Intro: Long Number Messaging for Businesses
When creating or even revising your business SMS & MMS messaging strategy, it's important you understand the basics: the options and methods available for business messaging, and how to identify and utilize the right option to exceed your messaging & communication goals.
I. Definition: What Is a Long Number?
Long Numbers also known as a Long Code, Virtual Mobile Number (VMN), or dedicated phone number "MSISDN" is a business communications reception mechanism used by businesses to receive MMS, SMS text messages, and even voice calls.
A Long Code Number is a standard-length phone number. Phone numbers are typically referred to as “long codes” (10-digit numbers in many different countries) when it's being compared to the alternative solution, a short code (made from 5-6 digits to create a random code or to create vanity codes based on alphanumeric characters).
Unlike Short Codes, the biggest differentiator of a Long Number is the ability to use it for communicating internationally. Whereas Short Codes are limited to domestic/national communications via messaging.
II. Who Uses Long Numbers?
Long numbers enable businesses to own their own unique number, unlike short codes which are commonly purchased as a shared short code vs dedicated short code, which are used among many other businesses.
Long numbers provide businesses throughout a vast range of different sectors and industries to collect and generate large volumes of mobile-originated (MO) SMS text messages from subscribers, including wireless application service providers, mobile virtual network operators, mobile virtual network enablers, SMS aggregators, e-sellers, advertising agencies, media channels, and mobile infrastructure providers.
III. What Are The Risks of Using a Long Number?
Significant traffic to a long code will risk having the application blocked. Short codes, on the other hand, are open to high-volume traffic applications.
Long Numbers have a restriction of one message per second (60 messages per minute) per the originating phone number (limit set by carriers). This cannot be increased.
Short codes however, can send up to 40 messages per second (2,400 per minute).
Both Short Code & Long Numbers that send duplicate messages within a minute are automatically filtered, regardless. A "duplicate message" is determined by the same "to", "from," and, "message"/"body" content.
IV. When Should I Use A Long Number?
For long-term campaigns or any other assignment, long numbers are also a good solution, as the number can be assigned exclusively for a long term.
- Competitions & Voting
- Product & Service Feedback
- Campaigns & Promotions
- Global Company Availability
- International Events Updates & Alerts
- Reception Channel for SMS Messages for Business to Consumer Conversations
- Direct Response/Reply Channel
- 2-way communications businesses and suppliers
- SMS-to-email applications
- SMS multi-party chat services
- Dedicated Channel for Mass Mail Campaigns
- Promotional Activities
- and much more!
V. What Is The Benefit of Using A Long Number?
Long codes are meant for person-to-person communications, and can send only 1 message per second.
Long codes have content restrictions that allow carriers to block traffic. Long codes are strictly intended for person-to-person interaction.
Another benefit and feature of a long code is that they offer same abilities as any 10-digit phone number:
- Send and receive SMS text messages,
- faxing (but who does that anymore? When you can share documents and create and send e-signature all through CM.com)
- and both inbound and outbound voice/calling.
Short codes, on the other hand, do not have the capability of inbound or outbound calling, or faxing. Instead, short codes are more advantageous as they are designed and intended to use when your text messaging campaign requires a high volume of messages that get sent and received daily.
VI. Long Numbers & How They Work
SMS gateway providers like CM.com have special arrangements with the major mobile carriers around the world to send two-way text messages.
Through an SMS gateway providers like CM.com, also known as an SMS aggregators, you're able to send and receive SMS traffic to and from the mobile phone networks' SMS centers (SMSCs), which relaying those messages the correct mobile phone it was directed at.
Aggregators then receive feedback from the SMSC to verify and obtain the status of the delivery of the message. The relationship between the aggregator and SMSC allows for the exchange in sending and receiving of large volumes of SMS Text messages to and from a Long Number/Long Code.
VII. How Much Are Long Numbers?
Long Numbers are sometimes significantly less expensive than short codes. A cost of a standard long number is on average between $1.00 to $2.00 and can run anywhere between $0.20 to $0.50 cents when sending a text message.
There are circumstances where Short Codes come at a lower rate than a Long Number. However, in most cases the average price for a random short code is around $3,000 per month and on average $4,500 for a vanity short code.
Long codes are significantly more affordable than short codes because they are not intended to transmit a large volume of SMS text messages.
VIII. Where Do I Get A Long Number?
A Long Number can be purchased directly from an SMS provider with SS7 access, often times the shortest way possible to gain an option for SMS reception.
With CM.com you can get Long Code Numbers on-demand for local, national, mobile, and toll-free in over 100 countries. We help you search for the most desirable and available phone numbers and purchase those numbers directly from the providers.
However, the most cost-effective method of acquiring a long number is either through an SMS aggregator or SMS provider like CM.com (Aggregator & Provider):