WhatsApp has launched a new developer tool, WhatsApp Cloud API, to help all businesses integrate WhatsApp business into their backend.
The WhatsApp Business API has been around for a while. Launched in 2018, it was WhatsApp’s first revenue-generating product, allowing pre-approved businesses to respond to client messages.
An API is an application programming interface that allows different computer servers to speak to one another. It’s how you can use different applications on Slack, or how you can add Zoom meetings to your Google Calendar.
WhatsApp Business API allows verified businesses to integrate WhatsApp with their websites so clients can order, raise inquiries, or just contact businesses using WhatsApp.
It’s also different from the WhatsApp Business app, which can only be used by 1 user. The WhatsApp Business API can be used by several users in a business.
Before last week, businesses that wanted access to WhatsApp’s Business API would have to apply for it through one of WhatsApp’s partners, and the thorough process could take anywhere from days to weeks.
Last week, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the launch of WhatsApp Cloud API, a free version of the Business API that is now available to all businesses, big and small.
The CEO also announced new Premium features coming to the WhatsApp Business app. This includes the ability to manage chats across 10 devices, and customisable click-to-chat links.
This is great news for all small businesses. With either the WhatsApp Cloud API or the WhatsApp Business App, they can now connect with clients on apps almost everyone already uses.