In July 2020, WhatsApp released a new form of notification templates: Interactive Message Templates (also known as WhatsApp Interactive Buttons). Here we’ll explore what these templates look like and how to use them to increase customer engagement.
First though, it’s worth reiterating the business benefits of a WhatsApp marketing strategy.
Used by 2 billion consumers in more than 180 countries, WhatsApp is the customer communication channel of choice for many businesses. 61% of customers say that messaging is the easiest, most convenient way to contact a business, and WhatsApp Business API enables medium and large enterprises to talk to customers on their favorite chat app.
It’s no surprise then that businesses of all kinds are using WhatsApp to provide customer support – either through a chatbot or live agent – and send proactive notifications, such as back in stock notifications, monthly reports, receipts, and more, as part of their WhatsApp marketing strategy.
The interactive message template is designed to make it easier to support these efforts and increase your customer engagement. Let’s take a look.
What is a WhatsApp Business message template?
A WhatsApp message template provides a way to proactively reach out to your customers using WhatsApp notifications.
Notifications are templated messages that are pre-approved by WhatsApp. Using WhatsApp Business message templates is a must when reaching out to customers on WhatsApp since they ensure a high-quality messaging experience and prevent marketing spam.
You can create different message templates, depending on your business needs. These include:
- Simple, text-only notifications, such as account statuses or delivery reminders.
- Rich media notifications, such as e-receipts, boarding passes, and onboarding videos.
- (NEW) Interactive notifications with buttons that direct customers to perform an action, such as visiting your site, contacting your support team, or scheduling an appointment.
Did you know you can only send message templates to customers who gave their consent during the opt-in process? Learn more about how to collect WhatsApp opt-ins.
What are WhatsApp Interactive Buttons?
Want a customer to call you? Visit your website? Or maybe you want their feedback so you can serve them better next time? With WhatsApp buttons, your customers can take the desired action with a single click.
Businesses using WhatsApp to contact customers can share the same level of information as they could with plain text and media message templates, while also using one-click responses to navigate customers through the entire journey.
Types of WhatsApp Interactive Buttons
There are two types of WhatsApp interactive button options to choose from:
1. WhatsApp call to action buttons
Use WhatsApp call to action buttons to direct consumers to your website, or connect them to your contact center.
Call to action button templates can have a maximum of two buttons, and support these two actions:
- Call phone number: enable your customers to call your customer support team with one click.
- Visit website: direct customers to a specific part of your website. You can choose to set a fixed or dynamic URL.
2. WhatsApp quick reply buttons
Use predefined WhatsApp quick reply buttons to receive instant replies from customers.
Quick reply button templates can have up to three buttons in one message, and the button text is always predefined.
Quick reply buttons also give you the opportunity to track responses and react accordingly – for example, you can send a notification to inform a customer about your new service offering, and give them quick reply options such as:
- Tell me more
- Schedule an appointment
- Not interested
Then, you can segment your customers based on their level of interest.
The business benefits of a WhatsApp Business message template
Notifications with either type of buttons can be text-only, or you can combine them with different media – documents (pdf), images, videos, location, and more.
The options are numerous and depend on your business needs, but regardless of the combination you choose, the expected result is the same – complete, valuable information in one single message.
Real-time customer service and support
Using clickable buttons turns one-way notifications into fast, two-way customer communication.
Now, you can give customers a chance to react to your notifications, receive relevant information, ask for support, or perform an action in just one click – minimizing customer effort and increasing engagement.
This brings a layer of interactivity that helps customers stay connected with your business across their entire journey.
Easy to tailor your customer communications
WhatsApp Interactive Buttons make it easy to track customer responses and later segment customers based on their preferences.
This can help you tailor your communication so you can provide the best possible experience on your customers’ channel of choice – and as a result, increase overall customer satisfaction.
Start using WhatsApp Business API
WhatsApp is becoming the one-stop-shop for business-to-customer interactions. With different types of message templates, businesses can adjust their communication to fit their needs and meet customer expectations. From awareness to retention, WhatsApp enables you to build customer relationships that last.
Connect to Your Customers on WhatsApp