WhatsApp Privacy Policy Update: Your Business Messaging Guide For 2021

Updated: Oct 20, 2021

ORAI's blog on WhatsApp's latest privacy policy
WhatsApp Privacy Policy Update

WhatsApp recently introduced new updates to its Privacy Policy, which has triggered discussions among all users and businesses. What will change for businesses? Can users still believe in the security of WhatsApp messaging? So many questions are hovering over the WhatsApp business market. So, we have brought to you this WhatsApp messaging guide for 2021, answering all the questions.

As a secure messaging platform, WhatsApp has become the most-used channel across the globe. It has also offered a unique communication environment for businesses. However, new WhatsApp privacy policy updates have raised questions and created confusion. Keeping that in mind, WhatsApp has now postponed the dates of new updates from 8th Feb to 15th May.

The platform is bringing changes to its standard terms of service for the use of WhatsApp Business for commercial purposes.

What are the WhatsApp Privacy Policy Changes?

Here are the new elements added to the WhatsApp Business Privacy Policy:

1. WhatsApp for Shopping

More and more businesses nowadays are using WhatsApp as an online store for conversational marketing and sales.

Hence, WhatsApp has come up with two new commercial services- Shopping Button and Cart. Customers can now explore your products in various options right on the chat platform. They can browse through carts and place their orders.

This new feature can help businesses easily manage orders and close sales faster than usual. They can fulfill customers’ purchasing demands on the WhatsApp Business account only.

Businesses with Instagram or Facebook Shops can also leverage them on WhatsApp. However, this feature is coming out at a slow pace and not available for Indian businesses as of now.

With new shopping features on WhatsApp, businesses can capture customers’ data and use it for a personalized experience and deliver intent-based ads on Instagram and Facebook.

Users will receive a message disclosing the collection of their information. However, there is no change in the policy related to Payments Data.

2. Facebook Hosting for WhatsApp Numbers

All BSPs/Business Solution Providers and WhatsApp Businesses will be able to choose to host their WhatsApp numbers via the hosting services of Facebook. This update has been introduced to ease the process of implementing WhatsApp for medium and even small-sized businesses.

Aligned with the standards, Facebook will gain the ability to use the processed messages for companies that choose its hosting service. It will do this as per your instructions or on your behalf.

In simple words, Facebook is not going to use the processed messages directly. Businesses can decide and opt-in for the same to start using messages for marketing objectives such as Facebook advertising.

Image on ORAI's blog showing Third-party hosting vs. Facebook hosting services
Third-party hosting vs. Facebook hosting services

A message on the WhatsApp chat label will appear with the privacy information, ensuring transparency regarding the end-to-end encryption of chats.

Through WhatsApp Privacy Policy, you can understand all about the types of information Facebook will collect and how it will be used.

What will Stay the Same as Before?

Here’s what will continue to be same as before in the new WhatsApp privacy policy:

1. Privacy of Personal Chats

The privacy and security of personal messages of users will remain the same. This includes all chats happening between users and groups. They will remain end-to-end encrypted as before.

Facebook will have no eyes on the personal calls or chats, so users can enjoy the same protected messaging environment on the platform.

Here’s an infographic shared by WhatsApp to clarify this:

Infographic on ORAI's blog showing the privacy policy updates of WhatsApp
Privacy of personal chats

Source: WhatsApp

2. User Experience

WhatsApp still wants you to use its Business API to ensure a high-quality user experience.

To ensure that, there are clear messaging guidelines shared by WhatsApp.

Messages WhatsApp allows:

a. Notification Messages

These are messages sent by a business to customers for better experiences such as order confirmations, invoices, delivery status, and more.

b. Support Messages

These are messages sent after a customer asks for support. So, customers are the initiators of these messages. For example, product purchase requests, refund or return requests, support queries, and more.

c. Verification

WhatsApp adds a 2-layer verification process to ensure better WhatsApp Business API security.

Messages WhatsApp doesn’t allow:

  • Template messaging for marketing or promotional purposes

  • Subscription-style messages such as newsletters or any other content

How to Use WhatsApp for Business in 2021

WhatsApp has made it safe for customers and businesses to interact with each other. With its Business API and Verified Business Accounts, customers feel confident while sharing their information. And these new policies will give more power to what this platform is known for. You just need to keep focusing on quality content, personalized assistance, and a satisfactory experience for customers.

So, here’s your messaging guide for 2021 aligned with the new WhatsApp Business Policy:

1. Get Your WhatsApp Business Account Verified

No better way to build trust among customers than getting your WhatsApp Business Account Verified with a ‘Green Badge’. You’ll get your WhatsApp Business API to scale up the ability to send automated messages from multiple devices. And the new policies let you use Facebook Hosting Services to onboard with WhatsApp faster.

At ORAI, we have experts to help small, medium, and large-sized businesses onboard with WhatsApp Business Verification process.