An SMS gateway allows your computer, CRM or e-mail server to send and receive bulk SMS messages via a gateway online platforms supporting APIs and 2-way SMS communication for UK companies and organisations.
ClickSend was awarded the best SMS provider based on its range of features.
By Alain Grossbard / Updated: Sunday, August 13th, 2023
The August 2023 SMS gateway list of UK providers are:
ClickSend was awarded the best SMS provider based on their:
Clicksend Review >>Visit Clicksend>>
Below shows the pricing for BulkSMS.com with no hidden fees and no contracts applicable. The only additional cost is for incoming long numbers that are often used for marketing purposes.
It should be noted that there are cheaper SMS Gateway UK prices for high volume requirements (50,000+ messages). It’s worth reviewing their websites and requesting a quote for UK bulk SMS provider to gain a tailored quote to meet your requirements. In some cases, there may be a money-back guarantee on pricing points with refunds offered for unused credits if a client is unhappy with the service provided.
Current is in $$$
BulkSMS.com provides application-to-person (A2P) messaging services to small and large businesses, public benefit organisations, and individuals. The company has a global market presence in more than 200 countries, including Europe, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
The BulkSMS text message gateway utilizes JSON REST for requests which are recommended for most API integration. The JSON REST API allows the business to submit and receive Bulk SMS messages. You can also get access to past messages and see your account profile. JSON deals with long messages in various languages and allows webhooks allowing text messages to be received back to your web server and publishes status reports.
The main features of this SMS gateway integration include:
A unique feature of BulkSMS.com is their Marketo and ClickDimensions integration. This offers two-way text message communications directly with ClickDimensions and Marketo allowing recipients to reply to messages promptly. Replies go to the CRM directly allowing for workflow actions. The key benefits are the ability to send messages to large custom groups, improved reporting and Salesforce functionality.
BulkSMS.com aims to provide a standard platform to allow clients in the United Kingdom to quickly deploy any gateway SMS service. This includes SMS alerts, SMS competitions, SMS voting, SMS information services, SMS dating services, SMS marketing campaigns or SMS for CRM. From a review of their website, it could not be seen as to the level of uptime guarantee, Service Level Agreement and latency reliability like other comparable bulk SM providers.
As a global text message provider, Bulksms.com has a plethora of reviews. The most current reviews indicate an average score of 3.7/5 out of 1562 reviews, as recorded on TrustPilot at the start of August 2023. The key to their relatively positive range of reviews is based on their ease of use, quality of support and ease of set-up. The fact they don’t lock customers into contracts and no credit expiry was also seen as an advantage. It’s a combination of these factors that has given BulkSMS a number of positive reviews.
BulkSMS offers both e-mail and phone support from their customer service centre. Customer support service is offered is Monday to Friday, 5:30 am to 10:00 pm GMT. The local UK number is +44 845 301 6857 or the team can be e-mailed at email@example.com
Further after-hours support is available via e-mail on the weekends. Some bank holidays will not apply and response times may exceed the times provided during regular business hours. BulkSMS.com recommends joining the technical notification list to be notified of any outages or changes. There is also a coverage change notification e-mail list to be notified of changes to pricing which can occur for international numbers.
The full trading details for BulkSMS.com in the UK is Celerity Messaging UK LTD
Company Registration Number: 6356781
VAT number: 930182548
BulkSMS.com is a division of Celerity Systems and was founded in 2000 along with its parent company. Its founders first began using SMS in 1997 to send weather updates to clients but soon realized the service had broader applications.
BulkSMS.com provides application-to-person (A2P) messaging services to large and small businesses, public benefit organisations, and individuals. The company has a global market presence in more than 200 countries, including Europe, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
The SMS Comparison Table and the associated site have been developed by a set of SMS experts (who no longer work in this area) and therefore are able to provide an independent assessment of bulk SMS providers in the UK. The idea of preparing such a Table and Site came about because a number of businesses wanted a better and more knowledgeable method of analyzing and comparing SMS bulk providers in a simple, easy-to-review manner.
This SMS Comparison Table is updated constantly but prices and features can change by the SMS providers without notice so you are encouraged to review their sites prior to engaging a text messaging service.
An SMS gateway allows a CRM, computer or e-mail to send and receive text messages through mobile network providers. The most common uses of an SMS Gateway are for bulk SMS and reminder services with an API allowing two-way communication with businesses or customers.
Applications of an SMS Gateway include:
Within the UK, text message gateways will either be directly routed by telecommunication carriers to the major providers via premium or aggregator carriers. This will impact reliability, the speed and the prices of text messages sent.
It should be noted that a short message service (SMS) also known as a “text message” has a limit of 160 characters when send to another device. This means that messages exceeding this character limit will be split into multiple parts which may lead to higher sending charges.
When sending any text message campaign within the UK, you must meet the Data Protection Act (2013). The law states that no company can send legally unsolicited electronic messages. This Data Protection Addendum (DPA or “Addendum”) applies to the processing of Personal Data governed by the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 2016/679 and, where so applicable, shall form part of the BulkSMS Standard Terms and Conditions (the “Standard Terms and Conditions”) to be entered into between BulkSMS and its clients (the “Client”) acting on its own behalf and as agent for each Client Affiliate, with effect from the date set out above or 20 May 2020, whichever is the latest.
This applies to text messages through a gateway with any message requiring:
Research has shown that short text messages perform the best. 95% of texts will be read within 3 minutes of being sent and around 98% of mobile users are likely to have read the SMS by the end of the day.
While 160 characters can exist within a text message, short and sharp messages that don’t require scrolling receive optimal open rates and engagement. Try to only provide a single message, whether a greeting, reminder, offer or referral.
Mobile phone is personal so must understand an individual’s personal space. Unexpected bulk SMS messages can be intrusive so ensure they are functional and courteous but not too familiar. Customisation tools can help maximise relevance but there is always a line an advertiser shouldn’t cross. Also, understand when the recipient will receive the text and the reliability of the gateway. Nobody wants to receive a text at midnight!
Don’t over-use the bulk SMS marketing channel – Infrequent and brief messages from businesses will ensure that users don’t unsubscribe from the communication. Use other channels such as e-mails to regularly update e-mails but avoid text messages for such communications.
Make sure you have a legitimate reason to send SMS messages – Ensure every message passes on useful information, acts as a reminder or clarifies an arrangement. As long as it has a legitimate use to an individual they will be happy to receive more text messages in the future.
If your business sends SMS messages to customers, clients, stakeholders or staff, then a premium direct gateway carrier is for you. Your message will be delivered directly to major text message service providers.
A text message gateway allows a computer to distribute or accept business SMS marketing transmissions to or from a telecommunications network. Most messages are usually routed to mobile phone networks. ClickSend is one such example of an SMS gateway provider using a direct carrier.
Need for a reliant premium SMS text message gateway provider when:
An SMPP stands for a Short Message Peer-to-Peer Protocol. The SMPP gateway protocol is used within the telecommunication industry that exchanges SMS services between Short Messaging Entities (ESME) or Short Message Service Centers (SMSC). As a level-7 TCP/IP protocol, it ensures speedy SMS message delivery. The SMPP can receive and send messages from mobiles including CDMA, UTMTS, GMA and UMTS phones.
Utilizing an API is a common practice by British businesses that have large-scale text message requirements. Developers connect to the SMS gateway through their preferred API from SMPP, Java, .NET, PHP or SOAP. Most providers will support SDKs through sample costs, documents and reusable libraries. Make sure the provider you choose has support levels that match your understanding of an SMS API as you may need a hands-on provider.
When setting up your API, the British SMS provider will provide you with a sample code. This will allow you to connect to a SOAP API regardless of the SMS API language you prefer. A provider like MessageMedia has samples o Java, GitHub in C3, Bash & Python as well as PHP. Other languages such as C++, Ruby and Powershell can also be utilised. Just talk to their support team when you first join and talk to their specialist SMS API technical support software person.
API integration is so popular because:
An API (Application Programming Interface) is a sophisticated software intermediary that allows two applications to talk to each other. It simply allows query parameters via URLs that provide SMS gateway instructions to send text messages. This can be enabled through scripting languages such as PHP that can be integrated to web forms and other applications.
SMS is abbreviated for Short Message Service. It’s a communication method that allows a mobile phone to communicate with each other. An SMS gateway allows computers and e-mail to also send and receive text messages making it suitable for businesses.
A text message gateway acts as a relay. It translates from one protocol to another through SMSCs (SMS centres). These SMS centres include wireless networks that handle forwarding, routing and stores and other SMS operations ensuring the messages are delivered to the destination mobile phone.
SMS integration is when businesses use their existing database or CRM to target their customers through an SMS Gateway. This can include targeting customers with promotions, news and other information. This integration can use automation to communicate with customers at various forms of the consumption life cycle.
SMS means short message service while MMS means Multimedia Messaging Service. This is the next level of a text message allowing video, audio and picture content to be sent to a mobile device. Sending an MMS can lead to a premium price depending on the SMS gateway used.
E-mail security gateways have gained popularity as they monitor the e-mails that are processed to be sent to mobile devices. They can assist in preventing unwanted content from being delivered that can be caused by phishing attacks, SPAM and malware.
This depends on the regulation of the country you operate in and your provider. Most countries require providers to have an opt-out functionality and ways to contact the SMS sender. This is the case with the UK. Ensure you meet these requirements to remain compliant.
One of the values of assessing the functionality, reliability and efficiency of the SMS Gateway UK providers is by testing them through the offers of using their free trial period or the provision of a range of SMS that is allocated to test their service. It can vary from free 5 SMS to 50 SMS dependent on the provider’s offer. In the case of the five selected Gateway providers, Message Bird does not offer such an offer and Nexmo will charge two (2) Euro. ClickSend, SMS Global, Burst SMS and SMS Solutions all offer a free trial based either on a number of text messages or a period of time.
With the use of flexible SMS API, Gateway providers can integrate SMS services into their own system and application for better functionality required by the client. New SMS integrations can often be added later on. Many SMS Gateway UK providers as reviewed on this site have API that can send more than 100 messages at any one time with the right type of application. For example, one is able to check the balance and delivery status of a single or group SMS without the need to login into the web interface. The official Microsoft ASP.NET Site is available for PHP, Ruby and .NET.There is no concern about shared resources since these providers have dedicated SMS API servers, thus allowing text messages and responses to be distributed efficiently and reliably. A number of these providers have quick integrations, connected with applications such as MailChimp, Infusionsoft, Campaign Monitor and Zapier.
SMS Gateway UK is essentially an online platform that provides a client with the means to send mass text messages within seconds of the command to send. It acts as a conduit between the user and the telecommunication network so that a reliable service is provided. There are the premier and hybrid telecommunication services, the latter being cheaper overseas providers which can be not as efficient as those within the UK. Many of the Gateway UK providers like ClickSend, use national dependable carriers such as BT, O2 and EE with an up-time of 99.9% or better with many having a 100% money-back reliability guarantee.
In most cases, British SMS Gateway providers have customer care centres in the UK to respond quickly to any concerns or information needed for the distribution of text messages. They provide an SMS service to engage with customers as well as measure and track campaign performance.
The table above shows the final five reputable SMS bulk providers while other providers were considered such as SMS Global, Nexmo, MessageBird, Intelli SMS and SMS Broadcast.
The information was all sourced from the web SMS provider’s websites with correspondence only made at the time to verify the information published. As this information came from websites with no automation used it’s recommended that you verify the data shown on this site within the provider’s website. This can verify your decision when selecting the UK SMS Gateway provider that’s right for you. You can view why SMS in the UK is one of the most effective communication channels.
SMS Comparison table and site are available free of charge to all users interested in comparing different UK SMS providers for value, pricing, features, APIs, reliability and customer service.
It was established eight years ago as a result of demand from businesses who wanted an easy-to-follow analysis of the effectiveness and efficiency of SMS providers, whether they are Bulk, Gateway, Marketing or Email to SMS providers.
The Comparison Table and associated sites are developed by a group of SMS experts in the field (who no longer work in that particular area) and therefore decided to provide you with an independent and unbiased review of SMS providers in the UK.
However, SMS providers can change the information on their sites without any notifications, so during your review, should you find any different information from what was provided on this site, please let the authors know so that any changes can be made.
The authors’ aim is to ensure you are provided with a fair and reasonable overview of some of the major UK bulk SMS providers for your decision-making process.
Published by Alain Grossbard