We all know that the WhatsApp subscription charges were gone a long time back, and they were gone for good. Since then, how is the company generating revenue, after all, there are no advertisements within the app?
WhatsApp has billions of active users and could have easily managed to make loads of money by pushing ads. Well, WhatsApp doesn’t work that way; instead, the company wants to explore monetization by offering several enterprise solutions.
It may be the company’s first attempt to monetize since the commencement of its operations, but we have known for some time that certain business features are coming to the messaging platform. A recent report by Reuters confirms that WhatsApp may soon be bringing something of this sort.
The report says that the messaging app is testing a feature that allows businesses to directly communicate with the WhatsApp users. Only a few companies from the Y Combinator startup incubator are a part of this testing. WhatsApp could charge the businesses for being able to communicate with their customers directly.
Umer Ilyas, co-founder of Cowlar Inc, a startup making collars for dairy cows and a part of this testing, said that the testing is still in the early stages but is highly anticipated in remote places where WhatsApp is popular like India, Brazil, and Pakistan. These places offer a huge opportunity and a lot of farmers have access to WhatsApp.
Talking about these emerging markets, Forbes reported that WhatsApp is testing its business in India, which happens to be the biggest market for the company. India makes up 15 percent of WhatsApp’s total user base with its 200 million monthly active users.
WhatsApp for Business is a version of the app that lets enterprises with 10 employees or less manage their clients better. The app is still in testing phase and will be rolled out first in India then other countries would follow. On his visit to India last month, Brian Acton, the co-founder of WhatsApp, told that the company is in ‘early stages of investigation’ of making digital payments possible through WhatsApp.