Understanding your virtual mobile number options

Understanding your virtual mobile number options

All of your SMS campaigns are delivered from a virtual mobile number, which makes it a very important piece when it comes to your mobile brand and credibility. The most common options include shared or dedicated virtual mobile numbers, toll-free numbers, shortcodes, and custom sender IDs.

Shared Virtual Mobile Numbers

Let’s start with shared virtual mobile numbers. Generally, these numbers are free and are your default option if you don’t have a dedicated virtual mobile number or shortcode. They’re not exclusive to your business, and they change from time to time from a pool of rotating numbers. This means your Sender ID might be different for every campaign you send, which can be very confusing for your customers.

Dedicated Virtual Mobile Numbers

For number consistency and exclusivity, most businesses choose a dedicated virtual number. Dedicated numbers allow you to receive SMS replies. These numbers can have a visual component if you lease a gold or a vanity number, which gives your customers an easier number to remember.

Standard vs Gold vs Vanity

There are 3 types: standard, gold, and vanity. Gold numbers are very easy to recognise and remember, and vanity numbers spell a word using your keypad:

  • Standard number: +61 467 528 788
  • Gold number: +61 459 333 444
  • Vanity number: +61 467 528 778 (614675BURST)

Dedicated virtual mobile numbers also enable features like SMS keywords, which can help you launch quick interactive surveys, contests, giveaways, competitions, and more.

We also offer Callable Virtual Mobile Numbers. These numbers allow you to receive calls in addition to all the features described above from a regular virtual mobile number.

Toll-Free Numbers

Toll-Free Numbers are business numbers that have no regional restrictions, making them ideal for brands looking to establish a global footprint.

Example Toll-Free Number: 1-888-123-1234.

Currently available to our North American customers, Toll-Free Numbers are typically for low volume, transactional style messaging. For high-volume marketing messaging, you’ll need a pre-approved shortcode—get in touch with us if you want to procure one.


Shortcodes are very similar to dedicated virtual mobile numbers but are more expensive. These numbers typically range between 4 to 6 digits (e.g. 134568), and their length is dependent upon the country’s delivery policies and general availability. They are commonly used for promotions, voting, information services, and by large corporate enterprises.

Keep in mind that we don’t provide shortcodes in Australia. You’ll need to contact your carrier to procure one.

Custom Sender IDs

If you’re using a dedicated virtual mobile number, you can also send your SMS messages with a Custom Sender ID. This helps your customers immediately identify you as the sender, but you can’t receive replies directly, which makes it inconvenient for replies and opt-outs. Instead of replying to your SMS message, they have to text your number directly. This is best used for one way SMS messages.

Using a dedicated virtual mobile number without a custom sender ID
Using a dedicated virtual mobile number with a custom sender ID

Both dedicated virtual mobile numbers and shortcodes are leased on a month to month basis, and they can be cancelled at any time. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

It only takes a few minutes to get your own virtual mobile number. Get started by signing up for a 14-day trial. No credit card needed and no obligations.