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For anyone getting into using WhatsApp Business, the major motive in entering this platform will be the exceptional features it arms businesses with. Companies, big or small, can utilize these tools to garner a better marketing experience. Among the various features provided by WhatsApp Business, one feature that any beginning WhatsApp marketer should familiarize themselves with, is the WhatsApp message templates.

If you are new to the WhatsApp Business app and need a little guidance on WhatsApp message templates, this article is for you. Here you will find everything you need to know about WhatsApp message templates, including strategies of using them, best practices and examples.

What are WhatsApp business templates?

Using the WhatsApp Business API businesses are able to directly interact and communicate with their customers for better customer services, among other benefits. But properly reaching them and being effective at it needs more than simple messages.

Consequently, learning about the concept of WhatsApp Business Templates becomes key in your business’s customer communication strategy.

So, what are WhatsApp Message Templates?  

A simple answer is that message templates are predefined formats for messages used by businesses, ranging from simple plain text messages to message formats that combine media with texts to have a dynamic effect. The messages can be constructed to appeal to customers in interesting ways.

Sending WhatsApp notification messages with templates could help make them dynamic and interactive, which might increase the chance of messages getting opened.
Firstly, for using WhatsApp message templates you will require approval from WhatsApp, and several conditions have to be met for the template to be approved by WhatsApp; which can be very confusing and overwhelming.

But don’t worry.

By the end of this article, you will get to know the best practices in setting up message templates, as well as the ways in which templates may get rejected. This will provide you with a clearer understanding of how to create the ideal WhatsApp message template.

If you want to cut to the chase and get started sooner, you can actually make use of WhatsApp marketing apps like QuickReply.ai.

What are the different parts of a WhatsApp message template?

Header

The header part of your template is optional, but something to consider adding. This is where you get to add your images, documents and other media along with the text. Having eye-catching graphics can never go wrong, so get creative with the “header” part of your text.

Body

This part is mandatory in your message template, and contains the main content of your message. It can be made up of plain texts and texts with place holders. The body of the message is where you communicate the core of your message to the customer.

Footer

In a message template you have the option to add a footer line of plain text, be it your brands, signature or your key takeaway line to hook customers.

Buttons

A WhatsApp template can also be fitted with interactive buttons so as to engage customers better. These buttons can be a simple CTA (Call to Action) or a quick reply button, like the “Yes or No” kind.

Buttons add a more dynamic element to your WhatsApp Business templates, bring interactivity and welcome complexity to the otherwise plain text messages, while opening up creative ways to sell better.

What are the best practices for creating WhatsApp templates?

There are several ways that your WhatsApp template might get rejected. For this reason, your templates need to be structured in the best way possible. It is advised that you follow some of the best practices and strategies in making templates, so that the chances of getting approval from WhatsApp will be higher. Try and stick to these practices or your message templates are more probable of getting rejected.

Here are some of the best practices you can apply to your WhatsApp Business templates:

1. Keep it simple

A concise and straightforward WhatsApp message template that conveys the information it needs to in a clear and uncomplicated way is always better. The info you are giving should be clear to the readers/customers.

2. Proofread

Your templates should not be grammatically flawed or have errors in the writing or spelling. One way to avoid this is by giving the template’s content a thorough proofread before submitting it to WhatsApp for review.

3. Check the formatting

Ensure that your template’s formatting is not wrong. There are minute ways of mistakes creeping into your template, so check well for any errors in formatting. One example of this can be seen in the use of variable parameters like {{1}}, {{2}} etc.

Here you have to make sure that the number of curly brackets is correct. There should be two curly brackets on each side of the variable number. If you make a mistake, this might get your template rejected.

Learn how to use formatting on WhatsApp here.

4. Use full URLs of links

When adding any links to your WhatsApp message template, ensure that the full URL is included. Avoid using short links, or links generated by using URL shorteners like biit.ly or tinurl. Short links produced by URL shorteners like these could mess-up the link destination in some cases. Also, make sure that the domain in the URL belongs to your own business.

5. Enter name for template properly

Make sure that you only use underscores and lowercase alphanumeric characters when typing the name for your message template. Blank spaces and other characters should not be used. One example for a valid message template name is instead of using ‘pymt_updt_01’ you can use ‘payment_update_details’.

6. Use uniform language throughout

Use the same language throughout both the message and the template. If you choose your template language as English, and write your message or content in French language, your template will surely get rejected. Keep in mind that the language you are using is supported by WhatsApp.

7. Tag messages carefully

Ensure that your message template gets tagged with the right ‘Language’ and ‘Category’.

8. Do not use abusive content

Your message template will get instantly rejected if it contains any sort of abusive or threatening content.

9. Do not violate WhatsApp commerce policy

It is important that your message template should adhere to the WhatsApp Commerce Policy and not violate any of it. Imagine you are sending out a survey link asking users to participate in it. If you are planning to send the survey link to assess customer service experience from users, this is acceptable by WhatsApp’s policy. But if you are sending out a non-transactional message or contests or games for users to participate, your template will most likely be rejected.

10. Use good visuals

The files you send out should be aesthetically appealing and enticing as to add value to your content from the recipient’s perspective. So, give some thought to the graphics that you are going to use.

Also read: WhatsApp broadcast marketing best practices

Examples of WhatsApp Templates

1. User Welcome/Account Update Template

Hello {{1}} , Welcome to ACME!
We are happy to have you here.
Love,
ACME Team

2. Appointment Update Template

Hi {{1}}, The appointment you scheduled with Dr.{{2}} is on {{3}}.

Hello {{1}}! You have an upcoming appointment with {{2}}.

3. Shipping Update Template

Hi {{1}}. Your order has been shipped and will reach you by {{2}}. You can track shipment using code {{3}}.
Happy Shopping.

4. Reservation Update Template

Hello {{1}},WEB CHECK-IN is open for your PNR - {{2}} on flight(s) departing within 24 hours!
Check in on our website now or use the mobile app- https://rb.gy/f1cx8y
Thank you for choosing our airlines!

5. Auto-Reply Template

Hello {{1}}, Your newsletter for {{2}} is here! Check it now!
Looking for more WhatsApp marketing templates and examples? See how leading brands are using WhatsApp.

Can WhatsApp Templates be rejected?

The short answer is yes. There are a set of rules defined by WhatsApp when sending messages to users. Some kinds of notifications are not permitted and cannot be used with WhatsApp. If your template contains any of the unpermitted words or is written in a way that it violates these rules, it will be rejected.

Here are some of the notification types that are not allowed on WhatsApp templates:

- Having promotional or sale related content

- After initial conversation, re-engaging with customers for sales intent

- Content that is recurring, like weekly/monthly newsletters or reminders

- Promotion materials that have customers

- Requests asking for customers to promote your business among other audiences

- Templates asking for ratings or review comments from customers

- Using form surveys for marketing

Get started with WhatsApp templates

There are quite a number of things to take into account and look out for when you are creating template messages on WhatsApp, whatever the purpose it might be. And it is easy to get overwhelmed. Considering the benefits of creating templates it should be something you have to work around and deal with.

And to make this simpler use QuickReply.ai to help you create ideal WhatsApp Message Templates!

Get QuickReply.ai right away!

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