The social media giant is getting serious about monetizing Whatsapp, after it reported sluggish earnings growth last Wednesday.
Whatsapp in itself, has rolled out three new way for customer to connect quickly with businesses: a shortcut button to immediately start a conversations, the ability to have businesses send you information like a boarding pass, and real-time support –according to an announcement by the company.
Facebook now, will also display the ads of businesses that link out to Whatsapp. This allows for businesses to purchase ads that lead people directly to an already loaded chat with the business on Whatsapp , and start conversing from there. Businesses can also respond to the customers for free if they answer within 24 hours. Facebook however, will charge them for any response after 24 hours – as another way to cash in on its many apps.
Business communications on Messenger haven’t had the success that Facebook had hoped – and the the company had to roll out additional chat extensions to compensate. The message function on Whatsapp is nearly identical to the one on Facebook—where one can go to a business’ page and send a message.
The Whatsapp blog pose indicated that it will be up to the business on whether it wants to offer real-time support. It opened up its platform to users last September. Since them, it has kept the number of businesses that use the app undisclosed.
Whatsapp did state though, that the new messaging tools have been tested with around 90 businesses that include: Uber, Singapore Airlines and Wish.