Customer trust is crucial for every business, and telecom carriers have demonstrated this with 10DLC regulations. 10DLC requires all businesses that text to register in order to use standard 10-digit phone numbers. A large part of 10DLC registration is documenting how your contacts opt into and opt out of texting. (Read more about what 10DLC is and how to register for it here.)
The 10DLC registration process includes submitting basic yet thorough information about your company and opt-in flow. If you’re a Heymarket customer, we have an intuitive portal where you can submit that information and complete your registration.
Still, carriers have strict requirements about how to receive that information, and any inaccurate or inconsistent information can result in you needing to re-submit information. Any inaccurate or incomplete information in your 10DLC submission could interrupt your messaging, so it’s important to get the process right.
The Heymarket team has helped thousands of customers register for 10DLC, and know what makes for a smooth process. We’ve also encountered all of the common issues that come up in the registration process, and ways to avoid prolonging your approval process and interrupting your messaging.
Here’s our list of the most common errors that businesses make when registering for 10DLC, and how to avoid them.
First, some background: What is opt-in and opt-out consent?
As we mentioned above, a large component of 10DLC registration is communicating to carriers how your contacts opt into and out of text messaging. Opt-in consent is how a person agrees to receive text messages from a business or entity. Opt-out is how the individual can withdraw their consent, and ensure they no longer receive any more text messages. Read more about what opt-in and opt-out mean here.
Opt-in and opt-out consent is mandatory for all businesses that text, regardless of your company size, who you’re texting with, or your use case. It’s the law and a 10DLC requirement from carriers, and it also allows you to build trust with your customers and contacts by only texting people who have clearly agreed to receive your messages.
Heymarket offers opt-out management, so the platform will automatically opt contacts in and out if they text standard keywords. But you also need to show opt-in and opt-out consent within your text messages to ensure 10DLC compliance.
Now that you’re up to speed on opt-in and opt-out consent, let’s dive into the most common mistakes that businesses make when demonstrating their opt-in flows during 10DLC registration.
Mistake #1: Thinking opt-in only applies to promotional texts
One common misconception is that only businesses that send promotional or mass texts need to have an opt-in process. The truth is that every business that texts, whether it’s sending 1-to-1 or 1-to-many texts with customers, leads, employees, or others, must secure a contact’s opt-in before texting with them. They also must make it easy for contacts to opt-out.
Whether you’re sending promotional texts, conversational texts, informational alerts, and everything in between, you must have an opt-in and opt-out process, and document that process for your 10DLC registration.
Mistake #2: Using verbal, implied, or informal consent
Prior to 10DLC, some businesses relied on intangible forms of consent to communicate their contacts’ opt-in for text messages, such as verbal consent. Now, carriers only accept tangible forms of opt-in that they can clearly verify. Here are some examples of tangible forms of opt-in collection:
- Inbound SMS: Posting a public number where customers can message you. You must include opt-in verbiage where the number is posted, and confirm opt-in via text with the contact.
- Web form: This could be a Contact Us form, or application filled out on a website. The form should include verbiage on how you’ll use the phone number for SMS.
- Paper forms: This could be client or customer applications filled out on paper, where you include a field for collecting a phone number. The form should include verbiage on how you’ll use the phone number for SMS.
- Email: You may explicitly ask for a phone number and permission to SMS via email.
Mistake #3: Not including a URL, image, document, or other proof of opt-in
When registering for 10DLC, it’s not enough to just describe your opt-in process. You should also provide supporting evidence that visually demonstrates what your opt-in flow looks like. This could include:
- A URL to any publicly accessible pages where you collect opt-in. For example, a page on your website or a form.
- An image or screenshot showing pages where you collect consent. This is useful if the page is not publicly accessible, e.g. behind a login.
- A PDF, which can be useful to show internal documents or paper applications where you gather opt-in.
Mistake #4: Not using clear language to collect opt-in
No matter what type of opt-in evidence you provide, it should always display clear language to gather your contact’s consent to text messaging. Successful opt-in language has a few components that you should be sure to include:
- Why you are collecting the contact’s phone number
- How you’ll use their phone numbers for SMS
- How to easily opt out
- Make the disclaimer easy to see
- Opt-in should be optional (e.g., an unchecked checkbox)
For example, your form or webpage could say “By checking this box, you are opting in to receiving SMS messages for regular account updates and appointment reminders to your provided contact phone number. You can opt out at any time by replying STOP.”
For more 10DLC registration best practices and examples of successful opt-in flows, read our full guide on our Help Center.
Heymarket’s compliance center: Helping you track your 10DLC registration
To help our customers navigate 10DLC registration, we’ve launched our Compliance Center. This 1-stop portal allows you to submit your 10DLC registration and track the status of your submission. If there are any errors in your submission or additional information is required, we will automatically notify you on the actions needed to complete your registration.