Using WhatsApp Bots? 5 Essential Points You Need To Know
WhatsApp bots have become increasingly popular among WhatsApp business accounts. This is no surprise, considering the benefits they provide. Here are ways you can use WhatsApp chatbots in both customer service and marketing to grow your business.
As a business owner, you know how time-consuming responding to customer messages can be. Be it general queries, complaints, or feedback, every single message you receive on WhatsApp needs to be answered with utmost attention and care.
That is, after all, part and parcel of using WhatsApp as a customer support channel. And tedious it may be, this isn’t something you can ignore as it’s vital to the success of your business.
There is, fortunately, a way to reduce the amount of time and effort you need to spend on these incoming messages without losing quality and dedication: WhatsApp bots.
As of late 2020, WhatsApp announced that over 175 million people were messaging WhatsApp business accounts – every single day.
Chances are, each one of them is sending more than one message per interaction, which means that there’s a whole lot of messages that businesses on the receiving end of them need to attend to… to say the least.
We’ve already touched on the topic of WhatsApp bots in some of our previous posts, specifically on how to set them up for automation. In this post, we’ll go over how you can use them for marketing and customer service.
WhatsApp Chatbots: Guidelines To Comply With
Before we dive into using WhatsApp bots for your business, there are a few guidelines you need to be aware of and comply with.
If you’re already using WhatsApp for your business, you may be familiar with these. But it’s never a bad idea to rehash it as the repercussions of non-compliance can be as severe as being banned from using WhatsApp’s services.
- WhatsApp Business messages are via opt-in. This means that messages sent can only be to people who have agreed to receive messages from you.
- You may respond to messages freely (in terms of content and cost) within the first 24 hours after receiving them. After this, you may only send out pre-approved message templates and will be charged a fee to do so.
- Chatbots and messaging automation can be used in this 24-hour window. But the messaging needs to explicitly provide alternative ways for users to reach a live human agent.
We advise you to give the WhatsApp Business policy a thorough read before proceeding.
Using WhatsApp Bots in Customer Service
One of the most popular uses of WhatsApp bots is none other than for customer service.
The automation features these WhatsApp chatbots offer means businesses can set them up such that their customers are attended to 24/7 – even during non-office hours.
As mentioned earlier, hundreds of millions of people message businesses on WhatsApp every day. While some, such as specific queries or complaints, may require the touch of a live human agent, there are messages within this mix that can be responded to using a WhatsApp bot.
These tend to be general and common questions about your business and can range from your opening hours and shop locations to your product catalog and return policy.
Based on keywords detected in incoming messages, your WhatsApp bot can send out pre-defined messages that answer their questions.
You can also integrate your WhatsApp chatbot with your CRM (Customer Relationship Management) System such that it’s set up to send out messages when specific touchpoints are triggered.
Benefits of Using WhatsApp Chatbots in Customer Service
By automating your WhatsApp chatbot, you create benefits for both your business and your customer.
Because these WhatsApp bots attend to fixed questions with fixed answers, they take the tediousness out of your everyday tasks.
This frees up time for you to handle the more important aspects of your business and your customer service agents to better dedicate themselves to other more urgent customer queries.
For your customers, WhatsApp chatbots help to facilitate quick responses by providing them with the information they need in a matter of seconds. This can be even faster than if a customer service agent were to locate an answer template, copy it, and paste it into the chat.
For more information on how to automate your WhatsApp bot, hop on over to our post on how to use automation for WhatsApp business accounts for a detailed guide.
Tip: Want more engagement? Create A WhatsApp Chatbot with stickers!
Using WhatsApp Marketing Bots
Another common use of WhatsApp chatbots is for marketing purposes.
You can set your WhatsApp bot such that it automatically sends out marketing messages. These can be to greet new contacts, introduce your business and services/products, talk about a promotion, inform customers about an upcoming sale, and more. (As long as you comply with the WhatsApp chatbot guidelines mentioned earlier.)
You can also use the WhatsApp marketing bot to automate and send out transactional messages such as payment reminders, receipts/invoices, shipping details, and delivery updates.
Benefits of Using WhatsApp Marketing Chatbots
The beauty of using WhatsApp bots in marketing is that it uses automation to help you stay in touch with your customers and lead them in the direction they need to go.
This, in turn, helps with customer segmentation and better guidance down the purchase funnel.
For instance, an incoming query on product pricing can prompt the WhatsApp marketing bot to send out a follow-up message to encourage purchase.
By automating your marketing reminders, you can also create more touchpoints with your customers with minimal effort. This keeps you, as a brand, at the top of their minds, and also acts as a nudge for them to continue down the buyer’s journey.
Keep in mind that Facebook is also working on improving WhatsApp’s marketing features, which will include allowing in-app purchases. Being able to pay right in the app itself makes the transaction a whole lot easier and encourages sales.
The bi-directional nature of WhatsApp, a messaging app, also means that user engagement tends to be higher than via other marketing platforms such as email or social media. WhatsApp’s recent introduction of interactive message templates also serves to increase communication with customers.
How To Build WhatsApp Bot?
How to get a WhatsApp chatbot up and running will depend on whether you’re using the free WhatsApp Business app or the WhatsApp Business API.
The app, while free and rather easy to configure, has its limitations. Building a WhatsApp bot with the business API opens up plenty more customer service, sales, and marketing opportunities, and not to mention the possibility to customize your bots.
It will, however, require a certain amount of coding knowledge. And this may be challenging to maneuver if you don’t have an in-house developer.
At WATI, we allow you to build a no-code WhatsApp chatbot that you can customize according to your messaging and business needs in under ten minutes.
Need help getting set up? Get in touch with our team today.
WATI is owned by Clare.AI, a digital and innovative startup that brings together cutting-edge tools powered by machine learning and artificial intelligence to provide top-notch customer communication solutions. The company is proudly trusted by a host of Fortune 500 companies.
How do I create a free chatbot on WhatsApp?
You can integrate chatbot with your WhatsApp Business Number only if you have a WhatsApp Business API approved number.
What is WhatsApp chat bot?
WhatsApp bots are used for customer support, sales and marketing automation purposes.