WhatsApp Business API: what is it and what’s in it for your company?
Exploring the possibilities of the WhatsApp Business API, or getting little grip on what the API really means for you? I figured it out for you and will try to explain it as simply as possible. Still left with questions? We're here for you.
First things first: what’s an API?
Let’s have a quick look at the concept of "API", short for Application Programming Interface. It’s used to exchange data between multiple applications.
Imagine you are a guest at a restaurant. The order you place doesn’t go directly to the chef, but first to the waiter, who then informs the kitchen. You order; the waiter transfers the order to the chef. In this example, the waiter is the API.
And that’s exactly what it’s like with the WhatsApp Business API. This exchanges data between WhatsApp and the system you use to handle WhatsApp messages, for example a customer conversations platform like Grasp. Think incoming and outgoing messages, message statuses and other content.
Since the API has no interface or application of its own, you will have to link it to a system like Grasp. This way, you connect directly to the WhatsApp server and - unlike the WhatsApp Business app - you do not need a phone with an internet connection.
When go for the WhatsApp Business API?
Although the free WhatsApp Business app (the business mobile application) gives you a solution designed for small business owners, it limits you quite a bit in terms of functionalities. With a (medium to) large organisation - or if you want to further professionalise or scale up your WhatsApp customer contact - you will need more advanced functionalities. For instance if you want to handle a large volume of WhatsApp messages, integrate your WhatsApp channel with your customer service system, interact with multiple users, collaborate smarter on messages, or manage multiple WhatsApp numbers. Then the WhatsApp Business API is exactly what you’re looking for.
Apart from the fact that the WhatsApp Business API provides you with tons of advanced functionalities, you also decide which system you link to it. You can, for example, easily connect the API to a customer conversations platform like Grasp, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of a full-fledged customer service system, and to answer customer messages with your entire team. In the same system, you also receive messages from communication channels other than WhatsApp, and offer the same customer experience on each channel.
WhatsApp Business API: the options at a glance
The WhatsApp Business API is ideally suited for medium and large businesses looking to take their customer contact via WhatsApp to the next level. Unlock a long list of opportunities to collaborate smarter with multiple users on a larger number of WhatsApp messages. Find the benefits below:
- Send WhatsApp messages to an unlimited number of users simultaneously
- One-to-one connection to WhatsApp, without a phone
- Multiple automation features including a chatbot, handy reply templates and auto replies
- Convenient features for better collaboration (message owner, comments and tagging)
- See which team member replied
- Create overview with labels and message status
- Gain insight into performance
- Create a complete customer view from one system
- Work GDPR compliant by archiving messages centrally
- Ability to make integrations with other systems
Getting started with the WhatsApp Business API
Are you ready for the WhatsApp Business API? We work together with multiple WhatsApp Business Providers to help you with the verification process*. We’re happy to unburden you, connecting you seamlessly to our customer conversations platform. You can quickly get started with WhatsApp, using Grasp to reply to your WhatsApp messages.
*As for the verification process, it’s important that you meet WhatsApp's requirements.
WhatsApp Business API pricing
To get started with the WhatsApp Business API, first make a phone number available to WhatsApp. This can be either a landline or a mobile phone number. If you already use the WhatsApp Business app, we will take care of migrating your phone number to the API. No business WhatsApp account yet? Even then, we will take the entire registration process off your hands, helping you step by step to get started quickly.
Phone number connection fees
With many WhatsApp Business Providers, you pay a fixed amount per month per WhatsApp number. With Grasp, you get the first number for free. For each subsequent WhatsApp number, you pay €25 per month.
Costs per conversation
In addition to monthly fees , you might also have to pay a fixed amount per conversation to WhatsApp. The rate per conversation depends on who initiated the conversation, and from which country. The first 1,000 conversations are free, and conversations started from a Facebook or Instagram Ad are also free of charge.
Finally, to use the WhatsApp Business API, you need a system that will allow you to receive and reply to messages, and in which you can collaborate with your team. Depending on which system you decide to use, you usually pay a monthly or annual fee for this. You can use Grasp from as little as €19 per user per month with free setup and verification with WhatsApp.
WhatsApp Business API demo
After reading this article, you hopefully understand a bit better what the WhatsApp Business API means for your company. Would you like an online demo of all the features I have described? Schedule a demo - no strings attached - here and discover all the possibilities of the WhatsApp Business API using Grasp.
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