In today's digital age, messaging apps have become the primary communication channel for businesses to engage with their customers.
With over 2 billion monthly active users, WhatsApp has emerged as a leading messaging app for businesses to connect with their customers. WhatsApp Business API is a powerful tool that enables businesses to streamline their communication, automate responses, and improve customer service.
Integrating WhatsApp Business API can seem daunting at first, but with the right guidance, businesses can get started with this messaging platform in no time.
In this blog, we will discuss how to get WhatsApp API, the benefits of using it, and the steps involved in WhatsApp API integration.
Introduction to WhatsApp API Integration
WhatsApp API Integration is a way for businesses and organizations to connect with their customers using the popular messaging app, WhatsApp. By integrating the WhatsApp Business API with their existing systems, businesses can automate and streamline their communication processes with customers, including sending notifications, providing customer support, and facilitating transactions.
To use the WhatsApp Business API platform, businesses need to gain approval from WhatsApp and must comply with its policies and guidelines.
While the WhatsApp API is not free to use, it offers different pricing models, including message-based and subscription-based pricing. To integrate with the WhatsApp Business API, businesses must partner with an official WhatsApp Business Solution Provider, who will provide the necessary tools and support to set up and manage the integration.
By integrating the WhatsApp API with their existing systems and tools, businesses can offer customers a seamless communication experience, enabling them to provide real-time updates, such as order confirmations, delivery status, and appointment reminders, without having to depend on traditional channels like email or SMS.
The main aim of the WhatsApp API is to allow businesses to engage with their customers through the WhatsApp messaging platform, automating and streamlining the process while ensuring security and efficiency.
What is WhatsApp Business API?
The WhatsApp Business API is a modified version of WhatsApp designed for medium to large businesses, enabling them to communicate with their customers on a larger scale efficiently.
It comes with advanced messaging capabilities, detailed metrics, and analytics to help businesses optimize their communication with customers. To ensure authenticity and credibility, business verification is required. The API provides automated messaging and integration with other systems, making communication seamless and efficient.
The broadcast limit is set at 100,000 people, enabling businesses to send messages to a large audience at once. Additionally, live chatbots are available for customer service, providing real-time assistance to customers.
The API allows businesses to send messages within a 24-hour session, and message scheduling is also possible. Moreover, the API includes a catalog feature that enables businesses to showcase their products or services and provide customers with a more comprehensive shopping experience.
About WhatsApp Business API pricing:
Businesses using the WhatsApp Business Platform are charged per conversation, which includes all messages delivered in a 24-hour session.
WhatsApp Business Platform conversations fall into two categories that are priced differently:
- User-initiated: A conversation that initiates in response to a user message. Whenever a business replies to a user within the 24-hour customer service window, that message will be associated with a user-initiated conversation. Businesses can send free-form messages within this 24-hour customer service window.
- Business-initiated: A conversation that initiates from a business sending a user a message outside the 24-hour customer service window. Messages that initiate a business-initiated conversation will require a message template.
Charges for conversations are based on the user’s country code. A user here is defined as the customer that your business is communicating with. Rates for business-initiated and user-initiated conversations vary by country or region.
You can download the individual rate cards from here.
Benefits of using WhatsApp API for D2C Brands
As Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) brands continue to gain momentum, businesses are increasingly looking for ways to communicate and engage with their customers effectively. WhatsApp Business API provides a powerful tool for D2C brands to reach their customers directly, offering a range of benefits that can help businesses build brand awareness, drive customer engagement, and increase sales.
Here are some key benefits of using WhatsApp API for D2C brands.
- WhatsApp API gives you access to a wide reach with less resistance
The WhatsApp API enables businesses to communicate with their customers on a platform that has over 2 billion users worldwide, making it a valuable tool for businesses looking to reach a broad audience. With its widespread usage in 180 out of 190 countries, the app provides access to a global audience.
Using the API, businesses can send messages, provide support, and share information seamlessly with customers in real time, all through a messaging platform that they are already familiar with. This makes the communication process smoother, with fewer barriers, enabling businesses to build stronger relationships with their customers and expand their reach with ease.
- WhatsApp API has a whooping 99% open rate for messages
D2C brands can leverage the WhatsApp API's high open rate for messages to engage with their audience and build brand loyalty. By sending personalized messages to their customers via the API, D2C brands can create a more personalized communication experience, strengthening their relationships with customers.
For instance, businesses can use the API to send personalized product recommendations, order confirmations, and delivery updates, improving the overall customer experience. With the ability to automate messages and integrate them with other systems, businesses can streamline their communication process and ensure that customers receive relevant and timely information.
Moreover, the WhatsApp API's real-time messaging capability allows businesses to offer immediate assistance and support to customers, leading to higher customer satisfaction rates.
- WhatsApp API enables better data collection and analysis
The WhatsApp API offers D2C brands an opportunity to collect valuable data and analyze customer behavior, enabling them to optimize their marketing and sales strategies.
By integrating the API with their customer relationship management (CRM) systems, businesses can gather information about customer preferences, purchasing patterns, and communication habits.
This information can be used to create targeted marketing campaigns that resonate with customers, leading to higher conversion rates and increased sales. Additionally, the API provides detailed metrics and analytics, allowing businesses to monitor the success of their messaging campaigns and make data-driven decisions.
With this information, businesses can adjust their strategies in real-time, improving their communication with customers and enhancing the overall customer experience.
- WhatsApp Business API provides increased scalability to D2C Brands
The WhatsApp Business API offers increased scalability to D2C brands, allowing them to communicate with customers at scale while maintaining a personalized approach. With the ability to automate messages and integrate with other systems, businesses can streamline their communication process and reduce the time and resources required to engage with customers.
The API also enables businesses to broadcast messages to up to 100,000 people at once, providing an efficient way to reach a large audience. Additionally, the API's live chatbots for customer service can handle a high volume of customer queries simultaneously, providing fast and efficient support to customers.
This scalability enables D2C brands to expand their customer base and engage with customers in a more personalized way, improving the overall customer experience.
Furthermore, the API's catalog feature allows businesses to showcase their products and services, making it easier for customers to discover and purchase items directly through the messaging platform.
- The WhatsApp Business API allows D2C brands to have more interactive communication.
The WhatsApp Business API allows D2C brands to have more interactive communication by providing new features such as buttons in chat, catalogs, and quick replies.
These features transform WhatsApp into a sales channel, enabling customers to discover and purchase products directly within the app. Catalogs allow businesses to showcase their products and services, making it easier for customers to browse and purchase items without leaving the messaging platform.
The API also enables businesses to save and reuse message templates, allowing them to easily answer frequently asked questions and provide personalized responses to customers.
Additionally, the one-to-one chat interface provides a high level of personalization, enhancing the overall customer experience. By implementing a D2C strategy directly through the WhatsApp Business API, businesses can avoid intermediate commissions and maintain greater control over their sales process.
- WhatsApp Business API promotes trust & security
The WhatsApp Business API is a highly secure platform due to several reasons. Firstly, all messages are end-to-end encrypted, which means that only the sender and the receiver have access to the content of the messages. This encryption ensures that messages cannot be intercepted or accessed by third parties.
Secondly, the API requires businesses to undergo a verification process before being approved to use the platform. This process involves providing business documentation and undergoing identity verification, ensuring that only legitimate businesses can use the platform.
Thirdly, the API has strict policies and guidelines that businesses must adhere to, including prohibiting the sending of spam or unsolicited messages. This helps to prevent malicious activities such as phishing and spamming.
Finally, the API offers several security features, such as two-factor authentication and the ability to block suspicious numbers. These features help to protect businesses and their customers from unauthorized access and fraudulent activities.
How to Get WhatsApp Business API: What is the Best Way?
Meta has outlined the eligibility requirements and process for obtaining the WhatsApp Business API. To be eligible, businesses must have a presence in one of the specified countries, maintain good standing, and comply with applicable laws and regulations.
Additionally, businesses must provide proof of their physical address, phone number, website, and email address, and phone number, and adhere to data privacy and security laws.
Obtaining access to the WhatsApp Business API is straightforward and can be done through various methods such as On-Premises API, Sign-up, and Cloud.
Although, the easiest way to get access to WhatsApp API is via conversational commerce software such as BiteSpeed. BiteSpeed takes care of the the whole process of WhatsApp Business API acess on your behalf in just few steps.
STEP 1 - Business & Facebook Account Details
In the first step, you need to share your details about your Facebook Business account and your website here. BiteSpeed will apply for Whatsapp API approval on your behalf.
Facebook will verify your website and approve or reject your application, depending on whether or not your business meets the WhatsApp Terms of Service.
WhatsApp only allows certain types of businesses to request API access. You can read their policy to see if you are eligible here.
BiteSpeed will reach out to you in some time on your personal Whatsapp number provided by you in the form mentioned in STEP 1 to inform you about a request that you'll need to approve in your Facebook business manager account.
You will need to verify the ownership of the phone number using an OTP / verification code sent to your number via SMS.
BiteSpeed will again reach out to you during this step.
The overall process should take anywhere from 2-5 business days.
Differences between WhatsApp Business API and WhatsApp Cloud API
WhatsApp Cloud API is a cloud-based version of WhatsApp Business Platform released on May 19, 2022. It offers automation, chatbots, and customer support features to businesses without the need for hosting their own servers.
The default message sending and receiving rate is 80 messages per second (MPS), which can be increased to 500 MPS upon request. WhatsApp Cloud API provides analytics and conversation metrics, including message and conversation counts, for your WhatsApp Business Account (WABA).
WhatsApp Business API and WhatsApp Cloud API are both versions of the WhatsApp Business Platform, but there are some key differences between them.
The WhatsApp Business API is a paid service for medium to large businesses that provides advanced messaging capabilities, detailed metrics and analytics, business verification, automated messaging and integration with other systems.
On the other hand, WhatsApp Cloud API is a cloud-based version of the WhatsApp Business Platform that offers various features like automation, chatbots, and customer support, and it eliminates the need to host your own servers.
Here are some key differences.
Quick Tips and Tricks for faster WhatsApp Business API integration
Integrating WhatsApp Business API can be a complex process, but with the right tips and tricks, it can be made easier and faster.
Here are some quick tips and tricks to help businesses integrate WhatsApp Business API quickly and efficiently.
- Ensure that your business meets the eligibility requirements for WhatsApp Business API integration, such as having a presence in one of the specified countries, being in good standing, and complying with all applicable laws and regulations.
- Have all the necessary documents and information ready, such as proof of your physical address, phone number, website, valid email addresses and phone numbers.
- Choose the right integration partner or platform that suits your business needs and requirements.
- Make sure your integration partner or platform is a WhatsApp Business Solution Provider approved by Facebook.
- Familiarize yourself with the WhatsApp Business API documentation and guidelines to understand the technical requirements and best practices for integration.
- Test your integration thoroughly before going live to ensure a smooth and error-free experience for your customers.
- Follow all laws and regulations regarding data privacy and security to protect your customers' information.
- Stay up-to-date with the latest updates and features of the WhatsApp Business API to optimize your communication with your customers.
In conclusion, getting access to the WhatsApp Business API can seem daunting, but it is a worthwhile investment for businesses looking to enhance their communication with customers. With the API, businesses can automate messaging, provide faster customer service, and reach a wider audience through broadcasting.
By following the eligibility requirements and choosing the integration method that best suits their needs, businesses can seamlessly integrate the WhatsApp API and enjoy the benefits it provides.
Additionally, by following the quick tips and tricks, businesses can ensure a faster and smoother integration process. Overall, integrating WhatsApp API can be a game-changer for businesses, providing them with the tools they need to succeed in today's digital world.
With BiteSpeed, turn inquires into sales by responding to marketing messages across channels and leverage customer behavior and data to create the “perfect audience” in minutes.
- Is WhatsApp API free?
No, WhatsApp API is not free. Businesses need to pay to use the service.
- Does WhatsApp Business have API?
Yes, WhatsApp Business has API. WhatsApp API is an upgraded version of WhatsApp Business that has been specifically designed to meet the needs of medium to large businesses.
- How to use API in WhatsApp Business?
To use API in WhatsApp Business, businesses need to apply for WhatsApp Business API and get approved by WhatsApp.
- How to integrate WhatsApp Business API in Android?
To integrate WhatsApp Business API in Android, businesses can use third-party libraries to send and receive messages. They need to follow the guidelines provided by WhatsApp to avoid any violation of their terms and policies.