Does your business send mobile messages to US customers? Then it’s time to get ready for A2P 10DLC.
(This blog post was originally published in 2019 . It was updated on September 03, 2021)
One of your first steps to sending messages via 10DLC (10-digit long codes) should be to apply to receive what’s known as a status.
This status is used to determine the amount of messages you can send and receive per second (in other words, your throughput).
Industry body The Campaign Registry (TCR) can provide you with this status. But if you are an Infobip customer, this process can be automated through our Numbers 10DLC tool.
The end of trust scores
The process of receiving a status replaces a now defunct vetting process that required you to receive what was known as a trust score.
The trust score system had been criticized by some organizations for being opaque. This new way of verifying a brand has been designed by US carriers and The Campaign Registry to be a more simple and fair system.
Read on to find out more about getting started with 10DLC. We’ll start with some background information – including a brief summary of what 10DLC is and why you might decide to send messages via this route.
For years, the big US carriers have wanted to stop businesses communicating with customers via long codes designed for person-to-person (P2P) use. They now want this traffic to be transported via dedicated short codes or 10DLC numbers sanctioned for application-to-person (A2P) messaging.
OpenMarket’s self-service 10DLC tool called Numbers lets you do everything you need to buy, register and send and receive SMS and MMS messages via 10DLC.
How to get a brand status
To protect their 10DLC routes, Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile want to make sure the traffic being sent on them won’t result in bad messaging experiences for their customers. In other words, they want to keep spam, smishing and other undesirable content off their network. That’s where receiving a “status” comes in.
An unverified status means that The Campaign Registry could not verify your brand because the information in your registration – most likely the tax id (e.g. EIN) and/or legal name – was incorrect. These two pieces of information must match exactly with what is on file with your federal government.
A verified status means The Campaign Registry has verified your brand. You can then submit campaigns, which will be eligible for different levels of throughput with T-Mobile and AT&T. Here’s how it works:
- If your brand is listed with the Russell 3000 Index, you will be assigned AT&T classes A/B. This will give you a messaging throughput of 60 TPS (60 transactions per second). With T-Mobile it works slightly differently. A listing with the Russell 3000 Index puts you in the T-Mobile top tier and able to send 200,000 messages per day.
- If your brand is not listed with the Russell 3000 Index, you will be assigned AT&T classes E/F (1 TPS), and will be in T-Mobile’s Low tier (2,000 messages/day).
Verizon’s verification process
The other major US carrier, Verizon, doesn’t require businesses to obtain a status. Instead it is using filters to block any traffic it deems to be a spam risk. It has not yet set out plans to limit throughput for 10DLC use cases, but you can expect healthy TPS rates of around 30. Verizon will allocate throughput in much the same way they do for short codes today.
Third-party vetting for 10DLC
If you are not satisfied with the result of the verification by The Campaign Registry, you can request additional vetting through OpenMarket’s Numbers self-service tool. Additional vetting will also be useful for non-US brands, which will otherwise be placed in the lower throughput bucket by T-Mobile and AT&T.
Using the Numbers tool, you can request either Standard or Enhanced vetting. Standard is very fast and costs $40. Enhanced takes a few days and costs $95. But please note that requesting either Standard or Enhanced does not guarantee that you’ll receive higher throughput.
10DLC vetting scores
Here’s a rundown of the four buckets for third-party vetting scores:
0–24 vetting score receives a 2,000 daily messaging quota
25–49 vetting score receives a 10,000 daily messaging quota
50–74 vetting score receives a 40,000 daily messaging quota
75–100 vetting score receives a 200,000 daily messaging quota
For all the details on the new features, see the 10DLC section of our docs site.
More on 10DLC throughput
For guidance, the maximum throughput on P2P long codes is low for business use cases – one transaction per second (TPS). Around 30 TPS and more is a good throughput to expect for 10DLC. This equates to well over a million a day. But throughput for short codes can be much higher – hundreds a second (even up to 1,000).
As a general rule, our feeling is that if a brand has a good reputation, and the use case is deemed to be a low spam risk, then it will receive a throughput that is suitable for most use cases. And, as we mentioned, if you’re not happy with the throughput you’re given, you can undergo further third-party vetting to try to increase it.
Which 10DLC use cases are deemed high risk?
An example of a use case likely to receive a high trust score (i.e. low risk) would be SMS-based two-factor authentication (2FA). This is because consumers have asked for this traffic, they respond to it, and it’s safe and necessary.
Promotional marketing campaigns by third-party affiliates would be on the other end of the scale. These are considered more likely to pose a spam risk. However, a marketing campaign run by a well-known brand with a good reputation is almost certainly likely to be considered safe traffic and should therefore receive a good score.
AT&T has released an illuminating code of conduct that sets out types of traffic it considers to be undesirable. It includes:
Loan advertisements with the exception of messages from direct lenders for secured loans
- Credit repair
- Debt relief
- Work from home, ‘secret shopper,’ and similar advertising campaigns
- Lead generation campaigns that indicate the sharing of collected information with third parties
The easy way to get your 10DLC status
As mentioned, to obtain your status, you are able to submit information via our Numbers 10DLC tool. Numbers makes it easy for you to manage the tasks you need to complete on your way to obtaining a status – and lots of other 10DLC-related processes. You can:
- Search for and purchase multiple 10DLC numbers
- Migrate your existing long codes
- Register brand, campaign and use-case information
- File a campaign brief with the US carriers that ask for it
- Request Standard or Enhanced vetting if needed
- View status of campaigns and which 10DLCs are assigned to them
- View a summary of your owned 10DLCs (and all other originators)
To talk about your options, get in touch. We’d be happy to guide you along your 10DLC path.