Short Code, 10DLC or Toll-Free

Joel Oliveira
Joel Oliveira
Apr 1 2024
Posted in Best Practices

What's best for your SMS strategy?

Short Code, 10DLC or Toll-Free

When it comes to customer engagement, SMS reigns supreme for countless businesses and brands. It's the go-to channel for connecting with customers effectively. But as technology evolves, so do the requirements for maintaining its effectiveness and trustworthiness.

Carriers have stepped up with initiatives aimed at knowing their customers better, spanning short codes, toll-free numbers, and now, the latest US A2P 10DLC requirements. These efforts not only ensure compliance but also bring added perks like enhanced reliability, security, and throughput, enriching the SMS experience for both businesses and their clientele.

With an impressive 98 percent open rate, SMS remains unparalleled in its ability to engage customers. Yet, amidst the evolving landscape of US A2P 10DLC and other number types, such as short codes and toll-free numbers, businesses find themselves at a crossroads, pondering the most effective strategies for reaching their audience through SMS.

Notificare provides a diverse array of phone number options, each varying in cost, prerequisites, and functionalities. Crafting your strategy significantly hinges on the specific markets you target. While utilizing a 10DLC is a widespread practice in Europe, it might not necessarily be the optimal choice for facilitating application-to-person communications in the United States or Canada.

Although this guide can be a valuable starting point, it's crucial to recognize that there's no universal solution that fits every scenario.

Short Code

Short codes have been a cornerstone of A2P messaging for domestic/national communications for quite some time. These 5 or 6-digit numbers are ideal for marketing campaigns, lead generation, and promotions where you want people to easily remember your number. However, acquiring one is a costly and lengthy process.

But their ability to manage large message volumes makes them invaluable for businesses seeking to connect with millions of subscribers effortlessly. Moreover, the meticulous campaign approval process associated with short codes enhances their reliability, ensuring the highest deliverability per message.

Currently, Notificare only supports dedicated Short Codes (random or vanity) in the United States and Canada.


A 10-digit Long Code serves as a standard phone number (+1 (415) XXX-XXXX or +44 20 XXXX XXXX) that enables businesses to send and receive SMS and MMS messages efficiently. These long codes offer a unique advantage by allowing businesses to establish trusted, localized connections using familiar area codes, making them particularly suitable for person-to-person interactions.

While setting up a 10DLC in many European nations is straightforward, the process in the US and Canada now entails completing a verification process. This step acts as a barrier to entry, fostering a trusted environment by deterring spammers from exploiting consumers. Moreover, it grants businesses enhanced throughput, improved deliverability, and establishes a platform for sustained customer engagement.

With Notificare, you can easily lease 10DLC numbers from various countries at incredibly affordable rates, empowering your business to establish meaningful connections worldwide.


Toll-free numbers stand out as one of the most adaptable options for domestic/national messaging needs. Similar to a geographic area code, toll-free numbers are organized in ranges such as +1 888 XXX-XXXX in the US and Canada and +44 800 XXX XXXX in the UK. They are free of charge for the calling party, and are typically used by businesses when they prefer to fully take on the cost of calls for their users.

Their implementation process is straightforward, and they will also undergo a verification process akin to Short Codes and 10DLC, enhancing deliverability. Many businesses already possess toll-free numbers, presenting a convenient opportunity to also integrate SMS capabilities.

Notificare supports Toll-Free numbers in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom.

Undecided? We will help you!

We're at the forefront of shaping a more dependable and secure future within the SMS landscape. However, it's important to recognize that each option comes with its own set of advantages and limitations. Ultimately, the key factor to consider is which option will enable you to engage your customers most effectively.

As always, you can find us available for any question you might have via our Support Channel.

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