WhatsApp CRM: Essentials For Businesses

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WhatsApp CRM

With more businesses than ever turning to WhatsApp Business as a key form of interaction with their customers, it’s no surprise that they’re also incorporating the platform into their CRM strategies.

When you leverage WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business, you gain a powerful tool for enhancing your customer relationships, driving engagement and streamlining your communication plans, from the moment the customer makes first contact, all the way through to after sales support.

There are challenges and considerations to take into account before you decide whether to use WhatsApp on its own as your CRM tool, or whether to integrate it into a larger CRM system. The good news is that as the landscape of CRM integration continues to evolve, there are plenty of exciting opportunities to grasp that could really benefit your business.

Let’s take a look at what the acronym ‘CRM’ means, the benefits of using WhatsApp Business as a CRM, and how you can integrate WhatsApp Business into another, more comprehensive CRM system, if required.

What is a CRM system?

CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management. A CRM system helps businesses process and manage their interactions with customers. This can be through storing client information, maintaining a history of interactions with customers, and managing customer accounts and preferences.

What does a CRM system do?

A CRM system can help you to store customer contact info, track interactions across various channels and facilitate communication with customers.

CRM systems can help businesses to improve customer relationships, boost engagement, enhance customer satisfaction, and drive sales growth through data-driven insights.

How can you use WhatsApp And WhatsApp Business as a CRM system?

There are various ways that you can use WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business as a CRM for your company. These include:

Directly communicating with customers

Both WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business allow you to communicate in real-time with your customers via instant messaging. Customers can get in touch directly with your business, allowing them to ask questions, verify your business information, browse your business catalogue, and purchase products or services.

Share multimedia content seamlessly

Want to incorporate images, videos, audio or documents into your marketing materials? With WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business, it’s easy to do just that. That means that you can make the most of your investment in visual assets created for your brand.

Use automation to supercharge your strategy

WhatsApp Business is packed with tools to help you streamline your customer service processes and use your time as efficiently as possible. Use Auto-Replies to create message templates that will ensure a speedy response, every time.

Integrate with other CRM systems

Already rely on another CRM system to operate your business? That’s not a problem. It’s possible to integrate WhatsApp Business with a wide range of other CRM systems so you can keep customer data, tracking and analytics all in one place.

Using WhatsApp Business Labels for Contact Management

One of the best functionalities for contact management in WhatsApp Business is the Labels feature. You can apply Labels to chats to help you see quickly and easily which categories a customer falls under. There are five pre-set Labels that you can use immediately, but you can also delete ones that aren’t relevant and add new Labels to suit your business needs.

Labels allow you to stay on top of all your messages at a glance, track your customers through the sales funnel and keep an eye on high-priority messages, such as time-sensitive or VIP messages. For example, you could categorise contacts by applying Labels showing whether they are prospective clients, active clients, clients with outstanding payments or clients requiring a response.

Another way to use Labels effectively is by applying filters to your search results. For example, once your Labels are set up, you could filter your WhatsApp inbox to show only Active Client comms, or Urgent comms.

Find out how to make the most of WhatsApp Labels on WhatsApp Business in our step-by-step guide.

The benefits and drawbacks of using WhatsApp Business as a CRM

While there are plenty of benefits to take into account when using WhatsApp Business as your company’s CRM, there are also some drawbacks that you should consider. Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of using WhatsApp Business as your CRM.

What are the pros of using WhatsApp Business as a CRM?

Enhance customer engagement

Your customers are likely to already be familiar with WhatsApp, and they’re probably already using the platform to chat with friends, family and other businesses. By offering to meet them where they already are, you can provide direct, personalised communication that meets their needs, without requiring them to download an extra app, field unnecessary emails or spend hours on the phone to your customer service team.

Offer efficient customer service

With time-saving features like automated greetings and ‘out of office’ messages, WhatsApp Business can help your team provide immediate support to customers, resolve queries promptly, and improve overall efficiency.

Streamline your sales process

WhatsApp Business has plenty of tools, such as Labels, which can help you keep on top of your interactions with customers. WhatsApp can be used to nurture leads, share product updates, and facilitate transactions, streamlining the sales funnel and driving revenue growth.

Cost-effective and accessible

In comparison to many CRM systems, WhatsApp Business offers a much cheaper and more accessible solution. WhatsApp Business is free to download and use, and you can even run it on the same device that you use WhatsApp Messenger on – all you’ll need is a free second virtual phone number to verify your business account.

What are the cons of using WhatsApp Business as a CRM?

There are a few drawbacks to using WhatsApp Business as your sole CRM solution.

WhatsApp Business is designed to help companies connect with clients. As the most popular instant messaging app worldwide, it’s a great choice for companies who want to chat directly with clients, answer FAQs, display product catalogs and show their business information to customers via the business profile. However, WhatsApp Business is not designed to provide all the functionalities of a full CRM solution. Here are some drawbacks to consider if you’re thinking of using WhatsApp Business as a CRM:

Limited analytics and reporting functionalities

While WhatsApp Business offers several CRM-friendly features, it may lack the comprehensive functionality of dedicated CRM systems, such as advanced analytics and reporting capabilities. If you’re after a more comprehensive CRM experience, you may want to consider integrating WhatsApp Business with another CRM solution.

No integration with email tracking

WhatsApp Business is designed for instant messaging, but it can’t cover other forms of marketing in the way that a dedicated CRM system can. For example, other CRM systems can integrate with Outlook or Gmail to simplify marketing workflows and provide cross-platform tracking and analytics.

No sales forecasting

If you’re looking for a CRM system that can provide actionable, data-driven insights and AI-powered sales forecasting capabilities, you may want to explore other options than WhatsApp.

Can you use the same number for WhatsApp Business and an external CRM?

It’s not possible to use the same number for WhatsApp Business and an external CRM solution at the same time due to WhatsApp’s terms of use. This means that if you use your second virtual phone number to set up a CRM for your business, you:

  1. a) can’t use the same number for WhatsApp Business at the same time.
  2. b) can’t pull your number back out of the CRM and use it to verify WhatsApp Business.

Integrating WhatsApp into another CRM system

Plenty of larger CRM ecosystems allow integration with WhatsApp and the WhatsApp Business API. When choosing a CRM system to integrate with WhatsApp, you should consider the platform’s capabilities, scalability, data security and pricing to make sure that it’s right for you, your team and your business.

Here are some CRM systems that you might like to consider integrating with WhatsApp Business:

Salesforce

Salesforce offers integration with WhatsApp Business, allowing businesses to connect WhatsApp to their CRM workflows seamlessly. With Salesforce, businesses can use AI to provide intelligent insights and recommendations, as well as offering AI-powered chatbots to automate common questions and customer service processes.

Find out more about integrating WhatsApp Business with Salesforce.

HubSpot

HubSpot CRM offers native integration with WhatsApp Business, enabling businesses to manage WhatsApp conversations, automate messaging, and track interactions within the CRM platform.

Find out more about integrating WhatsApp Business with HubSpot.

Zendesk

Zendesk’s CRM platform supports integration with WhatsApp Business, empowering businesses to provide omnichannel customer support and manage WhatsApp conversations alongside other support channels.

Find out more about integrating WhatsApp Business with Zendesk.

Zoho CRM

Zoho CRM provides integration with WhatsApp Business via third-party apps, allowing businesses to synchronise WhatsApp messages, contacts, and conversations with their CRM database.

Find out more about integrating WhatsApp Business with Zoho CRM.

Getting started the easy way with YourBusinessNumber

Are you looking to set up a WhatsApp Business account, but don’t want to spend extra money on a second handset or a new mobile phone contract? You’re in the right place.

With a second virtual business number, you can install and verify the WhatsApp Business app on the same phone as WhatsApp Messenger. That means a better work-life balance, separation between your personal and professional contacts, and access to all the incredible marketing tools on offer within the WhatsApp Business app.

With YourBusinessNumber, you can generate a second virtual phone number in just a few clicks. We offer flexible, low-cost contracts, so you can stay in complete control.

So what are you waiting for? Get started with your new WhatsApp Business number today!

Author:

Picture of George Lineker

George Lineker

The co-founder of YourBusinessNumber, George has a lasting interest in modern communications technology, and is an advocate of simple and easy to use tools for businesses of all sizes. He has a background in mobile telecom solutions along with qualifications in business and management support services.
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