Preparing for 10DLC: Getting Ready for the Future of Text Messaging in the US

As Bob Dylan says, “The Times They Are a-Changin.” Well, in this case, it's business text messaging that is changing. Wireless carriers will be exploring a brand new method for delivering mobile messaging in the form of the 10 digit long code - or 10DLC - numbers which are designed and sanctioned by the termination vendors for application-to-person (A2P) SMS messaging.

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What is 10DLC?

A 10DLC number is essentially a local 10-digit phone number that can support high volumes of text messages. Many experts anticipate that 10DLC will become the new standard for business text messaging sometime down the line. 

Something New for A2P

It’s important to understand if moving to 10DLC is right for you. For starters, if you’re sending customers concise but vital messages like appointment reminders, service updates, or alerts, 10DLC is a good method for delivery. 10DLC is also the preferred way to engage in local marketing. What’s more, 10DLC comes with less of the challenges sometimes associated with using standard shared short codes. Moving  to 10DLC aims to help carriers provide a better overall communications experience without these historical complications. 

Is This Really Better?

Well, yes. 10DLC numbers give businesses the best of both worlds: mass text messaging support, with lower overhead costs. 

What are the Benefits of 10DLC?

Higher SMS message volumes. 10DLC numbers are capable of supporting higher SMS volumes, whereas standard long virtual numbers are meant for person-to-person messaging and are subject to volume restrictions, which means they can potentially be blocked in A2P use cases. 

Lower costs. 10DLC numbers are more cost effective than short codes. So, businesses that can’t afford a short code number or don’t send enough messages to justify paying for a short code will have a cost-efficient alternative.

Additionally, businesses will be able to convert their existing landlines to 10DLC numbers. This means businesses can send more messages from their existing phone number, and won’t have to pay for an additional number to get 10DLC capabilities.

Better deliverability. Because 10DLC numbers are sanctioned by the carriers,, messages sent on these numbers are more likely going to reach the recipient than with regular local long codes.

 

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Don’t Worry, Be Ready!

The introduction of 10DLC should not slow down your text messaging efforts.  Just taking some simple steps now can help you down the road.  Here are some quick things to do:

1. Start classifying your use case to one or more of 10 DLC’s new pre-defined use case descriptions.

2. Do you need throughput higher than 30 mps? If so, consider moving to an SMS enabled toll-free number (TFN) or dedicated short code. 

3. Review your current use cases running on long codes and start determining what you can do to make the shift to 10DLC as seamless as possible. 

 

"10DLC numbers give businesses the best of both worlds: mass text messaging support, with lower overhead costs."

 

 

 

At Vonage, we're already helping several of our customers prepare for the gradual move to 10DLC. In January 2020, we integrated Verizon’s implementation of the 10DLC sanction with SMS customers. You can learn more about this initiative here. We are currently preparing for other carriers to launch of A2P 10DLC and will make sure our clients are registered and transition as this process moves along. 

What’s Next?

10DLC represents a significant, but positive, change for business text messaging. One that should be embraced, not feared. We will continue to update this article with new information as things develop. In the meantime, if you have any questions about 10DLC and how we can help with this transition, please contact our API team!

 

 

By Michael Goldberg Editor-in-Chief, Content Marketing

Michael is Vonage's Editor in Chief. When he's not writing and reading about technology, he enjoys watching the Jets and Mets try not to lose and spending time with his wife and two sons.

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