WhatsApp announced new features targeting SMBs. WhatsApp also stated that during the global pandemic, people prefer to message businesses to make a purchase. Over 175 million people message on a WhatsApp Business account every day. With the new features, WhatsApp aims to make messaging the best way for consumers and businesses to connect. The company also stated that the new features will be rolled out gradually in the months to come.
On-premise or a solutions provider
A Facebook spokesperson stated that businesses using WhatsApp Business API can use an on-premise solution or choose a solutions provider. With Facebook Hosting Services, businesses will be able to use Facebook’s secure hosting infrastructure for free thus removing a costly item for companies and help them save money.
- Shopping – WhatsApp is expanding ways for people to check out available products and make purchases right from a chat and also make it easier for businesses to integrate these features into their existing commerce and customer solutions. This will help many small businesses who have been most impacted during the pandemic.
- Facebook Hosting Services – The company plans to expand its partnerships with business solution providers. WhatsApp will also provide a new option for businesses to manage their WhatsApp messages via web hosting services that Facebook plans to offer. The option will make it easier for small and medium-sized businesses to get started, sell products, keep their inventory up to date, and quickly respond to messages they receive.
- Business Sales – Business customers will be charged for some of the services. It will help WhatsApp continue to provide and expand free end-to-end encrypted text, video, and voice calling for more than two billion people.
However, Facebook is also changing how it charges businesses for the services. Up to now, Facebook has not been charging businesses for using WhatsApp Businesses. Only charged for some WhatsApp business messages when the businesses send a boarding pass or e-commerce receipt over Facebook. But Facebook spokesperson stated that the company will change how it charge businesses in the future. It will be always free for people to send a message to businesses.