What is a Shared Short Code? A Beginner’s Guide

By John Adebimitan

Are you familiar with shared short codes? If not, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Shared short codes are a type of phone number used by businesses to send text messages to consumers. Unlike regular phone numbers, short codes are shorter and easier to remember. Shared short codes are used by multiple businesses, whereas dedicated short codes are used exclusively by one business.

Shared short codes have been popular for years, but they are now being phased out due to security concerns. The problem with shared short codes is that if one business sends spam or violates the rules, all businesses using that code can be affected.

This can result in the code being blocked by carriers, which means that no one can use it. To avoid this, businesses are now encouraged to use dedicated short codes or long codes. Dedicated short codes are more expensive but offer more control, while long codes are similar to regular phone numbers but can be used for text messaging.

Read also: How to Get a Short Code Number

What is a Shared Short Code?

A shared short code is a 5 to 6-digit phone number that is shared among multiple businesses or organizations for sending and receiving SMS or MMS messages. It is a cost-effective way for businesses to reach out to their customers through text messaging. Instead of having to purchase and maintain a dedicated short code, multiple businesses can share the same number by using unique keywords to differentiate their messages.

Shared short codes are pre-approved by carriers and can handle high-throughput SMS and MMS messages. They are widely used for various purposes, such as marketing campaigns, customer service, and notifications. Shared short codes are often used by small businesses, non-profit organizations, and government agencies that have limited budgets for marketing and communication.

However, shared short codes are going away due to the increasing concerns of carrier spam filters and the need for better security and privacy. Carriers are phasing out shared short codes and replacing them with 10-digit long codes (10DLC) that are registered and approved by carriers for specific use cases.

While shared short codes are still in use, businesses should start planning for a transition to 10DLC to avoid any interruptions in their messaging services. It is important to work with a reputable messaging provider that can guide you through the transition process and ensure compliance with carrier regulations.

In summary, a shared short code is a cost-effective way for businesses to reach out to their customers through text messaging. However, shared short codes are going away and being replaced by 10DLC due to carrier concerns about spam and the need for better security and privacy. Businesses should start planning for a transition to 10DLC to avoid any interruptions in their messaging services.

Shared Short Code

Read also: What is a Vanity Short Code?

Benefits of Using a Shared Short Code

Using a shared short code can provide several benefits for your business. Here are some of the advantages you can enjoy by using a shared short code:

Cost-Effective Solution

One of the biggest benefits of using a shared short code is its cost-effectiveness. You can significantly reduce your expenses by sharing the short code with other businesses. The cost of a shared short code is generally lower than that of a dedicated one. You can save money on leasing fees and setup costs.

Easy to Remember

Short codes are easy to remember and recognize. They are usually shorter than regular phone numbers, making them easier to type and remember. By using a shared short code, you can make it easier for your customers to remember your number and reach out to you whenever they need to.

High Delivery Rates

Shared short codes are pre-approved by carriers to avoid spam flags, giving them higher delivery rates than long numbers. This means that your messages are more likely to reach your customers’ phones without being blocked or filtered out.

Fast and Easy to Set Up

Shared short codes are fast and easy to set up and have no setup fees. You can start using them right away without having to go through a lengthy approval process. This makes them an ideal solution for businesses that need to send mass communications quickly and efficiently.

Risk Mitigation

Shared short codes come with some risks, such as keyword competition and reputation sharing. However, these risks can be mitigated by choosing a reputable provider and following best practices. By using a shared short code, you can enjoy the benefits of SMS marketing without having to bear all the risks and expenses of a dedicated short code.

Overall, using a shared short code can be a cost-effective, easy-to-remember, high-delivery-rate, fast, and easy-to-set-up solution for businesses that need to send mass communications.

Limitations of Using a Shared Short Code

When it comes to SMS marketing, using a shared short code can be a cost-effective way to reach a large audience. However, there are several limitations to using a shared short code that you should be aware of.

Limited Keyword Availability

One of the biggest limitations of using a shared short code is the limited availability of keywords. Since multiple businesses are using the same short code, there is a chance that the keyword you want to use is already taken. This can limit your ability to create targeted campaigns and can make it difficult for your customers to differentiate your messages from those of other businesses.

Shared Short Code

Compliance Concerns

Using a shared short code can also raise compliance concerns. If another business using the same short code violates SMS marketing regulations, it could result in your messages being blocked or flagged as spam. This can damage your reputation and lead to a decrease in engagement with your campaigns.

Limited Control

Since you are sharing a short code with other businesses, you have limited control over the messages that are sent from the code. While you can control the content of your own messages, you cannot control the messages sent by other businesses using the same code. This can lead to confusion among your customers and can make it difficult to maintain a consistent brand image.

Limited Customization

Another limitation of using a shared short code is the limited customization options available. Since the short code is shared among multiple businesses, you may not be able to customize the code to fit your brand or campaign. This can make it difficult to stand out from the crowd and can limit your ability to create a unique brand image.

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