With over 2.24 billion monthly active users in 2023, WhatsApp undoubtedly leads the social messaging market. It has lent new dimensions to proactive customer engagement and marketing with the WhatsApp Business suite.
The future of eCommerce now hinges on the fact that retailers establish a personal interactive communication medium with customers. Conversations are becoming a channel for personalized communication with which eCommerce companies drive customer loyalty and satisfaction.
Here, we take a detailed look at the benefits of WhatsApp business API for eCommerce retailers.
2) Overview of WhatsApp Business API
WhatsApp Business API is a program that plugs into your eCommerce platform or website backend giving you access to its many features. Over 5 million businesses use WhatsApp Business to promote products, offer curated customer service, and market themselves.
Both the WhatsApp Business app and WhatsApp Business API offer similar advantages to merchants. However, they differ in their scale. WhatsApp Business API enables you to message over 10,000 customers at once. Hence, it’s best suited for medium and large eCommerce businesses in creating tailored solutions for their customers.
3) Top 10 Benefits of Using WhatsApp Business API for eCommerce
Here we present a list of the best benefits WhatsApp Business API has for eCommerce companies:
3.1) Offer Versatile Customer Service
Nine out of ten online shoppers consider quality customer service as the first criterion in establishing brand loyalty. Excellent customer service involves assisting with pre-purchase queries, resolving technical issues, and handling returns.
Nowadays, customers rate support service not solely on the tone of friendliness or attention but on the speed of issue resolution. Even if one fails to solve the problem in one go, it is the promptness of the reply that leaves a good impression. This is exactly where WhatsApp API extends credibility.
Here are a couple of examples of how WhatsApp API helps customer service:
- It integrates with customer resource management tools like Zendesk to direct customer service agents in answering customer questions.
- It increases response time with automated chatbot-led communication for routine queries like refunds, changing phone numbers, etc.
- It ensures easy customer feedback collection through chatbot-enabled surveys and delivers self-service resources.
3.2) Upgrade Post-Purchase Customer Experience
For many eCommerce retailers, post-purchase is the hallmark of customer satisfaction. In fact, over 70% of customers think that many eCommerce companies fail to incorporate adequate post-purchase communication.
This is another area where WhatsApp Business API is extremely resourceful for eCommerce companies. Here are a few things WhatsApp API lets you do:
- You can coordinate and regularize order update notifications by seamlessly sending them to a customer’s chatbox.
- You can offer live tracking options and location sharing of the delivery agent when they are out for delivery with the parcel.
- You can enable cross-selling by forwarding product recommendations or product catalogs, or loyalty discounts to high-spenders.
3.3) Acquire and Convert Customers
Did you know that acquiring new customers is at least 2x costlier than retaining customers? However, WhatsApp presents a cost-effective way of acquiring and, more importantly, converting customers. Here is how WhatsApp API benefits eCommerce businesses:
- You can leverage WhatsApp’s opt-in feature to build a trusted communication channel with potential customers.
- You can broadcast notifications, updates, newsletters, and promotion materials to 10,000 customers to expedite your conversion strategy at a minimal cost.
- You can integrate the WhatsApp API into your website to direct customers to converse directly with you.
3.4) Streamline Notifications and Alerts
WhatsApp Business API transforms customer notifications and alerts from a time-consuming process to a hassle-free customer engagement strategy. This is because you can create message templates for commonly asked queries back-in-stock alerts and broadcast them to multiple clients.
WhatsApp’s automation enables you to trigger notifications on a recurring basis. Here are a few use cases of WhatsApp-led notifications and alerts:
- Send alerts for forgotten carts along with cart URLs so that customers are redirected to your website or cart to complete the order.
- Streamline post-purchase notifications such as order status en-route the shipping journey, out-for-delivery messages, and return requests.
- Forward actionable messages with clickable call-to-action buttons, such as limited discount events, trending search items etc.
3.5) Boost Marketing with Conversational Commerce
Conversational Messaging is a new pathway to engage with the customer base proactively for marketing. The benefit of choosing WhatsApp as a preferred marketing medium is connecting with young and conscious shoppers. With responsive messaging, brands can interact with GenZ and Millennials over a channel they endorse, i.e., WhatsApp.
Here are three ways you can leverage marketing with WhatsApp:
- Engage customers with custom-made content targeting shoppers at different stages of the funnel, such as media-rich reminders (top of the funnel) and personalized messages (middle of the funnel).
- Generate traffic by creating digital ads with a CTA button that opens a WhatsApp communication for marketers to interact with them.
- Drive brand loyalty by sharing content or resources with customers, such as sharing free articles, video ads, educational content, etc.
3.6) Create a Targeted Customer Experience
Designing a customer experience that hinges on how you deliver value to them is the best way to build trust with them. Alongside interactive conversation sessions to standout marketing campaigns. WhatsApp Business has many points for targeted customer experience.
- Segment customers into age groups, regions, and communication frequency to resonate with different funnel content.
- Support customers in their native language with WhatsApp’s 60+ language repository.
- Tailor outreach activities with preset templates that reference the customer’s last conversation for cross-selling, doing follow-ups, etc.
3.7) Sell on WhatsApp
With WhatsApp Business, you can transform the messaging app into a sales platform. Owing to its inherent capacity to aid sales efforts, eCommerce retailers have already coined the term WhatsApp Commerce. With WhatsApp, you don’t want customers to find your marketplace; you bring it to them.
Coupled with free-flowing conversations and product recommendations, eCommerce retailers get the chance to showcase their popular SKUs too. Here are a couple of ways WhatsApp API directs sales:
- You can run non-intrusive Shop Ads on customers’ status that presents quick glimpses of your products in 30 secs.
- You can showcase your product catalogs to potential shoppers which increases product visibility and ease the customer purchase journey.
- You can incorporate a store cart on WhatsApp chat so that customers can select an item from your catalog and initiate checkout on WhatsApp.
3.8) Boost Conversations with Automation
Automation is the backbone of the WhatsApp Business suite. Customer engagement is already a tricky venture. This is why WhatsApp has developed ways to hold customers’ attention with automated features. Here is how you can boost conversations with WhatsApp automation:
- WhatsApp offers chatbots that speed up response time for routine and predictable customer service queries.
- WhatsApp’s canned replies feature allows you to create keyboard shortcuts to answer familiar queries during live chat.
- WhatsApp API seamlessly integrates with CRM software allowing human agents to take over a conversation from chatbots anytime.
3.9) Engage with Global Customers
WhatsApp is the messenger of choice for 2 billion shoppers of all ages, with approximately 75% of millennials and GenZ consumers aboard the chat app. WhatsApp has market dominance in many South Asian, Latin American, and African countries. This means U.S. and European-based eCommerce companies have a direct channel to establish a brand presence with a diverse consumer base.
3.10) Keep Customer Privacy Intact with Cookie-free Data Sourcing
One of the reasons why WhatsApp users believe in using the platform is its privacy safeguard measures that are (relatively) better than other apps. Securing customer privacy becomes easier when eCommerce retailers can ensure the end-to-end encryption that WhatsApp offers.
Other than this, WhatsApp is cookie-free, which means consumers do not have to assent to any policy they don’t like while interacting with businesses.
Although WhatsApp prevents retailers from sourcing data in ways that undermine customer data safety, it does not bar them from data collection. WhatsApp helps retailers and marketers access customer data in the following ways:
- Whatsapp enables merchants to have data directly from the concerned party, i.e., the customer, with opt-in forms.
- WhatsApp lets you float customer feedback forms and even customer feedback with AI that records customer experiences.
- WhatsApp transparency and customer-centric policies rely on your customer’s trust with an opt-out option that gives you data about areas requiring improvements.
WhatsApp Business has broadened the horizons of business messaging, imbuing it with privacy standards and quality checks. Its API version emboldens retailers to scale their business operations like customer service, marketing, and sales without hesitation.
WhatsApp Business API, you can ensure customer satisfaction with timely and asynchronous messaging and prompt lead generation. It introduces the global audience to merchants and generates better leads. We hope this article has helped you understand the many benefits of using WhatsApp API for eCommerce.
5.1) Does WhatsApp Business API help with eCommerce sales?
The WhatsApp API helps eCommerce companies to understand their target audience better with personal messaging. Customers can find your products on the business profile area and select one to be redirected to their cart or the product description page. Your online presence ensures that customers can reach out to you at any point of the purchase cycle, and you can help them make informed buying decisions.
5.2) How to set up a WhatsApp Business API?
You can set up the Business API with either a Facebook-certified business solution provider to host the API on their platform and let you use their interface. Or you can directly integrate with the Facebook Developer’s platform with a Facebook Business account and host the API on their server. This API version is called WhatsApp cloud API.