What do the Symbols Mean on Facebook Messenger?

Using social media platforms, like Facebook Messenger, to communicate with customers is a trend that is here to stay. Sixty percent of Americans age 40 and below have used social media messaging services for customer service. Even older Americans are getting on board. About 38% of people aged 41 to 56 have done the same.

The convenience is so appealing that consumers want to talk to businesses using chat. According to a recent study, social messaging is the preferred customer service channel for American consumers. Around 33% report chat is their favorite way to communicate with businesses. Email scores second place with 24% preferring that medium. These days Facebook Messenger for business is just as important as having an email address and a phone number.

Learning how Facebook Messenger works may feel like just one more thing on your to-do list. You’ll need to learn how to navigate the interface, how to set your notification preferences, and how to manage incoming messages. And what about the Facebook Messenger icons? What’s up with the little blue bubble at the bottom right of your customers’ profile pictures? Those bubbles change every so often, and many users don’t understand the Facebook Messenger symbols’ meaning.

So what do the symbols mean on Facebook Messenger? This Facebook Messenger icons list will help demystify the little blue bubble and help you assist your customers effectively.

Facebook Messenger symbol #1: Open blue circle

This messenger symbol simply means the message is in the process of being sent.

Don’t navigate away from your message while this symbol displays! If you do, Messenger may not deliver your message successfully. This Facebook Messenger icon could be displayed for a few seconds or a few minutes depending on your device and signal strength.

Facebook Messenger symbol #2: Open blue circle with a checkmark

If you see an open blue circle with a checkmark, your message was sent. This FB messenger icon doesn’t mean the recipient has read or even received the message. This icon only means the transmission was successful.

Feel free to navigate away from Messenger at this point.

Facebook Messenger symbol #3: Solid blue circle with a checkmark

This Facebook Messenger symbol indicates your message was actually delivered. The solid blue circle with a checkmark doesn’t mean they’ve read the message yet, but they’ll receive a notification the next time they check Facebook.

Facebook Messenger symbol #4: Red triangle with an exclamation point

If you see this FB Messenger icon, something went wrong, because your message wasn’t sent. This doesn’t happen often, but a poor internet connection is usually the cause when you see this messenger symbol.

Save a copy of your message and send the message again when you have reliable service.

Facebook Messenger symbol #5: Small profile photo

Success! Once you see a small profile photo as the messenger symbol, you know the recipient has read your message. You may also notice the word “Seen” with a timestamp beneath the original message.

What about the black messenger icon?

From time to time messages from customers may appear with a black background instead of blue. These messages are encrypted for security.

Encrypted Facebook messages only appear on the device initiating the chat. You can turn on this feature in a chat by clicking the circle with an “l” in it at the top left. Select “Secret Conversations” and select “Turn on” when prompted.

Facebook messenger symbols can make communication and customer service easier once you know what they mean. Consult this Facebook Messenger icons list whenever you need a refresher to communicate with your customers on Messenger.