WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app in the world today. The introduction of the WhatsApp Business API in 2018 also turned it into one of the most lucrative marketing channels.
Tons of WhatsApp marketing tools have appeared on the market since this launch. At their core, they can all help you send promotional and transactional messages to your contact list.
However, there are strategic ways to use WhatsApp for your business, beyond simple promotional and transactional messages.
For example, you can send personalized abandoned cart prompts, price drop alerts, or reminders for upcoming events.
You can even enable end-to-end shopping experiences, where customers browse products, add them to their cart, and check out without leaving WhatsApp. (One of our customers used this functionality to reduce cart abandonments by 61% and improve their monthly average order value by 38%.)
These advanced capabilities can massively boost customer engagement, retention, and conversion rates. But since WhatsApp is such a rapidly changing product, many WhatsApp marketing solutions don’t support all of them.
In this article, we’ll help you find the best WhatsApp marketing software for your business by discussing the three key factors for comparing each option, including the features and use cases they support.
We’ll also review the eight best WhatsApp marketing software tools and platforms:
Note that this post doesn’t include free bulk WhatsApp marketing software tools. While popular, many of these tools are filled with bugs, aren’t secure, and aren’t approved by Meta (which can lead to your WhatsApp numbers getting blocked).
Insider — a Meta-verified Business Solution Provider — brings together the most extensive set of personalization capabilities for established and emerging channels like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, RCS, SMS, and many more. To learn more, visit our website or schedule a demo with our team.
Before we dive into the three factors, note that WhatsApp’s pricing currently differs depending on the region and the type of conversation (user-initiated or business-initiated).
As a result, WhatsApp messages can be cheaper than SMS in some countries, while in others, they can be twice as expensive. This can massively impact your WhatsApp marketing strategy if you’re a global brand, so make sure to follow Meta’s documentation for the most up-to-date pricing details.
With that out of the way, let’s dive into the three factors.
Business Solution Providers (BSPs) are companies whose expertise in the WhatsApp Business Platform has been verified by Meta.
The benefit of working with BSPs (beyond their proven expertise) is the fact that they can take care of many admin tasks, like:
You can still do WhatsApp marketing without a BSP. However, you’ll have to go through the account creation and setup process alone, which can be pretty daunting. Plus, you won’t be able to rely on their expertise when it comes to managing contact lists, building campaigns, getting templates approved, and so on.
You can check if the tools you’re researching are listed as BSPs in Meta’s Partner Directory (Note that some are listed under the name of their parent company or subsidiary).
WhatsApp is a versatile tool that constantly gets new features and updates. That’s why it’s essential to understand its various use cases and choose a solution that can support the ones you need.
The most popular use cases for WhatsApp are:
WhatsApp is usually one of many channels brands use to talk to their customers. If that’s the case for you, look for a solution that also supports other channels, like SMS, Facebook Messenger, email, and so on.
That way, you can manage all channels from one place and avoid data silos instead of juggling tons of different logins and piecing together systems through complex integrations. Additionally, some platforms that support multiple channels also have cross-channel marketing automation features. This is essential because it helps you create consistent, personalized journeys across all touchpoints customers have with your brand — from messaging channels like WhatsApp and SMS to your website and mobile app.
Now that you know what to look for, let’s dive into the eight best WhatsApp marketing software tools and platforms (with a focus on the factors we just went over).
Insider is our platform that helps brands like Samsung, Puma, and IKEA improve conversion rates, lifetime value (LTV), and customer acquisition costs (CAC) by:
We’ve been recognized as a leader in categories like cross-channel campaign management, personalization, and mobile marketing by both Forrester and G2:
We’ve also supported WhatsApp as a key marketing channel for over three years.
After our acquisition of MindBehind (which made us a BSP), we now take care of the entire WhatsApp setup process for our customers, including creating their accounts, helping them build, manage, and get their templates approved, and much more.
You can use Insider’s WhatsApp marketing features to:
Insider also helps grow your WhatsApp subscriber base with gamified templates and text-to-opt-in features. These entice your website visitors and mobile app users to sign-up for your WhatsApp contact list.
In the next sections, you’ll learn exactly how to use Insider’s WhatsApp marketing features to increase conversions, reduce cart abandonments, increase customer engagement, and boost AOV.
Insider can send different types of WhatsApp messages, depending on your needs. Here are four of the most popular message types our customers use to drive engagement and conversions.
For example, you can send promo messages when:
Sending similar messages via WhatsApp can be a great way to increase sales. But as we said, WhatsApp can be an expensive channel in some regions, so it’s crucial for your offers to be as relevant as possible to your audience.
That’s why Insider’s powerful segmentation capabilities ensure you’re sending promo messages only to the users most likely to engage with them.
For example, Insider predictive audiences can help you target users based on:
These AI-powered predictive segments are created automatically based on the visitor and customer data our platform collects from your website, CRM, CMS, POS, and any other relevant source.
You can also create manual segments based entirely on the rules you set. For example, you can create a segment of WhatsApp subscribers who:
Put simply, our versatile, AI-powered segmentation helps you make the most out of your marketing budget by targeting the right WhatsApp subscribers with personalized offers.
2. Cart recovery messages
You can send these prompts to users who added an item to their cart but didn’t complete their purchase. This is a classic way to recover revenue that would have otherwise been lost.
Insider lets you choose when these messages get sent, e.g., 10 minutes, an hour, or a day after customers abandon their carts. If they still don’t convert, you can create additional automated messages to nudge them with discounts and limited-time offers.
3. Transactional order updates
These messages help you keep customers up-to-date with their orders, which improves the shopping experience and reduces repetitive support tickets like “When will my order arrive?”.
4. Event check-ins and reminders
These messages help you delight your customers by:
For example, the screenshot below shows an airline sending a reminder about an upcoming flight, along with a link where the passenger can check in.
Two other automated messages are also sent after the check-in is complete. As a result, the customer has their boarding pass and flight details in one convenient place.
After its recent upgrades, WhatsApp lets brands offer a complete buying experience inside the app — a feature called conversational commerce.
However, since this is a very novel use case, not many WhatsApp marketing tools can utilize it. Fortunately, Insider is one of the very few platforms that can take full advantage of WhatsApp’s conversational commerce feature.
Here are three examples of how our WhatsApp Commerce capabilities help you go from sending messages to creating end-to-end shopping experiences:
2. Add-ons, upgrades, and cross-sell opportunities. In the previous section, we showed how airlines can use WhatsApp to remind customers about upcoming flights. With our WhatsApp Commerce features, they can unlock opportunities for upsells and cross-sells by offering extra baggage, seat upgrades, flight orders, and much more.
3. Lead capture and client qualification. Conversation commerce can also be used to understand potential customers better and move them toward the next step in their journey. The example below shows a bank using WhatsApp to capture more details about its leads. This information can then be used to send personalized offers based on each user’s preferences.
Put simply, conversational commerce is a very versatile capability that will transform how lots of customers interact with brands and buy products.
In fact, some leading brands are already using it to create new, better shopping experiences. Here’s what one eCommerce director of a leading food retailer said about using Insider’s WhatsApp Commerce:
“Insider’s WhatsApp Commerce has fundamentally changed how we interact with our customers. We’re now able to meet our audience where they already are and offer complete order booking experiences at the touch of a button within their favorite app. Insider’s WhatsApp Commerce lets us build more personalized and conversational purchase experiences for our audience, as an extension of our promotional campaigns — allowing them to leverage our offers, browse our menu, and place an order without leaving WhatsApp. This has significantly reduced cart abandonment by 61% and improved our monthly average order value by 38%.”
As we said, Insider supports tons of other channels besides WhatsApp, such as email, SMS, RCS, web push, and many more. This means you can build consistent, personalized journeys across all customer touchpoints.
For example, you can start by sending web push notifications to customers who just browsed your site. If this doesn’t lead to a conversion, you can instruct Insider to wait for a few hours and send them a promo email. Finally, customers who convert can get a confirmation message in WhatsApp.
You can just as easily use other channels through this journey, e.g., SMS instead of email if that’s a preferred touchpoint by your target audience.
And, since this is all based on customers’ behaviors, each message and product recommendation will be personalized, leading to higher engagement and conversion rates.
You can set the rules and fully automate this entire process with Insider’s Architect. This tool lets you create cross-channel customer journeys with a user-friendly drag-and-drop editor, as shown in the screenshot below.
For example, MadeiraMadeira uses WhatsApp, SMS, and email to talk to their customers.
With Insider’s Architect, they were able to create a unified customer experience across these channels. Plus, Insider’s AI-powered next-best channel predictions helped the company reach its customers on their preferred channels, at the right time, which led to significantly higher conversion rates.
Finally, you can use Insider’s detailed analytics to track the performance of your WhatsApp marketing campaigns (deliverability, open rates, etc.), as well as for all other channels you’re using.
Book a live demo with our team to see Insider in action and learn how it can help you boost sales, retention, AOV, and LTV.
Sendinblue brings together a collection of solutions for digital marketers, including SMS and email marketing tools, a landing page builder, live chat, and more. They also offer a sales CRM, which helps manage customer conversations, assign them to different team members, and mark them as done. When it comes to WhatsApp, Sendinblue is primarily focused on helping brands manage their contact lists and send promotional and transactional messages.
Infobip is a communications and marketing automation software that supports lots of messaging channels. The Infobip platform combines many different products, including pre-built business apps and APIs for each of their channels, as well as for use cases like customer authentication and number lookup. Their WhatsApp offering helps brands run WhatsApp marketing campaigns, provide customer support, and more.
CleverTap is a platform for customer engagement, automation, and personalization. The platform excels at mobile app engagement and comes with features for building segments, sending in-app notifications, and moving customers through different lifecycle stages. CleverTap supports WhatsApp as a channel but is not a BSP, so it can’t create a WhatsApp account for you and doesn’t support all of WhatsApp’s use cases.
Twilio is a communications and customer engagement platform famous for its flexible SMS and email APIs. They offer a wide range of products for sending text messages, building cloud contact centers, programmable voice and video, omnichannel marketing, and more. Their Programmable Messaging API can be used to send transactional and marketing messages via WhatsApp, while their Conversational API lets you manage customer support and sales interactions.
MessageBird is an omnichannel automation platform. Similar to Twilio, MessageBird offers APIs that enable brands to send messages across different channels (although MessageBird supports a few more social media touchpoints). It also has APIs for making and receiving phone calls. Their WhatsApp offering can be used to send customized messages, answer customer questions, and enable conversational commerce.
WATI is a customer engagement and team inbox tool. Unlike the previous entries, WATI is a very simple tool that’s focused exclusively on WhatsApp, with a small number of integrations with solutions like Shopify, WooCommerce, HubSpot, and Zoho CRM. Their main features include a shared team inbox, bulk sending, alerts and notifications, and a no-code chatbot.
Whatso is a marketing platform focused on WhatsApp and WordPress. Like WATI, Whatso is a simple solution for small businesses with features for contact management, anti-blocking protection for WhatsApp phone numbers, broadcasting messages (including text and multimedia formats), and chatbot automation.
Insider lets you take advantage of WhatsApp’s full potential to drive more revenue, boost customer engagement, and improve AOV and LTV. As a BSP, we support WhatsApp’s key features and use cases — from transactional and promotional messages to price drop alerts, event reminders, and conversational commerce.
Our extensive set of channels and personalization capabilities can also help you create individualized, cross-channel campaigns across all touchpoints customers have with your brand.
Click here to book a demo with our team and see Insider in action.
Bas Drogtrop is responsible for Insider Benelux. With his strong eCommerce knowledge and experience in Adtech and Martech, he helps companies in the Benelux grow their online businesses. Insider Benelux's partner portfolio includes leading retailers such as Hunkemöller, ICI Paris XL, OTTO, and iBOOD.