by DIABL0
27 replies
I've been searching the web for info on setting up an sms service with little luck.

Anyone know what is involved and approx costs and what message pricing might be?

I assume you need hardware, platform, provider, etc...

I'm really just interested in long codes for local at this time.

* Do all long codes have a one message per second restriction?

Outside of doing the above, are there any cost effective options?
I was looking at Twilio, but don't know how that would compare cost wise.
I assume it would be less up front, but more per message.

Any feedback from anyone that really knows about this stuff would be greatly appreciated!
#service #set #sms
  • Profile picture of the author Anderson2014
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    • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
      Originally Posted by Anderson2014 View Post

      PM me with what your exact needs are and budget. Are you looking for a white label solution or just for yourself to manage your clients campaigns?

      Let me know.

      I've used a few Twilio based programs and others outside of Twilio.
      What I really want to do is set up an actual service. So that I'm Twilio or the one offering the white label solution.

      In the mean time, I guess I will just set up something using Twilio.
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  • Profile picture of the author farry1
    The SMSC Service Provider uses the SMSC and its features for managing connections to mobile operators including commercial conditions, and secure high performance on SMS messages like bulk campaign advertisements send by telemarketing customers. The web user interface provides efficient tools for SMSC administrators and for customers campaign management.
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    • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
      Originally Posted by farry1 View Post

      The SMSC Service Provider uses the SMSC and its features for managing connections to mobile operators including commercial conditions, and secure high performance on SMS messages like bulk campaign advertisements send by telemarketing customers. The web user interface provides efficient tools for SMSC administrators and for customers campaign management.
      Thanks, that gets me a little further in figuring things out. I've already requested info from a couple companies offering SMSC.
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  • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
    It doesn't get much cheaper or customizeable than Twilio.
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    • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
      Originally Posted by xlfutur1 View Post

      It doesn't get much cheaper or customizeable than Twilio.
      Avid mobile (White Label/Tier 3 plan) goes as low as .004 per message, but you have to be doing 3 miilion per month to get down to that rate.

      At 500K+ it's .006. If your doing less than that, then Twillio is a better deal. 0 - 30K is .001 / 30K - 500K is .009.

      It's $289/month and includes 25K sms/month and 3 shared short codes. It includes a site builder and bunch of other stuff as well. If you need short codes, then it's a better deal than Twillio period.
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      • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
        Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

        Avid mobile (White Label/Tier 3 plan) goes as low as .004 per message, but you have to be doing 3 miilion per month to get down to that rate.

        At 500K+ it's .006. If your doing less than that, then Twillio is a better deal. 0 - 30K is .001 / 30K - 500K is .009.

        It's $289/month and includes 25K sms/month and 3 shared short codes. It includes a site builder and bunch of other stuff as well. If you need short codes, then it's a better deal than Twillio period.
        And how many small businesses in your area are going to be doing 3 million SMS messages per month? The nice thing about Twilio is that you don't have to spend any money unless you use the service. Being locked into monthly fees makes me break out into a cold sweat. But that's just me.
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        • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
          Originally Posted by xlfutur1 View Post

          And how many small businesses in your area are going to be doing 3 million SMS messages per month? The nice thing about Twilio is that you don't have to spend any money unless you use the service. Being locked into monthly fees makes me break out into a cold sweat. But that's just me.
          It's the combined volume of all the customers you sign up.
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          • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
            Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

            It's the combined volume of all the customers you sign up.
            My advice would be to concentrate on getting a client before you worry about SMS pricing. You can always figure out pricing later. Don't fall victim to the paralysis of analysis. I see people on this forum worry about 1/4 of a cent for an sms, yet they don't even have one client using SMS. You need a horse before it will pull a cart.
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            • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
              Originally Posted by xlfutur1 View Post

              My advice would be to concentrate on getting a client before you worry about SMS pricing. You can always figure out pricing later. Don't fall victim to the paralysis of analysis. I see people on this forum worry about 1/4 of a cent for an sms, yet they don't even have one client using SMS. You need a horse before it will pull a cart.

              I'm far from paralysis of analysis! I'm just doing my due diligence and seeing what my best options are. Anything less would be foolish on my part. But I know what your talking about.
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            • Profile picture of the author 9AppAve
              Originally Posted by xlfutur1 View Post

              My advice would be to concentrate on getting a client before you worry about SMS pricing. You can always figure out pricing later. Don't fall victim to the paralysis of analysis. I see people on this forum worry about 1/4 of a cent for an sms, yet they don't even have one client using SMS. You need a horse before it will pull a cart.
              I agree, Test your market, selling SMS to a small biz in most markets your likely the 2nd guy that week / month to pitch it.

              First, I am not an SMS hater, I love just about everything mobile, owned a large hosting company, been in the internet service biz since 1997... Mobile specific for the last 2 years.

              However, in my experience, there is not a single mobile offering, that has been pitched to perspective clients more then SMS...

              SMS is like most offerings, ton of competition and is not new and shiny ... Not that anything is :-)

              I am not saying this to discourage anyone from starting an SMS Biz, I think there is still a lot of opportunity out there, however, I definately agree with xlfutur1, worry about that 1/4 penny when and if it matters...
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  • Profile picture of the author iwhiz
    Can you use twilo for short code SMS?
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  • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
    Another option is to use a bulk provider and build your own application. That's exactly what I did and don't pay anywhere near what you Twilio guys are I looked at them a couple of years ago but I had already started to build the application/SaaS and found a great bulk provider.

    Of course, if you don't have programming skills you will have to invest in them.
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    • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
      Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

      Another option is to use a bulk provider and build your own application. That's exactly what I did and don't pay anywhere near what you Twilio guys are I looked at them a couple of years ago but I had already started to build the application/SaaS and found a great bulk provider.

      Of course, if you don't have programming skills you will have to invest in them.
      Do you care to elaborate?

      Where do you find bulk providers and what should one expect to pay?

      Creating an application would be no problem. I have programmers that have work for me for many many years and have developed a lot of programs, including my own email platform.
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      • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
        Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

        Do you care to elaborate?

        Where do you find bulk providers and what should one expect to pay?

        Creating an application would be no problem. I have programmers that have work for me for many many years and have developed a lot of programs, including my own email platform.
        Depends on the country. For US delivery you shouldn't pay anymore than $0.006/msg (regardless of delivery success).

        Programming for interacting with these bulk sms providers can be tricky in that slow=fast, or that it's vital to throttle the messages going thru your services to the API. Otherwise you get rejection.

        You (your programmers) have to build a queue system to manage the throttling -- this is the biggest challenge you will face. Tip: handle it at the database level rather than at the application tier to remove latency and incorporate asynchronous processing.

        If you just have one number from which to send messages from, you will be limited to sending 1 message/sec. As your user base grows and activity grows you need to add more send numbers and then incorporate a round-robin process to cycle thru the messages as they come in, still maintaining an appropriate submission rate (throttled) so that you don't get rejections.
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        • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
          Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

          Depends on the country. For US delivery you shouldn't pay anymore than $0.006/msg (regardless of delivery success).

          Programming for interacting with these bulk sms providers can be tricky in that slow=fast, or that it's vital to throttle the messages going thru your services to the API. Otherwise you get rejection.

          You (your programmers) have to build a queue system to manage the throttling -- this is the biggest challenge you will face. Tip: handle it at the database level rather than at the application tier to remove latency and incorporate asynchronous processing.

          If you just have one number from which to send messages from, you will be limited to sending 1 message/sec. As your user base grows and activity grows you need to add more send numbers and then incorporate a round-robin process to cycle thru the messages as they come in, still maintaining an appropriate submission rate (throttled) so that you don't get rejections.
          Are you using long codes? I know there is 1 message per min limit with them, but there is no limit with short codes. Well, I guess there is probably some technical limit.

          I'm interested in using short codes only.
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          • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
            Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

            Are you using long codes? I know there is 1 message per min limit with them, but there is no limit with short codes. Well, I guess there is probably some technical limit.

            I'm interested in using short codes only.
            I supposed it's a 10-digit phone number = "long code"? Cause that's what I ave, not short codes.

            With my sms gateway provider the limit is 1 sms per second per rented number/long code. So if you rent 1 number then you are limited to submitting 1 sms/sec thru the API from your webservice. So by adding rented long code numbers you can round robin thru them, thereby speeding up the submission of sms messages emanating from your site.

            The best analogy I can give you is let's say you have 1000 msgs you want to submit to the sms provider. Well you can't just say, "here's a 1000 sms messages all at once, now send them." -- it will fail. Instead you have to say, "here's one, here's another, here's another, here's another, here's another, etc...."

            Hope that makes sense.

            This is why I mentioned you need a queue system in place and a way to throttle the delivery thru the API to manage the submissions by your users. Believe me, 1 sms per second is SLOW if you have 100's of users all submitting thousands of messages at a time. This must be addressed at the architecture of your SaaS you build now.
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            • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
              Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

              I supposed it's a 10-digit phone number = "long code"? Cause that's what I ave, not short codes.

              With my sms gateway provider the limit is 1 sms per second per rented number/long code. So if you rent 1 number then you are limited to submitting 1 sms/sec thru the API from your webservice. So by adding rented long code numbers you can round robin thru them, thereby speeding up the submission of sms messages emanating from your site.

              The best analogy I can give you is let's say you have 1000 msgs you want to submit to the sms provider. Well you can't just say, "here's a 1000 sms messages all at once, now send them." -- it will fail. Instead you have to say, "here's one, here's another, here's another, here's another, here's another, etc...."

              Hope that makes sense.

              This is why I mentioned you need a queue system in place and a way to throttle the delivery thru the API to manage the submissions by your users. Believe me, 1 sms per second is SLOW if you have 100's of users all submitting thousands of messages at a time. This must be addressed at the architecture of your SaaS you build now.
              Yes I fully understand what you are saying. With short codes you don't have the 1 sms per second restriction. I'm looking to do short codes, not long codes, so it's not going to be an issue for me. Sounds like a great deal if your doing long codes though!

              So do the bulk providers offer dedicated short codes or provision them?
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              • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
                Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

                Yes I fully understand what you are saying. With short codes you don't have the 1 sms per second restriction. I'm looking to do short codes, not long codes, so it's not going to be an issue for me. Sounds like a great deal if your doing long codes though!

                So do the bulk providers offer dedicated short codes or provision them?
                So you are planning to just send a single message to the shortcode senders? I guess I don't follow what you want to do. My customers login to my website, add recipient info & then send out sms messages to those recipients. Some clients use the system for sending reminders to a small daily list of recipients, others use it to send promotions to 1000's of recipients at once, many use it for both.

                If I had built my SaaS limited to 1 sms per second it could take days to process submitted messages from concurrent users of my system that has 10' of 1000's of items in the queue waiting to be processed. Totally unacceptable.

                Also without asynchronously processing the users would be waiting for ever while those requests were processing and would likely just get timed out.
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              • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
                Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

                I'm looking to do short codes, not long codes, so it's not going to be an issue for me. Sounds like a great deal if your doing long codes though!

                So do the bulk providers offer dedicated short codes or provision them?
                I just confirmed that my provider does offer shortcode services.

                Just FYI: reason why I am not utilizing that type of service is mostly related to my client's customers and the niche(s) they fill. To be honest, here in the US the market is extremely sophisticated and is up to speed on what happens when they hear, "text 11111 to recieve blah, blah, blah....".

                For the most part, my clients prefer to utilize in-store signage along with simple verbal communication with their customers to handle the opt-in process. Electronically, I build and host for them a landing page that allows their customers to opt-in by typing a cell number into the box and I manage the subscriptions myself for them (included in the subscriptions I offer).

                Hope that helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author booksms247
    But it's not free for those outside the US.
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  • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
    I fully understand what you are saying,

    My question is do bulk providers offer dedicated short codes or provision them? Also, where do I find them?
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    • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
      Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

      I fully understand what you are saying,

      My question is do bulk providers offer dedicated short codes or provision them? Also, where do I find them?
      Yes. I just found one google searching.
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  • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
    What term do you suggest I search google with to find bulk providers?
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    • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
      Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

      What term do you suggest I search google with to find bulk providers?

      Bulk+sms+gateway
      Bulk+sms+provider

      There's a bunch. I didn't particularly like the idea of the credit-based ones and prefer the per-sms charging.
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      • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
        Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

        Bulk+sms+gateway
        Bulk+sms+provider

        There's a bunch. I didn't particularly like the idea of the credit-based ones and prefer the per-sms charging.
        I've searched that before and there's no great deals out there on short codes. I'm just better off signing up with avid mobile and using their platform/short codes and paying .01 or less on volume.
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  • Profile picture of the author TrumpiaTim
    Which provider did you ultimately decide on and how is business coming along for you?
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