August 24, 2022 10 min read

WhatsApp Business API: all you need to know in 2022

Written byPim de Vos

In 2018, the WhatsApp Business app was launched. The app could only be used by one person at the same time and has limited automation options. That’s why the app was only useful for small businesses.

For mid to large-sized businesses, WhatsApp introduced the WhatsApp Business API. With the API, businesses can manage high volumes of WhatsApp messages, work together with a team, and automate time-consuming workflows.

In this article, we’ll discuss the benefits of the WhatsApp Business API, how to use the right WhatsApp Business Solution Provider, which costs you can expect, and how to get started.

Benefits of the WhatsApp Business API

The WhatsApp Business API enables businesses to manage and answer WhatsApp messages with multiple users.

With the API, you are equipped with a wide variety of features that aren’t available in the app, such as:

  • Notifications (order confirmations, payment requests, appointment reminders, etc.)
  • Automation (auto-replies, quick replies, chatbots, rules)
  • Statistics (response time, resolution time, customer satisfaction)
  • Bulk messages
  • E-commerce integrations with Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento, and Lightspeed
  • The possibility to add WhatsApp to your website as a live chat

One of the biggest benefits of the API is that you can work together with your colleague on answering a question. You can simply @tag each other within a thread, without the customer noticing it.

Two colleagues collaborating on answering a customer question via the WhatsApp Business API.

The 24-hour limit of the WhatsApp Business API

To prevent spam and make sure businesses reply fast to customers, WhatsApp came up with a 24-hour window. This means businesses have 24 hours to reply to messages to customers.

After those 24 hours, businesses can only send a message with a WhatsApp Business template message. Template messages can be sent to either start a new conversation or reply to a customer after the 24-hour window. You can write these templates yourself, but they first have to be approved by WhatsApp before you can send them. For this, they have to fit WhatsApp’s policies.

You can personalize template messages with ‘dynamic fields’, as you can see in the image below.

An example of a WhatsApp Business message template

You can easily request a template via Trengo. But first, you’ll need to become a customer and use the WhatsApp Business API.

Je kunt via Trengo gemakkelijk een template aanvragen. Hiervoor moet je uiteraard eerst klant zijn en gebruik maken van de WhatsApp Business API.

📚 Read more: All you need to know about WhatsApp Template messages

Choosing the right WhatsApp Business Solution Provider

Using the WhatsApp Business API is a bit more complex than using the regular app. That’s because the API doesn’t come with an interface and can only be accessed via a customer engagement platform like Trengo.

Not every platform can connect to the API. For this, they need to be an official WhatsApp Business Solution Provider (BSP). There are few BSPs worldwide and WhatsApp has high standards of platforms that sign up to become one.

Trengo is an official WhatsApp Business Solution Provider. Source: Trengo.

When picking a BSP, it’s advised to take a look at the specific features the platform has. Just because a platform is a BSP, does not mean they offer all the features that the API is capable of.

Trengo offers all the benefits mentioned earlier in this blog. You get a complete WhatsApp API solution that works for both your customer service, sales, and marketing team. You can start a WhatsApp API account via Trengo and get started within 10 minutes.

WhatsApp Business API costs: what you can expect

To calculate the WhatsApp Business costs for your situation, you need to take the following costs into consideration:

  • Setup costs
  • Monthly costs
  • Costs per conversation

The costs always differ per platform.

Setup costs

A couple of BSPs ask for a one-time fee to set up your WhatsApp Business API account. With some BSPs, this number can go up to €1000 (!). Even though this process doesn’t take that much effort for either party.

At Trengo, you pay no setup costs.

Monthly costs

The monthly costs can differ a lot per BSP. Many providers don’t communicate their pricing at all. And others are not an official BSP and offer the API via a third party. This way, you may face unexpected costs. That’s why it’s advised to first research the best solution for your business.

Trengo offers a complete WhatsApp Business API solution for businesses. Source: Trengo

Besides just looking at the costs, it’s also important to research the features every platform offers. For instance: at Userlike, you can build a WhatsApp chatbot with a subscription of €720 per month. At Trengo, you can build a chatbot with a subscription starting at €25 a month.

Costs per conversation

All WhatsApp Business API users pay a fixed price per conversation. A conversation initiated by a customer comes with a different price than a conversation started by a business.

The first 1000 conversations per month are free for all WhatsApp Business API users. The costs per conversation differ per country. In The Netherlands, the costs are

📚 Read more: All you need to know about WhatsApp Business pricing

How to start using the WhatsApp Business API

When choosing Trengo as your WhatsApp Business Solution Provider, the process of getting started with the API goes as follows.

  1. Start a 14-day free trial at Trengo.
  2. Go to settings → WhatsApp Business.
  3. Click “Connect your number”.
  4. An overview with information now pops up. Read everything carefully.
  1. Click ‘Get started’.
  2. Confirm that you have a Facebook Business account. Don’t have a Facebook Business account? Create one first.
  3. Now, you’ll get to see an overview that gives you information on your phone number. Read this carefully.
  1. Confirm that you have a number that meets the requirements. If you don’t contact Trengo’s customer service via [email protected].
  2. Connect your Facebook account and create a WhatsApp Business account. Make sure you have the following information ready:
  • The name of your company
  • The address of your business
  1. Click ‘Continue with Facebook’ to log in.
  2. The name of your account and your phone number are automatically filled in. Check if this information is correct before you continue.
  3. Everything correct? Click ‘Next’ to continue.

Whoop! 🎉 You have successfully activated your number on the WhatsApp Business API.

  1. Go to https://business.facebook.com/ and log in with your Facebook account.
  2. Navigate to ‘Security center’ and click ‘Start Verification’. If you don’t see this button, your account may have already been verified.

Start a free trial at Trengo

Are you ready to help customers via the world’s most popular messaging app? WhatsApp is currently being used by more than 2 billion people worldwide. Besides talking to friends and family, consumers are now using it to get in touch with business too.

With Trengo, you can use all the functionalities that enable you to offer a modern customer experience on WhatsApp. You can be live with the WhatsApp API in ten minutes. And if you need some help getting set up, our team is always ready to help.

Start a 14-day free Trengo trial

Written by Pim de Vos

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