WhatsApp introduces version for small businesses
SAN JUAN – The company that makes instant-messaging and voice-over internet protocol (VoIP) application WhatsApp said it will make the software easier for businesses to respond to customers, “separating customer and personal messages, and creating an official presence” with WhatsApp Business, a free-to-download Android app for small businesses.
With the goal of connecting companies with customers, the new app features Business Profiles that can include a business description, email or store addresses, and website. Messaging Tools are built in, such as quick replies that provide “fast answers to frequently asked questions”; greeting messages to introduce customers to a business; and away messages.
“People all around the world use WhatsApp to connect with small businesses they care about, from online clothing companies in India to auto parts stores in Brazil,” reads a blog about the Facebook-owned app. “WhatsApp Business will make it easier for people to connect with them, and vice versa, in a fast and simple way.”
The app provides Messaging Statistics, or simple metrics such as the number of messages read by customers. As with the the regular app, its business version can also be used on the desktop as WhatsApp Web. New app users will be listed as a Business Account, with those using their business number being considered Confirmed Accounts.
“People will know that they’re talking to a business because you will be listed as a Business Account. Over time, some businesses will have Confirmed Accounts, once it has been confirmed the account phone number matches the business phone number,” WhatsApp said.
So far, the app can only be downloaded for the Android operating system.