Meta Announced WhatsApp Cloud API For All Businesses
The majority of organizations have been interested in WhatsApp Cloud API for a while. However, the WhatsApp Business API has similar functionality with limitations and drawn-out procedures, which discourages most firms from choosing it.
Yes, it's true, and Facebook formally stated that all businesses, regardless of size, can now utilize WhatsApp cloud API for free.
Businesses will be able to use all the advantages of business API through cloud API without having to pay for hosting the API or registering with business service providers (BSPs).
It's just another online location where businesses can open shops to facilitate communication with clients.
However, since the WhatsApp Business API is on-premises, back-end integration would typically require a solutions provider like Twilio.
According to the company, the WhatsApp Cloud API is essentially a cloud-based, Meta-hosted version that is especially targeted at small organizations and cuts the integration period from weeks to minutes.
The Meta Cloud API is as accessible for free as the Business API.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said, "Today, I'm overwhelmed to announce that we're releasing WhatsApp to use by any business irrespective of their size globally with WhatsApp Cloud API."
Since November 2021, WhatsApp has been working steadily to make the cloud API available to all organizations.
It was encouraging to learn that any business may now obtain the API and use it to implement WhatsApp businesses as a communication channel with their systems, such as CRM.
Before delving deeper into WhatsApp cloud API, let's first define and grasp what it is. According to Meta, the Cloud API would eliminate the need for servers, speed up the process of getting businesses on the platform, and provide clients with new features as they become available online.
The WhatsApp Business App, released in 2018, offers additional capabilities such as automatic rapid replies, greeting messages, FAQs, and more for businesses who don't want to use the API.
What is WhatsApp Cloud API?
The cloud-hosted variant of WhatsApp Business API is known as WhatsApp Cloud API.
It is hosted on Meta's cloud servers as opposed to an on-premise Business Solutions Provider (BSP) server or a company's private server and has features that are comparable to WhatsApp Business API.
Meta refers to WhatsApp Business API as On-premise API to distinguish it from WhatsApp Cloud API because the hosting type is the primary distinction between the two.
To access the WhatsApp API, businesses had to use a BSP under the original business model of Meta.
But it soon discovered that the application procedure was time-consuming, that businesses had to wait a long to access API updates, and that some companies couldn't afford the BSPs' fees.
Every business in the world can launch on WhatsApp Business thanks to the cloud-based API for the service.
It took a while to sign up for the WhatsApp Business API because you had to register with the BSPs.
The situation has changed. With the help of a secure cloud-hosted WhatsApp API, any company or developer may easily access WhatsApp business APIs, adapt them to their needs, and speed up customer service.
All hosting and servers will now be provided by Facebook (also known as Meta). Now, companies can easily set up a free WhatsApp business API account and register it.
Because of this, Meta decided to provide WhatsApp Cloud API as a speedier and more affordable alternative to purchasing WhatsApp API.
The ability to manage chats across several devices, for example, is one of the new capabilities coming to the Premium service, according to Meta, whose availability and cost will be announced at a later time.
Given that WhatsApp is a free smartphone application without adverts that enables users to send an infinite number of messages to contacts without using the mobile network or paying data fees, Facebook (as it was) purchased WhatsApp in 2014 for an astounding $22 billion.
The service was losing millions of dollars at the time and had 450 million users. More than 2 billion people are now using it.
This rapid expansion is undoubtedly ready for monetization, and WhatsApp's availability as a tool for companies of any size is an indication of how Meta aims to proceed.
Features of Meta WhatsApp Cloud API
Meta Cloud WhatsApp API requires a platform like AiSensy, just like the on-premise WhatsApp Business API.
The WhatsApp Cloud API can be used in the following ways:
- Sending a bulk message to thousands of WhatsApp members at once
- Automate notifications for events like order/shipping/payment confirmations & more by integrating 2000+ CRMs & e-commerce platforms.
- Support Live Human Chat on various devices.
- Send template-based text, image, audio, and video communications.
- Send messages with lists, Quick Replies, and CTA Buttons.
- For Your Business, Get Free Green Tick Verification
- Plan WhatsApp texts in bulk
- Meta guarantees a 99.9% uptime SLA and offers round-the-clock assistance for serious problems with ongoing follow-up till resolution.
- Integration of chatbots and chat automation using third-party applications
- No hosting fees (Meta hosts the WhatsApp Cloud API)
- Sending and receiving up to 80 messages per second combined (including text and media communications); starting in July 2022, this will increase to 250 messages per second (by request)
- Meta's free API software updates
- Encryption from end to end
- Integration of WhatsApp's messaging features seamlessly with outside programs (such as CRM or analytics)
- capability for broadcasting and bulk messaging
What about the cost of the WhatsApp Cloud API?
Although the WhatsApp Cloud API is free to use, users are charged based on the number of conversations.
All messages sent and received by the user and the company within 24 hours of the conversation's start are considered to be part of it.
WhatsApp conversations fall into one of two categories:
- User-initiated: An exchange is considered a user-initiated discussion when a user contacts a company and the latter responds within 24 hours.
- Business-initiated: A communication that a business initiates with a user after 24 hours has passed is referred to as a business-initiated chat.
Businesses can send free-form messages in user-initiated discussions, but they need message templates in business-initiated interactions to communicate with users.
Businesses utilizing the WhatsApp Cloud API are entitled to 1,000 free conversations each month, including both user- and business-initiated talks.
Beyond this threshold, you are required to add a credit card to your account.
When a user contacts a business through the latter's call-to-action (CTA) buttons on their advertisements, the latter does not charge for the chat (that click to their WhatsApp profile or Facebook page).
Subsequent interactions with the aforementioned individual, however, are charged as normal.
It should be noted that while the entrance point for users to contact the company by clicking on the advertisement is free, the advertisement itself is not.
WhatsApp On-premises API versus Meta WhatsApp Cloud API Differences
Although they do not impact end consumers, organizations nonetheless need to be aware of them.
With Meta WhatsApp Cloud API, Meta gives companies direct access to the API and hosting, enabling them to automatically obtain API software and security updates.
Additionally, because Meta does not charge for servers, they only need to pay fees for individual conversations.
WhatsApp For Business Contrarily, API involves two parties: BSPs and Meta. BSPs are given the API by Meta.
Therefore, businesses must either host WhatsApp API on their servers or purchase WhatsApp API from BSPs together with their hosting.
Businesses using the On-premise WhatsApp API will see delays in the release of new API versions as a result.
In addition to the per-conversation or per-message fees, businesses also have to pay server setup and maintenance costs.
Read the documentation for the WhatsApp Cloud API to learn more about the differences. We'll assist you in determining whether WhatsApp Cloud API is the best option for your company now that you are familiar with its fundamentals.
WhatsApp Cloud API's advantages
WhatsApp's Cloud API provides:
- Lightning Facebook quickly approves the WhatsApp Business API (in minutes).
All businesses worldwide will now have direct access to Facebook's Business API. Businesses can use WhatsApp Business API on any platform by contacting BSPs (Business Service Providers).
- Facebook guarantees that businesses will not be required to pay anything to be approved for the WhatsApp Business API.
Facebook, however, does not offer a platform for using the WhatsApp Business API. You can broadcast ads and handle customer support issues all on one platform with the help of the official WhatsApp Business API-based platform ChatDaddy
- Instantly obtain new updates - Get access to all new changes added to the WhatsApp Business API because you now have direct access to it via Cloud APIs.
What are WhatsApp Cloud API's restrictions?
The biggest drawback of the WhatsApp Cloud API is that Meta does not offer a platform for businesses to use it.
A finished product that can be utilized immediately out of the box is not an API.
Contrary to WhatsApp or WhatsApp Business, you must code or construct an app or platform to access WhatsApp Cloud API and take advantage of its features.
In other words, you are not responsible for any associated hosting fees since Meta simply hosts the WhatsApp Cloud API.
You must still locate a platform that enables API access, though.
However, WhatsApp Cloud API or WhatsApp Business Cloud API may be appropriate for you if you are a business owner with a team of developers who are solely trying to avoid the hosting fees connected with WhatsApp API.
Several WhatsApp marketing functions are absent from the WhatsApp Cloud API, though.
You do not have access to the following as a member of the WhatsApp Cloud API or WhatsApp Business Cloud API:
Recovery of abandoned carts: The average rate of cart abandonment is 69.57%, with a range of 56% to 81%.
This is a large sum that could hurt your company's profit margins.
You can automate abandoned cart recovery using ChatDaddy and turn those carts into successful sales.
Automated order-related notifications: Customers expect as much interaction as possible during the ordering and checkout processes from your online store.
This entails keeping them informed at every stage of the procedure, from order confirmation through order tracking and delivery.
None of those are offered by WhatsApp Cloud API.
Thankfully, ChatDaddy gives you access to several tools, like order confirmation, tracking, creation of order tracking links, cash on delivery verification, and more.
Analytics ROI: You won't have access to your company's analytics data if you use WhatsApp Cloud API.
When making decisions for your company, you need data. Without it, business owners risk making costly errors that could have been prevented.
ChatDaddy provides you with sophisticated analytics on your company, including overall numbers (revenue, volume, etc.), as well as better customer order tracking.
In addition, you can accomplish a lot more with ChatDaddy's WhatsApp API, like a thorough Shopify integration and unique WhatsApp API use cases.
Information to Consider Before Using WhatsApp Cloud API
You must first be aware that some BSPs do provide WhatsApp Cloud API.
You can obtain Cloud API from a BSP if you already work with them and they provide it.
However, Meta advises companies to purchase the WhatsApp Cloud API directly from Meta for simpler setup and upkeep.
Additionally, organizations can only utilize a phone number with WhatsApp Cloud API or WhatsApp On-premise API.
The same number cannot be used for both APIs.
Please get in touch with your BSP for help with the migration process if you wish to continue using your current WhatsApp On-premise API number for WhatsApp Cloud API.
Where can I find WhatsApp Cloud API?
The WhatsApp Cloud API is available without charge to developers and business owners.
To do this, take the following actions:
1. Go online and select "Create app" from the menu at www.developer.facebook.com.
2. Select "Business" under "Select an app type" and then click "Next."
3. If you have a Facebook Business Account, choose it as well. Type a name for your app and the email address that corresponds with it. Tap "Create app."
4. From the section that says "Add items to your app," select "Set up for WhatsApp."
5. Click "Continue" after choosing your Meta Business Account from the WhatsApp Platform API.
6. Copy the temporary access token and paste it, then store it securely.
7. Choose the test phone number and add a different phone number where you'd want to receive the message from Meta (through WhatsApp); this is necessary to verify that WhatsApp can send you messages from its servers.
Hello, the world is the message that was entered into the terminal, but you can change it whatever you like via the template manager.
Then, select "Send the message."
8. You ought to have gotten a WhatsApp message from the WhatsApp Cloud API team confirming that the message was successfully delivered.
9. Go to the Facebook template manager; you'll find the pre-installed template there.
To write your messages to customers, click the "Create Message Template" button.
How will the WhatsApp Cloud API affect businesses that already use the WhatsApp Business API?
If you already have a WhatsApp Business API Account that has been approved, WhatsApp Cloud API makes no difference to you.
Yes, you can move to WhatsApp Cloud API, but if you currently have a WhatsApp Business API Account, it won't signify much.
The WhatsApp Business API may now be more readily used by enterprises all across the world thanks to WhatsApp Cloud API.
Nothing will change if you already use WhatsApp Business API with a platform like ChatDaddy.
Concluding Remarks | Meta Announced WhatsApp Cloud API For All Businesses
Many of the features of WhatsApp Cloud API (or WhatsApp Business Cloud API) are the same as those of its on-premises counterpart, WhatsApp API or WhatsApp Business API; however, rather than relying on a WhatsApp BSP, organizations can obtain API access directly from Meta.
The drawback is that Meta doesn't offer a platform for gaining access to its WhatsApp Cloud API.
Therefore, you can take advantage of WhatsApp Cloud API's functionality if you are a developer or a business owner with development resources.
Therefore, ChatDaddy may be what you need if you want to leverage WhatsApp API directly with effective WhatsApp marketing & customer support capabilities all in one platform.
To learn more, register right away or contact our team to arrange a demo.
FAQs | Meta Announced WhatsApp Cloud API For All Businesses
Q: WhatsApp Business Cloud API: What is it?
A: You can scale your business messaging more quickly and implement WhatsApp Business APIs without having to pay for hosting your servers thanks to the Cloud API.
Q: Will the Cloud API offer access to every feature of the On-Premise WhatsApp API?
A: Yes, Meta will soon offer all essential on-premise WhatsApp API functionalities in the Cloud API by automatically releasing new features & monthly updates.
Q: Why is Meta WhatsApp Cloud API important
A: The cloud-based WhatsApp Business API, or Meta WhatsApp Cloud API, is made available directly by Meta. It enables businesses and developers to build applications on top of WhatsApp to personalize their user interfaces and rapidly and effectively reply to consumers.
Q: Is there a legitimate API for WhatsApp?
A: The WhatsApp API was introduced to assist medium-sized and large businesses that wished to use WhatsApp for mass customer communication. With automated replies, WhatsApp chatbots, and interactive messages, organizations may automate communication using the WhatsApp Business API.
Q: Which is better, the on-premise version or the WhatsApp Cloud API?
A: Because you receive full assistance from WhatsApp partners for onboarding, queries, and a platform to use the WhatsApp API, the on-premise WhatsApp API is a better option than the cloud WhatsApp API. Only the Cloud API is accessible through Meta. They don't offer a platform for using the APIs, and they solely offer email-based assistance.
Q: Is the current WhatsApp Business API deprecated by the launch of the Cloud API?
A: No, the launch of WhatsApp Cloud API won't have a significant impact on WhatsApp APIs used locally. The sole difference between the two APIs is that Meta gives direct access to the Cloud API. Additionally, as Meta does not offer a platform, you would still need one to access the WhatsApp Cloud API.