A Comprehensive Guide to Setting Up and Managing WhatsApp Business API Phone Number
Considering how big WhatsApp is as an eCommerce platform, it’s only natural for you to make the move and use WhatsApp for marketing. But if your business is choosing WhatsApp as a marketing platform you need more than just a WhatsApp Business profile.
Surely you can start a profile and carry out business but to be able to tap into the full potential of WhatsApp including automation, you will need WhatsApp Business API. WhatsApp has a lot to offer and only with WhatsApp Business API can you access all of its benefits.
In this post, we will go through everything you need to know about integrating WhatsApp Business API phone numbers for seamless messaging!
What is the difference between a WhatsApp phone number and a WhatsApp Business API number?
Using a regular WhatsApp Business account lets people conduct free messaging, sending media, etc. but it is more suited for personal usage to conduct group or one-on-one communication. It is free to use, lets you broadcast messages for up to 256 contacts, and can send media, audio clips, etc. with a 100 MB limit.
WhatsApp Business API is designed for mid to large-scale businesses and hence a WhatsApp Business API number lets you utilize a lot more features and benefits that are specifically designed for conducting business. With a WhatsApp Business API number, you can leverage automation, send messages through sessions and different templates, share unlimited broadcasts, etc.
Using a WhatsApp Business number, you can also power up your business’s communications across the globe and connect with solutions like CRM or other solution providers and utilize automated API messaging.
How long does the verification process take for WhatsApp Business API phone numbers?
It typically takes 3 days to 2 weeks for your WhatsApp Business account to get the WhatsApp green tick verification badge it acts as a trust indication showing how your number is authorized by WhatsApp. To start using the WhatsApp Business API phone number you must submit your business registration details and submit a phone number for WhatsApp verification.
What are the requirements for a WhatsApp business API phone number?
Before choosing a phone number for your WhatsApp Business you must ensure that it’s valid and meets the following requirements:
• The number should be owned by you.
• The number must be valid.
• It should have a country and area code, like cell numbers and landlines.
• The number should be able to receive SMS and voice calls to complete registration.
• The number should not be a short code.
• It should not be a number that has been previously used with the WhatsApp Business Platform.
To use a phone number that has already been registered with WhatsApp or WhatsApp Business App, you can migrate it to the WhatsApp Business Platform.
Can I use a toll-free or virtual phone number for WhatsApp Business API?
It is common for businesses to want to use their 1-800 or toll-free numbers as their customers are already familiar with them. Since these numbers are behind an Interactive Voice Response or IVR system usually, WhatsApp registration calls will be unable to navigate through it. Still, IVR phone numbers can be registered if they are able to redirect voice calls and SMS messages to a real person and accept international calls.
These are the steps to register IVR numbers:
• WhatsApp will share one or two phone numbers from which you can expect the registration call to come.
• Either create an allow list for these numbers or add them to your WABA and open a Direct Support ticket for these numbers and include the phone number you want to register in the ticket.
• To obtain the registration code, route the registration call to an employee or a mailbox.
Note that you must deactivate your IVR phone number from the WhatsApp consumer or business app in order to use the API if it is associated with either one.
How do I register my phone number for WhatsApp API?
For you to register a WhatsApp API number you first need a number that meets all the requirements. Here is how you can register your number for WhatsApp Business API step by step.
• Find a BSP that fits your needs and log in from the BSP’s website.
• Create or select your Facebook Business account and add your business information.
• Create or select your WhatsApp Business Profile.
• Register your WhatsApp Business number and verify either by text message or voice call.
If you are a business that started with the WhatsApp Business App and your business is scaling and the number of customers and conversations are increasing, you will be planning to migrate your WhatsApp Business number from the app to API. But you cannot use a number in the app and API at the same time.
First, you will have to delete your WhatsApp Business account. 3 minutes after deleting the account your phone number will be available again to be used for the WhatsApp Business API.
Can I change the phone number anytime for my WhatsApp Business API?
No. A number cannot be changed once it has been registered with the WhatsApp Business API.
If you need to change the number, you must apply again for a new WhatsApp Business API following the steps mentioned above.
Can I use multiple WhatsApp Business API clients with a single phone number?
With a single number, you can only access a single WhatsApp Business API client. However, it is possible for the business to acquire multiple WhatsApp Business API clients under the names of various company divisions, including finance, procurement, sales, and customer support, on various phone numbers.
What are the best practices for managing multiple WhatsApp Business API phone numbers?
When using multiple WhatsApp Business API numbers to carry out different processes and functions of your business, you need to keep in mind a few good practices that can help simplify the whole thing.
1. Keep the Phone Number List in Mind
You can register up to 20 numbers for a Business Manager if you are a verified business. Track and remember your phone number list in mind. Note that if your message quality and engagement are lower, you will only be able to add two numbers, irrespective of being verified or not.
2. Create a Central Dashboard
Creating a Central Dashboard will let you have an overview of all conversations across all numbers. This is important especially when your business is dealing with customers in scale. Interakt offers a shared inbox specifically for this! Features like a Shared Inbox for WhatsApp by Interakt make managing conversations easier.
3. Automate Conversations
Automating conversation across the numbers to ensure that you remain proactive across all these phone numbers that you use. You can automate things like order alerts, customer support, FAQs, etc.
But at the same time, you can use the WhatsApp Business API with Interakt to create a custom WhatsApp automation flow for abandoned cart recovery, customer engagement, customer retention, repeat orders, and more.
Leverage Seamless Messaging by integrating WhatsApp Business API Phone Number!
We have gone through all the possible questions you might have about integrating the WhatsApp API number for your business. As we have already mentioned, the complete potential of WhatsApp can only be unlocked by using the WhatsApp Business API.
To use your WhatsApp Business number and unleash the potential of WhatsApp Business API setting up automation and leveraging all its features, you need a comprehensive WhatsApp Business solution provider.
And Interakt is exactly that!
Book a WhatsApp Business API demo with Interakt today
The standard WhatsApp number is used for personal purposes, while both WhatsApp Business and WhatsApp Business API are more suited for business use, including marketing, sales and support purposes, with the help of automations.
Some of the requirements for WhatsApp Business API phone number include owning a mobile phone or landing (fixed) number. This should be a number that you can receive phone calls or SMS on, with no blocks.
The Official WhatsApp Business API verification approval process usually takes 3 days to 2 weeks. We recommend working with a WhatsApp Business API provider like Interakt to ensure you comply with all the requirements, increasing your chances of faster verification.
You can downgrade your WhatsApp Business API phone number to WhatsApp consumer/ Business app using the following steps:
• Open Facebook Business Manager account
• Go to Business Settings and click on WhatsApp Accounts
• Select the relevant WhatsApp Account
• Click on Settings (next to People, Partners)
• Scroll down and click on ‘WhatsApp Manager’
• Click on the Trash Icon to delete your number as WhatsApp Business API number
• Once deleted, wait for a few minutes
• To register a new number, you will need to go through the registration process again
Some of the best practices for managing multiple WhatsApp Business API phone numbers include:
• Using a WhatsApp Business API platform like Interakt
• Separating numbers based on purpose/ department (marketing, sales, support, etc.)
• Setting up a Shared Inbox for complete visibility on conversations
• Streamlining the number of WhatsApp Business API phone numbers you register
WhatsApp Business can be used by multiple users using extensions, tools and hacks available online, but the risk of account ban exists. But if you use a WhatsApp Business API provider like Interakt, you can add multiple users to manage the conversations on the messaging platform.
Some of the issues as you update your business app, may include change in number notification, country restrictions, inability to send messages with emojis, and similar. Use the WADebug command line tool to help find potential issues with the WhatsApp Business API setup and to request help from WhatsApp support. Alternatively, you can reach out to your WhatsApp Business API platform to assist you. You can read more here.
Once a number is registered on WhatsApp Business API, it cannot be changed. You will need to apply for a new WhatsApp Business API if you need to change the number.