WhatsApp, the Facebook-owned messaging app, announced Thursday (Jan. 24) that more than five million businesses are using WhatsApp Business a year after the launch of the Android-based app.
According to a blog post, WhatsApp said that to celebrate the app’s first year, it rolled out some of the most popular features of WhatsApp Business to the web and desktop. Those features include quick replies (frequent messages businesses can send to answer common questions), labels (which enable small businesses to organize chats with labels) and chat list filtering, which enables users to manage chats with filters and sort them by certain categories. According to WhatsApp, using these features on a computer helps businesses save time.
"In January of last year, we launched the WhatsApp Business app, and now there are more than five million businesses using it to support customers, grow their businesses and serve their communities all over the world," WhatsApp wrote in the blog post. "We're excited that we've helped millions of businesses grow. For example, in India, Bengaluru-based eyewear brand Glassic has told us that 30 percent of its new sales are generated through WhatsApp Business.”
In January of 2018, WhatsApp rolled out the free messaging app, aiming to make it easier for small and medium-sized businesses to interact with customers. At the time, WhatsApp had 1.3 billion users; earlier this month, it surpassed Facebook in terms of monthly active users.
“People all around the world use WhatsApp to connect with small businesses they care about — from online clothing companies in India to auto parts stores in Brazil,” the company wrote at the time. “But WhatsApp was built for people, and we want to improve the business experience. For example, by making it easier for businesses to respond to customers, separating customer and personal messages and creating an official presence.”