Blog / What is a WhatsApp business account: All the options and features of your WhatsApp business account.

What is a WhatsApp business account: All the options and features of your WhatsApp business account.

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By Johannes Mansbart

CEO, chatarmin.com

Updated on January 03, 2024

WhatsApp Market Comparison

What is a WhatsApp business account? Create and set up a WhatsApp business account - this is how it works.

Over two billion private individuals use the most popular messenger service in the world: WhatsApp. It is estimated that there will be three billion WhatsApp users worldwide soon. In Germany alone, over 60 million people use WhatsApp. So, globally as well as in our latitudes, WhatsApp is the most-installed app of all. According to studies, WhatsApp is used by about 90 percent of German smartphone owners. The app is used by users of all ages and sometimes even takes precedence over email, especially among young and old people.

The question is therefore very obvious: Can I - as a business - communicate professionally with customers, partners, sponsors, and other professional stakeholders, via WhatsApp? This is exactly possible via a WhatsApp business account.

WhatsApp offers several solutions for commercial use.

In this article you can read:

  • what a WhatsApp business account is
  • how to set up your WhatsApp business account
  • what the advantages of a WhatsApp business account are

Conclusion: WhatsApp Business App, WhatsApp Business Premium, or WhatsApp Business Platform?

To save you an extensive "read" and to give you a quick overview, you will find the most important differences of the "three WhatsApp business options" - the WhatsApp Business App, WhatsApp Business Premium, and the WhatsApp Business Platform - summarised here:

FeatureWhatsApp Business AppWhatsApp Business PremiumWhatsApp Business Platform
Monthly CostsFreeFree€99.00 + META Costs
Free Conversations
GDPR compliance
Automations and Journeys
Support Agents and Ticketing
WhatsApp mobile app
Dashboards and Analytics
Custom Logins and 2FA
Documentation and Segments
API Integrations
WhatsApp Desktop Users410Infinite
Multi-Messenger
Klaviyo WhatsApp Integration
Shopify WhatsApp Integration
Shopware WhatsApp Integration

Book your 25-minute sparring session with me to choose the right WhatsApp business option for your company:

Let's now take a closer look at the question of "which WhatsApp" is the right one for your corporate communication, via WhatsApp. We will start with the basics, trying to give you an overview and go more and more into the details further down the road. Thanks for reading and giving this a go!

What is a WhatsApp business account?

A WhatsApp business account is required to use the WhatsApp Business App, WhatsApp Business Premium, or the WhatsApp Business API.

A WhatsApp Business Account gives businesses access to advanced features tailored for the business use of WhatsApp. WhatsApp has thus developed three customised solutions for business use.

For customers, a WhatsApp business account is relatively easy to distinguish from a personal WhatsApp account.

A corporate account is marked on WhatsApp with "corporate account" or "business account" in the profile. In addition, a green tick can be seen on some accounts. These brands have been officially verified and match a certain size- or adspent- threshold.

In the screenshot below, you can see an example of a verified WhatsApp business account with a green tick, Chatarmin customer waterdrop®. The nine-figure D2C Brand with Shopify and Klaviyo techstack scales its WhatsApp marketing via Chatarmin, through Shopify WhatsApp campaigns and Klaviyo WhatsApp automations:

The waterdrop® WhatsApp enterprise account has been successfully verified and scaled in partnership with Chatarmin

waterdrop® WhatsApp corporate account

How much does a WhatsApp business account cost?

Via the WhatsApp Business App, the corporate account is free of charge. When used via the WhatsApp Business API - now called WhatsApp Business Platform - the costs depend on the provider. With Chatarmin, you can use your WhatsApp Business account with numerous features from €99.00 per month.

You can find more information about our prices on our Chatarmin WhatsApp pricing page. Separate to the tool costs, there are direct META costs that regulate the use and costs of the WhatsApp Business Platform.

Here you can find [our detailed blog post on the differences between WhatsApp Private, WhatsApp Business, WhatsApp Business Premium, and the WhatsApp Business Platform. You will also find all costs and functions explained in detail.

WhatsApp Business app screenshots and application areas

Source: Google Play Store WhatsApp App

What does "This is a chat with a corporate account" mean?

To offer users more transparency, WhatsApp flags conversations with companies. When a chat with a company is started, customers will see if it is a company account, or a private WhatsApp account.

Apart from that, customers will see if the company is accessing the conversation via Facebook or other platforms. The following notices are displayed to customers when chatting with businesses:

When businesses use WhatsApp through a partner: "This business is working with other businesses to manage this chat." When businesses access WhatsApp through Facebook: "This business uses a secure service from Facebook to manage this chat."

Furthermore, you can tell if the WhatsApp business account in question is a WhatsApp Business App account, or a WhatsApp Business Platform account, by the following two detail differences:

The differences between a WhatsApp Business App company account and a WhatsApp Business Platform WhatsApp account

Learn the differences using a WhatsApp App corporate account and a WhatsApp Business Platform corporate account: Voice calls are possible with the WhatsApp Business App. Video calls do not work with the WhatsApp Business App, nor using the WhatsApp Business Platform ("API").

An important detail on the side: neither voice nor video calls are possible with a WhatsApp Business API account as of September 2023!

Create a WhatsApp business account: Here's how!

Creating a WhatsApp business account differs depending on which WhatsApp business solution you choose. We will now highlight the three WhatsApp Business options: Business App, Business Premium, and the Business Platform.

WhatsApp Business App: The perfect WhatsApp business account for self-employed and sole traders.

The WhatsApp Business App was developed for small businesses and self-employed freelancers. It is therefore particularly suitable for local businesses that do not have a professional service department, such as your hairdresser, consultants, a lawyer or farm store.

The WhatsApp Business App works similarly to the private WhatsApp you know for writing with friends and family. Additionally, the WhatsApp Business app offers some handy features for businesses with quick replies, a catalog, and broadcasts.

WhatsApp Business App Screenshots and Uses

Source: Google PlayStore WhatsApp App

WhatsApp Business App: Five steps to your WhatsApp business account

Follow these next steps to create your WhatsApp Business App account:

  1. Download the WhatsApp Business App (Android, iOS) and open it
  2. Read and accept the terms of use
  3. Add your phone number and confirm it with a 6-digit code via SMS 2-factor authentication
  4. Create your account by specifying company name, category and profile picture. You can update and change them at any time
  5. After creating the business account, we recommend you to enter additional information in the company profile. You can find a screenshot above based on the example Human Instinct. To do this, select "DISCOVER" in the app and then "Company Profile". Here you can add / customize the following company information:
  • name
  • phone number
  • address
  • category
  • opening hours
  • email address
  • websites and social media URLs

WhatsApp Business App Conclusion: The most important things to know about your WhatsApp Business App company account.

The official WhatsApp Business App offers businesses advanced features for communicating with customers. The app is an extension of the regular WhatsApp app and is still free of charge. This solution is primarily aimed at small businesses that want to better present themselves on WhatsApp.

A WhatsApp business account allows you to save text modules, create a business profile, and send automated messages.

Although WhatsApp Business is intended for business use, we do not recommend its use to larger business owners with employees and a broader target audience. The WhatsApp Business app is not GDPR compliant and for this reason is not the optimal solution for scalable communication.

For micro and individual entrepreneurs, the WhatsApp Business App is the ideal solution for the above reasons.

WhatsApp Business App at a glance.

  • Employee accounts: 1
  • Linkable devices: 5
  • WhatsApp desktop compatible: Yes
  • Assign chats to employees: No
  • Approved WhatsApp newsletters: No
  • Sales and support features: Basic features
  • Privacy compliant: No

WhatsApp Business Premium: The intermediate solution between the WhatsApp Business App and the WhatsApp Business Platform.

WhatsApp Business Premium is a subscription model of WhatsApp Business. It extends the range of functions of the WhatsApp Business app, and is considered an optimal in-between-solution, if businesses shy back from using the WhatsApp Business Platform yet.

As of September 2023, WhatsApp Business Premium is not yet available globally, and - as you would expect from WhatsApp - is only being tested in developing countries and rolled out step by step. You can only check if you are eligible for WhatsApp Business Premium, by looking into your company profile yourself. If the option is available, it will be offered to you. Chances are small yet for DACH business owners. WhatsApp usually tests new features in its test-countries like Brazil, or generally, in mobile-first developing countries.

Currently, there are two features that are unlocked by subscribing to WhatsApp Business Premium:

  • The number of linkable devices is increased from four to 10. This means that WhatsApp Business Premium subscribers can use a total of 11 devices. As in the basic version, only a smartphone can still be used; all other devices must be desktop-based. Tablets are also excluded. Chats can be assigned to specific employees to better organize team collaboration.
  • The automatically generated "WhatsApp website" of your company consists of brand name and profile picture in the basic version. In the premium version, opening hours, address, link to your website and the WhatsApp catalog are added. In the basic version, the link to the website is created based on the phone number (the so-called wa.me link), in the premium version you can additionally choose your own link name that leads to your company overview (as far as it is not already taken).

To learn more about WhatsApp Business Premium solution, read this blogpost from us..

The WhatsApp website is composed of the information you store in the WhatsApp business app. For example, if you change the opening hours in your WhatsApp Business profile, they will be changed on the website as well.

PLEASE NOTE: WhatsApp Business Premium is currently not yet available nationwide in German-speaking countries, as of September 2023.

This new feature "WhatsApp Business Premium" is worthwhile for your company if you are satisfied with the range of functions of the business app, but want to bring in more employees and keep a better overview of who answers which chats.

However, WhatsApp Business Premium is also not suitable for medium-sized and large companies. It still lacks many support features that are standard in professional chat support, such as employee routing, forwarding, and chatbots. WhatsApp offers the WhatsApp Business API for this purpose. Via the interface, you link your WhatsApp business account with a business software for WhatsApp - the WhatsApp Business Platform.

The data protection situation also remains problematic with WhatsApp Premium. By accessing the phonebook of the connected smartphone, numbers are passed on to WhatsApp without authorization. This is also ruled out by using the API.

WhatsApp Business Premium Conclusion

WhatsApp Business Premium is a subscription model of WhatsApp Business. It expands the range of functions of the WhatsApp Business app.

WhatsApp Business Premium is currently not yet available nationwide in German-speaking countries, as of September 2023.

This new feature is worthwhile for your company if you are satisfied with the range of functions of the business app, but want to engage more employees and keep a better overview of who answers which chats.

However, WhatsApp Business Premium is not suitable for medium-sized and large companies. It still lacks many support features that are standard in professional chat support, such as employee routing, redirects and chatbots.

WhatsApp Business Premium app at a glance.

  • Employee accounts: 1
  • Linkable devices: 11
  • Assign chats to employees: Yes
  • Approved WhatsApp newsletters: No
  • Sales and support features: Advanced basic features
  • Privacy compliant: No

WhatsApp Business Platform: Scale your professional WhatsApp efforts in a GDPR-compliant API WhatsApp Business account

You can get access to the WhatsApp Business Platform (former "API") through a specific licensed META partner, a so-called BSP ("Business Service Provider") or ISV (Initial Software Vendor). To register with one of these, you can use Chatarmin, for example, via a so-called "embedded signup" from the BSP provider. To create a company account via an "Embedded Signup" you need the following things:

  • Valid phone number (mobile or landline)
  • Personal Facebook account
  • Facebook Business Manager account with admin rights
  • Company information, commercial register, company register or association register excerpt
  • A payment option to cover variable WhatsApp spent, mostly VISA or MASTERCARD credit card

PLEASE NOTE: If you already use WhatsApp or the WhatsApp Business App, you can use the phone number stored there to use the WhatsApp API. However, this cannot be reversed. So we recommend creating your WhatApp Business Platform account with a "fresh" ("WhatsApp") number. This number must be "unlocked", or, "activated", via an initial 2-factor authentication via call or SMS, and should have an active or valid contract thereafter to ensure the number is being retained for as long as you may want to make use of it."

Once you have performed the (embedded) signup, you can already access certain features of the API. For full functionality of your WABA ("WhatsApp Business Account") you should have requested verification.

Request verification of your WABA through Chatarmin

The "WhatsApp Business Platform", formerly called "WhatsApp API", is not a ready-to-use dashboard tool per se. You only have the option of coding your own app using the publicly available API webhooks, or resorting to said services of a WhatsApp marketing tool like Chatarmin.

WhatsApp Business Platform Conclusion

For businesses, a fully functional, GDPR-compliant and stable "WhatsApp API" has been available since spring 2022, which can be used via various third-party providers, BSP or ISV, such as Chatarmin. You can serve your WhatsApp business account via Facebook Business Manager and/or via the respective API provider. Chatarmin is here the most transparent, flexible and affordable WhatsApp marketing tool based on the WhatsApp Business Platform.

In addition to text modules, a multi-agent and ticketing system, integrations, automations or automated messages, many other features are available to companies.

Chatarmin has the best Shopify and Klaviyo WhatsApp integration of all WhatsApp marketing tools, so for D2C Brands with MarTech Stack Shopify & Klaviyo we recommend our own solution in good conscience.

"I was spoiled for choice. After a detailed analysis of all providers for WhatsApp marketing, I chose Chatarmin because of the integration with Shopify & Klaviyo and the value for money." - Leoni Hutzler, Klosterkitchen CRM Lead

Chatarmin can be used across multiple devices and by multiple users simultaneously. Campaign broadcasts and campaign analytics are at the heart of Chatarmin, as is our Flowbuilder with Flow Analytics.No matter which BSP or ISV you choose: The WhatsApp Business Platform ("API") is GDPR compliant.

The WhatsApp Business Platform benefits at a glance:

  • Infinite scalability of your target group
  • GDPR compliant customer contact
  • Use with an infinite number of devices
  • Agent system: allocation and access of all marketing, sales and support employees
  • Automations, flows and integrations
  • Segmentation, tagging and analytics
  • WhatsApp templates and text modules
  • Multimedia-based WhatsApp campaigns and newsletters for outbound and inbound use
  • no video- or phone calls via WhatsApp Business Platform

The biggest downside of choosing the WhatsApp Business Platform out of all professional WhatsApp options, is its costly prizing. However, as soon as your company has met a certain size-threshold, your professional WhatsApp efforts will be impossible to structure, organize, and scale, without a professional WhatsApp Business solution such as Chatarmin, built upon the WhatsApp Business Platform API.

WhatsApp Business Account: Should I create and use a WhatsApp Business App, WhatsApp Business Premium, or WhatsApp Business Platform account?

We summarize for you once again the pros and cons of the WhatsApp Business App as well as the WhatsApp Business Platform. This way, we want to help you make the right decision for you. It is ultimately up to you, whether you want to use WhatsApp business via the WhatsApp Business App tailored to the needs of micro-businesses, the WhatsApp Business Premium option, tailored to the needs of small to medium sized businesses, or going full-scale and GDPR-compliant via the WhatsApp Business Platform.

Let this table help you make the right decision for starting you WhatsApp business efforts, choosing the right WhatsApp business account for your company:

FeatureWhatsApp Business AppWhatsApp Business PremiumWhatsApp Business Platform
Monthly CostsFreeFree€99.00 + META Costs
Free Conversations
GDPR compliance
Automations and Journeys
Support Agents and Ticketing
WhatsApp mobile app
Dashboards and Analytics
Custom Logins and 2FA
Documentation and Segments
API Integrations
WhatsApp Desktop Users410Infinite
Multi-Messenger
Klaviyo WhatsApp Integration
Shopify WhatsApp Integration
Shopware WhatsApp Integration

Conclusion: Create and scale your DSGVO compliant WhatsApp corporate account through Chatarmin.

Forward-thinking businesses are turning to a WhatsApp corporate account. Email was yesterday, WhatsApp is today's key to modern stakeholder engagement. Be it in contact with customers, partners, sponsors or employees.

Several million companies already use the WhatsApp Business App, WhatsApp Business Premium feature or the WhatsApp Business Platform. And there are more every day... With your WhatsApp business account, you are where your customers are: WhatsApp, the most widely used messenger in the world. Fast contact, transparent communication and marketing features are just some of the many advantages of WhatsApp Business.

With Chatarmin you get access to the WhatsApp Business Platform. Our universal inbox allows you to use various messaging tools for WhatsApp customer service, marketing and sales.

Our Shopify, Shopware & Klaviyo integrations are unique for D2C Brands that want to offer WhatsApp marketing, sales or support. The price-performance is right with us. We flexibly create custom project solutions for enterprises and corporates, so you can synchronize, optimize and automate your CRM and retention marketing efforts, in a professional omnichannel way.

We hope this blog post helped you choose the right WhatsApp business option for you.

If you want to read an even more detailed post about the costs and features of the different WhatsApp options, you can find it here.

Please feel free to contact us for a 25-minute non-binding consultation at any time:

Book a slot with Johannes, our CEO!