Next time you have to chat to your insurance broker or hair salon via WhatsApp their profiles will most probably pop up as a ‘ WhatsApp Business Account’. Yup, they just made WhatsApp more professional.
The instant messaging company has launched WhatsApp Business, a service aimed at verifying business accounts and comes with a range of features aimed at helping everyone do business better. Some of the features include dedicated business profiles for details like email addresses, business descriptions, store addresses, and websites; smart messaging tools like greetings, quick replies, and away messages; and metrics for how many messages were sent, delivered, and read.
Business accounts will be clearly listed as such, just make sure not to send dodgy pics to the clearly marked accounts… (like Margaret). WhatsApp says over time businesses that have confirmed their account phone number matches their business one will receive a confirmation badge on their profile. Almost like WhatsApp adding green verification badges to selected business accounts last year in the standard app.
Have a business number and a personal one? The cool thing is, you will be able to load both the standard WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business on one device, each with a different number. If you like your WhatsApp on the desktop (like us), you will be able to add your business account on there too.
The app has rolled out in Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, the UK, and the US, but the company mentioned that a global rollout is scheduled for the coming weeks. It is also only available on Android devices at the moment with nothing confirmed for iOS yet.
Currently all users can continue to use the standard app. They will still have full control over the messages they receive and features like blocking numbers and reporting spam. If you do not want a business account, you don’t have to have one. Just continue sending obscure or humorous pics to each other… as you were.