With mobile usage growing exponentially in recent years, texting has become a useful customer engagement method for businesses everywhere, as it enables near-instant communication and allows organizations to reach clients and prospects where they are. However, texting can also be a very personal approach and not the right medium for all kinds of business communication. Here are 10 situations when a company should definitely avoid reaching out to customers via text.

Texting is becoming a popular way to reach out to customers with information, but what are some times when you should not communicate with potential customers via mobile? Why?

1. If They Are Unsatisfied or Concerned

Never text with a customer if they have concerns or are unsatisfied with something. It is easy for a message’s tone to get misconstrued. Don’t take that risk. If you have a customer who needs help or to be reassured, pick up the phone and speak with them directly. It might not always be the easiest path forward, but it’s the only one. – Zach Binder, Bell + Ivy

2. When Sending a Message That Requires Context

You should never text your customers if your message requires context because such messages are easy to misinterpret. If you want to avoid miscommunications, never use texting for such messages. Email marketing can be a much better option for these instances. – Josh Kohlbach, Wholesale Suite

3. If It’s About Money or Legal Matters

There are certain topics that need to be done in person and should not be dealt with over a text. Anything related to legal matters or money should be discussed face-to-face or via phone. Don’t try to negotiate a price or get a payment via text. It will make you look unprofessional and desperate. Use texts for simple reminders and for check-ins but not to deal with sticky topics. – Maria Thimothy, OneIMS

4. If You Want Them to Complete an Order

You should avoid texting customers if your goal is to get them to complete an order on the spot. Retargeting campaigns are much more effective through email and social media. Use texting to get people to sign up for events, read content or complete a survey. Save sales talk for other platforms. – John Turner, SeedProd LLC

5. If You Need to Send a Lengthy Message

When communicating with customers via text, make sure you don’t send long messages. People already don’t like to receive texts from businesses and brands, so if they signed up for yours, it’s crucial to keep them on board. Refrain from sending long texts or multiple texts at once. This ensures that you keep customers’ attention and encourage their action. – Jared Atchison, WPForms

6. If You’re Trying to Resolve a Conflict

The worst time to reach out via text is when there’s a need for conflict resolution. It’s unprofessional, it’s annoying and it is certainly not effective. Texts have one problem: their tone is more about inferring than about intention. It depends on how the other person perceives it. If they’re not in a good mood, it’s likely your tone is going to come across as bad. – Asim Rais Siddiqui, Tekrevol

7. If Sending Long, Suspicious-Looking Links

You shouldn’t communicate with customers via text if you’re going to send them long links that look suspicious and make them question your brand’s security protocol. Customers need to feel safe interacting and engaging with your business, and the first step is in how it communicates with them. Any links sent to customers should be shortened and go straight to your website. – Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

8. When There’s No Call to Action Involved

Don’t text when there’s no call to action involved. SMS or text marketing in and of itself requires an action taken on the part of the customer or the strategy basically becomes irrelevant. It’s not a method recommended for just sending out information. You can use other strategies for that, like your blog. – Andrew Schrage, Money Crashers Personal Finance

9. If It’s Not an Absolute Emergency

Many marketers use texting to reach out to customers with business information. However, I believe you shouldn’t bother them unless it’s an emergency because reaching out to them unnecessarily may mean a breach of privacy. So I would not text them unless it’s an absolute necessity. – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster

10. If It’s Outside of Business Hours

Taking the meaning of “time” literally in this question, I think that businesses should not push promotional messages at odd times of the day or night, especially when people wind down for the evening or night and use their devices to relax and tune off from everyday chatter. When you text customers late in the evening, you’re imposing on them. This creates a poor brand image. – Blair Williams, MemberPress