How to Set up WhatsApp Business Chatbot?

Written By Axel Nash |

An excellent design combined with end-to-end encryption and robust service makes WhatsApp the most popular messaging app. WhatsApp's monthly active users are reaching a whopping 2 billion people around the globe, allowing you to stay connected with friends and work in the pandemic state. WhatsApp provides a secure, swift, and highly intuitive user experience to its users that makes it more preferred among the masses. Wouldn't it be great if you're able to utilize this fast and intuitive platform for your business to help your teams engage and support customers across the world? WhatsApp business chatbots provide the functionality for every business on earth to use this massive platform for their business growth.

Part 1: What is a WhatsApp chatbot? What are the features?

WhatsApp business boasts a massive user base of over 3 million, introduced chatbots to provide businesses with the very component to communicate with customers effectively. WhatsApp business chatbot software in simple terms is an Artificial intelligence-powered chatbot that runs on the WhatsApp platform and works on a predefined set of rules—designed to have a conversation with humans over the chat seamlessly.

These conversational agents are configured to answer customers' queries instantly on the business's behalf. The chatbot software mimics a spoken or written human interaction to simulate an interaction or conversation with a real person. WhatsApp bot was designed to offer a streamlined and quick way of interacting with business customers and managing their problems in real-time.

The service facilitates businesses in providing their customers with the needed support on a platform they use frequently. This not only helps a company engage with its customers but also develops a long-lasting relationship with your customers and augments the customer experience while allowing a business to retain its customers in the long run.

Part 2: How to set up a WhatsApp business chatbot with WhatsApp Business API?

Developing a chatbot with a WhatsApp business is easy and only requires a plan and aims to build a sophisticated bot as it is flexible in customization. You'll need approval from WhatsApp for building a recognized WhatsApp and not being blocked by the company. WhatsApp says its API is only available to 'medium and large businesses,' but it isn't clear on what sort of businesses it considers as medium or large. The approval process can take some time, but once you get authorization, you're already equipped with a potential business promoter tool.

Benefits

  • Assist customers on their preferred platform when they are available.
  • Respond to customer queries and problems right away.
  • Lead customers down the sales funnel by allowing them to take quick actions.
  • Build trust and brand loyalty with customers.
  • Secure end-to-end communication made more comfortable and reachable.

With the WhatsApp chatbot, you get full control of your communication with customers across the board. The platform ensures a certain level of safety of the users' data and space and filters spam throughout its system. How can you have a WhatsApp business chatbot for your business? Let us dive right into the steps to know the details.

Step 1: Applying for WhatsApp Business API

The initial step for creating a WhatsApp bot for your business is to apply for the WhatsApp Business API. You can apply either as a client or a solution provider. You'll be required to fill out a form with all your information like the name of the business, website address, location, and company representative details. You have the privilege of applying either to WhatsApp directly or via its dedicated solution providers. WhatsApp will review your application, and if approved by the platform, you will be authorized to operate the chatbot.

Step 2: Selecting a chatbot platform

You'll need to select a chatbot platform that will help you set up and integrate the chatbot with your WhatsApp Business API. There are several bot platforms in the market you can choose from depending on your priority and service model. Usually, a chatbot platform offers a list of services like

  • 24*7 customer service availability
  • streamlined bot-to-human handover for complex queries dealing
  • multiple language support
  • conversion analytics

Step 3: Determining a suitable conversation flow

As the chatbot service from WhatsApp is in the initial stages and usage of AI is limited, you'll need to define an appropriate and fitting dialogue flow for your business. This conversation flow will define what your customer gets when they interact with the bot. Here the business needs to consider the kind of questions their customers will most likely have and how the bot will respond to questions it doesn't have in its library. This conversation flow will be used by your chatbot service provider to design a suitable flow.

Step 4: Test WhatsApp chatbot

The WhatsApp chatbot is intended to enhance the customer experience and offer a swift flow of information about the business and general problems the customers can encounter. To achieve the goal and build an effective WhatsApp bot, you need to test it by asking similar questions or random questions and see how the bot responds to them. This way, you will be able to identify the problems and fix them before going into the market.

WhatsApp chatbot example

Among the best WhatsApp chatbots, the most common thing is their primary focus on customer service. With a strict screening and exclusion of promotional bots, WhatsApp makes sure that your users never feel spammed or being sold out, and organizations leverage the service to focus on improving customer experience with their brand.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Chatbot

KLM Airlines has deployed a WhatsApp message bot to augment its customer service and support. It can be a useful resource for customers to get the flight and booking information. The bot can be utilized by KLM Airlines to notify users of flight delays or connect users with human agents to resolve their issues.

Business Profile

WhatsApp business accounts help brands gain a user's loyalty and offer a familiar face and identity to the company. It also verifies your identity by having a "Verified" badge next to your company name.

Greeting messages

WhatsApp for business allows a business to set up a greeting message that the users will receive when they start a dialog with your company. This instant message can show your welcoming gesture and engage potential customers without any delay.

Quick replies

Users get a swift reply to several predefined questions such as information, instructions, and any other frequently asked company info.

Part 3: 2 WhatsApp business chatbot you can try

1. Twilio

Twilio Sandbox for WhatsApp allows you to prototype with WhatsApp instantly without waiting for approval from WhatsApp.

Features:

  • Using simple REST API, send and receive messages on WhatsApp.
  • Twilio's programmable SMS API enables you to send WhatsApp messages with utmost trust and reliability.
  • Programming helper libraries available in Node, PHP, Python, Ruby, and Java.
  • By using TwiML on your server, Functions, TwiMLBins, and even Studio to create flows for responding to incoming messages.
  • Real-time status checks with webhooks to see if your messages were delivered or opened.
  • You can send video, audio, images, and pdf files by using Twilio WhatsApp, just like MMS.

WhatsApp necessitates that your application implements explicit user opt-ins to deliver messages over the platform. Twilio makes it very simple and easy for you to use the WhatsApp Business API and build a chatbot for effective customer communications.

2. Vonage

Vonage is another popular WhatsApp Business chatbot service provider that allows you to elevate your customer experience with the WhatsApp Business API. The bot service enables you to send notifications, customer information, and essential service messages you need on WhatsApp. The Vonage APIs conceal the underlying complexity of hosting and scaling WhatsApp software to enable you to focus more on elevating the customer experience.

Features

  • Easy setup: Your business doesn't have to worry about managing, hosting, scaling, or software updates.
  • Integration: Integrate WhatsApp Business with several other applications like Salesforce Service Cloud.
  • Chat Security: With WhatsApp, end-to-end encryption Vonage makes your sensitive information secure.
  • Swift delivery: Highly optimized delivery rates with failover capabilities and real-time insights.
  • Rich media: Your business can utilize the facility to enrich messages with images, video, audio, and other file types.

Organizations today understand the significance of customer support and conversational marketing. Chatbots are offering very needed customer convenience and enable the enterprises to nurture leads, drive brand recognition, and build lasting customer loyalty.

WhatsApp chatbots permit brands to streamline their business operations with real-time service to incoming queries, giving an edge to your business over your competitors.

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Axel Nash

staff Editor

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