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WhatsApp API Guide: Your Way To Master WhatsApp Business API

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WhatsApp API Guide: Your Way To Master WhatsApp Business API

A comprehensive guide for WhatsApp Business API. Learn everything about WhatsApp API – how to create, pricing, functions, guidelines, examples, and more.

WhatsApp is a popular messaging app that has made its name in history as the revolutionary app that trumped text messaging. It was born out of a need for a free messenger that allowed people from anywhere to communicate with anyone else who had the app. 

In the past 11 years, WhatsApp has come a long way. It started as a rather basic looking application that only supported text and media messages. However, WhatsApp has quickly added a vast list of features to its repertoire. 

As smartphones became more mainstream and affordable, especially in parts of Asia like India, SEA and the Middle East, WhatsApp recognised the potential the app had for businesses. In fact, WhatsApp’s largest market is India with 340 million users. In the SEA, Indonesia trumps the chart with the most number of users at 84.8 million, while Saudi Arabia is WhatsApp’s largest market in the Middle East.

This is when the company transitioned from being a consumer-focused messaging app to a powerful marketing toolkit that can boost your business prospects using WhatsApp Business API. 


What is WhatsApp API?

What can WhatsApp Business API do?

  1. WhatsApp API can do a myriad of things for your online business

2. WhatsApp API for sending messages: How do I send messages to my customers? 

3. WhatsApp API for bulk messages

4. WhatsApp API for building lasting relationships with customers

Diving into the working function: How WhatsApp API works

  1. The problem with the existing WhatsApp Business API
  2. How did WhatsApp solve the hiccup?

Getting started: How to set up WhatsApp Business API?

  1. Choosing the right Business Service Provider
  2. Creating Facebook and WhatsApp Business Accounts
  3. Registering your business phone number

WhatsApp Business API pricing – How does WhatsApp price its API messages?

WhatsApp API vs WhatsApp Business – What are the starking differences?

  1. Advantages of using WhatsApp Business API – What do you get out of WhatsApp API?

What’s right for your business – WhatsApp Business or WhatsApp Business API?

What are the best WhatsApp API practices for your business?

WhatsApp API examples – Learning the intricacies of WhatsApp Business API

WhatsApp API in real-life action  – How brands use WhatsApp Business API effectively

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Conclusion


What is WhatsApp API?

In short: WhatsApp API is a software interface by WhatsApp that can help businesses receive and send messages to multiple users at scale. 

You might have come across the term API several times without knowing exactly what it means. We’ll break it down for you.

Application Programming Interface (API) is software that facilitates two applications to communicate with each other. Whenever you use any app to send a message, query a search or post a picture online you’re using an API.

WhatsApp’s Business API is similar. It can help your business communicate with other users through a WhatsApp API account for the business. 

While this might sound complicated, it’s fairly straightforward once you understand how it can contribute to your business.

What can WhatsApp Business API do?

We live in a digital world where everybody is connected to the Internet at all times and chances are that they’re one of WhatsApp’s 2 billion active users. 

With over 50 million WhatsApp Business users across the world and growing, more businesses are adopting the platform every year. 

WhatsApp API can do a myriad of things for your online business

So why does your business need to start serving customers on the app? Here are WhatsApp API examples of what it can do for your business.

WhatsApp API use cases

1. Customer support right where they are

Using a chatbot in conjunction with the WhatsApp Business API can reinvent your customer support initiatives, helping you assist customers right on their phone, right when they need it.

You can quickly respond to customer support queries straight from the app, even when there are no support representatives available. 

WhatsApp API chatbots can have intuitive and personalised chats with customers. This helps sort out queries in terms of complexity, allowing only the most important support tickets to be transferred to live agents. This can improve your efficiency drastically over time. 

2. Recommend products and solutions that really speak to them

When shopping online, customers are often confused about what to pick from the thousands of options before them. Unlike shopping in stores, they don’t have the opportunity to see and feel the product and may have many questions about products they’re interested in. 

A WhatsApp API chatbot can analyse customers’ shopping behaviour and recommend products that they’d like. This helps customers find products that they love without the hassle of rummaging through a catalogue of thousands of products. 

3. Allow payments under the same roof

Salesforce reports that as many as 74% of customers use MULTIPLE channels to complete a transaction. Today, your users expect the opposite of that. They want seamless journeys that start and end in the same place. Whether it’s renewing an insurance premium or recharging your phone number, a WhatsApp chatbot is all your users need.

You can also use WhatsApp API to allow transactions right where your customers choose their products. A good WhatsApp chatbot will engage users with offerings and send the payment link when it’s time to convert. Additionally, WhatsApp also launched its UPI-based payment system in India – WhatsApp Pay. This feature allows users shopping on WhatsApp in India to make payments swiftly on the app.

4. Collect feedback instantly to know how you can approve

Collecting feedback is an important part of the development and marketing of your product. By using a chatbot through WhatsApp’s Business API, you can gauge what your customers need by collecting relevant feedback. You can use this collected information to improve your product or service as well as make your customers feel important.

How collecting feedback changed the game for an ed-tech startup: Lido Learning wanted to scale up its operations while delivering exceptional experiences across channels. 

Lido used Verloop.io’s Outreach to reach out and collect feedback from users on WhatsApp. Since users were more likely to check communication on WhatsApp, Lido saw >22% form-fill rates. While earlier they could only see ~10-15% on their website. Super convenient, isn’t it? 

There’s more for you to read: Lido Learning Moved To 100% Chat After Automating Their Customer Support

5. Gather insightful data and understand your users better

AI-powered chatbots can gather a lot of user data from the interactions they have with users. And so over time, you can use this dataset to improve customer satisfaction, resolve customer support tickets quickly and even create more effective marketing campaigns. 

6. Stay on your toes even when you are (physically) not

People expect businesses to be available to answer their questions around the clock. It’s extremely cost-ineffective, especially for small and medium businesses, to hire a customer support team to be on standby 24×7. 

How else would you meet the demands of growing traffic and engagement? The answer is to use an AI-powered chatbot through WhatsApp’s Business API. It can help you stay online and answer queries autonomously at any time of the day. 

7. Marketing with almost too good of an open rate 

WhatsApp Business API stands out as the preferred choice for small and large businesses alike. This is because of the huge user base on the app that allows you to reach most people on their phones. And so, they don’t need to download a third-party app that they don’t trust.

If you own a smartphone, chances are that you’re a WhatsApp user. We’ve all grown so accustomed to the interface of the lovely green messenger that has made using the app so intuitive over the years. Your users are always available on the app, they are always checking, reading, and consuming information on WhatsApp throughout a typical day. This is what helps WhatsApp penetrate its reach to people across ages, gender demographics

Here’s what a WhatsApp chatbot did for a real estate company: Marathon Realty switched to WhatsApp chatbot to support its customers and it played out phenomenally for the brand.  The company saw a staggering 74% open rate and generated 2000 leads at a 55% conversion rate – against 2-3% through forms and web pages. 

Read the full case study here: Marathon Realty Boasts A 55% Lead Conversion Rate With Verloop.io’s WhatsApp Chatbot For Real Estate

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WhatsApp API for sending messages: How do I send messages to my customers? 

You can use WhatsApp API to send text, media, templates, contacts and location messages. The API allows for a variety of different file formats which makes it easy to send anything from a contact number to a location or video.

You can send a message through the WhatsApp Business API by invoking a POST call to the /messages node. To send different kinds of media, you may follow the documentation and edit the JSON message body accordingly. WhatsApp API allows you to send messages in two formats –

1. Session messages 

A common question a lot of brands have is what a session message in WhatsApp API is and how it affects their usage of the app. 

Session messages are just any messages sent from your business in response to a message initiated by the user. The API starts a messaging session when the user sends you a message first and the session lasts for the subsequent 24-hour period. 

Note that you will only be able to send non-template messages while this session is active. You may however send a template message to the user so they can respond with a text that will activate a new session. 

2. Templates 

whatsapp template message

Templates are the primary mechanism through which brands communicate with users on WhatsApp. The templates are approved message drafts that you can automatically send to the user based on the conditions. You must make sure that your templates meet the requirements listed in the WhatsApp Business API documentation for a quick approval. If you don’t know where to start with designing templates, check out our collection of 30 free-to-use WhatsApp templates to pick and use! 

We have dived deeper into the standard quality information in later sections – Check out WhatsApp API – What are the best practices for your business?

whatsapp template guidelines

WhatsApp API also supports businesses that want to connect with their customers through interactive messages! Read: Get Started with WhatsApp Interactive Messages

WhatsApp API for bulk messages

WhatsApp is a great customer support tool, but it also doubles up as a fantastic marketing communication tool with the WhatsApp Business API. Many brands may want to use the WhatsApp API for bulk messaging.

However, WhatsApp favours organic conversations and marketing campaigns rather than just bulk messaging promotions. To help make the platform spam-free and make for a more enjoyable experience for all stakeholders including businesses and users, they’ve implemented measures in their Terms of Service that prevent bulk messaging. Read: WhatsApp Group Vs WhatsApp Broadcast: Which Should You Use?

However, with a competent BSP, you can communicate with users with an Outreach Feature. WhatsApp Outreach can help you give reminders, make announcements, and cross-promote – scheduled and delivered at your convenience. You can use this feature to proactively communicate about events that may occur in future like scheduled maintenance or app downtime. For example, telecom companies can use Outreach to inform users of possible network disruptions far in advance. This not only clears confusion or panic among users but also mentally prepares your agents to handle the situation.

Know more: Introducing Outreach For Proactive Communication

WhatsApp API for building lasting relationships with customers

Using the WhatsApp Business API along with an AI chatbot for seamless customer support can help you build relationships with customers that both of you value and cherish. 

A customer is delighted when he is attended to without much delay. Time is of the essence on the Internet, where even a few seconds of delay could mean that the customer clicks away. 

Deploying a chatbot on WhatsApp can help you connect, follow up and engage with customers in a personal and effective manner. 

Registering for a WhatsApp Business API account can also make your business seem legitimate, trustworthy and credible with a verified badge on your profile. This can help instil a sense of trust in customers who are more likely to communicate with a verified account than a random account with no identification. 

Where more of it comes from: AbhiBus, a travel tech platform, chose to deploy AI chatbot on WhatsApp and its website. It’s safe to say it was a great decision for the startup. The ART dropped to less than a minute, with the chatbot taking care of 96% of the platform’s ticket traffic, propelling the CSAT to heights! Read the impact at length: AbhiBus Full Case Study

If you are not convinced that the travel industry needs WhatsApp automation, we’re here to tell you why you should be. See: The Need for a WhatsApp Chatbot for Travel – With Top 7 Use Cases

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Diving into the working function: How WhatsApp API works

The WhatsApp API is truly a great tool for businesses of all sizes. With over 100 billion messages exchanged each day, WhatsApp Business API helps businesses have personalised conversations with people across the world.

The idea is brilliant, but how does it work? 

In this section, we’ll cover everything you need to know about how the WhatsApp API works and how that affects your business, especially in light of WhatsApp’s privacy policy changes. 

There is a lot of confusion about whether or not users’ privacy is at stake because of WhatsApp’s updated policy. 

Before we address that question, let’s take a look at the data flow before the policy change and after it.

The problem with the existing WhatsApp Business API

Currently, WhatsApp has WhatsApp Business APIs (WABAs) to manage the customer support load using a third-party Business Service Provider (BSP).

Here, the user’s application communicates with the WhatsApp servers, which in turn communicates with the cloud infrastructure of your BSP. The WhatsApp Business API Client communicates on the BSP’s cloud to relay information from the user to all the team members. 

Whatsapp api data flow

However, this process can be slow and inefficient since WABA servers take time to deploy and many BSPs do not have their own infrastructure to be able to host these servers. 

How did WhatsApp solve the hiccup?

To tackle this problem, WhatsApp made changes to its privacy policy that would allow businesses to use Facebook’s cloud infrastructure to relay messages. To make it clear, businesses can choose whether they want to host the WABA servers on their BSP’s infrastructure or Facebook’s. 

data flow with FB hosting

If businesses choose to host it on Facebook’s infrastructure, they have the option to display personalised ads based on customers’ data across Facebook’s suite of apps including Facebook and Instagram. 

The controversy surrounding WhatsApp’s privacy policy change in January of 2021 was amidst confusion over what the changes meant for the end-to-end encryption, which is one of the app’s USPs. However, all data and chats on a one-on-one conversation between users remain end-to-end encrypted. They are not accessible by Facebook or any other third party. The policy only affects a user’s conversations with a business account. 

whatsapp chatbot
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Getting started: How to set up WhatsApp Business API?

WhatsApp has a monthly active user base of over 2 billion in over 180 countries. It’s no surprise why their business tools are a favourite amongst brands of all sizes.

WhatsApp caters to businesses of all sizes from small to large enterprises. For micro and small businesses, they offer a free app – WhatsApp Business that has limited features at no cost.

For medium and large businesses, they offer access to their API through a Business Service Provider (BSP).

Setting up WhatsApp Business API is a fairly straightforward process. We’ve broken it down in an easy-to-follow step-by-step format so you can breeze through the WhatsApp Business API set-up.

set up whatsapp api

Step 1: Choosing the right Business Service Provider

A Business Service Provider provides you with infrastructure and tools to help your business scale using WhatsApp Business API.

It’s important to know what to look for when choosing the right BSP. Here are a few key factors to keep in mind while choosing a BSP:

  1. AI and ML datasets used
  2. Pricing by the BSP
  3. Support for multiple channels
  4. Smart personalisation capabilities
  5. Support for agent-chatbot collaboration
  6. Ability to integrate with other apps
  7. Customer success support 

Step 2: Creating Facebook and WhatsApp Business Accounts

Navigate to your BSP’s website and log into your Facebook account.

A dialog box will ask for your permission to access information from your profile. Allow it to continue.

The resulting dialog box will help you connect your accounts to the Messaging Service Provider so you can use the API.

Click ‘Get Started’ to continue.

Connect with the Messaging Service Provider and give it permission for account access and billing management.

Click ‘Continue’

  1. Your information will automatically sync if you already have a Facebook Business Account.

 Enter information about your business in the form that appears to set up your Facebook Business Account.

  1. If you have a pre-existing WhatsApp Business profile, your details will sync automatically.

Create a WhatsApp Business Profile by entering your display name, description and sector in the set-up wizard.

Step 3: Registering your business phone number

Enter your number and request a verification code either through SMS or call.

Key in the code to verify your business phone number on WhatsApp and start messaging right from the get-go!

The last step to access your BSP’s tools is to obtain a token and register it. This will allow you to customise API settings using the Web Tool, docker containers or through AWS.

And if you are looking to register your number to a different business account, you’d want to check out: Migrate Your Phone Number to a Different WABA in 10 Simple Steps

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WhatsApp Business API pricing – How does WhatsApp price its API messages?

For most businesses, pricing and messaging limits are of prime consideration when using the WhatsApp Business API.

Currently, WhatsApp uses a pay-per-notification system. This system will become obsolete and be replaced with a pay-per-conversation system starting February 1, 2022.

As per the current system, responding to customers’ queries is free for the first 24 hours, every subsequent message attracts a fixed fee. These fees can vary depending on the region.

Notification-based pricing system – Until January 31, 2022

This is the pricing system WhatsApp currently follows for messages sent by its API users. Under this model, WhatsApp charges its users for the number of messages it sends to its users in a calendar month. 

Right now, businesses are not charged for any messages they send within a 24-hour chat session initiated by the user. They, however, need to pay for templated messages they send post this session. WhatsApp charges based on the List Price Schedule.

Conversation-based pricing system – February 1, 2022 onwards

WhatsApp is all ready to switch to the new way of pricing its messages for API users. Under the conversation-based pricing system, businesses are charged separately on the basis of who starts the conversation. WhatsApp prices its messages under two categories –

  • Business-initiated conversations
  • User-initiated conversations

“Each WABA gets 1,000 free tier conversations”, WhatsApp outlines under this pricing model as the first 1000 messages each month will be on the house.

If you want to keep track of your expenses on WhatsApp Business API, just hop on to the Business Manager > Settings > Payments

We highly recommend you check out All You Need To Know About WhatsApp Business Pricing In 2022 for more information.

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WhatsApp API vs WhatsApp Business – What are the starking differences?

At the outset, WhatsApp Business is aimed at small businesses with lower messaging requirements.

Larger businesses prefer using the WhatsApp Business API to overcome some of the following limitations in its free counterpart:

1. Manual messaging and restricted automation

2. Limited parallel user sessions

3. No support for media

On the other hand, WhatsApp allows businesses to scale customer support operations using a simple to use interface on a platform trusted by millions. 

whatsapp vs whatsapp api

Advantages of using WhatsApp Business API

WhatsApp advertises its API as a way for large organisations to have personalised conversations with customers. Here are some of its features:

1. Support for full automation

The WhatsApp Business API allows businesses to fully automate their chat support even when live agents are unavailable to respond.

An AI-powered WhatsApp chatbot can be deployed to have seamless, personalised chats with customers around the clock. These chatbots are equipped to answer basic customer queries autonomously and can automatically transfer complex queries to live agents.

This is perfect for organisations that handle multiple customer support queries at once.

2. Support for rich media and high-quality templates

Unlike WhatsApp Business, WhatsApp Business API supports sending approved template messages that are vetted to be high-quality by WhatsApp. Media like images and GIFs need approval as well. 

Once approved, you can send notifications or promotional content to users who explicitly opt-in to receive it (You already know WhatsApp does NOT like businesses spamming their users.) 

So, wouldn’t you want to know? 7 Best Ways to Collect WhatsApp Business Opt-Ins

3. Verification badge

WhatsApp Business accounts that use the API can display a green verified badge on their profile. This helps instil trust in customers that a verified account will never send them spam since all message templates go through WhatsApp’s vetting process. 

We love to help our readers: How To Verify WhatsApp Business Account?

4. KPI tracking and analytics

The WhatsApp API allows you to gather key insights and analytics that you can use to better your customer support operations. You can use this data to extrapolate various data points that can be used as an effective feedback mechanism for everything about your product. This is invaluable data for large organisations looking to maximise the efficiency of their processes.

5. Multi-channel management

WhatsApp Business API is meant to be used with a BSP that provides the front-end interface to manage the API. Most BSPs provide a dashboard that allows you to monitor activity across several communication channels.

6. Support for third-party integration

WhatsApp’s Business API can integrate with a variety of different third-party applications such as online aggregators like Shopify, as well as payment gateways. It can also be used with data analytics software and CRMs.

Quick read: Benefits of Using WhatsApp Business Account

What’s right for your business – WhatsApp Business or WhatsApp Business API?

If you’re looking for a platform to scale your customer service processes on, there’s arguably no parallel to WhatsApp. Over a billion people use WhatsApp every day and the platform is growing rapidly, adding 1 million new users each day. The reach WhatsApp offers through its two business solutions — WhatsApp Business (App and API) — are unrivalled.

The question is – which one should you prefer for your business?

While both are great ways for businesses to reach customers, they’re targeted at different sizes of businesses. Large message volumes and multiple active support sessions are the primary reasons businesses choose the API over the WhatsApp Business App. Businesses

Choose WhatsApp Business over WhatsApp Business API only if you have a small team, cater to <20 messages a day, and can’t accommodate the API costs into your budget.

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WhatsApp API – What are the best practices for your business?

What sets WhatsApp Business API apart from other communication channels is that WhatsApp focuses on a more personalised messaging experience where the customer is the centre of attention.

Businesses can message customers for free for the first 24 hours IF the user initiates the conversation. Once this session ends, you’ll only be able to send chargeable high-quality templates.

WhatsApp inspects these templates to ensure that it’s high-quality content. Once approved, you can use them to automate your chats.

This high standard of scrutiny filters out spam effectively and helps keep the platform clean.

On the flip side, this also makes it important to have high-rated message templates. If you’re wondering how to do this, you’re on the right page.

One of the most important things to keep in mind while using WhatsApp Business API is that you follow all their rules and guidelines to maintain a high-quality rating.

Quality ratings

It’s a rating mechanism employed by WhatsApp to indicate how it views the quality of your conversations. Using only high-quality message templates can help businesses avoid getting reported as spam or blocked by contacts.

Phone numbers are shown Low (Red), Medium (Yellow), or High (Green) under the Phone Numbers Tab on WhatsApp Manager. 

Contacts can report or block a business’ number and provide a reason such as ‘spam’ and ‘no longer needed’. This affects the quality rating adversely and can drop the rating from High to Medium or Medium to Low.

If your number has a low rating, its status will change from Connected to Flagged.

In this case, it’s important to improve the rating over the next 7 days. If the rating does not improve, WhatsApp will lower the messaging limit and reinstate the status to ‘CAPIonnected’.

How do messaging limits work?

The messaging limit determines the number of unique users you can message in a day after the initial 24 hour Session period. This limit only applies to message templates.

There are three tiers of messaging limits:

Up to 1K unique users in a day, up to 10K unique users in a day and up to 100 unique users in a day.

All businesses using the WhatsApp Business API start with Tier 1 and are upgraded to the next tier if they’re able to maintain their rating and are reaching out to over double the current limit on a rolling 24-hour basis.

The highest tier allows businesses to reach out to 100k unique users every day. The pricing also varies depending on the tier and region of the recipient.

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WhatsApp API examples – Learning the intricacies of WhatsApp Business API

An API acts as a messenger to help you communicate with WhatsApp’s server. You can relay commands to the server using specific nodes assigned to perform a specific function.

To put it simply – it works by requesting data from the server and awaiting a response. WhatsApp Business API uses JSON data formats.

APIs are perfect for applications that have a lot of high-volume dynamic data such as in real-time messaging apps like WhatsApp.

WhatsApp Business API features 13 nodes:

Account

The account node is used for registering the WhatsApp Business API Client and contains one edge within it:

/verify – This edge is used to complete the registration process using the verification code sent to you through your preferred mode

Certificates

WhatsApp Business API uses SSL certificates for HTTPS traffic out of the box, but you can opt to use your own Certification Authority certificates for SSL configuration using the following edges contained within the certificates node:

/external – Manage external CA certificates for SSL configuration

/webhooks – Used for Webhook URLs with internal Certification Authority certificates

When making calls to the API, make sure to ensure that you’re using the right edges for your purpose and are not making calls directly to the /v1/certificates endpoint

Contacts

The contacts node performs the critical functions of verifying whether a number in your database corresponds to a valid WhatsApp account. You can only send a message to a user if the ‘status’ is returned as ‘valid’. It also retrieves the WhatsApp ID which is required to send a message to the user.

/{user-whatsapp-id}/identity – This single edge is used to manage all user identities in the database.

It’s important to note that if you check the identities of too many users without messaging them, you will be blacklisted. Only check the identity of users who have already opted in through the opt-in flow managed by your business.

Health

You can use this node to monitor the health of your WhatsApp Business API client.

It can display whether the client is connected, connecting, uninitialized, unregistered, or disconnected.

Media

The media node is quite essential to provide a rich, high-quality messaging experience.

Various content types and file formats can be uploaded to the node:

Audio : AAC, MP4, AMR, MPEG

Video: MP4, 3GPP

Stickers: WEBP

Images: JPEG, PNG

Documents: Any MIME-type formats

However, it does not support animated stickers.

Any media uploaded to the media node must be equal to or under 64MB. The business needs to routinely monitor its media volume and ensure that it does not get filled up to avoid message failure.

Messages

This node is the most frequently used node as it’s used to send text, message templates, media or documents.

We recommend reading through this page in the WhatsApp Business API documentation to get a thorough understanding of the different parameters and all the objects that are supported.

Metrics

The metrics node allows businesses to collect data about ongoing processes and monitor traffic. There are various metrics that you can monitor using this node such as the total process limit, number of requests handled, number of calls to the database for each API, total number of API requests etc.

Services

You can use this endpoint to delete messages on the database linked to the WhatsApp Business API.

If you’re using a large database with >10 million rows, make sure to run the services API request several times until there are no errors and that status is completed.

Settings

The settings node allows you to configure the WhatsApp API Client and WhatsApp profiles as well as backup, restore and a lot more.

It contains 6 edges:

If you want to update, retrieve or reset WhatsApp Business API client — /application

To update/retrieve profile settings: /profile

If you want to update information on the Business profile such as its address, description and industry: /business/profile

To fetch e-commerce compliance information: /business/compliance_info

To backup or restore registration and app settings: /backup and /restore correspondingly

If you want to enable two-factor authentication to the WhatsApp Business API Client: /account/two_step

You can only use the admin account to retrieve or change any settings.  

Stats

Use this node to measure the performance of your queue, current queue callback size and the total number of pending messages.

The stats node has two edges:

/app returns statistics for Coreapp

/db returns statistics for the database

Stickerpacks

You can manage both first-party and third-party stickerpacks using this node.

/{stickerpack-id} is used to retrieve, update or delete a chosen stickerpack.

/{sticker-pack-id}/sticker: This returns information about stickers and can also be used to create or update third-party stickerpacks.

Support

If you run into issues with your WhatsApp Business API client, you can use the support node to retrieve information that support teams can use to diagnose and troubleshoot the issue.

Users

Lastly, the users node is used for essential functions relating to logging in, logging out and retrieving/deleting user accounts.

There are three edges connected to this node:

/login  is used to login to the WhatsApp Business API client

/logout is used to log out of the WhatsApp Business API client

/{username} can help you retrieve or delete a user account

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WhatsApp API in real-life action  – How brands are using WhatsApp Business API effectively

WhatsApp Business API is a powerful tool that can help businesses across industries scale their customer support operations to thousands of customers through a familiar and easy-to-access platform. 

Statista reports show that WhatsApp has the highest penetration in Saudi Arabia (73%), followed by Germany (65%) and Indonesia (40%). This makes it the perfect customer support and marketing platform for SEA, MENA and Europe.

Here’s how three big shots in different industries harnessed WhatsApp to top their game!

ADIB reduced call centre volume by 20% and resolved 80% of queries through ChatBanking

The Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) is a prime example of the banking industry inching towards true digital transformation. As one of the leading banks in the world, ADIB has paved the course for others in the market to embrace the new way of connecting with people. 

Allow me to set the context first to simplify the complexity of use cases for automation. 

  • For starters, ADIB needed a conversational and multilingual chatbot to serve its largely Arabic speaking clientele. 
  • Now, the bank also needed to deploy a chatbot that supported over 17+ diverse dialects of Arabic (Including Emirati Arabic) and English ensuring there is no loss in translation during support conversations. 
  • ADIB also had a diverse range of banking services with individual support journeys that needed automation.
  • Unsurprisingly, the bank was also trying to manage a massive volume of 300k+ contact centre calls a month with an ART of 10 minutes. 

It goes without saying that ADIB could use AI as a helping hand to fix its support function. Makes you wonder how WhatsApp API worked out for them? Well, the bank deployed a conversational WhatsApp and website chatbot that took care of most of their worries. This is what happened when they did from October 2020:

  • In just 1 quarter, the average CSAT jumped to over 90%.
  • Chat volume grew to 800k+ with a bot deflection rate of 80%
  • 20% reduction in call centre volumes, saving $2.7 million in annual costs!
  • Reduction in FRT to 1.1 minutes a ticket.

Here is an in-depth account of how ADIB was able to simplify its complicated support function with AI algorithms sturdy enough to handle the load.

BMW Germany achieves higher customer service quality with WhatsApp Business API

The German luxury car brand, BMW has made a brilliant example of great utilisation of WhatsApp Business API.

BMW Germany is a reputed luxury automobile manufacturer in addition to being a financial and mobility service provider. The brand has made a name for itself as an automobile technology pioneer with operations scaled across 140 countries.

In the luxury sector, top-notch customer service is non-negotiable. Customers pay a premium to purchase goods and services placing trust in the brand’s customer support. This is why BMW Germany chose WhatsApp Business API. WhatsApp has good penetration in Germany already and is by far the most convenient way to reach out to customers.

In 2019, they launched customer service operations on WhatsApp Business API which enabled customers to check the status of their car maintenance at BMW centres just by sending a message from WhatsApp. They could also choose to speak with customer support representatives for complex queries.

After implementing WhatsApp Business API, BMW Germany had amazing results:

  • Dramatic decrease of 60% in callback requests.
  • Processed 3,800 customer messages a month, and
  • 90% recommendation rate for WhatsApp.

Using WhatsApp Business API helped BMW Germany achieve their goal of higher customer support quality.

BMW Germany is just one of many companies that are using WhatsApp Business API to scale their customer support operations. Read more about this case study here.

In other news, Flipkart saw 3.5x more conversions using WhatsApp Business API for marketing. 

There are virtually infinite ways WhatsApp Business API can be used and innovative marketing is just one of them. However, we think Flipkart did it best with its smart marketing campaign integrated with a WhatsApp-based digital assistant.

The e-commerce leader launched a marketing campaign for their grand annual sale, which featured a digital assistant called Big B Bot, based on Amitabh Bachchan. Big B Bot walked users through the best deals available right on WhatsApp offering them an exciting and engaging shopping experience.

This clever marketing campaign allowed users to have unique, personalised conversations with a celebrity which made the experience seem tailored and immersive.

It was an instant hit among the target audience and resulted in:

  • 3.5x more conversions
  • 7x more high-quality visitors
  • $2.5 million in revenue

Check out the complete case study here.

If you own an eCommerce store, this is how a WhatsApp chatbot can catapult your business to new heights too! 

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

We’ve compiled a list of the most frequently asked questions about WhatsApp Business API that will help answer any questions you might have:

1. Is WhatsApp API free?

No, WhatsApp Business API is not free and can only be accessed through a Business Service Provider. Users have to pay per message after the initial 24 hours. However, WhatsApp Business is an alternative free app available on the Google Play Store and Apple App Store that allows anyone to download and set up a business profile. The features and functionality of this app are limited but sufficient for small businesses. To get your WhatsApp API link, talk to your BSP.

You can find more information on the WhatsApp Business API pricing here.

2. Is WhatsApp API open source?

No, WhatsApp API is not open source and it can only be accessed by signing up for WhatsApp Business API through a BSP who provides the relevant authentication token to help set up the API.

3. How much does WhatsApp API cost?

WhatsApp Business API is switching the way their payment systems work starting from February 1, 2022. Currently, WhatsApp API charges were pay-per-message sent after the initial 24-hour session. The new WhatsApp API message pricing allows businesses to pay-per-conversation instead.  You can find out more about it here.

4. How to get WhatsApp API for business?

Using WhatsApp to step up your interactions with your customers is definitely a step in the right direction. You can set up a WhatsApp Business API fairly quickly through a registered third-party Business Service Provider. These BSPs provide you with the front-end interface and the infrastructure to be able to use the WhatsApp Business API.

5. How to create a WhatsApp API link?

You can create a WhatsApp API link by obtaining an authentication token from your Business Service Provider.

6. Does WhatsApp Business API have any messaging limits?

Yes. WhatsApp has a stringent messaging limit system that’s designed to incentivise using high-quality templates and avoid spam.

The messaging limits are divided into three tiers based on how many unique users you can message in a given 24-hour period.

The first tier allows messages to 1k unique users, the second – 10k and the final tier offers up to24-hour 100k.

To upgrade their tier, businesses must message a total of double the current 24-hour limit over 7 days.

For instance, you can be upgraded from Tier 1 to Tier 2 if you message 2,000 users in 48 hours or 1000 per 24 hours.

7. What messaging limit tier do you start with?

All businesses, regardless of their size, start at the first messaging limit tier. They can then upgrade their limits if they meet the criteria.

They may also be downgraded from their current tier if they fail to maintain their phone number quality over time.

8. What is the phone number quality rating?

WhatsApp doesn’t want advertisers that spam people and provide no value using their platform. To combat this, they enabled a quality rating system that indicates the quality of your conversations. If the rating drops to the lowest (Red), the number will be flagged and subsequently reinstated but with lower messaging limits.

You can learn more about quality ratings and the best practices to use on WhatsApp Business API here.

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Verloop.io – Your smart, friendly, perceptive WhatsApp API chatbot

We are sure that by now you have a fairly clear understanding of what WhatsApp API is, how it works, how to set it up, use cases and the advantages you can reap from it. But to ensure you actually get to enjoy what WhatsApp API has to offer, you need a vendor that delivers everything and a lot more.

Verloop.io’s WhatsApp chatbot is designed with convenience, accuracy and speed at its forefront. Our well-backed and trained AI and ML give you the freedom to engage with your customers and resolve their queries seamlessly across channels – WhatsApp in particular!

If this guide was of any help and if you think you want to know more can be realised for your business, drop us a hello. 🙂

If you are looking for more in-depth information on how to nail customer support on everyone’s chat app – WhatsApp, we think you’d love to check out our free eBook below. 

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