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WhatsApp Business API vs. WhatsApp Chatbots: Which is Right for You?

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May 30, 2024

6 min read


WhatsApp, the widely used messaging app, has 3 billion users worldwide. The global reach and ease of use have revolutionized how businesses engage with their customers.
Providing a customer experience is crucial in today’s landscape, and with its extensive user base, everyone is vying for consumer attention on WhatsApp. Also, with the introduction of WhatsApp Business features, navigating the varied options can be tricky.
Two standout factors come into play: the WhatsApp Business API and AI chatbots for WhatsApp. Read on to explore these tools further to determine which aligns best with your business requirements.

Exploring the WhatsApp Business API

Businesses may interact with their customers on WhatsApp with ease thanks to the API WhatsApp Business, which is a set of tools and resources.
In contrast to the free group-only WhatsApp Business app, the API easily connects with the infrastructure of your business to provide functions like:


An API stands for Application Programming Interface. Companies can use it to connect numerous chatbots and agents, which enables them to handle a lot of client engagements at once. This is perfect for medium-sized to large-sized enterprises that get a lot of inquiries.

Advanced Functionalities

Through the API, a vast diversity of features are accessible. You can integrate your CRM system with complex decision tree-based chatbots to deliver an impeccable customer experience. You can even build automated broadcasts that feature rich media content, such as images and movies.

Team Collaboration

Managing multiple customer conversations can get overwhelming. The API facilitates team inboxes, allowing agents to collaborate and ensuring no inquiry goes unanswered.

Clickable Buttons

Enhance the user experience by incorporating interactive buttons within messages, allowing customers to take desired actions like scheduling appointments or visiting product pages.
However, the API has its own set of drawbacks:
Technical Expertise: Building applications using the API requires programming knowledge or a partnership with a WhatsApp Business Solution Provider (BSP).
Cost: Unlike the free WhatsApp Business app, the API incurs a cost based on message volume, country, and the chosen BSP.

AI Chatbots on WhatsApp: The Ultimate Conversation Game Changer

Consider a helper overseeing your customer conversations on WhatsApp. That’s the wonder of AI chatbots. These smart tools can streamline duties and offer round-the-clock assistance to customers.
Here are a few notable benefits:

Improved Customer Experience

Chatbots free up human agents to handle more complicated queries by scheduling appointments, resolving basic problems, and providing commonly asked questions and answers. As a result, customers are happy, and the workflow is more effective.

Increased Engagement

Chatbots can initiate conversations, personalize interactions, and offer product recommendations. This proactive approach boosts customer engagement and potentially leads to more sales.

Data Collection and Insights

During chats, chatbots can collect useful customer information. By analysing this data, you may better understand consumer preferences, spot patterns, and develop your marketing plan as a whole.

While chatbots offer significant benefits, there are limitations to consider:
Limited Understanding: AI chatbots are still under development, and their ability to understand complex questions or nuanced conversations may be limited.

Development and Maintenance: Building and maintaining a robust chatbot requires investment in time and resources. There are also pre-built chatbot solutions available, but customization options might be limited.

The Ideal Combination: API and Chatbot Collaboration

The interesting component is how well AI chatbots and the WhatsApp Business API can collaborate. Utilizing the API enables you to create a chatbot with enhanced features. This empowers you to automate interactions while smoothly incorporating agents for more intricate scenarios.
While both tools offer distinct advantages, consider this: the most powerful solution might be a combination of both. Integrating an AI chatbot with your WhatsApp Business API can lead you to:

  • Handle Basic Inquiries: Chatbots can manage routine questions, freeing up agents for complex issues requiring human touch.
  • Qualify Leads: Chatbots can gather valuable customer data during conversations, allowing your sales team to focus on qualified leads.
  • 24/7 Support: Chatbots can provide initial support outside of business hours, ensuring customer queries are always addressed promptly.

Deciding Between API and Chatbot: Making the Right Choice

Determining whether you should use business APIs or an AI chatbot for WhatsApp depends on several factors.
Let’s break it down briefly to assist you in making an informed decision:

Go for the WhatsApp Business API if:

  • You’re a medium-to-large business with a high volume of customer interactions.
  • You need advanced features like complex chatbots, CRM integration, and team collaboration.
  • You have the technical expertise or a partnership with a BSP to develop custom applications.

Consider AI Chatbots for WhatsApp if:

  • You’re a small to medium business looking to automate basic tasks and improve customer service.
  • You want to increase customer engagement and personalize interactions.
  • You don’t have the resources for extensive development but are open to pre-built chatbot solutions.

Wrapping Up

For businesses of any scale, both the WhatsApp Business API and AI chatbots bring numerous benefits.
Consider your communication objectives, financial limits, and company requirements carefully before making a choice. Ensure that the solution you choose will assist you in reaching your objectives and raising customer satisfaction levels, whether you wish to use AI chatbots, the WhatsApp Business API, or both.
Shipyaari Delta can assist you in turning each WhatsApp conversation into a possible growth opportunity. From broadcasts to catalogs and chatbots to multi-agent live chats, it offers a comprehensive suite of tools to transform WhatsApp interactions and drive business success.
Try it today and enhance the power of WhatsApp for your business!

Frequently Asked Questions

No, the WhatsApp Business API incurs costs based on message volume and the chosen Business Solution Provider (BSP).
There’s a free tier for sending certain message types, but there are associated fees for full functionality. AI chatbots can come with tiered pricing structures or membership fees, depending on the platform you select.

No. You cannot use a regular WhatsApp number with the Business API. You’ll need a dedicated business phone number to register for the API.

While some knowledge can be beneficial, it’s not a must. The API itself demands coding expertise. Numerous Business Solution Providers (BSPs) offer interfaces and assistance to help businesses integrate the API, even without extensive programming know-how. 

The security of AI chatbots varies based on the platform you select. Seek out chatbot providers with security measures in place to safeguard customer data gathered during conversations.

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