WhatsApp has been recognized as one of the leading messaging platforms in the world, thanks to its simplicity, efficiency, and handy conversation tools at its users’ disposal. These traits have led to a rising interest from businesses as well, which is why the company has created its Business platform.
The platform comes in two forms: the free WhatsApp Business app suitable only for small and local businesses, and the paid WhatsApp Business API targeted to businesses with larger teams dedicated to growth. The latter can only be acquired through a specialized company – a business solution provider (BSP) such as WATI – that has the means to conduct all the necessary checks into your business’s legitimacy and verify it. This allows the messaging giant to separate “the wheat from the chaff” and keep the amount of spam on the platform minimum.
Those businesses that opt for the WhatsApp Business API, receive plenty of advantages in doing so. These include:
- official WhatsApp Business account,
- WhatsApp green badge/checkmark next to the business’s name in conversations,
- enabling multiple agents to use one WhatsApp Business account at the same time,
- allowing your team members to collaborate,
- ability to deliver your customers messages, important notifications, multimedia, and more through a unified inbox,
- data-driven insights so you could make informed decisions on your communication strategies,
- automate conversations with your customers thanks to the WhatsApp bot.
Using WhatsApp for ecommerce – should you?
In short, absolutely yes. Considering how quickly the ecommerce industry is evolving, your business will have to find a way to make itself stand out and foster meaningful engagement with customers, and fast. There are plenty of benefits of introducing WhatsApp Business API and chat bot to facilitate conversations with your customers, particularly if your business is in the ecommerce branch:
- access to an immense number of monthly active WhatsApp users – over 2 billion,
- conducting real-time conversations with customers,
- enhancing their shopping experience,
- building and nurturing a personal connection with customers,
- facilitating quick actions by your customers and leading them toward sale,
- fostering a relationship of loyalty and trust with your customers,
- enabling secure communication with customers through end-to-end encryption,
- building brand identity and recognition.
Using WhatsApp Business in ecommerce – different ways
There are plenty of situations in which the WhatsApp Business platform can be immensely helpful when used by an ecommerce business. We’re going to cover the most notable ones to get you started:
1. Driving sales
One of the best ways to make use of WhatsApp bot featured in the company’s API is to encourage new and existing customers by offering discounts, coupons, and vouchers, by asking key questions that activate them, and communicating with the shopping cart to remind the user if they remain unused/unredeemed.
2. Finding and recommending products
A great way to make your WhatsApp bot even more useful is to help your customers find a specific product they’re looking for on the basis of pointed questions about customer preferences. The bot can also provide product recommendations, giving customers photos of the suggested products, as well as information about size, price, and so on.
3. Placing orders
Once the customer decides on the product, the chat bot can also facilitate the sale process itself, removing the requirement for the customer to jump from one platform to another just to complete the sale. Why not offer your customers an option to simply buy what they want right there on their phones, in the WhatsApp messaging app?
4. Shipment information
After the product has been sold, every customer will appreciate being informed about every step of the shipping progress. This is another great implementation of the WhatsApp bot. This way, the customers can receive on their phones the automatic updates when the product has been shipped, changed location, and more. This is much more personal than just a typical email message with a tracking number.
5. Purchase guides
The WhatsApp bot can provide useful guidance for your customers on any topic related to your ecommerce business, instantly. As an example, if your customer is interested in clothes that flatter their body shape, the bot can give them a few pointers. They can include advice for choosing the right size or information about the length of a specific dress or pants. This is greatly helpful when the customer is unsure about any detail but can’t ask about it directly on the product page.
6. Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Responding to customers’ questions is one of the most important roles of your customer support and guess what? The chat bot can help you here as well. There are usually a number of questions typically asked by customers that are possible to predict. The bot can easily answer these frequently asked questions (FAQs) if triggered by a specific phrase. For instance, if a customer types ‘track order’, a bot can instantly hit them with the response about how your business handles order tracking.
7. Loyalty programs
As you probably already know, collecting points and redeeming them for discounts and vouchers is a well-established practice in the world of ecommerce. The chat bot can come in handy here as well. It can regularly inform the customers about the balance of their loyalty points and redeeming thresholds. It can offer them chances to earn points, as well as encouraging them to redeem.
Chat bots can also be entertaining. People love challenging their knowledge and answering questions about their preferences. So offering them to earn points by taking a quiz can assist you in many ways. It can help increase engagement, collect meaningful data, and create a more precise customer profile.
9. Feedback gathering
Another important part of the interaction between your business and a customer after a successful sale and delivery of a product is hearing about how they liked the product, how was their experience, what went well, what went wrong, and what can be changed to provide an even better experience. Approaching the customer via WhatsApp bot is more successful than sending them an email that they can simply ignore.
10. Live customer support
Just because the chat bot is so useful, it doesn’t mean you should forget about the human touch. After all, even automatic responses have their limitations. You can offer your customers an option to interact with an actual human being, as well. This is for situations when they don’t get a satisfactory response from the bot or need details only a human can provide. In this case, the bot will forward their message to the proper person.
Drive ecommerce growth with WhatsApp Business and WATI
Although these ecommerce use cases are among the most popular ones, there are many more that you will discover if you implement the WhatsApp API and chat bot yourself. If you’re ready to give us a chance to help your business evolve and connect with your audience more efficiently, then sign up for early access here.
WATI is the product of Clare.AI, the AI digital assistant start-up and online tool combining machine learning with proprietary natural language processing technology to create award-winning and productive customer communication experiences. Clare.AI is trusted by two of the biggest ecommerce stores in Hong Kong – HKTVMALL and Ztore, as well as many businesses in other branches.
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