WhatsApp has launched WhatsApp Business, an app for medium and large-scale enterprises to send and receive messages across the globe. The app has been released in limited markets, including India.
India has more than 2 million WhatsApp users, and new users are joining the app each day. Good numbers of small businesses are already using WhatsApp to stay in touch with their customers. The regular WhatsApp is free to use and is providing them with interactive features to effectively promote their brand.
WhatsApp Business is similar to the regular version, except that enterprises will have to pay for certain messages. That is because the app can be used from a web application or a portal by using the WhatsApp API integration services provided by many companies.
The developers of WhatsApp Business have set some strict rules to make sure that the app is effectively used and users are not disturbed by the continuous inflow of messages from various enterprises.
In this post, we will see more about WhatsApp Business pricing, the types of messages that can be sent to users, and the process in which enterprises will have to request early access to use the app.
WhatsApp Business has a pay-per-message scheme where the price depends on the destination country to which the message is being sent. In the pay-as-you-go scheme, enterprises pay for what they use. Apart from WhatsApp charges, the company that provides the API integration services will charge a flat-rate as a platform fee irrespective of the delivery location. The companies offer discounts when enterprises opt for bulk messaging packages. This is cost-effective as enterprises will need to send a number of messages to users.
There are two types of messages that are sent using WhatsApp Business. They are template messages and session messages.
- Template messages are pre-approved templates where certain parameters can be changed to include the required details. The rest of the text cannot be changed.
- Templates cannot be used to send promotional messages. These are not marketing tools.
- Templates are mainly used to send informational messages to users. Notifications, greetings, welcome messages, delivery and booking information, etc. are sent using the templates.
- Templates come under the pay-per-message scheme.
- Template messages have to be used when an enterprise responds to a customer-initiated message after 24 hours.
- No other form of messages will be delivered after the 24-hour window.
- Templates can be used to attract customers’ attention and make them initiate a conversation.
- If an enterprise requires custom-designed templates, they can contact the developers of the app. The team will code a template to meet the requirements of the enterprise.
- Chatbots use template messages to send standard automated replies to customer queries.
- Session messages are freeform messages which require no standard structure or pattern.
- These messages can be promotional in nature and can include text, images, videos, and documents.
- Session messages are a part of the packages available for the enterprises.
- These messages can be sent within 24 hours after the last customer-initiated message.
- Keeping the conversation alive for long will enable enterprises to freely interact with users and finalize sales.
- There is no limit to the number of session messages that can be sent to the users.
The advantages of using an API platform to send WhatsApp messages to users are as follows.
Speed and Reliability
- The companies provide reliable services by balancing the traffic of messages through various channels.
- The messages are delivered to users instantly allowing faster communication between the parties.
- With access to more than 200 countries, companies send messages to users residing anywhere in the world.
- Compliance with government policies, vulnerability testing, and role-based access control ensure that the data sent via the platform is safe and secure at all times.
- 24*7 technical support is provided to enterprises to ensure an error-free platform.
Some tricks to generate lead using the Business App
We all understand the market out there is way too competitive. To connect with the customers, the business needs to be omnipresent.
The best way to reach out to the customers is to create a short link of your WhatsApp Business App and share it across your website and other social media channels. To get the short link all you need to do is check out the settings of your App and find out the Business Settings and this is where you can setup you default message.
When the customer clicks the link, they will be asked to provide the confirmation whether they wish to connect with your business over WhatsApp. Using this feature, you can always customize the messages based on the customer query.
Use the broadcast
Yes, you read it right, the business version still allows you to create the business broadcast. One of the ways is to select the creation of the new broadcast group and manually add 256 contacts to the same. The process is tedious and time-consuming. A short cut to this is to use the labels.
All you need to do is label your contacts. Once the labeling is done, select a particular label and use the action menu to create the broadcast group instantly.
If using the business first time for business dealings, it might seem overwhelming. You are required to be prompt in answering customer queries. This Whatsapp Business solution provides a feature where you can automate the replies to certain client queries so whether your staff is available or not to take a query at that time, the customer will be attended. The same stands true when you onboard new clients on Whatsapp. As this is a very personal level of engagement, the customer needs to be greeted in a warm manner. With the automation of messages, you can always be in touch with the new clients irrespective of your geographic location.