WhatsApp

Connecting a WhatsApp Business API to chat with customers over WhatsApp.

WhatsApp is a cross-platform messaging and Voice over IP service owned by Facebook. As of February 2019, WhatsApp has over 1.5 billion active users in over 180 countries.

The WhatsApp Logo

WhatsApp does not allow companies to connect directly to their API or create business accounts on their own. To create a WhatsApp Business API account you'll need to apply through a WhatsApp Partner.

Once a WhatsApp Partner has approved and provisioned your WhatsApp Business API account with a phone number you may connect it to the respond.io platform and manage WhatsApp messages just like any other channel.

WhatsApp Providers

We are integrated with the following WhatsApp Channel Providers.

Provider

Use Case

Pricing Model

Billing Cycle

Min Monthly Charge

Session^ Messages Included

API Account Application

360Dialog

Production

Per Month

Monthly

$15

Unlimited

Sign Up

Twilio

Production

Per Message

Monthly

< $1

None

Sign Up

MessageBird

Production

Message Bundle

Annually

$50

15,000*

Sign Up

Vonage

Production

Active Users

Enterprise

Enterprise

N/A

Sign Up

Chat API

Testing Only

Per Month

Monthly

$39

N/A

Sign Up

^ WhatsApp API has a Session Messaging Window of 24 hrs. Companies must reply to customers within 24 hrs to send a Session Message. Otherwise, a Template Message must be used.

*MessageBirds cheapest plan includes 15,000 Session Messages, the subscription is billed annually.

Messaging Window

WhatsApp API has a messaging window or 24 hours which you are allowed to reply to customers with any content. After 24 hours, you will need to send a Template Message in order to send a reply to the customer.

The 24 hours messaging window is applicable to the following providers :

Learn more on WhatsApp Message Templates

ChatAPI is not an official WhatsApp API partner and therefore, we only recommend it as a temporary solution until your WhatsApp Business API account is approved. Any further usage will risk your WhatsApp number being banned.

WhatsApp Interactive Message

Due to the partners' limitation, WhatsApp Interactive Message is only supported by 360dialog as of now.

In respond.io, WhatsApp Interactive Message is used when sending a multiple choice question from a survey or quick replies using Dialogflow. When the question or message has fewer or equals to 3 options, WhatsApp Quick Replies will be used to display the options.

Otherwise, WhatsApp List Messages will be used to display the options not exceeding the maximum limit of 10.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to get WhatsApp Business with multiple users?

You need to connect a WhatsApp Business API account to respond.io. WhatsApp Business is two products: 📱 WhatsApp Business App - one device, one user ⚙️ WhatsApp Business API - for companies with teams

If you want to learn about the difference between these accounts, you can check our video.

How much does a WhatsApp Business API account cost?

The price you pay for WhatsApp Business API via a WhatsApp Partner has two components:

  • The fee charged by WhatsApp

  • The fee charged by the WhatsApp Partner

Different WhatsApp Partners have different pricing models:

  • Set-up fee

  • Monthly fee

  • Messaging fee

You can compare the prices between WhatsApp Partners here.

Are there any restrictions to the type of Messages that I can send to my Contacts?

WhatsApp Business API has 2 types of messages:

  • Session Messages: Whenever a contact sends an incoming message to your number, a timer is set. You have 24 hours to send outgoing messages to that user without any restrictions.

  • Template Messages: After the 24 hours of the session message is finished, you can only send a pre-approved template by WhatsApp to encourage your contact to resume the conversation and you can keep sending session messages. Advertising, marketing, or promotional messages are not permitted as Template Messages. For a more comprehensive breakdown, please refer to their Message Templates Guidelines.

Can I use WhatsApp Groups with WhatsApp API?

Group Messages are not supported by WhatsApp Business API. Facebook has deprecated the development of this feature.

Can I receive WhatsApp Calls with WhatsApp API?

WhatsApp calls are not supported by WhatsApp Business API.