WhatsApp business app: How small and medium businesses got a leg up

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Published: January 25, 2018 4:21 AM

An Android app, this is free to download and has the small business owner in mind.

small medium business, whatsapp, whatsapp business, whatsapp business app, facebook, special messaging app, whatsapp web, new whatsapp businessAn Android app, this is free to download and has the small business owner in mind.

More than 1 billion people in over 180 countries use WhatsApp to stay in touch with friends and family, anytime and anywhere. The Facebook-owned entity has introduced a special messaging app for the fast-growing small and medium business (SMB) community. The new WhatsApp Business app, that will be available free to download on Google Play in different markets including India, will make it easier for companies to connect with customers, and convenient for its 1.3 billion users to chat with businesses that matter to them. Here’s how: Business Profiles: Help customers with useful information such as business description, email or store addresses, and website; Messaging Tools: Save time with smart messaging tools—quick replies that provide fast answers to frequently asked questions, greeting messages that introduce customers to your business, and away messages that let them know you’re busy;

Messaging Statistics: Review simple metrics like the number of messages read to see what’s working; WhatsApp Web: Send and receive messages with WhatsApp Business on your desktop; Account Type: 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’s been confirmed that the account phone number matches the business phone number.

There are 51 million SMBs in India, of which only 32% are online. The large number—68% are still offline because most of them do not understand the benefit of going digital and they also face technical challenges. Despite this, most of them use WhatsApp for messaging. Citing a survey of Morning Consult study, WhatsApp said that over 80% of small businesses in India and Brazil use WhatsApp to both communicate with customers and grow their business. Currently, WhatsApp Business is available in Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, the UK and the US. The app will be gradually rolled out out around the world including India in a few weeks.

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