The use of digital channels for customer support is rising and Whatsapp is becoming a dominant messaging player in most countries. Collab is officially announcing the release of a fully supported Whatsapp connector and API, based on the concepts below:
WhatsApp API Connector Key Benefits
- Fully featured integration, including the option to combine with AI powered chat bots
- Decrease average hold time, by managing multiple inbound and outbound Whatsapp conversations at once
- Plug-and-play, easy to deploy connector
There are three message types: “Inbound”, “Outbound Session” and “Outbound Template”:
- Inbound refers to any message initiated by end customers (users) to your contact center.
- Outbound Session are any messages sent and received in response to an inbound message. A messaging session starts when a user sends your contact center a message and lasts for 24 hours from the most recently received message.
- Outbound Templates are predefined message templates used when more than 24 hours have elapsed since the customer last responded to you or if no message has been exchanged with this number. These messages are the only ones allowed in these situations, any other type of message will fail. Important: these template messages must be submitted for WhatsApp approval before they can be used.
How does it work for the agent and supervisors?
For agents it is a regular chat session, except when trying to reply to a customer outside the 24h hours window. In that particular scenario, the agent will be informed that an Outbound Template Message must be used in order to reach the customer.
Supervisors may directly configure these templates, so that the agents have access to them on the OneContact Agent web interface. This is available starting from OneContact CC 3.5
What will happen to the old solution (using an unofficial integration)?
The old solution shouldn’t be sold anymore and new project using this solution won’t be accepted. For the customer already using the old solution, the migration to the new solution should be promoted.
How to migrate from the old solution (using an unofficial integration) to this new solution?
To respect the numbering rules imposed by WhatsApp (see rules below) the number being used on the old solution cannot be used on the new solution.
Therefore, we suggest having a new number and set an automatic reply message (which Collab may setup at no cost) for the number used on the old solution.
Eg.: “Hello, to better serve you, our number changed to +1-202-555-0107, please contact us using through that number”.
Which numbers can be used?
All WhatsApp Business API accounts are based on a valid phone number.
There are two options to get a valid number, depending on the case: the customer must own a number (which respects all rules below) or rent Collab a number.
The following rules apply to the number:
- You must own this number.
- It needs to be clean, which means it must never have been registered with a WhatsApp user before.
- It must include a country and area code.
- The number must be able to receive a call or SMS for the registration step.
- Landlines are acceptable phone numbers to use.
- Short codes are not allowed on the WhatsApp platform.
- Virtual Mobile Numbers (VNM) are supported, we do recommend using a Voice enabled number to receive the verification token by a call.
Where will messages be stored?
Messages might be stored on our Nubitalk Cloud and on our broker partner’s platforms.
Which message types are supported?
At this launch phase, only images and text, on both directions.
Is there a messages limit or threshold?
Can Collab or Collab Partners create a chat bot to reply customers?
Is WhatsApp Business App related with this integration?
Which are the technical requirements?
A SIP Connector reachable from the internet.