Making it official! SleekFlow is a WhatsApp Business Solution Provider.

Instant messaging apps, and in particular, WhatsApp has become today’s primary network for almost every internet user. According to Statista, WhatsApp is ranked top among the most used mobile messenger platforms, surpassing Facebook Messenger and WeChat.

The most used mobile messenger platforms

Obviously, if your business aims to better connect with your customers, priority should be given to establishing an official presence on WhatsApp. Previously, we have summarized the features of the free Whatsapp Business App, as well as shared some great features of WhatsApp Business API and hacks to unlock its multi-user function. This time, we will get back to basics and provide you with a step-by-step guide to setting up your own WhatsApp Business account.

Let’s get started!

Looking to set up a WhatsApp Business API account instead? Check out the guide here.

Types of Whatsapp Business accounts

There are three types of WhatsApp Business accounts:

Types of WhatsApp Business accountChargesTarget users
WhatsApp Business AppFreeSmall to medium businesses
WhatsApp Business APIService fee + conversation feeLarge businesses or enterprises
Third-party WhatsApp Business API*No longer availableNo longer available

Free WhatsApp Business App

Most sellers are already aware of this option. Designed for SMEs, the free WhatsApp Business App account provides basic features like a simple business profile showing the business name, operating hours, and product catalogs while offering basic features such as limited quick replies.

Official WhatsApp Business API

The official WhatsApp Business API, as a paid solution, has a wide range of useful and highly functional features that can help businesses scale quickly and efficiently. Its countless benefits include:

  • Free 1000 conversations per account per month

  • Business name displayed instead of the phone number even if the customer did not save your contact

  • Green tick verification for reliability

  • Broadcast WhatsApp messages without the fear of being blocked

  • Interactive buttons on messages

  • Multiple logins for different teammates to manage conversations simultaneously

  • Chatbots and automation

  • Payment link in WhatsApp chat

There are so many more customized settings for you to explore!

Further reading: a quick read of WhatsApp Business API's advantages

Using the WhatsApp Business API also requires a Business Solution Provider (BSP) officially assigned by WhatsApp. Remember to learn how to choose the best for your business by comparing providers such as 360dialog and Twilio before beginning your journey!

*Some WhatsApp Business API providers mark up their prices with extra service fees. Choose wisely.

Third-party WhatsApp Business API*

*Chat API is no longer in service since June 2022 due to Meta's policy change. Learn how to apply for WhatsApp Business API below.

Good news for existing third-party or Chat API* users! SleekFlow is offering an exclusive limited-time offer with 20% off the first three months just for you. Grab your monthly subscription plan by entering the promo code on the payment page before it ends on the 30th of September 2022.

Calling all third-party users! Promo code: CHATOFFICIAL20

How can I use the WhatsApp Business App?

WhatsApp Business

To register a WhatsApp Business account for your own business, you will need to do the following:

1. Download the WhatsApp Business App on Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

WhatsApp Business App

2. Click the WhatsApp Business icon on your home screen to launch the app.

3. Confirm your understanding and acceptance of the WhatsApp Business Terms of Service, tap “Agree”.

4. Select your region and fill in your phone number in the international phone number format.

5. Choose to verify your number through SMS or phone call, then enter the 6-digit registration code.

6. Enable access to your contacts and photos. Contacts from your phone’s address book will then be automatically synced.

7. Enter your business name, business category, and profile picture to create an account.

8. Go to “Explore” > “Business Profile”. Fill in important business information such as your business address, website, description, and opening hours.

9. Done! You can now start sending messages.

How to get started with the Official Whatsapp Business API?

1. Fill in the request form

Go to https://app.sleekflow.io/request-whatsapp and fill in the request form, you can refer to the table below on how to retrieve some essential information:

FieldNote
Facebook Business Manager IDLog into your company’s Facebook Business Manager account Go to Business Settings Under Company Name, you will find your Business Manager ID number
Facebook Business Verification By choosing “yes”, you confirm that Facebook has verified your business account
Business Registration Supporting DocumentRequired for all Hong Kong companies

SleekFlow will start processing your application immediately and your application for approval. The entire process should take between 2 to 3 weeks.

2. Use SleekFlow with the WhatsApp Business API

Once approved, your team can start using the SleekFlow Web and Mobile app to run WhatsApp simultaneously.

SleekFlow and WhatsApp Business API

Wanna apply for it on your own instead? Check out the detailed guide here.

How to get started with the third-party Whatsapp Business API

*Chat API is no longer in service since June 2022 due to Meta's policy change. Learn how to apply for WhatsApp Business API in the above section.

If time is of the essence to you, you can consider using a third-party solution. However, do note that the trade-off would be reduced stability in terms of customer engagement. That being said, the set-up is super simple!

Simply scan the QR code on SleekFlow, and you can quickly link your Business WhatsApp account to the platform and begin in no time.

1. Connect WhatsApp account to SleekFlow

To get started, you will first need to install the WhatsApp or WhatsApp Business App on your phone.

For the integration to function properly, please be reminded that:

  1. The device should be connected to Wi-Fi and charged

  2. Avoid using Desktop/ Web WhatsApp

  3. Keep WhatsApp App running in the background to maintain stable connectivity

Launch WhatsApp and go to “Settings” > “WhatsApp Web/ Desktop”. Click “Log out from all devices”.

Connect WhatsApp Account to SleekFlow

Head over to  “SleekFlow Platform – Channel”. Add WhatsApp to SleekFlow by pressing the WhatsApp icon under “Add Channels”.

SleekFlow Platform – Channel

Scan the QR code with your WhatsApp app, then click “I have already scanned the QR code” to continue.

WhatsApp QR code

Type in Channel Name (e.g. Sales Team, Customer Service, Operations Team) for this specific WhatsApp Integration.

Channel Name

The channel will be shown as “Connected” in about 60 minutes, you can then start sending and receiving messages. Otherwise, please refer to the troubleshooting guide.

Connected channel

2. Synchronize contacts and conversation history

Go to the 3 dots of your “Connected” WhatsApp Channel and click “Sync History”. You are recommended to sync history at midnight so as to not interfere with sending and receiving of messages.

Synchronized Contacts and Conversation History

If the process goes smoothly, the status will be updated to a success banner.

Syncing

Or else, the “Sync Failed” banner will pop up. Try “Sync History” again.

Sync failed

3. Add a second WhatsApp Number

To integrate with more than one third-party WhatsApp Business API, you need to pay a subscription fee of $29 USD/ month for each additional number.

A second WhatsApp number

Your credit card will be immediately charged the full sum.

Credit card payment

Summary

WhatsApp is the leading messaging app being used today. It surpasses Facebook Messenger and WeChat on the matter. Thus, it is no wonder that using WhatsApp for your business communication can contribute well to your progress, especially for small or startup businesses. Learning how to create a WhatsApp business account is the initial step every business owner must take to be able to utilize the endless possibilities the app has to offer.

Here at SleekFlow, we want to help every company in building their personalized messaging platform through WhatsApp for business. We offer guides on how to create a WhatsApp business account as well as the actual product and after-sales services.

Need help applying for WhatsApp Business API? Get a consultation and onboarding session for free.

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