What is 10DLC registration for SMS marketing

6 minute read
What is 10DLC registration for SMS marketing

What is 10DLC registration?

10DLC is a registration process for sending SMS marketing traffic. It requires registration of the ten digit long codes (10DLC) with the phone carriers.

If your business uses or plans to use SMS marketing, you’ve probably heard about upcoming A2P 10DLC requirements.

The details around this constantly changing, but we will use this article to clarify what is happening and what you need to do.

Understanding the jargon

First of all, let’s start by breaking down the acronyms used by the telecommunication carriers:

  • Carriers – Telecommunication companies such as AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon.
  • 10DLC or long code – 10 digit long code. A standard phone number such as +1-555-123-4567 vs a short-code. Typically costs $1/month to lease.
  • Toll-free long code – numbers which begins with an 8 and are available for both voice and text messaging such as +1-888-123-4567. Typically costs $2-3/month to lease and requires a registration / approval process.
  • Short-code – a 5-6 digit phone number used exclusively for SMS marketing such as 12345. Typically costs $500+/month to lease. Requires and application and carrier approval to lease.
  • A2P – Application-to-Person (A2P) is a type of text message sent from an application, e.g. DailyStory, to a person, e.g. you, sent over a 10DLC.
  • Registered numbers – long codes, toll-free codes, or short-codes that are registered with the carriers.
  • Unregistered numbers – Long codes that are unregistered with the carriers.

The majority of SMS marketing is performed using 10DLC vs. short-codes or toll-free numbers.

Long codes versus short codes and toll-free numbers

Each type of number supports different business needs and desired outcomes.

  • 10DLC best supports a localized, smaller customer base, with typical uses including chat, event-based interactions, service updates, appointment reminders and more. While traditional local long codes send at a rate of 1 message per second and only support sending of a few hundred messages per day, 10DLCs should be capable of sending around 100,000 text messages per month with a send rate of between five and 15 text messages per second. Keep in mind that support for 10DLCs is exclusive to the United States and Canada.
  • Short codes support an enterprise-level, large-scale customer base, with typical uses including marketing blasts, one-time passwords, fraud alerts, transactional and more. While short codes are appealing, their lease rates are the most expensive and can range from $500 to $1,000 per month or more. Short codes feature unlimited throughput and volume. For example, you can use them to send millions of text messages per day and at rates of up to 500 per second.
  • Toll-free long codes support either enterprise-level or localized messaging volumes, with typical uses including customer service chat, customer feedback, notifications and more. Its volume capabilities can be more limited, though. Toll-free long codes can only send at a rate of 3 messages per second, though, with the capability of sending a few thousand texts per day.

Why is 10DLC registration necessary?

The carriers introduced 10DLC registration in 2021 because more business were using long code for sending application-t0-person (A2P) messaging in North America.

Driven by a high amount of abuse

This use of long codes for SMS was driven primarily by both cost and convenience. The cost for a long code is minimal and it was possible to use unregistered numbers. Unfortunately this also caused a tremendous amount of abuse and unwanted messages.

For example, using long codes it is possible to using snowshoeing – a process where a business has dozens to hundreds of numbers used for sending SMS.

Registration eliminates abuse

The carriers introduced the 10DLC registration process to help eliminate this abuse, but also enable sending messages at a higher volume with less filtering. And, supposedly this results in fewer carrier violations and a higher deliverability rate.

Short codes do not have voice capabilities, while 10DLC and toll-free do. But 10DLC does not include delivery-receipt capabilities, while short code and toll-free do.

Why use 10 digit long codes for your SMS marketing?

Using a long code for your SMS marketing is substantially more affordable than using a short code.

Low-cost option

When compared to short codes, 10DLCs are far more affordable for small businesses. They typically cost only a few dollars per month. Granted, if you have the budget to use both short codes and 10DLCs, definitely do since they both serve different purposes and have different benefits.

Local phone number recognition

10DLC enables businesses to reach customers individually or in mass with a local phone number. This vastly improves user experience and then customer engagement as a result. Think about your own experience as a consumer. Are you more trusting of a local number being used by a nearby restaurant?

Both text and voice-enabled

10DLCs support voice, which means customers can send and receive text messages on the same number they call you on. Again, this contributes to a better, less-confusing and more-seamless user experience. The better the experience, the better your results.

Higher messaging volume (but not the highest)

10DLC numbers feature a higher messaging volume than traditional long codes and toll-free numbers for about the same cost. They can’t compare to the volume that short codes feature, but depending on your SMS text messaging goals, that might not matter to your business.

What is A2P 10DLC compliance?

In early 2021 phone carriers (AT&T, Verizon, etc.) have begun to further restrict SMS marketing by rejecting messages as “carrier violations“. At the same time they have also added new surcharges for A2P 10DLC text messaging. And, simultaneously introduced new business registration requirements for A2P 10DLC registration.

The telecommunication carriers state they are “updating their systems to  delivery better quality and lower filtering” for certain businesses that use 10DLC A2P.

And, just like any message sent through DailyStory, the message cannot contain any S.H.A.F.T. (Sex, Hate, Alcohol, Firearms or Tobacco) content.

What is the 10DLC registration process?

If you are sending SMS marketing using long code, the 10DLC registration process requires you register and pass an approval process. This includes details such as:

  • Creation of a business profile with either EIN or DUNS number
  • Business address
  • Identifying business points of contact
  • Describing and classifying the type of business

DailyStory will continue to provide guidance on this new requirement as it evolves.

Below are some of the known requirements:

  • Company Name
  • Company Phone number
  • Company Website
  • Company Vertical
  • Organization Type
  • Tax Number/ID/EIN
  • Address
  • City
  • State
  • Postal Code
  • Country
  • Email address
  • Several, typically 2, sample text messages

Are there any fees associated with 10DLC registration?

Yes, each campaign registration will incur a one-time registration fee from $50 – $100. This fee is charged by the carriers, not by DailyStory. However, DailyStory will pay for it on your behalf and it will appear on your next invoice.

Additionally there is a $10-20/month 10DLC registration fee, also charged by the carriers. If you are a DailyStory customer this will be added to your monthly invoice automatically.

What if I don’t want to register for 10DLC?

We understand that you may not wish to participate in 10DLC registration. While we understand this, please know that not participating in 10 DLC will have an impact on the deliverability of your messaging. The phone carriers have stated that they will implement additional filtering on content sent by non-10DLC registered businesses.

As it applies to 10DLC carriers identity traffic as:

  • 10DLC Registered, messages are sent using a number that is registered to a 10DLC profile.
  • 10DLC Unregistered, messages are sent using a number that is not-registered with 10DLC

How it impacts deliverability

Traffic registered with 10DLC is claimed to receive less carrier filtering. While unregistered traffic is subject to both higher filtering and additional costs (up to $0.1/message).

How should I plan around this?

At DailyStory we know how important SMS marketing is to your business.

We also continue to recommend using SMS marketing, but we also recommend investing in other marketing channels (email marketing, social, SEO, etc.).

DailyStory also continues to support both 10DLC registered and unregistered traffic.

In conclusion

SMS marketing is a powerful tactic that businesses should be using in their overall digital marketing strategies. Registering your 10 digit long codes for 10DLC will help get your messages delivered.

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