Understanding the Risks of Texting From Two Phone Numbers

Sending text messages to subscribers from two or more phone numbers comes with several compliance risks. Brands who text their subscribers from two separate numbers may be doing so because:

  • It's only temporary while they transition.
  • They are using two separate SMS providers due to feature offerings or limitations.
  • You are employing separate SMS platforms-- one for transactional SMS and marketing SMS.

In this article, we discuss the compliance risks and the impact on customer experience when sending from more than one phone number.

Maintain a Clear Unsubscribe List

If a subscriber requests to opt out of your promotional messaging but responds STOP to the transactional messaging thread, they will not be opted out of your promotional messaging since these messages are being sent from two separate numbers.

Similarly, if you are running an SMS program from two or more platforms due to a feature offering or limitation and a subscriber opts out of one program/number, they will NOT be opted out of the other. 

Both of these pose compliance risks. Your brand would be required to manually unsubscribe any subscribers who request to opt out of your SMS program across all phone numbers.

Please note that using Shopify's SMS subscribed status within a customer profile should not be considered a source of truth for maintaining a clear unsubscribe list across multiple SMS platforms. If you are using multiple providers, you cannot be certain that all providers accurately pass SMS status back to Shopify when a subscriber unsubscribes. 

By maintaining a single source of truth - one SMS provider - and by refraining from texting your subscribers from separate phone numbers, you can be sure to conserve a precise and clear unsubscribe list.

Provide a Delightful Customer Experience

The user experience of receiving messages from multiple numbers/threads in parallel can be disruptive and cause a lapse in trust between your brand and your subscribers.

As a brand sharing an inbox with your subscribers' closest contacts, your SMS program and messaging should be courteous and build trust between subscribers and your brand.

When you text your subscribers from only one phone number, you can ensure to provide them with a delightful customer experience.

Mitigate Filtering by Reducing Potential Spam Compliants

iOS 16 makes it easier than ever to report junk via SMS. If your brand is sending multiple messages from multiple numbers, subscribers may be more inclined to report an unsaved number as spam or junk.

This could result in an increase in spam complaints to carriers which lead to your toll-free number being suspended or messages being filtered by carriers.

By texting your subscribers from a single phone number, you can mitigate filtering and reduce the likelihood of multiple spam complaints.

Before You Go

  • If your brand has a dedicated short code (DSC), carriers will attempt to send your messages first from your DSC. If your message fails, carriers will automatically attempt to send your message from your backup toll-free number. Similarly, carriers will send your messages to international recipients from your international toll-free number. Your toll-free number, DSC, and international toll-free number can be found on your keywords page.

Additional Resources

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