Instant messaging app, WhatsApp, has finally launched its new business app. The app will be available in select markets including the US, UK, Mexico, Indonesia, and Italy. The company is planning to fully roll out the new business app worldwide in the next few weeks. There are a few features that will totally define the new app.
WhatsApp has added new messaging tools designed for business. Users will also be able to create and update business profiles on the platform. The move is part of a long-term plan by WhatsApp to increase revenue. The app’s goal is to charge large companies and enterprises for the advanced custom tools that allow them to communicate better with their customers. WhatsApp is a huge messaging app with over a billion users worldwide. It’s an invaluable tool for businesses to engage with customers on a more personal level.
The business app is available only on Android at the moment, and it’s the first initial step to provide companies with the opportunity to establish a presence on the platform. It’s the WhatsApp version of a Facebook page.
WhatsApp announced the plans to launch a business app a few months ago. The company first started verifying business accounts before rolling out the program. A pilot for the business app was conducted in September last year. It was clear at the time that there was a lot of upside in offering a professional business app on the platform, and the company wants to maximize this potential.
It’s also easy to get started. Any small or medium scale business can set up a business WhatsApp profile in a few minutes. All you need to do is enter your business details including name, address, phone number etc. Once the profile is set, your business will now have access to a series of customized tools. The tools are expected to offer better customer engagement.
For instance, there is an option for “quick replies” on the business app. This feature allows you to provide fast answers to customers’ frequently asked questions. There is also an “away message” that lets your customers know you are not around and a “greetings message” which is a custom message that will introduce your business to the target customers. The app will also offer robust messaging statistics. For example, businesses will be able to see the total number of messages read.
WhatsApp users will now have the chance to message any business they want. But there is also an option to block messages and numbers from companies or report spam when you need to. Businesses will only be able to get in touch with customers who have provided their phone numbers and consented to getting messages from them.
The company is expected to launch an enterprise solution later targeting bigger companies such as e-commerce sites, airlines, and financial institutions. There is also a plan to launch apps supported by other platforms other than Android. The new business app is available free of charge on Google Play Store.