Learn more about our short code program: 

  1. What are the limits on outbound calls and SMS messages per-second?
  2. What are the requirements for US short code advertisements and opt-in forms?
  3. What are the opt-in requirements for US short codes?
  4. What are the opt-in requirements for Canada short codes?
  5. What are the opt-out requirements for US short codes?
  6. What are the opt-out requirements for Canada short codes?
  7. What are the requirements for short code HELP and STOP?
  8. Will TeleMessage automatically handle my short code’s replies to the keywords HELP and STOP?

 

 

 

Subscription

One Time MT Message

 

US

Canada

US

Canada

Web Page 

Terms and Conditions and Privacy Statement

Text program terms and conditions and link to full T&C’s and Privacy Statement required on registration page. No scrolling to read.

Text program terms and conditions and link to full T&C’s and Privacy Statement required on registration page. No scrolling to read.

Text program terms and conditions and link to full T&C’s and Privacy Statement required on registration page. No scrolling to read.

Text program terms and conditions and link to full T&C’s and Privacy Statement required on registration page. No scrolling to read.

Description of Text Program

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

In Store Ad

Terms and Conditions and Privacy Statement

N/A

N/A

Text program terms and conditions and link to full T&C’s and Privacy Statement required on registration page.

Text program terms and conditions and link to full T&C’s and Privacy Statement required on registration page.

Description of Text Program

N/A

N/A

Yes

Yes

Text Message Requirements

MT Character Byte Limits

160

136

160

136

Language Support

English

English / French

English

English / French

Opt-in requires handset verifier confirmation

Reply Yes to opt-in MT

Reply Yes or Oui to opt-in MT

N/A

N/A

Program title required for all MT’s

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

MO Keyword Support requiring MT auto reply

HELP, STOP

STOP, ARRET, HELP, AIDE, INFO

HELP, STOP

STOP, ARRET, HELP, AIDE, INFO

Rates description in Opt-in and Help MT’s

Msg & data rates may apply.

Msg & data rates may apply.

Msg & data rates may apply.

Msg & data rates may apply.

Add’l Information in Help MT

Customer service contact information (email and/or URL and/or phone). NOTE: if the phone number is the exclusive method of contact, then it must be toll-free;

– Cost and message frequency of the program;

– Opt-out/unsubscribe information 

– Identity of the program sponsor by company name and a short description of the program;

Customer service contact information (email and/or URL and/or phone). NOTE: if the phone number is the exclusive method of contact, then it must be toll-free;

– Cost and message frequency of the program;

– Opt-out/unsubscribe information 

– Identity of the program sponsor by company name and a short description of the program;

Customer service contact information (email and/or URL and/or phone). NOTE: if the phone number is the exclusive method of contact, then it must be toll-free;


– Cost and message frequency of the program;


– Opt-out/unsubscribe information 

– Identity of the program sponsor by company name and a short description of the program;

Customer service contact information (email and/or URL and/or phone). NOTE: if the phone number is the exclusive method of contact, then it must be toll-free;


– Cost and message frequency of the program;


– Opt-out/unsubscribe information 

– Identity of the program sponsor by company name and a short description of the program;

Opt-out instruction included in content MT’s

Reply STOP to Cancel.

Reply STOP to Cancel.

Reply STOP to Cancel.

Reply STOP to Cancel.

Help instruction included in content MT’s

N/A

N/A

Reply HELP for help.

Reply HELP for help.

Acceptable Opt-out keywords

STOP, END, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE, and QUIT

STOP, END, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE, QUIT and ARRET

STOP, END, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE, and QUIT

STOP, END, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE, QUIT and ARRET

Opt-out MT

Program Title and Confirmation that no further messages will be delivered

Program Title and Confirmation that no further messages will be delivered

Program Title and Confirmation that no further messages will be delivered

Program Title and Confirmation that no further messages will be delivered


 

 

What are the limits on outbound calls and SMS messages per-second?

Calls

By default each TeleMessage account can make 1 outgoing call per-second. If your account needs more, please contact our sales team about options for higher limits.

SMS via Long Code

Each TeleMessage SMS-enabled long code (regular 10 digit number that excludes toll free numbers) can send 1 SMS message segment per-second, per-number. Unfortunately we are not able to adjust this rate limit. If your application requires a high volume of outgoing SMS, we recommend using an SMS short code.

SMS via US or Canadian Toll Free Long Code

US and Canadian toll free phone numbers have a rate limit of 3 message segments per-second, per-number.


 

 

What are the requirements for US short code advertisements and opt-in forms?

Carriers require specific information be included wherever the short code is advertised, or where users are invited to sign up for short code messages. This can be paper forms, web pages or any other method through which the end user submits their phone number and will receive a message from a short code as a result. Your company is required to comply with these guidelines in the use of any TeleMessage-provided short code.

Advertisements and opt-in forms are also known as Calls to Action, or CTAs. The wording of your short code CTA will vary depending on the sign up method, since it tells users how to opt into a short code campaign. An SMS keyword Call to Action, for example, should look like this:

TEXT {KEYWORD} TO ##### TO SIGN UP FOR ALERTS.

For all sign up methods, the following language (with your information in the blanks) must appear wherever the short code is advertised (on the web, in print, etc):

MESSAGE AND DATA RATES MAY APPLY. {MESSAGE FREQUENCY}. TEXT HELP TO ##### FOR HELP. TEXT STOP TO ##### TO CANCEL. FOR TERMS: {URL TO SMS TERMS OF SERVICE}. FOR PRIVACY: {URL TO PRIVACY POLICY}

Keep the following points in mind when writing your Call to Action:

  • Message frequency must be specific, for example: “1 message/day” or “4 messages/month.” If the message frequency is dependent on the user, use “1 message/user request”.
  • TeleMessage provides sample compliant terms and privacy language, which can be integrated directly into an existing terms page.
  • STOP” must appear in bold anywhere it is displayed.

You may also wish to review the CTIA’s Mobile Commerce Compliance Handbook and the MMA’s Best Practices Guide.


 

What are the opt-in requirements for US short codes?

Users can opt-in to a short code campaign several ways. In each case, the campaign’s opt-in message flow must meet certain compliance standards set by the wireless carriers.

Handset Opt-In: Sending a text message from a mobile phone to a short code

When a user signs up from a mobile handset, a double opt-in process is advised, but not required. A compliant message flow should look like this:

End user: {Keyword}
Short code: Welcome to {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts! Msg&data rates may apply.  {Message frequency} Reply HELP for help, STOP to cancel.

• The “description” should be a single word to define the kind of alerts, e.g. “Account Alerts,” “News Alerts,” “Promo Alerts,” etc.
• The message frequency must be specific, but can be any interval, for example: “1 message per day,” “4 messages per month,” “2 messages per transaction,” etc. If the message frequency will vary based on user interaction, “1 message/user request” is standard.

Non-Handset Opt-in: Asking to receive text messages and giving your mobile number to a website, mobile app, paper form, via verbal agreement, or otherwise opting in without using a handset.

When a user initially signs up by any means other than from a mobile handset, a double opt-in process is required. A compliant message flow should look like this:

(User signs up without using mobile handset, and receives a text message from the short code asking to confirm opt-in)
Short code: Text YES to join {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts. Msg&data rates may apply. {Message frequency} Reply HELP for help, STOP to cancel.
End user:YES
Short code: Welcome to {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts! Msg&data rates may apply.  {Message frequency} Reply HELP for help, STOP to cancel.

Note: Rather than confirming opt-in with a text message keyword such as YES, users may confirm by entering a verification code online instead. Once the verification code has been entered, a compliant welcome message must be sent to the handset.


 

 

What are the opt-in requirements for Canada short codes?

Canadian wireless carriers require that all short code advertisements and opt-in message flows meet certain criteria. TeleMessage recommends that your short code advertisements and opt-in message flows follow the examples provided below in order to meet carriers’ compliance standards.

Please note: the character limit for Canada short code SMS is 136 characters. Messages with more than 136 characters will not be delivered.

Short Code Advertisement (also known as “Call to Action” or CTA) Guidelines

The wording of your short code advertisement (also known as a Call to Action, or CTA) will vary depending on the sign up method, since it tells users how to opt into a short code campaign. An SMS Keyword Call to Action, for example, should look like this:

TEXT {KEYWORD} TO ##### TO SIGN UP FOR ALERTS.

For all sign up methods, the following language must appear wherever the short code is advertised (on the web, in print, etc):

STANDARD MESSAGE AND DATA RATES MAY APPLY. {MESSAGE FREQUENCY}. TEXT HELP TO ##### FOR HELP. TEXT STOP TO ##### TO CANCEL. FOR TERMS: {URL TO SMS TERMS OF SERVICE}. FOR PRIVACY: {URL TO PRIVACY POLICY}

Your website must also display a mailing address for your business.

Keep the following points in mind when writing your Call to Action:

• Message frequency must be specific, for example: “1 message/day” or “4 messages/month.” If the message frequency will vary, it must be user-prompted (for example, “1 message/user request”). Note: the abbreviation “msgs” is not accepted; please use “msg” instead.
• The words “HELP” and “STOP” must appear in bold.

Opt-In Guidelines

Users can opt into a short code several ways: by sending a text message or opting in from a mobile app (Handset Opt-In); or by signing up on a web site, filling out a paper form, making a verbal agreement, or otherwise opting in without using a handset (Non-Handset Opt-in). In each case, the campaign’s opt-in message flow must meet certain compliance standards set by the wireless carriers. Be sure to follow these opt-in compliance guidelines carefully:

Handset Opt-In

When a user signs up from a mobile handset, a double opt-in process is advised, but not required. A compliant message flow should look like this:

End user: {Keyword}
Short code: Welcome to {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts! Std msg&data rates may apply.
{Message frequency} Reply HELP for help, STOP to cancel.

Non-Handset Opt-In

When a user initially signs up by any means other than from a mobile handset, a double opt-in process is required. A compliant message flow should look like this:

(End user signs up without using mobile handset, and receives a text message from the short code asking to confirm opt-in)
Short code: Text YES to join {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts. Std msg&data rates may apply. {Message frequency} Reply HELP for help, STOP to cancel.
End user: YES
Short code: Welcome to {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts! Std msg&data rates may apply.
{Message frequency} Reply HELP for help, STOP to cancel.

Note: Rather than confirming opt-in with a text message keyword such as YES, users may confirm by entering a verification code online instead. Once the verification code has been entered, a compliant welcome message must be sent to the handset.


 

 

What are the opt-out requirements for US short codes?

End-users may be subscribed to multiple campaigns running off of one short code but may want to unsubscribe from a particular campaign. This can be achieved using STOP Filtering.

STOP Filtering

When a short code is created, the customer should create a database for managing opt-in and opt-out.

A short code program must allow the end-user to text STOP to opt-out of messages from the short code. If there are multiple campaigns running on a single short code, customers can follow the example message flow below to allow the end-user to unsubscribe from a single campaign or all of the campaigns.

Example message flow:

End-user sends: STOP

Your Short Code replies: To unsubscribe from { Campaign 1 } Alerts, text 1; { Campaign 2 } Alerts, text 2. Text STOPALL to unsubscribe from all messages.

End-user sends: 1

Your Short Code replies: You are unsubscribed from { Campaign 1 } Alerts. You will not receive any more messages from this program. Reply HELP for help or { source of help }. Msg&data rates may apply.

OR

End-user sends: STOPALL

Your Short Code replies: You are unsubscribed from all { Campaign } Alerts, no more messages will be sent. Reply HELP for help or { source of help }. Msg&data rates may apply.


 

 

What are the opt-out requirements for Canada short codes?

To be on the safe side, we recommend that you include language at the end of every message sent from your short code informing users how to stop from receiving further messages (e.g., “Text STOP to cancel”, or “Texter ARRET pour ##### pour annuler”).  Moreover, in all cases, your short code must be able to correctly handle an inbound STOP or ARRET message: a compliant STOP/ARRET message must be returned and you must discontinue sending messages to that end user unless the user re-initiates the service again.

However, strictly speaking, carriers distinguish between the following situations with respect to whether you must include STOP/ARRET language in the body of every message:

  • For a subscription service/recurring program,you must include STOP/ARRET language in the body of the messages that are part of the sign-up flow.  However, once the end user has opted into the program, you need not include STOP/ARRET language in the body of subsequent messages..
  • For an info on demand/single message program,you do not need to include the STOP/ARRET language in the body of messages sent to the user.  The rationale is that the user is initiating a response text from your service and therefore explicitly requesting you to send a short code message.

Remember that there is absolutely no difference when it comes to receiving the keyword STOP/ARRET from a user. If carriers audit a short code and text the keyword STOP/ARRET to your short code, a compliant STOP/ARRET message must be returned, and you must discontinue sending messages until the user initiates the service again.

More specifically, when a user sends the keyword STOP/ARRET to a short code, the application must reply with a message stating, “At your request we will no longer send you messages in connection with <your program name>” (or something similar), even if the phone number is not subscribed, or if you are not running a subscription service. You must also stop sending messages of any kind to that user until/unless the user sends another “JOIN” message to initiate the service again.


 

 

What are the requirements for short code HELP and STOP?

Wireless carriers require certain information to be included in HELP and STOP message content for all US short codes. TeleMessage recommends including that information in the following format for your HELP and STOP messages to be considered compliant if your short code is tested by a carrier. We also recommend the following method for maintaining an opt-out list.

HELP Message

A compliant response is required whenever users text HELP to your short code, regardless of whether the user is subscribed to the program. Example:

End user: HELP or INFO
Short code: {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts: Help at {source of help #1} or {toll free number}. Msg&data rates may apply. {Message frequency}. Text STOP to cancel.

• The “description” should be a single word to define the kind of alerts, e.g. “Account Alerts,” “News Alerts,” “Promo Alerts,” etc.
• The first “source of help” should be a support email address or a link to your terms of service.
• The message frequency must be specific, but can be any interval, for example: “1 message per day,” “4 messages per month,” “2 messages per transaction,” etc. If the message frequency will vary based on user interaction, “1 message/user request” is standard.

Managing Opt-Out Requests

Unlike on long codes, TeleMessage does not manage opt-out requests for short codes. This allows the short code application to independently manage subscription lists and requests from end users to re-opt in. When a short code app is created, a database for managing opt-in and opt-out will need to be created for it as well.

STOP Message

Along with maintaining an opt-out list, a compliant response is required whenever users text STOP or the universal keywords STOP, END, CANCEL, UNSUBSCRIBE, and QUIT to your short code, regardless of whether the user was subscribed to the program previously. Example:

End user: STOP, END, QUIT, CANCEL or UNSUBSCRIBE
Short code: You are unsubscribed from {Campaign Name} {Description} Alerts. No more messages will be sent. Reply HELP for help or {toll free number}.

STOP Filtering

End users may be subscribed to multiple campaigns running off of one short code and may want to unsubscribe from a particular campaign. This is achieved using STOP Filtering. 


 

 

Will TeleMessage automatically handle my short code’s replies to the keywords HELP and STOP?

Unlike with a long code, TeleMessage does not handle your short code’s HELP & STOP replies, or your opt-out list by default. You should build this functionality into your own short code messaging application. 

With some exceptions, TeleMessage can handle your short code’s HELP & STOP replies and opt-out list by request. For more details, please contact your account manager.