s message to any set keyword.


This section shows details regarding the phone number and other relevant information.

  • Owner User: The identifier of the user owning the phone number. 

  • Owner Domain: The domain or organization. This string identifies the organization within the bot system.

  • Plan: The plan to which the user who owns the phone number is subscribed to. When the user is subscribed to a specific plan, say Responder Bot 50, it will apply to all the phone numbers they own and this enables them to define up to 50 keywords for all of their phone numbers.

  • Server Date: The current server date. 

  • Server Time: The current server time. The Server Date and Server Time together serve as a reference for the timestamps of the messages listed in the History tab.


This section at the bottom of the page contains three important tabs: Keywords, History, and Send SMS. These tabs will be discussed in detail in the following sections.


This tab in the Details page is used to manage keywords for the bot. Incoming messages are evaluated for any matching keywords that you have set and if there is a match it will respond to the sender with the set response defined.

(A) Add a New Keyword

The Add Keyword button which when clicked will bring up the Add Keyword dialog used to configure a new keyword for the bot.

The following select special characters are allowed to form part of a keyword:

  • Colon :
  • Semicolon ;
  • underscore _
  • hyphen -
  • parenthesis ( )
  • square brackets [ ]
  • percent %
  • hash $
  • slashes / \

Note that these characters are not keyword separators but these are characters that can be part of a keyword. For example, the keyword can be ABC:DEF.

(B) Table of Keywords and Responses

This table shows all the defined keywords and the response text. 

(C) Edit or Delete Keywords

To the right of each keyword and response is an Edit button to change its configuration and a Delete button  to discard it.

(D) Search Box

You can enter a search term that will narrow down the displayed keywords and their responses if the search term is found in either.


The History tab shows all the incoming messages to, outgoing messages from, and call actions for the phone number being managed.  If the source number matches a PBX contact information it will display the name configured for the contact together with the phone number. From here you can also initiate replies to a message and download the historical logs as a spreadsheet formatted file.

(A) Date Filters

Set a From and To date and press the Filter button to show only messages within the dates chosen

(B) Refresh History

Clicking on the refresh button will show the latest incoming and/or outgoing messages.

(C) Search Box

Putting in a search term will narrow down the shown messages that contain the matching search term.

(D) Reply Buttons

Beside each entry is a reply button that can be used to send a reply to the message.
Note: This will open the Send SMS chatbox.

(E) Download Logs

The Export button when clicked will provide options for downloading of the shown messages into a CSV or Excel spreadsheet format file.

Send SMS

The Send SMS tab can be used to send new messages or view previous conversations organized by the senders’ phone numbers, which are shown on the left pane.  If a sender matches the mobile number listed under one of your PBX contacts it will display the name configured for the contact before the phone number. The right pane displays the messages sent and received when a conversation is chosen by clicking on the phone number in the left pane.

Tip: Seeing the conversation with the bot and the phone numbers will give you an idea of the quality of the responses. This may help you tweak your keywords and responses if you think the dialogue could be improved.

(A) Create New Message

The New Message button is used to send a message to a phone number not listed on the left pane. Clicking on the button will display two options: Mobile Numbers and Linked Accounts.

The option Mobile Numbers will let you enter into the recipient box the phone numbers that you would like to send a message to. For multiple recipients (Maximum of 50) enter the phone numbers while using a comma (,) to separate from each other.

The option Linked Accounts will let you choose from PBX Contacts to send messages to.  When you start entering a contact name it will show matching contact names to choose from.

Write the message to send in the lower input box and press the send button . The message you type will be sent via SMS to the destination number with the managed phone number as the sender.

New Message Notifications

Owners of phone numbers assigned to the bot/SMS responder are notified when new messages arrive for their phone numbers. 

Who are the owners of these phone numbers? The PBX user to whom the voice part of the number is routed to is considered the owner of the bot/SMS responder phone number.

Note: New message notifications will appear in the SMS Responder portal at least 2 minutes after the message is received by the SMS Responder system.

The number on the bell tells how many total messages are unread. Clicking on the floating bell button will show more details. This includes which phone number received the messages, from which phone numbers the messages come from, and how many new messages are unread.

On this popup, when you click on a sender number, you will be directed to the Send SMS tab which shows the dialog of messages between the phone number and the sender number.

To clear or mark as read all notifications you can click on Mark as read (All) at the bottom of the notification popup.

Testing the SMS Responder

To test the SMS Responder, simply send an SMS message from your mobile phone to the DID that you configured. You should receive the default response that you configured in the steps above.