Guide to SMS Quiet Hours in Flows

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Overview

Learn about the default SMS quiet hours for flows, and how to configure them in your Klaviyo account.
The default Klaviyo hours prevent SMS messages from sending between 8 pm–11 am based on the recipient’s country code (using Eastern Time in the US and Canada and Australian Eastern Time in Australia).

Quiet hours allow you to avoid sending your text messages during non-preferred hours of day to your subscribers. That means sending messages at times when they want to hear from you — not when they are sleeping or at inconvenient times.

This also ensures that your subscribers will see your messages during reasonable hours of the day and allows you to more easily comply with telemarketing laws and regulations, such as the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).

Understanding the Importance of SMS Quiet Hours

Since text messages are typically viewed as more intrusive, it is required to send them at times that are legally compliant. Under the TCPA in the US and as a best practice in many other countries, text messages should not be sent before 8 am and after 9 pm in the recipient's time zone. Note that some individual US states (like Florida) have more restrictive rules, so it’s important to understand the rules applicable to the states and countries your recipients are located in.

When you’re planning to send an SMS message, it’s important to consider the experience of the recipient. For example, sending a confirmation message immediately after a customer makes a purchase, or replying instantly to a text inquiry provides a great customer experience. 

Understanding Klaviyo Default Hours

By default, Klaviyo will automatically configure most of your automated SMS or MMS messages to not send between 8 pm–11 am based on the recipient’s country code (using Eastern Time in the US and Canada and Australian Eastern Time in Australia). The 8 pm–11 am ET quiet hours window lines up as 5 pm-8 am PT, thus providing the broadest coverage to comply with US laws. 

Examples of Messages to Avoid Sending During Quiet Hours

You should not send any non-transactional flow messages during these “non-business” or quiet hours. Examples of these types of non-transactional messages include:

  • Back in stock notifications
  • Welcome series messages (aside from the first message, which is considered a subscription confirmation, unless it contains marketing content)
  • Messages that include marketing content, like an order confirmation with a link to or pictures of promotions or other products

We recommend that quiet hours also be used on all non-essential flows, including non-essential transactional flows like order and shipping updates that your customers would not expect to receive at odd hours.

Quiet hours will not be enabled for messages that involve Klaviyo default keyword auto-replies (e.g., the message that is sent automatically when someone texts Yes, Stop, Help, etc.). For any custom keyword, autoresponders set up in the Consent & Keyword Management section in the Settings > SMS page, quiet hours will still apply.

How to Change the Default Quiet Hours in Your Settings

To adjust your account’s default Klaviyo SMS Quiet Hours, navigate to your account name in the upper right-hand corner, and click on Account from the dropdown.

Then, click Settings, and choose SMS from the dropdown.

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Once inside the SMS Settings page, navigate to the SMS Sending Settings section. Here, you can change your SMS Quiet Hours from the default 8 pm–11 am setting.

For each recipient country, we list the country code (e.g., +44, +1, etc.) and the time zone used in that country.

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Click on the dropdown next to Avoid sending messages between to choose the starting time an SMS flow message cannot be sent.

Then, click on the dropdown to the right for the ending time that a message cannot be sent. These two times will represent the range that a message cannot be sent in the time zone being used. For example, you could adjust your quiet hours so that a message cannot be sent between 7:30 pm and 11:30 am Eastern Time in the United States and Canada.

Klaviyo does not set quiet hours on a per day basis. Your chosen quiet hours will apply to all days of the week.

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In the US, it’s recommended that you set up your Quiet Hours settings so that flow messages are not sent between 8 pm and 11 am ET. If you send to recipients in Alaska or Hawaii, adjust your quiet hours so that you aren’t sending automated messages to recipients in those states between 8 pm and 11 am local time (i.e., between 8 pm and 2 pm ET). For more information on the TCPA and the “mini-TCPA” in Florida, visit our guide About US SMS Compliance Laws. And for more country-specific regulations, visit our Localized Messaging Compliance Law guides.

Once you update your Quiet Hours, click Update SMS Sending Settings to save your setup.

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Daylight Savings Hours Changes

Daylight savings time (DST) will apply for each respective region and country as it occurs. For example, if you are sending to recipients in the US, starting the second Sunday in March at 2 am we will automatically switch to EDT, and starting the first Sunday of November will switch to using EST. Thus, we will match the correct local time in accordance with daylight savings time.

You will see these changes reflect in your SMS Settings section as they update.

View and Adjust Your Quiet Hours Settings in Flows

Once you have set your quiet hours, they will appear by default in all existing and new flows.

For every SMS action added to a flow, Quiet Hours is listed as one of the options under Settings in the left-hand sidebar.

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The quiet hours setting will automatically be toggled as “ON” for the SMS action. This means that your flow will only send the SMS or MMS during the quiet hours you designated.

How to Adjust Your Quiet Hours Inside a Flow Message

To turn off quiet hours for a particular SMS or MMS, click the Settings gear icon in the upper right corner.

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This will open a new area where you can toggle off Quiet Hours for this particular message.

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You can always change your global SMS Quiet Hours settings by clicking Change your SMS Quiet Hours in this area.

Note that quiet hours are checked at message send time. For example, say you have quiet hours enabled so messages can only send between 11 am and 8 pm. If at 7:05 pm, you change the quiet hours to start at 7 pm, any messages that were about to go out will now wait until 11 am the next morning.

This also applies to any elements after an SMS in a flow (e.g., splits, time delays, subsequent emails, etc.), as recipients who are waiting to receive their SMS during quiet hours will move to the Waiting queue. The recipient will need to get the SMS before they receive any subsequent flow messages. If flow filters are being used, those will be checked and applied once the SMS message has been sent. More information on flow behaviors can be found in our How Contacts Move Through a Flow guide.

Quiet Hours and Smart Sending

Quiet Hours differ from Smart Sending, but your Quiet Hours settings might affect Smart Sending. Smart Sending is also checked at send time, not the time you scheduled the message. For example, if someone has just received a message and then they get triggered for another SMS message during quiet hours, the message will be delayed until the next available window that lines up for both Smart Sending and quiet hours. Klaviyo will check the quiet hours window first before attempting to find an ideal Smart Sending window.

What Happens When a Recipient Cannot Be Sent to Yet

Once your flow is live, if your next SMS or MMS is scheduled to be sent during your quiet hours, your recipient will go into the Waiting queue and their message will delay until the next available sending time. In the left-hand sidebar for a flow message, you will see an Analytics (Last 30 Days) section. The line for Waiting activity will display how many recipients are waiting to receive this message.

Note that quiet hours are checked at message send time. This applies to any elements after an SMS in a flow (e.g., splits, time delays, subsequent emails, etc.), as recipients who are waiting to receive their SMS during quiet hours will move to the Waiting queue. The recipient will need to get the SMS before they receive any subsequent flow messages. If flow filters are being used, those will be checked and applied once the SMS message has been sent. More information on flow behaviors can be found in our How Contacts Move Through a Flow guide.

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If you click on this line, it will take you to the message’s Recipient Activity tab with the Waiting section automatically open. This section will show the number of people waiting to receive the message during their preferable hours that do not fall during quiet hours.

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If you try to force a recipient through the Waiting queue by clicking Send Now or back-populating, quiet hours will still apply.

Once your quiet hours are over, the flow will send the SMS or MMS to the recipient and remove them from the Waiting queue.

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