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Toll-Free SMS

Bandwidth Toll-Free SMS

Get more out of your toll-free numbers

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Your omni-channel strategy starts right here

Your customers want to be able to reach you whenever and wherever they are, and doing that over a voice call isn’t always convenient or reliable. Bandwidth Toll-Free SMS lets you leverage the power of your existing toll-free numbers by text-enabling them and allowing your agents to handle multiple conversations with customers via SMS using the same numbers your customers already know to call.

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Message Deliverability

Text messaging has big-time value as a channel for customer communications. Learn the best practices for ensuring your messages are delivered and engaged with.

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Move between text and voice on the same number!

Increasingly, your customers want to communicate with your business over text, whether that’s receiving notifications and alerts, or working through a customer service issue. But sometimes a text isn’t enough. With Bandwidth Toll-Free SMS, customers can seamlessly move from texting with your agents to talking to them, all from the same number.

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Ready to deliver millions of messages

Whether you’re using your 800 number to send appointment reminders, customer surveys, or promotions your high volume use case doesn’t have to live on a short code. Use the same toll-free number you use for your contact center or sales line to deliver a better user experience.

Bandwidth toll-free voice dashboard

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No new numbers to buy

Your customers already have your number. When they need to reach you they know exactly what digits to dial. So why get a new number just so they can text you? You don’t have to! Bandwidth can text-enable your existing toll-free numbers, eliminating confusion for your customers and alleviating you from having to manage a separate number for messaging.

How much can ditching your short code save you?

Use our calculator to estimate your monthly savings by switching from short codes to toll-free SMS.

Messages Sent: 1M

Messages Recieved: 500k


Estimated savings using Bandwidth: 28%

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A powerful alternative to Short Codes

Enterprise A2P Messaging from Bandwidth gives you the throughput you need to send and deliver SMS messages on-time– without all the extra carrier surcharges that short codes include. Not familiar with the pricing breakdown? We can help clear things up. Use our calculator to see how the additional carrier short code delivery fees can add up to serious savings when you make the switch

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With you every step of the way

We know you’re going to have questions, which is why we’re with you every step of the way. From onboarding and enabling your toll-free numbers to questions about message deliverability, our team of voice and messaging experts is ready to help.

Frequently asked questions

Who uses Toll-Free SMS?

Many businesses utilize toll-free SMS in order to send and receive high volume SMS messages to their customers, without all the extra carrier surcharges, with information like:

  • Shipping notifications: Notifications from retail factories about your purchase, like: still in production/packaging, has shipped, or been delivered.
  • Appointment reminders: Doctors offices sending you confirmation or appointment reminders about your upcoming visit.
  • Service updates: Maintenance workers sending you any updates, including what time an employee will be at your house, the status of the work order if unfinished and some options on times to come back, or a completion update.
  • School/Office alerts: School, universities, offices sending out weather advisories, emergency situations, important technology “down-time” alerts.

Toll-free SMS works best when your use case involves personalized messaging; meaning both the sender and the recipient are having a conversation via text message. Since consumers prefer to communicate through text messaging instead of taking the time to make a call, (especially if they think they’ll have to sit on hold or hunt through menus), text messaging helps businesses pave the way for a better customer/user experience. By maintaining a more personalized relationship with customers and providing a chance for them to respond back with any questions or concerns, Toll-free SMS is a scalable “easy button” for businesses to leverage text messaging today, on a number they probably already pay for.

How much does Toll-Free SMS cost?

Toll-free numbers vary in price depending on country location and service providers. In the United States, toll-free numbers are very reasonable, and start at around $1 to a few dollars per number.

Toll-free SMS is priced per message sent and/or received. At Bandwidth, toll-free SMS message pricing starts at $.0065 per message for both inbound and outbound messaging. Customers are billed monthly for messages sent and received by the business, and a small fee for the toll-free number itself.

Where can I get Toll-Free SMS?

Businesses looking to get started sending toll-free SMS can get started in a variety of ways depending on what technology tools you may need along the way. Bandwidth’s API-driven platform lets you get started developing applications or software platforms with toll-free messaging in just minutes. Businesses may also enable any existing toll-free numbers they have for texting with Bandwidth and use them to send critical alerts and notifications to their customers via SMS. This allows for a more personalized touch, since they are utilizing the same number their customers already know to call.

Can I get Toll-Free SMS with a different provider than my voice provider?

Yes! If you already have a toll-free number that you are using for your contact center or sales line, it’s easy to enable your number for texting using Bandwidth’s Hosted Messaging feature so you won’t have to ride out an existing voice contract.

What do consumers need to know about Toll-Free SMS?

Toll-free SMS is still somewhat new for businesses, and it’s a great feature for businesses looking to communicate with their customers. Just like toll-free numbers are the expected business phone number for voice, toll-free is quickly becoming the expected and preferred business phone number for messaging. Studies show that the average consumer prefers to be communicated with via text, so toll-free messaging is becoming an increasingly important customer success and sales tool.

If your SMS feature is for customer support or sales, toll-free is a fantastic option for you because it allows customers to call your business back on the same phone number you are texting from. However, because toll-free numbers can support a higher throughput of messages per phone number than traditional ten-digit numbers, some developers choose to use toll-free numbers for one-way communications like alerts and notifications. Choosing toll-free also makes responding to those notifications possible.

The messaging revolution also plays a vital role in why toll-free is becoming a preferred style of messaging for businesses. Shared short codes were popular for a time, but are being eliminated due to spam concerns, so now only dedicated short codes are accepted in the industry. If you’re moving away from short codes, Toll-free SMS is the smartest way forward.

What is the difference between Toll-Free SMS and Short Codes?

Short codes are great for mass messaging use cases like pin codes, two-factor authentication, SMS marketing, and more. If you’ve ever cast a vote for American Idol or donated via text to the Red Cross then you’ve used a short code. But some short code messages may be better sent using a toll-free number. Why?

Here are a few reasons:

  • A toll-free number can be provisioned and ready for use in the snap of a finger. Short codes require carrier approvals that can take weeks or even months to provision.
  • Toll-free numbers can be both voice and text-enabled, which opens the door for your customers to text and call you from the same number. The end result is additional flexibility for your customers and potential cost savings for you.
  • You likely already have a toll-free number that you’re promoting, so why get a new number for customers to remember? Leverage your existing toll-free number for both voice and texting.
  • Toll-free numbers will save you money, and can cost as little as $1 per number. Short codes cost between $500 to $1000 per month in lease fees to the Short Code Registry, and that cost is unavoidable.

Looking ahead, toll-free SMS is an ideal alternative for mass business text messaging when you include cost savings, ease of use, ease of implementation, and a better customer experience

A better experience for you and your customers

Give your customers, and your team, an experience they won’t forget with Bandwidth Toll-Free SMS. Talk to a toll-free SMS expert today and see how your business can make better, more meaningful connections with your customers.

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