Keyword Reply for Automated Flows

Learn how to use our Keyword Reply feature to increase customer engagement in your automated flows.

Table of Contents

What is the Keyword Reply feature?

  • The Keyword Reply feature enables users to reply to a particular keyword in a text message in order to initiate a specific action, deal, or response from the merchant.
  • Using Keyword Reply, you can create interactive, two-way dialogues with your subscribers.
  • You are not restricted to just one question and keyword reply.
    • You have the flexibility to include multiple questions and response options, enabling you to gather more detailed product preferences from your subscribers.
  • Keyword Replies can be added to MMS messages too.
  • You can utilize the same keywords across different flows and even use them multiple times within the same flow.
  • You cannot add Opt-in, Help, or Opt-out keywords to any flows as “conversational” Keyword Replies.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Keyword reply only works in Two-way messaging countries (such as the US and Canada) Recart does not limit the message sending if you target one-way countries. Subscribers will receive the message, but will not be able to respond.

How to create Keyword Replies and add them to automated flows

  1. Go to your Automated Flows page and select the flow to which you would like to add a Keyword Reply 


  2. Open the text editor of the SMS message you would like to add the Keyword Reply to

    1. Select the Keyword icon

    2. Type the Keyword in which you would like to use

    3. Click Insert keyword


  3. Once the keyword is added, it will appear under the Message item as an option for linking it to another message or logic item.

    1. It is important to connect the keyword to another item to trigger the desired action, deal, or response from you in response to the keyword trigger.


  4. You can utilize the same keywords across different flows and even use them multiple times within the same flow.

    1. If the subscriber receives more messages with the same keywords included we consider a subscriber reply response to the latest sent message containing the specific keyword.


Some use cases for Keyword Reply in automated flows

Use case: SMS Receipt feedback follow up - send link to a feedback survey; OR ask customers who loved the product to leave a review while contacting those who were not too happy.



Use case: Send VIP customers a special discount and increase engagement with them


Use case: Send a follow-up message to customers who enter a segment because they have purchased a certain product whether they are interested in your new stock or would like to leave a review


Use case: Send a follow-up message to customers who enter a segment because they have purchased a certain product about restocking their supplies


Use case: get interactive in your welcome flow by asking customers whether they want to view reviews


Use case: get interactive in your welcome flow by offering customers the chance to enter a competition


More ideas

  • when someone enters a segment, send them a special offer
  • ask a product-interest-related question in your Welcome flow
  • trigger a specific automated flow based on a keyword
    • e.g. reply XYZ if you want to track your orders
  • post-purchase feedback - are you satisfied:
    • with your order?
    • the help you received?(eg. help flow or in order refunded flow)
    • delivery speed?
  • recharge reply-to-buy journey
    • upsell a product with a keyword
  • rate our service
    • customer rates your company’s service between 1-5
      • if it’s low - redirect to contact
      • if it’s high - rate it publicly
  • use Keywords in the Help flow directing a help conversation to the subscriber - chatbot feeling

Keyword guidelines

  • You cannot use Operational keywords such as Opt-in, Help, and Opt-out keywords
  • Use alphanumeric characters (A–Z and 0–9)
  • Keywords cannot contain special characters or spaces. Eg: !, @, or $.
  • Keep keywords between 1 and 20 characters.
  • Keywords are not case-sensitive.
  • No Emojis: Emojis render differently from traditional characters, thus you can't use them as keywords.
  • Phrases, sentences, or spaces: Keywords can't be longer than a single word; any other spacing will be excluded.
  • Avoid common words that could be used in a normal text conversation, such as “the,” "that," "are," "can," "here," "about," or “and,” which may erroneously subscribe someone who didn’t intend to subscribe.

❗Important Notes❗

  • Editing

    • You cannot edit a keyword. If you would like to change the keyword, you will need to delete it first and create a new one.
  • Validity of the keywords

    • The keyword inherits the same status as the automated flow. Keywords will trigger the next message sending when the flow is active.
  • Incorrectly spelled keyword or lengthy response from a subscriber

    • There may be instances where the subscriber incorrectly spells the keyword or provides a longer response than expected.
    • In such scenarios, we will refrain from sending any auto-response. This is to ensure that the subscriber can reach out to you without receiving an automated message.
    • The message will be directed to the Inbox instead.
  • Quiet hours and Smart sending

    • Subscribers expect merchants to send them a message instantly, even if they’ve already received multiple messages or it’s during Quiet Hours.
    • Therefore, Quiet Hours and Smart Sending are disabled automatically for the next message.
  • Two-way vs. one-way countries

    • Keyword reply only works in Two-way messaging countries. However, we do not restrict message sending targeting one-way messaging countries.
    • Customers will still receive the message, but they will not be able to respond.
    • A warning will be displayed when targeting one-way subscribers in the segment in an automated flow.

      Screenshot 2024-05-06 at 18.32.54


In case you have any questions or need assistance with setting up Keyword Reply, do not hesitate to contact the Customer Support team, we are happy to help. 😊