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Aug 26, 2021
3 minutes read

WhatsApp for Business: the new way to engage with your customers

The popularity of WhatsApp as a mobile messaging app is steadily growing and with good reason. With 2 billion active daily users sending 65 billion messages every day, in 180 countries and 60 languages, it’s no surprise that Facebook (the developers behind WhatsApp) expanded their platform to include a business application: WhatsApp Business.

Do you want to:

  • send useful notifications and deliver superior customer support? 
  • automate customer support and handle more queries via bots?
  • process requests, orders and payments in real-time in one app?
  • deliver an omnichannel customer experience?
  • escalate to live agents for a high impact conversation?

Was ‘yes’ your answer to most or even all points above? Then how about using one of the most powerful messaging channels to date: WhatsApp. With an engagement rate of over 70%, WhatsApp Business is an exceptionally valuable channel to build relationships with customers.

So what is WhatsApp Business?

WhatsApp Business allows you to chat with your customers and make use of all the popular features that WhatsApp brings, such as photos, links, PDFs, and GIFs. Meet your customers where they are and engage with them on a global scale.

WhatsApp Business comes in two flavors: The WhatsApp Business App, which is used by more than 50 million users every month, and the WhatsApp Business API. The app is suitable for small businesses and the API solution is tailored to medium and large businesses. How do you know which one is right for your business? The WhatsApp Business app only allows single device and single person usage. Do you need more hands on deck for your customer service? Then the Business API is the right fit for you.

There are two types of messages allowed on WhatsApp Business API: Session Messages initiated by your customers and Template Messages initiated by you.

A messaging session starts when your customer sends a message to your business and it allows you to reply to messages within a 24-hour window. Within the session, you can personalise and/or automate your customer service. Once the Session Messaging window closes, you will be able to send (WhatsApp pre-approved) Template Messages to reach out to customers that present an active opt-in.

If you wish to communicate with your customer outside the 24-hour Customer Care Window, meaning you want to initiate a conversation with a notification to a customer that has an active opt-in, you may only send Message Templates. For all those outbound customer care messages, you will need an opt-in from your customers before you may send a message. Customers must first consent to receive WhatsApp messages with an active opt-in.

So what can WhatsApp Business do for you specifically? Well…

Is your focus Retail? Then talk with your customers about returns, refunds and whether or not their product is in stock. Or you could send purchase confirmations and delivery updates. Are you in the Travel & Hospitality industry? Send your customers flight changes, upgrades, boarding passes and hotel confirmations!

Is Utilities your specialty? Help your customers change plans whilst having a personal chat with them over WhatsApp. Or are you not into all of the above and do you just want to organise your logistics? Chat with your customers to set delivery dates and send notifications and receipts over the same channel.

All-in-all, WhatsApp Business is a versatile way of engaging with your customers. Interested in reading more about WhatsApp Business? We have gathered multiple ideas for businesses on how to collect opt-ins, go into detail on how WhatsApp Business will suit your specific field and discuss some real-life use cases in our WhatsApp Business API guide

Discover more about WhatsApp Business API.

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Brian Fieret
Digital Marketer at CM.com. Responsible for developing and executing the digital marketing strategy of CPaaS and Payments.

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