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WhatsApp Templates: Everything You Need to Know

WhatsApp is one of the most popular messaging apps in the world, with over 2 billion users in 180 countries. It’s no wonder that businesses are eager to take advantage of the platform to reach customers. And with the WhatsApp Business API, companies can do just that – by integrating with the API, they can send messages to customers at scale, automate conversations, and provide support via the customers preferred channel.

But before you start sending WhatsApp messages, you need to create templates that meet WhatsApp’s standards. In this blog post, we’ll go over everything you need to know about WhatsApp templates, including best practices and tips for getting them approved.

What are WhatsApp templates?
WhatsApp Business Templates are predefined message formats designed for businesses to use when communicating with their customers via WhatsApp. These templates provide a structured framework that ensures consistency, compliance, and efficiency in business messaging.

WhatsApp Business, a separate application from the standard WhatsApp messenger, offers additional features and tools specifically tailored for businesses to connect and engage with their customers. One of these features is the ability to create and use WhatsApp Business Templates.

These templates allow businesses to create pre-approved message formats that align with WhatsApp’s guidelines and policies. They can include text, images, and basic formatting. Templates are typically used for sending commonly requested information, such as order confirmations, shipping updates, appointment reminders, frequently asked questions, and other customer service-related messages.

What are the benefits of WhatsApp templates?
Using WhatsApp Business Templates offers several advantages:

  1. Standardization: Templates ensure that your business messages adhere to a consistent format, tone, and structure. This helps maintain a professional image and provides a unified customer experience.
  2. Efficiency: Instead of typing out repetitive messages, templates enable businesses to quickly send predefined responses with just a few clicks. This saves time and streamlines communication, especially when dealing with a high volume of customer inquiries.
  3. Compliance: WhatsApp has guidelines and policies in place to prevent spam and ensure a positive user experience. By using pre-approved templates, businesses can ensure their messages comply with these policies, reducing the risk of being flagged as spam or facing account restrictions.
  4. Personalization: While templates provide standardized messages, they can be customized with dynamic fields that allow businesses to insert personalized information, such as the customer’s name, order details, or appointment time. This adds a personal touch to the communication.
  5. Automation and Scaling: WhatsApp Business Templates can be integrated with automation tools or chatbot systems, allowing businesses to handle a large volume of messages and automate responses. This enables 24/7 availability and scalability in customer support and other business processes.

WhatsApp template and conversation categories
As of April 1, 2023, WhatsApp has four conversation categories to help businesses organize templates:

  • Marketing
  • Utility
  • Authentication
  • Service

Marketing conversation category
Templates added to the marketing conversation category includes all types of templates businesses use to market their products or services to customers, such as offering relevant deals to customers who have opted in. WhatsApp also assigns every other business-initiated conversation that doesn’t qualify as an authentication- or utility template to the marketing category.

Utility conversation category
Templates for the utility conversation category include all types of templates related to transactions. Think of updates around orders, notifications and recurring billing statements to customers who have opted in to receive these messages via WhatsApp.

Authentication conversation category
Templates for the authentication conversation category includes all types of templates used to enable businesses to authenticate users with one-time passcodes at various stages of the login process, such as account registration, account recovery, and integrity challenges.

Note that the template categories above are primarily used by businesses to proactively connect (business-initiated) with their customers. There is one category exclusively used for user-initiated conversations: the service category.

Service conversation category
This conversation category encompasses any conversation initiated by the user.

WhatsApp Template Approval
Before you can use templates, they need to be approved by WhatsApp. WhatsApp will review the template, the placeholders, and an example of the content before they accept or reject it. The approval process is quick. However, we recommend businesses submit templates as soon as possible to allow plenty of time to make edits and re-submit if needed.

Best Practices for WhatsApp Templates
WhatsApp reserves the right to reject templates that don’t meet their standards. Here are some tips and tricks to help get templates approved on the first try:

  • Follow WhatsApp’s Business Policy and Commerce Policy. Violating these policies is a surefire way to get a template rejected.
  • Proofread carefully. WhatsApp will reject content for spelling and grammar mistakes.
  • Make sure no brackets are missing on your variable parameters. {1}} or }}1}} will get rejected.
  • Check your language. Make sure the language selected on a template matches the content. And don’t mix languages – ‘Spanglish’ will not be approved!
  • Ditch the URL shorteners. Tools like and TinyURL hide the true destination of a link.Links should be relevant. URLs should be to your own website(s). Linking to other domains will probably get a template rejected.
  • Name templates sensibly. Use descriptive names like ‘delivery_status’ or ‘summer_promotion_voucher’ instead of ‘template_66’.
  • Keep the reviewer in mind. Templates are reviewed by WhatsApp, so their purpose should be clear. If it’s not, it could be thrown out.

What if you want to test a template?
If you want to make a test template for your developers to use when integrating WhatsApp, you need to follow a strict name and content format. The message template name should be “test” and the content should be “Hello {{1}}”.

In conclusion, WhatsApp templates are an essential tool for businesses to streamline their communication with customers.

By following the best practices outlined in this article, you can ensure your templates are approved on the first try and avoid potential delays in reaching your audience. Remember to prioritize clarity, relevance, and personalization in your messaging, and always adhere to WhatsApp’s policies.


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