WhatsApp’s high user base and open rates have encouraged many businesses to use it to form better connections with customers and internal teams.
The business version of the app had over 292 million overall downloads as of June 2022, and companies have recorded an improvement in sales and customer service through the platform,
WhatsApp has also made it easier for companies to showcase their services through the platform through many features. One such functionality is WhatsApp business catalog, which makes it easy for customers to go through offerings and even place orders within the app.
In this article, you’ll learn about catalogs, how to create, share and manage them, and more about third-party tools you can use for a streamlined process.
What are WhatsApp catalogs?
A whatsApp catalog is a feature included within the business version of the communication platform. It lets companies showcase and share their service offerings with customers on mobile, web, or desktop.
Imagine WhatsApp catalogs as a virtual shopping interface where companies can add, remove, or manage their services. It makes it easier for customers to simplify their buying process and boost their purchase experience within WhatsApp.
What do you need before creating a WhatsApp catalog?
A WhatsApp Business account. On a serious note, you must comply with your region's online selling laws. Also, every product image you upload to your catalog is subject to review. It ensures that your products or services meet the WhatsApp Commerce Policy.
If any image you upload gets flagged, you can make two appeals to WhatsApp directly.
Components of catalogs
WhatsApp catalogs help companies show their services to prospective customers or repeat ones. It has various features, from images to detailed descriptions of each item.
Companies can upload creative, high-resolution photos for each product. It helps users quickly find what they’re looking for and learn more about the products or services. They can include multiple images for each product to ensure depth.
Businesses can also write out brief or detailed explanations for each product. This ensures that customers consume as much information as they need about the offerings.
Companies can organize their products or services into different categories. This helps customers easily find and go through what they want.
Every WhatsApp catalog includes pricing information. This feature is only available to users from specific countries.
You can attach unique codes, such as SKUs, to each product or service you offer. It allows dropped-off customers to identify quickly what they want.
Companies can also include their phone number, address, or email. It allows customers to get in touch if they have any queries that need to be resolved or need help placing an order.
How does a WhatsApp business catalog work?
As the name suggests, WhatsApp catalogs provide a comprehensive overview of your service offerings to customers directly on the app. It lets you provide a “Catalog” option on your business profile, enabling you to share it directly with customers or your social media handles.
Customers can browse your catalog, add services to their cart, and check out, all from WhatsApp.
WhatsApp catalog best practices
While there’s no one-size-fits-all approach, there are a few things you need to keep in mind while creating and sharing catalogs.
Here are some best practices to remember:
- Keep it simple. Make sure the catalog is easy to navigate and understand using short product descriptions and high-resolution visuals.
- Categorize products. Branch products into categories with exact names to make it super-easy for customers to find what they want.
- Use keywords. Research and include relevant keywords to make the catalog easy to find.
- Keep it updated. Update the catalog regularly in terms of product information and pricing.
- Use built-in WhatsApp features. Use features like product codes and prices to provide customers with helpful information.
- Use customer feedback. Leverage customer opinions and feedback, and make consistent tweaks to your catalog.
- Promote the catalog. The easier your catalog is to find, the more business you can generate. Share the catalog on your social media handles for maximum reach.
How to create and manage WhatsApp catalogs
Setting up your catalog and managing it, is super easy. Here are some steps to view and manage your WhatsApp catalog:
- Create a catalog, and organize your services into different categories. Go to your WhatsApp business account's “Catalog” option and choose “Add Item” to start. Make sure you include images, detailed descriptions, prices, and codes.
- Make it live for all your users. Once you're happy with the catalog, publish and share it with your customers to ensure they can access it. Click the “Share” button in the app, or share it through your social media handles or other channels.
- Share your services or service categories with specific customers. You can head over to a specific customer conversation, click on “Catalog,” and share services they’ve either expressed interest in or ones you think could be helpful.
- Managing your catalog and updating it regularly. Use the “Statistics” option in WhatsApp Business to track how well your catalog performs. It includes key metrics such as catalog views, number of clicks, and more to help you further optimize the catalog.
- Viewing and updating your catalog Head over to the catalog option on your web app or desktop version, or go to “Settings” and find “Catalogs” under the “Business Tools” option to view and update it.
Helpful tip: You can also share your WhatsApp catalog link through a “Short” link option available in settings.
How to share a WhatsApp Business catalog
Once you create a catalog, your customers need to find it; the way they can is when you share it with them.
Here are some steps to share your catalog with customers on mobile or desktop:
- Select a prospect or customer with whom you want to share the catalog on the WhatsApp Business application.
- Once inside the conversation, select the attachment option and choose “Catalog.”
- Choose the catalog from the options menu
- Send the catalog. Write a message if you want to
You can also share a WhatsApp catalog with interested users through a link. Follow the steps below and find out how.
- Follow the first two steps above.
- Select “share link” from the options listed.
- Once you select which channel to share the link on, such as SMS, Email, or WhatsApp, your customers can view the catalog directly from the link.
How do people buy from WhatsApp catalog?
Customers can easily purchase through the WhatsApp Business application through the “Cart” feature. Remember this feature is supported only in a few locations.
The cart functionality helps your customers initiate the order process and help pay for and track the order within a single solution. When you click on your business profile, customers can see a “Shopping” button next to your business name. Using this option, they can browse your catalog and add service items to the cart. After adding items to the cart, they can access them for a final review by clicking the “Cart” option within the catalog menu. You can also send messages with a link to the cart, which they can click to access. Here, they can review their cart and perform actions such as changing the required items. They can also put a pin on their purchase by returning it later since all the items are saved.
Once customers are ready to order, they can send you all the items in their cart as a message. This functionality within WhatsApp Business allows new and existing customers to place orders quickly and raise queries, if any.
Boosting productivity with Cooby
Cooby helps you control WhatsApp inboxes for individual users and companies while providing a massive productivity boost.
By acting as an overlay on top of WhatsApp web, there is no learning curve to using Cooby; the features make complete sense right from the get-go. From multi-user support to being security-compliant, Cooby has many useful functionalities, such as:
- Inbox zero: Ensure significant productivity gains by having no unread messages in your inbox. Cooby helps you sort, respond and close, snooze, archive, and categorize your chat to a close tab to ensure you don’t have messages at the end of the day.
- Message templates: Create and label multiple templates for every use case to ensure you can send messages to customers quickly and easily. For example, if you want to share your WhatsApp catalog with multiple users through a broadcast, you can personalize them with placeholders to include your customer’s name or display name.
- CRM integration: Capture all your conversations, notes, number of messages, and time directly to Salesforce or HubSpot to ensure your sales team doesn’t have to shift between multiple tools and perform CRM actions within Cooby.
- Connect with non-contacts: Easily send messages to numbers through Cooby without saving them as a contact first. This helps you save time, get in touch with a customer, and help them resolve their queries or find precisely what they are looking for.
- Broadcasting: Easily send messages to multiple customers or prospects simultaneously without getting flagged by WhatsApp. As said before, if you want to share your catalog with various customers, you can use the broadcast functionality and take it further by personalizing the messages.
- Reminders and unread tabs: Set WhatsApp reminders for messages you want to return to later or group them into unread or custom tabs. It ensures you don’t let any conversation slip through.
- Take notes: Take notes for each conversation and find them easily whenever you want. It prevents you losing out on important context.
Cooby offers a 7-day free trial and is priced at $10.49 for individuals and teams when billed semi-annually. You can get started by adding Cooby to your browser today.
WhatsApp Business Catalog FAQs
1. Is WhatsApp Business Catalog free?
Yes, WhatsApp Business catalogs are free to use for all businesses. Companies that want to take advantage of more premium Business features, such as multi-agent support or a WhatsApp web page, can subscribe to WhatsApp Business Premium.
2. How many catalogs can be added to WhatsApp Business?
WhatsApp Business lets companies create and manage 1 catalog per account.
3. How do I send a catalog on WhatsApp Business automatically?
Businesses can set up a WhatsApp Business API account and configure their third-party tool to send catalogs to customers on specific triggers. Companies can also use a solution like Cooby that does not require API access and broadcast their catalogs to multiple users.