WhatsApp Business is officially available in the United States and other select markets, aiming to enable businesses to better communicate with their customers.
While the Facebook-owned app is one of the world's most popular in terms of messaging and has been enjoying impressive growth, the company wants to draw more revenue from enterprises. WhatsApp Business is a notable step in this direction.
WhatsApp Business Availability
WhatsApp Business first made its debut back in September 2017 but only as a beta at that point and only select parties got to experience it.
The service is now ready for public release and it's now available on Android in the United States, United Kingdom, Italy, Mexico, and Indonesia, with a wider global rollout to follow soon. For now, WhatsApp Business is only available on Android, with no mention of when it will roll out for iOS as well.
WhatsApp Business is designed for small businesses so they can easily respond to customers and have an official presence on the platform. The app is available as a free download and promises a number of benefits.
"Our new app will make it easier for companies to connect with customers, and more convenient for our 1.3 billion users to chat with businesses that matter to them," says WhatsApp.
WhatsApp Business: How It Works
With WhatsApp Business, small businesses will be able to create a profile page on the platform and add key details such as a description, website, email address, phone number, and so on. To make things easier and to shorten response times, businesses can also take advantage of quick replies based on their previous written responses.
Other messaging tools include greeting messages to welcome customers, and away messages to let users know things are busy at the moment. WhatsApp Business also offers messaging stats with various metrics, such as the number of read messages.
Other WhatsApp Business Perks
WhatsApp Web, meanwhile, will allow WhatsApp Business users to keep in touch with customers using the desktop version of the app. WhatsApp Business is compatible with landline phone numbers as well, not just mobile.
Users will know that they are dealing with a business, as it will appear as a Business Account. In time, businesses will get Confirmed Accounts once they confirm that their business phone number matches the phone number used for the account. The Confirmed Account will further assure customers that they are talking to a legitimate business.
The standalone WhatsApp Business app can coexist with the regular WhatsApp on the same smartphone, so users can easily separate their business communications from their personal ones.