Introduction to WhatsApp for sales

Miodrag Magyar
November 13, 2022
Introduction to WhatsApp for sales

Table of contents



No business can function without a digital strategy in today’s world. Brands and consumers communicate daily with ease via email and messaging apps. The quality of these interactions determines how successful a business is in converting prospects into customers.

In recent years, WhatsApp gained popularity, incomparable to any other communication platform. In fact, it’s the most popular messaging app in the world. Over two billion people worldwide are on WhatsApp, and more than 50 million brands use the business version of the app to build and maintain relationships with their customers. In this article, we’ll talk about how to use WhatsApp to boost your sales.

The benefits of utilizing WhatsApp for sales

WhatsApp Business is a valuable and powerful tool for high-quality conversations that can enhance customer service and improve sales numbers. So, what makes WhatsApp so effective?

Improved experience

The main benefit of using WhatsApp is that it helps improve customer experience. Businesses understand that competition is not about products or services but experiences. People feel confident to message a brand and expect an instant response. With WhatsApp integrated into their marketing and sales strategy, businesses can answer customers’ needs in real-time, leading to better conversion and retention.

Human factor

The conversational sales made possible with WhatsApp are another big one. Any salesperson knows that people don’t buy products - they buy emotions. 

People don’t buy products; they buy emotions. Often, their buying decisions are based on the treatment they get from the brands. With WhatsApp, the sales process is conversational, and customers feel cared for by the business.

When a business can reach that level of customer satisfaction, it can expect improved loyalty and increased sales.

Tools and features

It’s not just another messaging app. WhatsApp Business comes with an arsenal of tools and features specifically designed to help businesses communicate better with their customers. 

Business Profile

A Business profile will help your customers easily find crucial information about your business, such as your business name, description, address, business hours, and category.

Product Catalog

With a Product catalog integrated into your WhatsApp Business account, customers can effortlessly browse and share a product or service with their friends, further increasing your brand awareness. When a customer is interested in a product you sell, you can send them a product message. That way, you don’t need to transfer them to your website but keep the conversation live.

Broadcasts

WhatsApp Business allows you to broadcast messages to multiple contacts. This is a crucial tool, as WhatsApp doesn’t allow ads on its platform. 

The lack of ads isn’t a drawback. With digital marketing, even with advanced targeting, you still shoot in the dark. Internet users are bombarded with ads on every browser, page, and app. One day you search for fast food joints near you, and for days afterward, all you see are burger ads until you’re so fed up that you become a vegetarian.

With the WhatsApp Broadcast feature, you only promote your products to people who are genuinely interested in what you offer. They sign up (opt-in) to get updates and news from your brand.

Automation

Basic automation, like quick replies and welcome messages, can increase customer engagement. At the same time, if you use WhatsApp Business Platform/API, more advanced solutions like WhatsApp bots can attend to customers outside office hours and handle multiple conversations simultaneously, so no sale is lost.

You can automate pre-programmed replies sent to incoming messages from customers on WhatsApp, set rules, assign chats to teammates based on their message content, and more.

Analytics

Success in sales depends on metrics and statistics. Understanding which approach works best, what messages trigger the recipient’s interest, and how successful your agents are in closing the deal will help you improve your sales. The WhatsApp Business app gives you basic statistics, such as:

  • The number of messaging conversations and;
  • How many messages were sent, delivered, and opened?

With WhatsApp Business Platform/API, you can have complete insight into metrics such as the following:

  • Opened conversations
  • Closed conversations
  • Resolution time
  • Average first response time
  • Conversations per agent
  • Number of messages before closing (per agent)

Where to start?

You’d first have to create a WhatsApp Business Account to use the messaging app for sales. There are two types of WhatsApp Business Accounts - WhatsApp Business app and WhatsApp Business Platform/API

The WhatsApp Business app is designed for micro businesses that are new to the world of WhatsApp sales. The app is ideal if you want to feel the pulse of your customer base and start growing your business via WhatsApp.

However, the features that come with the app are very basic. For example, the broadcast feature is limited to only 256 contacts per list. If you have more than 256 customers who opted-in to receive your messages, you’d have to create more than one list. Plus, only customers with your number saved in their phone’s address books will receive your messages. 

Furthermore, there are no analytics, no collaboration between agents in a shared inbox, no integrations, and no programmable features such as what’s possible with the WhatsApp Business Platform/API.

If you’re considering whether the WhatsApp Business app or the WhatsApp Business Platform is more suitable for your business, read our article “Pros and Cons of using the WhatsApp Business App.”

Sales strategies you can apply with WhatsApp Business API

In what part of the sales process will WhatsApp be most effective? There are seven steps in a sales process:

  1. Prospecting
  2. Preparation
  3. Approach
  4. Presentation
  5. Handling objections
  6. Closing
  7. Follow-up

At any stage of the sales process, WhatsApp can be a powerful tool at any stage of the sales process, although it will be more suitable for some stages than others.

While the “Prospecting stage” isn’t the best one to rely on WhatsApp for, as “cold calling” is against WhatsApp’s Business messaging policy, there’s no reason not to use it to connect with cold nurture leads who opted-in to being contacted on WhatsApp.

Subscribe to WhatsApp Business Platform/API and connect it to a customer communication platform

If you have already tried the WhatsApp Business app and are ready to level up, it’s time to subscribe to WhatsApp Business Platform/API. The API is not freely available. You’d need to subscribe to one of the Business Solution Providers (BSP) to use it. Since it doesn’t have a user interface, you need to create it yourself or connect it to a customer communication platform like Rasayel. From there, you can unlock all the advanced features available on WhatsApp:

  • Team inbox
  • Unlimited broadcast lists
  • Complex automation
  • Chatbots
  • Automation
  • Analytics, and more.

Incentivize opt-ins to increase your audience

Use your social media to increase your WhatsApp audience. Freebies and exclusive discounts are always a good way to encourage people to opt-in to receive your WhatsApp messages. For example, run a campaign on Facebook and Instagram and ask your followers to opt-in by promising them a special discount coupon for every new customer who joins your contact list.

Additionally, you can create a campaign to advertise your availability on WhatsApp and offer every available shortcut for customers to message you:

Personalize communication with message templates

A WhatsApp template is a customizable message you create to initiate a conversation with your customers. Templates have placeholders and variables you can fill in with individual customer data. 

For example, a promotional message can be customized for the name of each customer and the product they abandoned in the shopping cart on your online store. You can send them a notification that looks like this:

Hi {{1}}, we noticed you have an abandoned cart at our store. Are you still interested in getting your {{2}}? Buy it now with a 15% discount. Click here to claim the discount. Have a lovely day!

Message templates can have interactive features. You can integrate different options for user response. For example, your customer can choose an answer from a list of suggested answers, click a button to visit a landing page or website, view single or multiple products from your catalog, add products to a shopping cart, and more.

If you want to learn more about Message templates, read our other posts: 

Have message templates ready for each phase of the sales process

Message templates need to be approved by Facebook before you send them out to your customers. It takes between a few minutes and 24 hours to get the approval, and that’s only if your template aligns with the WhatsApp requirements. If you need more information on this topic, read our article “How to Make Sure WhatsApp Approves Your Message Templates?

The sales process will require more than one message template to complete the cycle. Develop your entire communication and define all your templates in advance so that everything runs smoothly throughout your campaign.

Use promotional broadcasts and newsletters to increase sales

With the WhatsApp Broadcast feature, you can send messages to an unlimited number of your opted-in customers. These bulk messages can be anything from promotions on your new products to newsletters and coupons. 

Put yourself in your customers’ shoes and think about what they want to hear from your business. This will help you increase customer engagement, loyalty, and, ultimately, sales. Businesses use promotional broadcasts and newsletters, such as:

  • Personalized special offers for holidays, birthdays, and occasions like Black Friday
  • A new product or service announcement
  • Exclusive discounts
  • Discount coupons and codes
  • Abandoned shopping cart follow-ups
  • Payment and delivery updates
  • Upselling messages

Add a WhatsApp chat widget to your Shopify store or website

A chat widget is a small window that appears on a website allowing visitors to talk to your customer service reps or an AI-powered chatbot. Chat widgets are usually located in the lower right corner of a website. If you need a step-by-step guide on how to set one up, we will be publishing a blog post on this soon!

Integrate Rasayel with your sales CRM 

Customer Relationship Management tools are essential for growing and cultivating a customer base. By integrating your CRM with Rasayel, you can combine the data each system collects and manage it in a centralized platform. Integration means no lead or customer is ever left behind. 

More tips for killer sales

Make sure your sales team is aware of your marketing campaign

How does your marketing connect with your sales team? Let’s say the marketing team is running a newsletter campaign on WhatsApp. Is your sales team ready to receive any leads that respond to these newsletters? What is their next course of action?

Have your documents ready to send to customers over WhatsApp

WhatsApp has certain file limits. The maximum file size allowed for all media sent or forwarded through WhatsApp is 64 MB. To send a larger file, you can upload it outside of WhatsApp and use the attach media feature in a chat to send it to your customers.

Prepare sales decks or brochures that you can send

Create a sales deck to help your team guide the audience through their sales presentation. A well-prepared sales deck will enhance your sales team’s pitches by acting as a touchstone. They will enable them to provide more personalized information to the prospects and customers they’re presenting to.

Keep track of the people in your sales pipeline

If you run your customer conversations in Rasayel, you can create tags for every sales pipeline stage. Next, you can create specific filters for the different stages in the sales process, and when you change the tag, it will shift that customer to a new view in Rasayel. Why is this important? 

Every customer in a different stage in the sales pipeline needs a different approach, a different type of messaging, and specific documents. By applying tags and filters, you can clearly see where each of your customers is standing and customize your messages for the best results.

Conclusion

Staying in touch with your customers is crucial for building and maintaining customer relationships. No other communication tool has proven to be as effective in managing customer relationships as WhatsApp. Today, one can’t imagine the world of sales without powerful strategies for increasing revenue, executed with the help of the world’s most popular app.

In this article, I tried to give you a taste of what WhatsApp can do for your sales, but I barely scratched the surface of WhatsApp’s full potential. In the days ahead, I will write more articles to provide you with more ideas, specific strategies, and use cases you can apply to your business, so keep checking our blog.

Learn more

If you’d like to learn more about how WhatsApp can help you grow your business, please reach out to us on WhatsApp at +13024070488.

We also offer a free consultation session where we review your use case, answer any questions about WhatsApp, and help you build a strategy to make the best out of the platform. Book a call with us here. We’d love to speak with you:

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