Here you can follow the enablement process for getting started with SMS.
Enabling SMS for your organization largely depends on your geography, traffic direction, intended content, and national regulations for using SMS for business purposes.
It is important before starting setup and sending communications to understand all of these factors, as they will incur different setup and usage procedures.
For SMS, it is crucial to understand that every country has different rules and terms of usage according to their national law. Before starting any SMS communications, make sure you are fully familiar with International SMS coverage and Connectivity.
For information about regulations and policies specific to mobile operators in the US and Canada, see Compliance Guidelines.
One-way and Two-way Traffic
SMS can be used for one or two-way communication with your customers. In other words, if you are sending out notifications, or requests for a response where a customer can text back.
There are a number of conditions which apply depending on what type of traffic you allow. If you allow customers to respond via SMS, then you will need to purchase a number. Some countries also require you to register a number regardless if you are using one or two-way communications.
Make sure you are fully familiar with International SMS coverage and Connectivity rules.
The registration process is usually unique to each operator which requires it. This can vary from simple pre-approval to message templates and additional authorization documentation.
Wait times for registration are usually proportionate to the level of complexity behind the steps involved and are highly operator-dependent. Contact your account manager for any additional details you may require.
Buy a Number
Buy a number if you are accepting incoming SMS messages from customers. You do not need to purchase a number if you are only sending outbound SMS messages and your country's regulations do not require otherwise. Move on to Sender Names if this is the case.
To purchase a number via the web interface, go to Channels and Numbers > Numbers and select Buy Number to get started.
Use the filters to select the required country and capability (SMS, MMS, and Voice), then select a number from the list of available numbers. You can only purchase one number at a time.
If for any reason there are none available, use the Request option to open a request form, which will be passed over to Infobip support.
Once purchased, go back to the Numbers screen at any time to see and manage your numbers.
Once you acquire a number, all messages received by that number will be associated with your account, and by default all these messages are accessible via the Analyze module. You can see more information about this in the Reports and Insights section of these docs.
As well as simply receiving inbound messages, there are additional actions that can be set up on a number level, that will be triggered every time a message is received.
- Forward to HTTP - Forward received messages and their details to an external URL. This allows you to get the message into your platform for further processing.
- Forward to Email - Forward important SMS details (sender, receiver, content) to one or multiple email addresses in human-readable table form.
- PULL - Store all received messages in a pull container where they can be retrieved using the API.
- Forward to SMPP - Same as Forward to HTTP, this action is used to forward the received message to an external platform, however using SMPP protocol.
- Save message to log - Forwarding is not enabled, and messages are saved to logs which can be viewed in the web interface.
Forwarding is set up in conjunction with your keywords attributed to your numbers via Numbers. See the section on Forwarding for more information.
Sender names can be added and used when sending outbound SMS messages. Rather than just presenting yourself as a generic number, you can appear on customer devices as your company name.
This can be in any of the following forms:
- Alphanumeric - This is a recognizable sender ID made up of any combination of numbers and letters, or just letters (e.g., info123 / infoSMS).
- Numeric - This ID is made up of a long number and is usually a typical mobile number in standard numeric form (e.g., 447764720247). Using VLNs allows end-users to reply back on your number and thus opens up two-way messaging. If used internationally, sender networks need to be within operator roaming reach for messages to be received.
- Short code - This is a memorable 4 - 6 digit number which is essentially a shorter version of your numeric sender number (e.g., 20247). Leased from MNOs and messaging companies, they're typically used for sweepstakes, polling, TV voting, etc. Depending on the country they can also be used for strict one-way campaigns as a regular sender ID.
A general rule for the allowed length of sender name is:
- 3-11 characters maximum length for alphanumeric senders
- 3-15 digits maximum length for numeric senders
- 4-6 digits for short codes
However, each country or network may have its own length restrictions.
Sender names are set in the web interface when creating new SMS communications. They are auto-saved and can be reselected again in the future.
See the section on sending a message for more information about how to set a sender name.
If you need to add more numbers, you can set them up in Apps. You can now also top up your account which you will need to do before sending.