Short Code Texting Service

Welcome to the easier, less stressful way of getting an SMS short code. We’ll take care of everything for you from beginning through launch so your first campaign is a breeze!

What Are Short Codes?

An SMS short code is a unique 5-6 digit phone number that can send and receive SMS and MMS messages at high volumes in a short period. These numbers are shorter than the usual 10-digit phone number we use for our personal cell phones.

An SMS short code service is the best choice for companies looking to brand their mobile messaging campaigns for their audience. Watch our video to learn more.

The Different Types of SMS Short Codes

Random Short Codes

Random short codes, also known as non-vanity short codes, are random 5 or 6-digit phone numbers that are assigned to organizations by phone carriers after they’ve completed the entire short code provisioning process.

Remember, you have no control over what number you receive once your applications been approved. Most organizations use this type of short code in today’s market because they’re a lot less expensive than their counterpart, vanity codes.

Vanity Short Codes

Vanity short codes are 5-6 digit phone numbers that you can customize. This means you have the power to choose what number your customers see when they open your text messages if they aren’t already taken by another organization.

Vanity SMS short codes are more beneficial in the sense that they’re more memorable than random SMS short codes, and they give you the best chance at branding your business.

Short Codes, Toll-Free, and 10DLC

There are a few key differences between the phone number options you have to choose from. Short codes are 5-6 digits long, whereas the other options (toll-free and 10DLC) are 10 digits long and send messages at lower speeds per second.

Short codes (vanity & random) are also more expensive than 10-digit numbers. It can also take anywhere from 6-8 weeks to get a short code number approved, whereas l0-digit numbers, AKA SMS long code numbers, take 1-2 days. Also, it’s essential to keep in mind that 10-digit phone numbers are subject to carrier spam/content filters, where short codes typically aren’t.


5-6 Digits

$1,000-1,500 per month

600+ messages per second

Approval process required

6 to 8 week approval time


10 Digits

$4-10 per month

50+ messages per second

Approval process required

1-3 day approval time


10 Digits


Maximum throughput available

Approval process required

1-7 day approval time

SMS Short Code Pricing

It’s important to know that you don’t buy SMS short codes, you lease them for the right to send text messages from the number. SMS short codes can vary in price depending on multiple factors like whether you want a vanity code or a random code. Random SMS short codes cost $1,000, whereas vanity SMS short codes cost $1,500.

The setup fee, also known as the provisioning fee, is a one-time payment to providers, so they will handle the entire short code provisioning process for you with each of the phone carriers. Esendex’s setup/provisioning fee is $3,200. Keep in mind, we’re 100% transparent about our pricing, so you don’t ever have to worry about hidden fees.

Short Code Pricing

Random Short Codes

  • $1,000/month
  • $3,200 setup fee

Vanity Short Codes

  • $1,500/month
  • $3,200 setup fee

Can I Migrate/Move A Short Code?

Yes, just find an SMS service provider that uses the same SMS aggregator as your current SMS service provider. The process could take as little as a few minutes to hours. On the other hand, if you can’t find an SMS service provider with the same SMS aggregator this could be a long, time-consuming process. Contact our team of experts if you need help with this issue.

What’s the difference between a random short code and vanity short code?

Random SMS short codes are 5 or 6-digit phone numbers that are given to you at random by the phone carriers after the short code provisioning process is complete, whereas vanity SMS short codes are completely customized by you.

How long does it take to get a short code?

The average short code provisioning process takes anywhere between 6-8 weeks for Esendex. During this process we’ll always keep you updated on the status of your pending short code.

Do short codes get filtered by carriers for spam?

Yes. Esendex, as well as all the other phone carriers, have multiple security parameters set in place to stop organizations/businesses from sending spam or breaking compliance guidelines.

How much does an SMS short code cost?

A random short code and vanity short code both cost $3,200 to set up, whereas a random short code costs $1,000 per month, and a vanity short code costs $1,500 per month.

What are the alternatives to using a short code?

The perfect alternative for a short code is a 10 digit long code. You can choose between a 10DLC or toll-free phone number.

How fast can short codes send text messages?

Esendex’s short code API has no limits. At 600 text messages per second, we can reach as many of your contacts as fast as you need without any issues.

What is a short code audit?

A short code audit is when a network carrier views your short code request to see if your use case, message content, etc. pass their requirements.

Can I send MMS from a short code?

Yes! Short codes can send and receive mass SMS and multimedia messages (MMS).

How to get short codes for text messaging?

You can get short codes for text messaging your contacts by submitting your short code application, then going through the short code provisioning process. To begin the journey, please contact our helpful sales team.

Let’s start sending, together.