Can I use a short code in an outgoing text?

What is a short code and why we don't use them with texting in Churchteams?

What is a short code?

A short code is 5-6 digit number that is used by businesses to allow customers (in our case, church members) to opt in to text messaging services so that they can then send the customer messages such as promotions back via text.

Why doesn't Churchteams use short codes to opt-in members for text messaging?

We don't use short codes for a number of reasons:
  • One of the main reasons has to do with it then being shared across many churches due to the cost. For example, many text based giving systems have one universal short code for all of their churches.  So, the first time a person texts to that short code they search for physically nearby churches and ask the person which church they want to give to. We really didn't like the possibility of selecting the next door church inadvertently. 
  • Another complication with it being shared has to do with the ability for churches to have their own set of unique keywords. With your own number you define the keywords you want to use.
  • Some phone plans don't work with short codes so there is some limitation on who can access it, where a standard phone number pretty much works universally. 
  • Having a local phone number generally gives people a better comfort level rather than texting a phone number that is from a different area of the country or a random short code.