It seems as if, after making more than a year’s deliberation, the monetization has been activated on WhatsApp, the world’s largest online messaging platform, by Facebook. Still, the regular users of WhatsApp should not worry about paying anything for the service. The money is being made from WhatsApp for Business and from 1st August, the global rollout of the API has happened.
WhatsApp would start to charge businesses for sending across marketing as well as customer service messages and the prices would vary from one country to another. The messages can be received from the users for the first 24 hours by all the businesses absolutely for free. Charges would be imposed for each and every message in case the company is unable to reply to customers’ queries after that time frame. According to WhatsApp, every message would cost between 0.5 cents to 9 cents, coming to an approximate price of 34p to Rs 6 in Indian currency. In a country like India, which is extremely sensitive to prices, WhatsApp must be looking to keep the competition on level ground by charging standard rates for all SMSes.
For the time being, businesses would only be able to make communication with those users who have first come into contact. One can use WhatsApp business for sending such notifications like shipping confirmations, reminders for appointments, tickets for some event etc. According to the report by TechCrunch, the app can be used by small businesses to even send in late replies one after another for free.
Recently the valuation of Facebook had a single day slippage of $120 billion and that is a clear indication, the social media giant needs more sources through which they can earn revenue. WhatsApp for Business seems to be the ideal source for that.
By next year, WhatsApp would be making use of the WhatsApp status feature to let products be advertised by businesses and promote them. No confirmation has been made with regard to the kind of charges, they would impose on the businesses, which use the platform of WhatsApp for advertising purpose.