As traditional brick and mortar businesses were forced to close their doors, quickly shift online, and rapidly digitally transform their offerings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the consumer demand for omnichannel digital solutions has increased exponentially. One such solution is WhatsApp for Business, which has seen a huge adoption increase in 2020. High delivery and read rates as well as rich media functionality make the Facebook-owned app a perfect channel for providing real-time customer service and support to your audience on an app that experiences over 65 billion peer-to-peer messages shared on a daily basis. We are helping businesses all over Southern Africa to utilise the channel and have broken down How to use WhatsApp for Customer Service and Support in 2021.
- Auto Industry
- Banking & Insurance
Why it’s important to connect with your customers on a 1-to-1 level
Customers expect swift, private, and personalised responses from the brands they communicate with. WhatsApp for Business allows a business to instantly engage with customers on the platform they are already using every day in an asynchronous and personalised manner.
WhatsApp has become ubiquitous in today’s instant messaging world. It is the most popular messaging app in the world and businesses can now build automated customer service solutions, such as LiveChat and ChatBots, customised to their business needs and focused on the user experience. This was made possible by WhatsApp releasing their Business API, which saw huge uptake in applications across industries in 2020.
1. Air Travel
- Booking Confirmation Documents
- Flight Status Updates
- Boarding Passes
- Live Chat with Air Travel
Air travel operators were early adopters of WhatsApp for Business, using the platform to send booking confirmations, check-in notifications, boarding passes, and flight status updates to passengers. This ensures that receiving critical information like boarding documentation and flight updates is a seamless experience on a platform passengers are already using in the palm of their hand.
Passengers wanting to make changes to their flights or to get more information can visit an automated ChatBot FAQs page 24/7 or chat live to an agent who can assist them further during normal business hours. With COVID-19 lockdown levels and restrictions changing on an ongoing basis, timely COVID-19 air travel notifications can be sent to passengers engaged on the channel
South African Airline, FlySafair, is leading the pack in terms of customer service through WhatsApp in South Africa. They were one of the early adopters of this dynamic channel, using WhatsApp to send boarding passes, provide critical health and safety information, enable passengers to make a change to their booking, and more. Want to see how it works? Save ‘+27769585303’ to your contacts and say Hi on WhatsApp.
2. Auto Industry
- Roadside Assistance Support
- Service Booking
Automotive companies that offer services like Roadside Assistance and servicing plans are using WhatsApp for Business to improve the ease of use of these customer value-adds.
Vehicle owners who have experienced a breakdown can request roadside assistance through an automated ChatBot that will ask validating questions such as live location pin,, customer ID, and car registration. Once these information fields have been submitted, they are automatically passed onto the roadside assistance team via an API. A Live chat agent can then be assigned to ensure the case is seen to and that the customer receives all the necessary support. This makes the process as seamless as possible for the vehicle owner and ensures that they receive timely assistance.
Another way that WhatsApp for Business can improve the customer service layer is the ability to make, confirm, and change vehicle service bookings. Vehicle owners can request to book a service, receive their confirmation via a WhatsApp push notification, and then be able to chat live with an agent to edit or cancel their service booking.
WhatsApp location services allow a vehicle owner to send their location pin to find their nearest auto service location or to help roadside assistance agents to correctly locate the broken down vehicle.
- Customer Returns
- Find a store near me
- Account Management
One of the biggest challenges in the retail industry is dealing with unhappy customers. WhatsApp provides an instant means for shoppers to learn more about a stores’ return policy, opening times, and more by visiting an FAQs page or by chatting to a live customer care agent.
When a customer wants to return an item, they can request the details for their nearest store by using the “Find a Store Near Me’ feature. By sending a WhatsApp location pin, an API can automatically suggest the nearest store based on the location details provided.
If a retail store provides a credit or higher purchase offering, the WhatsApp for Business chat can be turned into a full account management solution with the ability for customers to check account balances, pay accounts, and take advantage of the latest promotions.
Save Hyper, KwaZulu Natal’s largest independent retailer, uses their Apex-powered WhatsApp for Business to enable customers to chat live with Save customer care agents, browse promotions, and find their nearest Save Hyper store. Print costs have been eliminated and customer satisfaction is at an all-time high.
- Freight Tracking
- Parcel pick-up requests
Historically speaking, customer-facing logistics management is cumbersome and trying to speak to the right person oftentimes is impossible. WhatsApp for Business can solve many of the most commonly faced issues by providing a convenient way to request parcel pickups, track freight-in-transit, and to chat live via the WhatsApp channel.
A WhatsApp message containing the waybill number can be sent to a customer after they have sent a parcel or are waiting for a parcel from a brand. This enables the customer to send their Waybill number to the chat and receive instantaneous updates about where the parcel is and how long it will take to arrive. Back-end System API integrations allow the customer to receive on-the-go updates as the parcel is being delivered.
If the customer needs to update the delivery information, a live chat with a logistics agent can help locate the parcel and identify the correct supervisor who can assist the customer.
Global logistics provider, Aramex, is using the WhatsApp API to great effect. Since introducing the new channel, Aramex has served over one million customers while at the same time experiencing a 19% decrease in incoming call volumes. 41% of all shipment enquiries now come through the Aramex WhatsApp for Business.
5. Banking & Insurance
- Account Signups
Banking no longer needs to take place in a physical branch location. Some of the biggest challenges faced by banking customers can be solved like enquiring about new accounts, getting a quote for a loan or insurance package, updating personal details, and much more via digital channels like WhatsApp for Business.
Bank customers who want to see if they qualify for a loan can complete the approval process by answering automated questions followed by a live banker confirming sensitive information all in the same chat. Insurance companies can engage with customers and fulfill quoting requests using agents who chat live with customers on WhatsApp.
Banks and insurance companies are starting to fully understand how WhatsApp for Business can easily integrate into their legacy systems and create immense value for the customer and business.
King Price Insurance uses WhatsApp for Business, powered by Apex, to provide support and account management services to existing customers. Prospective customers can request a call-back from a King Price agent or chat directly to an agent in real-time. Insurance agents can chat with new prospects to provide them with quotes and initiate the sign up process. This has greatly increased monthly customer care resolutions and has lead to a huge reduction in call centre bottlenecks.
WhatsApp for Business possesses immense value when it comes to improving your business’s customer service and support layers. Whether it’s banking, retail, auto industry, travel, or even logistics – providing customer service resolution via an instant and trusted channel like WhatsApp will be critical to successful customer service in today’s digital world.