10 Tips to Use WhatsApp for Customer Service

Discover 10 essential tips for using WhatsApp for customer service. Learn to integrate, personalize, and improve customer interactions effectively with Hoola.

10 Tips to Use WhatsApp for Customer Service

In this article

Start with WhatsApp marketing & support 👇

Need ideas? Share your eCommerce strategy with Hoola and we'll give you the tools to add WhatsApp into the mix.

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“Customer Support is a liability of eCommerce”

Well, if you look at it like that…

It will be.

Change the paradigm. See it as an asset. Find opportunity in the chaos. Customers having questions means they are looking for solutions.

Solutions that you can provide.
That your business can solve.
That your product can fix.

These days, customers expect fast and efficient support from the businesses they deal with. WhatsApp offers a convenient and cost-effective way to communicate with your customers in real time.

Let’s explore how to use WhatsApp for customer support and how it can benefit your business.

How to turn customers into loyal fans.

Why use WhatsApp for Customer Service?

There are 2.24 billion active WhatsApp users every month, and growing.

Number of monthly active WhatsApp users worldwide from April 2013 to March 2020, Source: Statista 2023

That is a quarter of the world.
Yes, 1 out of 4 people in the world uses WhatsApp.

Those are pretty good odds that your customers use WhatsApp too.

As a business, using the WhatsApp API helps you:

  • Automate customer support flows
  • Have infinite agents managing 1 number
  • Enrich your customer profiles with data from the chat
  • Send auto-replies, use message formats, and have real conversations
  • Connect it to your shop or CRM and turn support into sales with 0 friction

Smaller businesses can use WhatsApp Business App features:

  • Reply directly from mobile & desktop
  • Easily send images, videos, documents, and even voice notes
  • All data is end-to-end encrypted with consumer privacy & GDPR

Read about all differences of the WhatsApp Business Platform vs the Business App.

From there you can expand, scale, and grow like crazy. Like this amazing quote on Customer Experience says…

“We’re not competitor obsessed, we’re customer obsessed. We start with what the customer needs and we work backwards.”
-Jeff Bezos

Benefits of using WhatsApp for customer support

Offering support in WhatsApp is the first key step to uncovering the full potential of WhatsApp and its efficacy for marketing.

Soon enough you will see it reflected in your numbers:

  • Increase ROAS by increasing Customer Lifetime Value
  • Long-lasting customer relationships for increased CLV
  • Reduce CACs through reconverting existing customers
  • Increased customer satisfaction and loyalty
  • Reduced response time and improved efficiency
  • Reach people right where their friends are on their main messenger app

WhatsApp is a powerful tool for customer support that can help you provide fast, efficient, and personalized service to your customers.

Once you move to marketing, we’ll help you out with our guide to create your WhatsApp marketing strategy.

Start with WhatsApp for its massive reach. Stay for its massive potential.

Build stronger relationships with your customers.

They WILL remember you. They WILL come back. And you WILL make money.

10 Tips for incredible Customer Service on WhatsApp

WhatsApp isn't just for chatting with friends anymore. It's a powerhouse for customer service. Let's dive into how you can make the most of it for your business.

1. Complete your WhatsApp Business profile

First things first, set up your WhatsApp Business profile. It's like your business card on WhatsApp. When customers look you up, they should see who you are, what you do, and how to get in touch. A good profile builds trust. It tells customers, "Hey, we're legit!" Include your logo, business description, email, and website. Make it easy for customers to recognize and reach you. Remember, a well-set-up profile is the first step to winning over your customers.

2. Integrate WhatsApp with CRM and other tools

Now, let's talk about teaming up WhatsApp with your CRM and other tools. Imagine this: every customer chat, order, and question in one place. No more jumping between screens or missing messages. Integration means everything is synced up, making life easier for you and your team. Plus, it helps you keep track of customer chats, orders, and preferences. It's like having a superpower for customer service and makes business-to-customer communication much easier!

3. Get started right away on the WhatsApp Business API

Key differences between the WhatsApp Business App and WhatsApp Business Platform (API).

Next up is the WhatsApp Business API. Think of it as your magic wand for customer service. With this API, and a WhatsApp Business Solution Provider that knows what they’re doing you can set up your entire customer service, including automated replies. This means when customers ask common questions, they get instant answers, even when you're off the clock. And there's more! You can build a complete picture of each customer. What they like, what they buy, when they shop – it's all collected into one customer profile by Hoola. This helps you offer them just what they need, right when they need it. Sounds useful? Using the API is a smart move to keep your customers happy and your business running smoothly.

4. Personalize all interactions with customers

Alright, let's get personal – with your customer service, that is. Personalizing chats on WhatsApp can really make your customers feel special. How? Start by using their name. It's simple but effective. Then, remember their past purchases and preferences when they reach out to you with specific questions (that sometimes lack context). It shows you pay attention and care, and Hoola makes this enormously quick and simple. Also, tweak your marketing messages to match what they like, based on support conversations. This way, your offers hit the mark and don't feel like just another ad. Personal touches go a long way in making customers feel valued and understood.

5. Put team collaboration as a high priority

Teamwork makes the dream work, especially on WhatsApp. Your team should work together like a well-oiled machine, also between teams, for example to streamline support and marketing. Share customer chats with teammates who have the right answers. Or jump into a conversation to add your expertise or notes and comments. You can even set up internal chats to brainstorm or solve tricky customer issues together. The best part? Everyone stays on the same page, making sure your customer service is top-notch and no message slips through the cracks. Remember, great teamwork leads to happy customers (and a much better customer experience).

6. Set up your personal AI chatbot

Ever thought of having a customer support agent that works 24/7? That's what an AI chatbot on WhatsApp can be for you. Say welcome to the future of AI in eCommerce. Set one up to answer basic questions, show off your products, or help with simple tasks. It's like having a friendly robot that knows your business inside out. Customers get quick answers, and you get more time to focus on the big stuff. Plus, it's a cool way to make sure no one's left waiting. A chatbot can be the first friendly hello that leads to a lasting customer relationship.

7. Manage appointments from WhatsApp directly

Handling appointments and customer questions can be a breeze with WhatsApp. Use it to book meetings, confirm times, or answer queries fast. It's like having a personal assistant in your pocket. Customers love it because it's easy. They can just message you, book a time, or ask something quickly. And you'll love it because it keeps everything organized and flowing smoothly. No more missed appointments or lost emails. Just smooth sailing and happy customers.

8. Set up abandoned cart recovery and other updates

Have you ever had customers who fill up their shopping carts and then just vanish? It happens, but WhatsApp can help you bring them back. Send a friendly message reminding them about their cart. Maybe they got busy or forgot. A little nudge can make a big difference. You can even throw in a special offer or help them with any questions they might have. It's a simple way to turn maybe-buyers into happy customers.

9. ALWAYS Keep customers up-to-date about their order status

When customers buy something, they're excited to get it. Keep that excitement alive with updates on WhatsApp. Let them know when their order is processed, shipped, and out for delivery. It's all about keeping them in the loop. This way, they know you're on top of things, and they can relax knowing their purchase is on its way. Regular updates can turn the waiting time into a good experience, building trust and satisfaction.

10. Re-engage customers with personalized campaigns

The conversation doesn’t have to end with the sale. Keep in touch with your customers on WhatsApp. Send them info about new products, special deals, or helpful tips. Make sure it's stuff they'll like. This keeps your brand in their mind in a friendly, helpful way. It's not just about selling; it's about building a relationship. When customers feel valued and understood, they're more likely to come back. And that's what good business is all about – creating lasting connections.

How to get started today with WhatsApp for Customer Service

The ACTUAL guide. Let’s go. If you are just starting, you can set it up in 1 day.

It won’t be perfect, but it will give you insight into your customer support, your customers’ needs, and how your product really helps them.

  1. Start below 500 contacts with WhatsApp Business
  2. Completely fill out your Business profile in the app with logo & details
  3. Customize your profile with your product catalog
  4. Create your labels to categorize customer inquiries
  5. Assign different team members to handle customer inquiries
  6. Set up in-app templates to quickly reply to frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Features of the WhatsApp Business App

After that, let’s see how to step up your game.

When you go above 500 contacts…

This is when we move to the WhatsApp Business API.

You will need a WhatsApp Business Solution Provider to operate it effectively. Basically, the software from another company that integrates with your WhatsApp. Its functionalities are not even comparable, from automations to collaborating with your support team, to integrating with your other tech stack.

This is where you move to Hoola.

How to get started? Do this.

  1. Choose your most relevant use case: Marketing, Sales or Support
  2. Sign up to Hoola and set up your environment in like 4 minutes.
  3. Connect your business number to their software
  4. Create automated flows on recurring situations
    - Sales: automate your product recommendations, upsells, cross-sells and resells
    - Support: automate FAQs, order management, assigning agents & delivery tracking
    - Marketing: send hyper-personalized campaigns to audience segments
  1. Brace yourself and start living in the future.

Best practices for WhatsApp Customer Service

Being available for your customers where their friends are is already 80% of the game. But you can go the extra mile, and stand out from the crowd.

Optimizing for your own business processes:

  • Use chat templates to save time and ensure consistency in your responses
  • Use WhatsApp’s broadcast feature to send mass messages to your customers
  • Use WhatsApp’s label feature to organize and prioritize customer conversations
  • Train your team on how to use WhatsApp effectively for customer support

Your customers will love you. Your team will love you. Let’s dive a bit deeper:

Using Chatbots and Live Chat Effectively

Chatbots are great, but nothing beats a real conversation. The key is to find the perfect balance. Use chatbots for the simple stuff – like FAQs and quick replies. But when a customer needs more, switch to live chat. That personal touch can turn a good service into a great one. Remember, chatbots start the conversation, but humans make the connection. At Hoola we automate the intent of the customer, and then assign an agent to customer cases that need human attention.

Putting the customer-first by connecting all channels

Your customers are everywhere, and they love to share. Use WhatsApp to let them send photos, videos, or voice messages. It makes solving their problems easier and more fun. Say a picture really is worth a thousand words when they’re showing a product issue. And when they share a video of how they're using your product? That's gold for understanding and helping them better.

Offering a cross-channel customer experience by adding WhatsApp marketing

WhatsApp isn't just for chatting; it's a powerful marketing tool. Use it to send updates, offers, or just check in with your customers. Make it a part of your whole marketing mix. When you connect with customers on WhatsApp, you meet them where they are – on their phones, in their daily life. It's a direct line to what they need and want. And when you get that right, you're not just selling; you're building a relationship that lasts.

Wrapping it up: Why WhatsApp is a game changer in customer support

So, we've walked through the world of WhatsApp and seen how it can change the game for customer service. From setting up a smart business profile to using chatbots and keeping customers in the loop – it's clear that WhatsApp is more than just a messaging app. It's a tool that can make your customer service quicker, more personal, and way more effective.

And hey, if you're thinking, "This sounds great, but where do I start?" – that's where Hoola comes in. We make customer service easier and more connected with the rest of your channels and overall strategy. Our multi-channel support solutions are like having a superpower for customer service. We help you manage everything smoothly and keep your customers smiling. Need more info? Just send us a WhatsApp or give us a call.

Remember, great customer service isn't just about answering questions. It's about making every customer feel heard, helped, and happy. And with WhatsApp in your toolkit, you're well on your way to doing just that. So why not give it a try and see the difference it makes? Your customers – and your team – will thank you for it!

Frequently asked questions

How can I use WhatsApp for customer service?

Using WhatsApp for customer service is straightforward. Start by setting up a WhatsApp account, either on the WhatsApp Business App, but preferably on the WhatsApp Business API (using Hoola). Then, complete your profile with your business details. You can use the app to chat with customers, send updates, and respond to inquiries. Implement AI chatbots for instant responses to common questions and integrate WhatsApp with your CRM for better customer data management. Personalize interactions, manage appointments, and use WhatsApp to send regular updates about orders and services. It's really about being where your customers are and making interactions easy and efficient.

Why is WhatsApp important for customer service?

WhatsApp is important for customer service because it's where a huge number of your customers spend their time. With over 2 billion users globally, WhatsApp offers a direct and personal way to communicate with your audience. In these times, the relationship between customers and brands is changing, and customers expect to have a direct line to brands. WhatsApp is fast, convenient, and familiar to most people, which makes it easier for them to reach out and interact with your business. Plus, its features like chat, voice messages, and the ability to share images and videos make it a versatile tool for delivering comprehensive customer service.

How can WhatsApp improve my customer service?

WhatsApp makes your customer service faster, more personal, and accessible. With features like instant messaging, automated responses, and the ability to send multimedia, it helps you connect with customers in a way that's both efficient and friendly. Plus, integrating WhatsApp with your CRM and other tools streamlines your entire customer engagement strategy, improving the overview of all your customer interactions.