How can I offer my website visitors the chance to SMS me without having my mobile number?

Mark O'Neill March 15, 2011
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I would like visitors to my website to be able to send me a SMS message if they would like to get in contact with me. However, there is no way I am going to put my mobile number online as I don’t want crank callers calling me up at all times of the day and night.

Is there an online service that allows people to send me SMS messages, but without being able to see my mobile number? Obviously, the web app would have the number, but wouldn’t show it on the screen. Then I can view the message on my phone and decide whether to respond.

Does such a service exist? Or have I just thought of a great new website idea? ;-)

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  1. Jessica Cam W.
    April 2, 2011 at 7:15 am

    This isn't quite SMS, but what about Meebo Me widgets? You don't have to reveal your phone number and your website visitors can chat with you as long as you're logged in/online on Meebo.com on the computer, iPhone or Android app. Visitors can also leave you messages if you're offline.

  2. Tina
    March 21, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    Mark,

    which of the solutions above did you test? Which ones worked and which one are you going to use?

  3. Daniel Shane
    March 16, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    Maybe try obtaining a number from http://k7.net/ which will give you a US based phone number. [Washington State]

    From there you could associate the K7.net number with a Google Voice account.
    You might then be able to send & receive SMS directly from your computer.

  4. Phlegon
    March 16, 2011 at 3:15 am

    Sadly, it appears Uk networks no longer allow this feature. I'm on T-mobile UK and after searching for the solution on the forums, it appears they pulled the plug on the service. Great post. Thanks

  5. FIDELIS
    March 16, 2011 at 1:37 am

    Hello, you could also try using the following online sms service. It provides virtual mobile numbers:
    https://www.2-waysms.com/

  6. Tracy Holz
    March 16, 2011 at 1:29 am

    Get a Google voice account for free, then give that sms number out - then forward that sms message to where ever you want!!

    Holzster

    • Tina
      March 16, 2011 at 1:35 am

      Unfortunately, Google Voice is not yet available outside the US.

  7. Roy
    March 15, 2011 at 10:22 pm

    You could use a standard contact form that sends an email, with the email address pointing to your mobile number instead. Every SMS-capable phone can be "texted" via email. The email address formats are pretty much all the same, generally it's 10-digit mobile number @ domain dot com. Here's a partial list of the domains for some of the major US carriers:

    T-Mobile: phonenumber@tmomail.net
    T-Mobile Sidekick I & II: phonenumber@tmail.com
    Virgin Mobile: phonenumber@vmobl.com
    Sprint: phonenumber@messaging.sprintpcs.com
    Verizon: phonenumber@vtext.com
    MetroPCS: phonenumber@mymetropcs.com
    AT&T: phonenumber@txt.att.net

    You will probably want to set the text field for the body of the message to a limit of 160 characters if you use this option. As long as users are aware that they're sending an SMS message, they should understand why it's limited.

    • Mike
      March 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm

      Wikipedia List of SMS Gateways
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_SMS_gateways

      BTW you definitely want to add some spam protection like a captcha or something to the PHP mailer (or whatever system you decide on using)

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