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It is also entirely possible that if the affordability of the WhatsApp Business app is suitable, then it can act as a very viable alternative to call centre services.

Following up on its announcement a year ago, WhatsApp has started opening up its business API to help people and businesses communicate with each other.

Plus, users may prefer WhatsApp over other modes of communicating with companies, like waiting on the phone to be connected to a sales rep, sending an email, or filling out a support request form on their site that doesn't accommodate certain kinds of questions or requests.

FACEBOOK IS LOOKING to cash in on WhatsApp by charging sloppy businesses to send messages to customers. "It offers programmable messaging APIs (application programming interface) and managed services that enterprises can use to connect with customers over WhatsApp and to orchestrate rich conversational messaging experiences", Gupshup said in a statement.

Businesses will be able to do things like provide real-time customer service and send information like boarding passes or shipping confirmations, WhatsApp wrote in a blog post.

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WhatsApp says it will work directly with businesses to keep bringing more of them to the platform over time. The coming of WhatsApp Business, however, will change things for the IM company as finally, the company will start generating revenue, thus paying off Facebook for its $19 billion buy-out which happened in 2014.

"When a person taps on an Ad that clicks to WhatsApp, they will be transferred to a pre-filled WhatsApp chat where they can message your business quickly", writes Facebook.

While only customers can initiate the conversations, businesses will be able to reply to their messages and customer service enquiries. You will be charged only if you send a message after 24 hours of the last message sent by the customer.

The new features will also enable business to buy advertisements on Facebook's News Feed that allow users to message them via WhatsApp.

Along with the new WhatsApp Business API, Facebook will soon be offering ads via its Ads Manager that open a WhatsApp chat.


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