Definition of WhatsApp API
In 2018, WhatsApp released its WhatsApp API as a digital messaging service with more sophisticated capabilities than its predecessor, nWhatsApp Business. WhatsApp Business API, or often referred to as WhatsApp API, offers various features and a more upgraded communication experience targeted at customer service.
WhatsApp API is not an application but a system that is run by an Application Programming Interface (API). The API is a software that allows servers to be able to connect two or more systems simultaneously. WhatsApp API cannot be obtained through the App Store or Play Store but must be obtained via official WhatsApp partners. Qiscus is one such partner located in Indonesia.
WhatsApp API vs WhatsApp Business
As previously mentioned, the WhatsApp API is an advanced version of the earlier-released WhatsApp Business software. To make it easier for you to understand the difference between WhatsApp API and WhatsApp Business, look at the comparison table below:
WhatsApp Business is a free application that are more suitable for smaller businesses with a smaller customer base or reach. However, medium to large businesses frequently overwhelmed by customer enquiries, the WhatsApp Business API is the most appropriate solution.
Read the following article to understand the different WhatsApp tools: WhatsApp’s Ecosystem: Understanding its Services
Features of WhatsApp API
As previously mentioned, the WhatsApp API is the most advanced version in the WhatsApp ecosystem. WhatsApp API contains more sophisticated features when compared to WhatsApp personal and WhatsApp Business. These features can only be obtained if you subscribe to the WhatsApp API through Qiscus. Without a subscription with Qiscus, the features you are able to access may be different from what is listed below.
The following is a list of features that you will obtain if you use the WhatsApp API:
1. Unlimited Admins and Devices
This is the most distinguishable feature of WhatsApp API from WhatsApp Business. Via WhatsApp API, you can access your WhatsApp account on multiple devices at once without any limitations. It is possible even if you want to access 10 devices simultaneously. This nifty feature is useful for businesses to serve large numbers of customers simultaneously.
2. Automatic Agent Allocation
Automatically allocate all incoming messages on WhatsApp to available admins automatically and in equal distribution to minimize the accumulation of messages for individual admins. This feature will also help you respond to consumer messages faster because consumers don’t have to wait too long to get their messages answered.
3. Distribution of Agent Roles
Unlike WhatsApp Business, WhatsApp API allows you to specify the roles and duties of each team. There are 3 roles: supervisor, admin, and agent. These role assignments also make it easier for you to set boundaries to the account access of specific team members.
4. Send interactive and automated messages with message templates
One of the most interesting features in WhatsApp API is the Message Templates feature. With this feature, send a variety of messages directly and automatically to consumers. Use Message Templates to send customers one-time passwords (OTPs), payment notifications and delivery information, just to name a few. Visit this page to learn more about the Message Template feature with examples.
5. Broadcast instantly, whether to multiple numbers or just one
It is impossible to send broadcast messages to multiple numbers in WhatsApp Business, but now you can make magic happen with WhatsApp API. With WhatsApp API, you can send broadcast messages without a limit on the number of recipients. In addition, you can also send broadcast messages personally to one number instantly and quickly without having to upload a CSV form first.
6. Chatbot and Agent Collaboration
In the WhatsApp API, you can integrate a chatbot to provide automatic responses to consumers who contact your business. However, that doesn’t mean you cannot involve an agent for more complicated queries. With the chatbot and agent collaboration feature, you can manage messages in a more productive way. For example, allow chatbots to manage simpler queries or FAQs while complex messages can be redirected to your agents.
7. Auto-Reply Beyond Working Hours
As the name implies, this feature helps provide automatic replies to predetermined message types. This feature will be helpful if you enforce specific operational hours on your WhatsApp account. This means that all messages received outside your brand’s operational hours will automatically receive a reply through the auto-reply feature.
The Analytics feature is usually the most important feature for users of WhatsApp API. With this feature, you can review and monitor important metrics in real-time accurately. Some existing metrics include the number of incoming messages, agent performance, and what messages consumers send the most.
9. Integration with Chatbot, CRM, and Ticketing
As previously mentioned, if you decide to use the WhatsApp API, you will be able to integrate various other systems into it. These include Chatbot, CRM, and Ticketing. Open access for integration will greatly facilitate you in customizing the WhatsApp dashboard according to your business needs.
10. Compatible with Various Other Applications
In addition to the various support systems mentioned above, with WhatsApp API, you can also combine multiple other communication channels. This combination will allow you to access all channels via the same dashboard. The channels that you can integrate include email, Instagram, LINE, FB Messenger and others.
Please visit this page to subscribe to WhatsApp Business API and Qiscus Multichannel Chat.
Benefits of WhatsApp API for business
The provision of WhatsApp API comes about from an in-depth survey we have conducted when understanding what business needs. By using the WhatsApp API, your business will enjoy the following benefits:
- A centralized dashboard that can also be integrated with other communication channels, such as Instagram, LINE and email just to name a few
- Serve consumers more freely due to no restrictions on agents or devices and improve response time. Quick and timely responses can also increase the possibility of consumers becoming loyal customers.
- Receive help to improve and enhance the customer experience your brand provides since your agents can now focus on more complex messages while FAQs can be managed by chatbots
- Send various types of messages, such as OTP, delivery updates and payment notifications automatically and personally to each consumer. This makes conversations more interactive than before.
- Discover reports or metrics of WhatsApp API usage clearly and accurately through thorough analytical features. A variety of features are provided such as tabulating the total number of incoming and outgoing messages, frequently asked messages, agent performance and so on.
- Possible integration with various support tools and systems such as CRM, Chatbot, and Ticketing so that consumers can be served frp, in one dashboard without switching applications.
In addition, the use of WhatsApp Business API will help your business in terms of Lead Generation, Support, Customer Marketing, as well as Engagement and Conversion as described below:
1. Lead Generation
WhatsApp Business API integrated with Qiscus Multichannel Chat will help you to always be aware of all your incoming leads. Even outside business hours, your business will still record incoming conversations with the help of our built-in chatbot.
2. Support and Service
Similar to Lead Generation, the use of WhatsApp API will maximize the customer support services provided by your business especially if you also integrate other communication channels with WhatsApp API on Qiscus Multichannel Chat. Of course, this will help you provide timely and fast responses since there is no need to switch dashboards. In addition, you can also perform periodic evaluations based on the metrics in the Analytics tool.
3. Customer Marketing
Did you know that one of the most effective customer marketing strategies is by providing a personal touch? With WhatsApp API, you can provide personal touches in your communication with customers as easily as possible. Various personal automatic notifications, such as birthday wishes, reminder messages, and even messages containing offers can be done with the help of the Message Template feature in WhatsApp API.
4. Engagement and Conversion
Increase the conversion of leads into consumers by using WhatsApp API integrated with Qiscus Multichannel Chat. All incoming data will be automatically recorded in the Contact feature, making it easier for you to follow up and carry out other approach strategies.
Tutorial on Creating a WhatsApp API Account
Below is a tutorial to activate your WhatsApp API account:
1. Verify your Facebook Business Manager account
Before creating a WhatsApp API account , you are required to have a verified Facebook Business Manager account. Facebook Business Manager is a complete platform for managing all the tools from Facebook that your business needs.
To verify, please ensure that you have a Facebook Business Manager account first. If you already have a Facebook Business Manager account, please addollows:
- Visit the following page: https://business.facebook.com/settings/security
- Click the Start Verification button
- At this stage, you will be asked to enter the required documents
- If you have uploaded all the required documents, the verification process will automatically start
Please note that the verification process will take between 3 to 7 business days.
2. Partner with Qiscus, one of WhatsApp’s official partner in Indonesia
As previously mentioned, the WhatsApp API cannot be obtained for free. For businesses which want to use the WhatsApp API, they must first contact an official WhatsApp partner (also known as the WhatsApp Business Solution Provider (BSP). Through WhatsApp partners, you can be sure that your business will receive an official and legal WhatsApp API account.
Qiscus is the official WhatsApp partner in Indonesia that can help you get onboard WhatsApp API. The WhatsApp API account provided by Qiscus is sure to help your brand with the 10 features mentioned above. Visit the following page to get the WhatsApp API with 10 complete features mentioned above.