Long code vs. Short code: what’s the best bulk SMS service for your brand?

Long code vs. Short code: what’s the best bulk SMS service for your brand?

If you’re not previously utilising bulk SMS service to draw in with your customers, you’re losing huge profits. With open rates averaging around 98%, SMS correspondence is perhaps a great strategy for pulling in and holding the customer attention.

One of the main choices you’ll have to make when assembling text marketing is picking between a shortcode or long code to send and get messages. In case you’re new to the universe of text marketing, you might be considering how these two code types vary and how to choose which one is ideal for you.

The distinction between long codes and shortcodes comes down to the number of digits used to send and receive messages. Both code types accompany an arrangement of advantages, so, it’s significant that you comprehend what distinguishes the two before you begin using bulk SMS service.

As a leading bulk SMS provider, we investigate the qualities of each, and how you can choose which code type best lines up with your brand’s marketing objectives. 

What is a shortcode?

A shortcode is a 5 to 6-digit number that organisations use to convey SMS and MMS messages to their crowd. Shortcodes are proposed to be utilised for one-way correspondence with customers and are frequently divided among different organisations at the same time. 

The essential advantage to utilising a shortcode bulk SMS service is that it’ll cost you less per message and you can send texts fast – making it a favoured decision for your marketing team to send SMS to a high-volume list of users. 

For shortcodes that are shared by numerous brands, keywords are used to guarantee that text traffic is appropriately arranged. For instance, if three brands had a similar shortcode, they would each have to utilise a one-of-a-kind keyword that separates messages being sent to that shared short code number. On the off chance that one of the brands chose to utilise the keyword ‘Hi’ to enlist customers into their marketing interchanges, the other two brands cannot use that specific keyword. 

Use cases for a standard SMS shortcode include: 

  • One-to-One Transactional Alerts 
  • Promotional Messages
  • Two-factor Authentication 

Let’s discuss a dedicated short code, now

If you don’t like the idea of sharing a number with different brands, a dedicated SMS shortcode offers the elite utilisation of a number to one business. The benefit of this technique is that you’re not confined by what keywords you can use.

Since there’s only one business utilising the keyword, there’s no compelling reason to distinguish text traffic with particular keywords, permitting you to have more freedom and creativity with your SMS campaigns. 

Moreover, dedicated shortcodes have a lot quicker throughput speed – around 30 times quicker than a shared shortcode. In case you’re on a shared code and another organisation on that code is communicating something specific, your message might be postponed.

Something essential to note about dedicated shortcodes is that while they can build up your brand engagement and acknowledgement, they likewise accompany higher set-up and maintenance costs.

Use cases for a dedicated SMS shortcode include: 

  • Making a custom shortcode for a “text to join” campaign 
  • Adjusting your shortcode with your brand image 
  • Sending users your contact card to save on their mobile phones

What is a long code?

A long code is a 10-digit number that is usually utilised for two-way customer correspondence. The principal advantage of long code bulk SMS service is that they can be customised to line up with your organisation’s branding and seem more personalised to the customers.

Long codes can likewise be utilised to reach the global audience, so it’s an ideal decision for brands looking to grow their venture into the global markets.

All things considered, there are a few downsides to utilising a long code that you ought to know about. Long codes do not have the similar approval process that shortcodes have, so it might diminish the deliverability of your messages.

Likewise, long codes have much more slow throughput speeds. Most suppliers are simply ready to send one SMS message each second through a long code, making it hard to run a text crusade where you may want to send a message to a huge crowd or when you are offering a time-sensitive text promotion.

How to settle on Shortcode versus Long code for your brand?

The choice between shortcode versus long code boils down to the particular business objectives you have which you want to solve with bulk SMS service.

In case you’re intending to dispatch an SMS campaign and send it to a high number of contacts, utilising a shortcode is likely your most ideal choice. With a short code bulk SMS service, you’ll have the option to send a large number of messages right away, just as use media files like pictures, GIFs, audio, etc. What’s more, shortcodes are enlisted and endorsed by most mobile networks, so your messages would not get hailed as spam before reaching the customers.

In case you’re wanting to utilise text marketing for two-way customer correspondence, an SMS long code might be the ideal decision. Long codes will help make your messages seem more personal, and they can be customised to line up with your brand’s value and image in the market. Despite the restricted texting abilities, long codes are basic and cheap to set up and can offer a wide range of benefits that will profit your business’ SMS marketing endeavours.

The choice between utilising a shortcode or a long code boils down to the customer experience you need to give. There’s no obvious response to which technique is better as the two of them offer their exceptional advantages. Your ultimate choice ought to be dictated by your marketing objectives and the requirements of your target audience. Our experienced bulk SMS provider is here to help you decide what’s best.


Do you plan to utilise bulk SMS service to send text campaigns to a long list of customers, or would you say you are more centred on offering exceptional two-way customer communication? The choice you make on which SMS code type to utilise relies on your response to this question.

In case you’re still uncertain, our SMS experts are here to help you out in taking the best decision for your brand communication. At GNEC Media, we help brands advance their text marketing efforts and help them see the best yield on their business via bulk SMS service.

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