Messaging Channels — Africa

Differences between WhatsApp business and WhatsApp API

WhatsApp Business is an application primarily built for small and medium-sized enterprises to interact with their customers.

According to CNBC Africa 97% of internet users in Kenya use WhatsApp. This makes it important for businesses to understand the different variations to WhatsApp such as WhatsApp business and WhatsApp API and the impact they have on their businesses.

The difference between WhatsApp business and WhatsApp API

WhatsApp business is an application that was built primarily for small and medium size enterprises with the goal of making interactions with their customers on WhatsApp easier. On the other hand  WhatsApp API was built with large and medium sized enterprises in mind ,who need an entire business suite that integrates with other channels and data.

Features of WhatsApp business


Catalogs are an integral part of WhatsApp business because it enables a business to showcase their products and services to their customers.

Business profile

A business profile enables one to input details of the company such as its name , location, website link , business description and email address. This enables the customer to know about a business and what it is about.

Business profile
Business profile
Automate messages

With WhatsApp business one can automate their messages . For example if a business is inactive at that moment and a customer reaches out , the customer can receive a message informing them that they will be addressed at a later time frame. This helps that customer know that the business did not ignore them.


Businesses can automate greetings for new customers who have reached out to the business.


A business can label conversations they have had with a consumer so as to segment them according to their individual needs. The business can create up to 20 labels and give them different colors.

Broadcast Lists

From the lists that were created a business can go the extra mile and create a broadcast list that will enable them to send specific messages to specific segments.


A business can know how many messages were sent out , received and read so as to know how best to plan for and improve their next campaigns.

However despite the fact that WhatsApp business has a plethora of advantages it can be a limiting App for businesses that are seeking to reach a wider audience and to scale faster and that is where WhatsApp API comes in.

Features of WhatsApp API

Quick responses

WhatsApp API allows a user to create session buttons that allow a user to respond to messages and take the necessary action. For example if a user wants to give feedback they can use the quick reply feature.

Content Heavy Communication

WhatsApp API enables users to create messages that are inclusive of images, videos , documents and audio files. This helps to improve the overall customer experience

List Messages

Brands can create messages that have up to 10 options that customers can read and reply to accordingly . For example a bakery can have variations to certain bread and present a list of options to the customer to choose from.

Conversational flows and chatbots

Businesses can setup conversational flows and bots that hep to qualify high value leads ,drive self serve services for scheduling appointments , finding exact store locations, cancelling orders etc.

Natural Language Processing

The use of Natural Language Processing(NLP) to understand phrases or grammatical errors that occur when an individual types.


Business can integrate with backend systems for ticketing , knowledge base, or even a CRM.

Aligning with the customer journey

Businesses can align with customers throughout their buyers journey so as to send them notifications to complete orders, to purchase an item, to remind them or appointments etc.

Monitor responses

When notifications are sent out , the business can monitor communication with their customers.

WhatsApp business vs WhatsApp API

WhatsApp business vs WhatsApp API: What should your Kenyan business use.

If your business is still young and still acquiring customers then the basic functionalities of WhatsApp business will suffice. However if your business is medium or large and gets loads of traffic on a day to day basis then WhatsApp API may be your best bet .Get started with Brrng WhatsApp Api today

Last updated
June 12, 2024
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