SMS
Get started

Get Started

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.

Local Requirements

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.

Sender

Different countries and networks have different terms of use and regulations which affect many aspects of using SMS. For sender names, this may mean that you need to register your sender IDs before submitting traffic.

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

Purchase numbers for SMS communication using the Numbers app. To purchase a number over the web interface, go to Channels and Numbers > Numbers, and then select Buy Number to get started.

Numbers enables you to purchase numbers, or if you already have a number procured elsewhere but want to use it over Infobip, you can also request it to be imported.

For more information on using Numbers to manage your numbers to configure what happens after a message has been received, see Numbers.

Number Configuration

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 Reports and Insights.

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 logswhich 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

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 (opens in a new tab) allows end-users to reply back on your number and thus opens up two-way messaging (opens in a new tab). If used internationally, sender networks need to be within operator roaming (opens in a new tab) 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 (opens in a new tab) 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:

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.

Next Steps

If you need to add more numbers, you can set them up in Numbers. You can now also top up your account which you will need to do before sending.

Need assistance

Explore Infobip tutorials

Encountering issues

Contact our support

What's new? Check out

Release notes

Unsure about a term? See

Glossary

Research panel

Help shape the future of our products
Service Terms & ConditionsPrivacy policyTerms of use