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WhatsApp Cloud API

Connecting a WhatsApp Cloud API account to chat with customers over WhatsApp.
To connect WhatsApp Cloud API, a Facebook app with Whatsapp Product enabled is required. Read this guide on how to set up your Facebook app.
Facebook announced the release of WhatsApp Cloud API on 20th May, and it’s available to any business of any size, big and small to communicate with customers using the official WhatsApp API.
This channel has a limited 24-hour messaging window due to WhatsApp regulations. Find out more here!

Connecting WhatsApp Cloud API

To chat with your customers over WhatsApp Cloud API, connect a WhatsApp Business Profile and Facebook Business account.
Facebook App and Facebook Business Account are required and you must be the admin of both to connect.
Step 1: Navigate to Channel Settings From Settings Module, navigate to the menu item, Channels.
Step 2: Add Channel Press Add Channel and choose WhatsApp. The Connecting WhatsApp Cloud API dialog should open up.
Step 3: Connect with Facebook Press the Connect With Facebook button.
Step 4: Sign in with a Facebook Account Sign in using the Facebook account that has admin access to the Facebook App and Facebook Business Account.
Step 5: Select the WhatsApp Number You will be provided options on which number together with the WABA name you would like to connect. Select the number
Step 6: Add the Callback URL Head back to the WhatsApp section in Facebook Developer App. Navigate to the Configuration subsection and set up the Callback URL. Add the generated Callback URL and verify token from respond.io to the corresponding fields at the webhook dialog.
Step 7: Verify and Save changes At Facebook App, verify and save changes to the app.
Step 8: Subscribe to webhook event At your Facebook App, select webhooks product and select WhatsApp Business Account in the dropdown list. Click on subscribe messages event.
Step 9: Complete the setup at respond.io Press DONE to complete the setup
Once you have completed the setup, any messages sent to your WhatsApp number will now be received in your Space.

Channel Configuration

WhatsApp Cloud API channel can be configured with a unique channel name.
Step 1: Navigate to Channel Settings From Settings Module, navigate to the menu item, Channels
Step 2: Locate the WhatsApp Cloud API channel Once you have located the WhatsApp Cloud API channel, press Configure
Step 3: Make the necessary configuration You can configure the following:
  • Channel Name - Name used internally to identify the account
Step 4: Update the configuration Press Done to update the channel configuration

Managing WhatsApp Business API Profile

If there is a need to make a change or check your WhatsApp Business API Profile, it can be done in the respond.io platform.
Step 1: Navigate to Channel Settings From Settings Module, navigate to the menu item, Channels
Step 2: Locate the WhatsApp Cloud API channel Once you have located the WhatsApp Cloud API channel, press Profile
Step 3: Sync Profile If the profile hasn't been synced, press Sync Profile to obtain the latest WhatsApp Business Profile information from WhatsApp
Step 4: Make necessary changes You may edit the information as needed.
Fields
Description
Profile Photo
Image shown as the profile picture of the WhatsApp Business Account
An image size of 640x640 is recommended.
Address
Address of the business. Maximum of 256 characters.
Description
Description of the business. Maximum of 512 characters.
Email
Email address (in valid email format) to contact the business. Maximum of 128 characters.
Vertical
Industry of the business. Must be one of these accepted values:
  • Automotive
  • Beauty, Spa and Salon
  • Clothing and Apparel
  • Education
  • Entertainment
  • Event Planning and Service
  • Finance and Banking
  • Food and Grocery
  • Public Service
  • Hotel and Lodging
  • Medical and Health
  • Non-profit
  • Professional Services
  • Shopping and Retail
  • Travel and Transportation
  • Restaurant
  • Other
The business vertical cannot be set back to an empty value after it is created.
Website
URLs (including http:// or https://) associated with the business (e.g., website, Facebook Page, Instagram). Maximum of 2 websites with a maximum of 256 characters each.
Step 5: Save changes Review the information and press SAVE when it is ready.

Managing WhatsApp Message Templates

Before sending a Template Message to a contact at respond.io platform, please ensure that the template message is approved

Syncing Message Templates

Step 1: Navigate to Channel Settings From Settings Module, navigate to the menu item, Channels
Step 2: Locate the WhatsApp Cloud API channel Once you have located the WhatsApp Cloud API channel, press Templates
Step 3: Sync Templates Press Sync Templates to begin the syncing process.
Step 4: Syncing Completed When the synchronisation has completed, the message templates will be listed with their corresponding status and last synced date time will be updated. Rejection reason will be displayed underneath the rejected message template.
Status
Description
Submitted
The message template is submitted and pending for approval.
Approved
The message template is approved and can be sent to contacts.
Rejected
The message template is rejected and cannot be used.
You may use the search and filter at the top right corner of listing to find your templates easier!

Submitting Message Template

Step 1: Navigate to Channel Settings From Settings Module, navigate to the menu item, Channels
Step 2: Locate the WhatsApp Cloud API channel Once you have located the WhatsApp Cloud API channel, press Templates
Step 3: Submit Template Press Submit Template to submit a Message Template for approval
Step 4: Fill in the required information Fill in the information needed to create a new template
Field
Description
Name
Name can only contain lowercase alphanumeric characters and underscores ( _ )
Category
The category of which the message template belongs to.
Language
The language that the template is written in.
Step 5: Start building the message Build the message by filling in the necessary components and check out the message on the preview section.
​
Building Block
Description
Header
​
The Header is optional and serves as the title or header of your template. It supports the following:
  • Text
  • Image
  • Video
  • Document
*Respond.io Platform accepts uploads up to 20MB in size
Body
The Body should contain the most important text of your template. Only text is supported.
You may use markdown to format the content of this block
Footer
The Footer only supports text and can be used to provide less relevant information in your template message
Button
​
The button adds interactivity to your templates. There are two main types.
  • Quick Reply Button
    • Used for getting quick answers from your client
    • Max 3 Quick Reply Buttons per Template
    • Each Quick Reply cannot have more than 20 characters
  • Call to Action Button
    • Used to send your client to a Website or call a Phone Number
    • Max one URL and Phone Number per Template
    • URL can have a parameter for personalisation
Step 6: Providing sample value This is only applicable if you have included any parameters in your message template content.
Providing sample values to the parameter in the message template will assist the review to understand the message you are trying to send to your contacts
You may use Dynamic Variables to fill in the message template parameter.
Important Links Message guidelines by WhatsApp​

Troubleshooting

Inability to Send Messages

  1. 1.
    Make sure that the number you connected to the platform is a WhatsApp Cloud API number.

Messages Are Not Arriving

This can happen when message webhook is not subscribed.
Step 1: Navigate to Facebook App Webhook page Open the Facebook App and navigate to the Webhooks page.
Step 2: Verify the subscribed event Select Whatsapp Business Account and verify if messages event is subscribed.
Step 3: Send a test message Send a test message to the WhatsApp phone number and check if it arrived.

Inability To Receive Read Receipts

Occasionally, when the user who connected WhatsApp Cloud API changes their Facebook password and permission will be outdated. Permissions will need to be refreshed.
Step 1: Navigate to Channel Settings From Settings Module, navigate to the menu item, Channels
Step 2: Locate the WhatsApp Cloud API channel Once you have located the WhatsApp Cloud API Messenger channel, press Troubleshoot
Step 3: Refresh Permission Press Refresh Permission to refresh WhatsApp permissions.
Step 4: Send a test message Send a test message to the WhatsApp phone number and check if it arrived.

Contact Not Receiving Messages

This can happen when contact has not agreed to WhatsApp terms and privacy policy
If your contacts cannot receive message from your WhatsApp Cloud API number, make sure that they have agreed to the latest WhatsApp terms and privacy policy.
Having trouble with the channel? Contact us here!

Frequently Asked Question

What are the consideration of the phone number that allows to be added to WhatsApp Cloud API?

  • If the number is already being used in the WhatsApp customer or business app, you will have to delete your account on the WhatsApp customer or business app.
  • The Phone number used for WhatsApp Cloud API can’t be used in the WhatsApp customer or business app.
  • You can still use the number for everyday purposes, such as calling and receiving messages after registering it on the WhatsApp Business Platform.
  • Once you use a phone for WhatsApp Cloud API you can no longer use that number on the WhatsApp Business App.

Is Business verification needed to start using Cloud API?

It isn’t mandatory to complete Facebook business verification to start sending messages on WhatsApp. Without business verification, your business will still be able to
  • Respond to unlimited customer-initiated conversations.
  • Send business-initiated conversations (template messages) to 50 unique customers in a rolling 24-hour period. You will need to complete business verification if you want to initiate more than 50 business-initiated conversations in a rolling 24-hour period.
Businesses can initiate Business Verification (BV) only when they are ready to scale business-initiated conversations or want to become an Official Business Account.

Can I view my conversation insight of my WhatsApp Business Account?

Yes, you can monitor your messaging and spending analytics in real-time for your WhatsApp business account in the Insights tab of your Meta WhatsApp Manager. Read more here.

What is WhatsApp messaging limits ?

Messaging limits determine the maximum number of business-initiated conversations each phone number can start in a rolling 24-hour period. These limits do not apply to user-initiated conversations. A business-initiated conversation starts when the first message is delivered to a customer and ends 24 hours later. Read more here.

How to add payment method to my WhatsApp Business Account?

Your first 1,000 conversations each month are free. If you want to exceed the free tier of 1,000 conversations per month, you need to add a payment method to your WhatsApp Business account in Business Manager. You can learn more here​

What is WhatsApp Cloud API pricing?

WhatsApp Business Platform conversations fall into two categories that are priced differently:
  • User-initiated: A conversation that initiates in response to a user message. Whenever a business replies to a user within the 24 hour customer service window, that message will be associated with a user-initiated conversation. Businesses can send free-form messages within this 24 hour customer service window.
  • Business-initiated: A conversation that initiates from a business sending a user a message outside the 24 hour customer service window. Messages that initiate a business-initiated conversation will require a message template.
All conversations are measured in fixed 24-hour sessions. A conversation starts when the first business message in a conversation is delivered, either initiated by the business or in reply to a user message. Businesses and users can exchange any number of messages, including template messages, within a 24 hour conversation session without incurring additional charges. Each 24 hour conversation session results in a single charge.
Charges for conversations are based on the user’s country code. A user here is defined as the customer that your business is communicating with. Rates for business-initiated and user-initiated conversations vary by country or region. Read more here​

How to delete phone number from a business account?

There are a few requirement and steps needed to delete a phone number, read more here​