Landline phones were created to connect us over voice, but they’re not well known for texting. Can you text a landline?
Yes, texting a landline is possible, but the landline needs to be enabled and equipped with the right software to both send and receive texts. In this blog post, learn why a landline phone is still relevant today and why businesses find value in being able to text a landline.
What is a landline?
A landline is a phone connection that requires physical cables to transmit a call. For comparison, our mobile phones transmit calls wirelessly through radio waves. Landline phones were our only option until mobile phones were introduced.
Unsurprisingly, landline usage in the home has decreased since mobile phones have become more accessible to the public. Mobile-only homes are now the norm, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.
Can you text a landline?
Yes, you can text a landline, but the recipient will need additional software to receive, read and compose a text message if they want to reply. For the general public, there is little need to text a landline given that we can text one another from our mobile phones. So, a personal landline doesn’t need to be text-enabled.
The need to text a landline phone number is more relevant for businesses that would like the option to communicate with their customers over text messages.
What happens if you send a text to a landline?
When someone sends a text to a landline from a mobile phone and the landline isn’t enabled with text messaging software, the text message is sent into the void. There’s nowhere for the text to land, so the text is left undelivered, floating in the ether. Texting software is needed to capture those text messages.
Consumers themselves don’t really wonder, “Can you text a landline?” when they text businesses. Most send a text assuming that a business phone number is already text-enabled. According to a recent Zipwhip survey, 43% of consumers have proactively texted a business. Additionally, one in three have texted a business and never received a response. (The latter indicates they’re texting a business that has not yet text-enabled their phone number.)
The difference between texting a landline and Text to Landline service
Texting a landline shouldn’t be confused with Text to Landline, a service offered by some phone providers for landline phones.
Text to Landline service converts texts sent to a landline into a voice message and subsequently calls the recipient’s landline phone number to deliver the message. The recipient will hear the converted voice message when they answer the phone or the message will be delivered to their voicemail.
Text to Landline can be helpful for the occasional intercepted text message in the home. For businesses, however, text-to-voice service isn’t pragmatic for managing a high volume of customer communications. The customer will feel ignored since there is no way to text them back.
Is there a good reason to keep a landline phone?
Family members each have their personal phone lines via their mobile devices, so a landline phone isn’t necessary for a home.
Businesses, however, greatly benefit from keeping their landline phone number (and enabling it with texting software). There are several reasons to keep a landline, especially if the business has owned the phone number for a while.
- A phone number offers brand recognition and a centralized avenue for customers and clients to reach your business.
- Landlines offer high-quality phone calls due to their wired connection. Mobile phones commonly offer spotty or dropped connections.
- Landline phones are reliable during power outages. Internet-based calling (VoIP) doesn’t offer that same benefit.
It may seem unnecessary to give customers the option to text a landline given that employees can text from their own mobile phones. However, it’s ill-advised to communicate with customers over a personal phone’s default messaging app due to a lack of safety features in our SMS apps, among other reasons.
Furthermore, native SMS apps don’t have the productivity tools that businesses need to scale. A few examples include composing text messages from the convenience of a laptop or scheduling text messages ahead of time.
Texting-for-business software modernizes the landline phone. Businesses can text their customers without the need to change phone numbers or purchase an additional line.
Can you text a landline? Yes, you can with business-texting software
So how does it work? Business-texting software will re-route text messages to the software where employees can read and reply to texts on their own laptops or via a mobile app. Calls will still go through your landline uninterrupted.