We'll explain how Zendesk's WhatsApp channel works and some of the things to keep in mind, such as conflicts between the API and app versions, sending proactive messages, and the 24-hour rule in this article.
How WhatsApp channel works
You can’t use the WhatsApp channel to do the following:
Send or receive WhatsApp phone calls.
Send messages proactively to end users through WhatsApp.
WhatsApp has certain rules that prevent us from making proactive messaging possible. This rule is called "WhatsApp 24-hour rule" (see below).
Rules and things to keep in mind
- API vs. App
Once a phone number is registered on the WhatsApp Business API, it cannot be used for WhatsApp Business or the WhatsApp consumer app. A phone number can be upgraded to the WhatsApp Business API, but not downgraded.
- Cannot send proactive messages
You cannot send outbound marketing and solicitation messages (in other words, “proactive messages”) to end users. End user users must reach out to you first.
- 24-hour rule
You have 24 hours from when the end user’s message was sent from WhatsApp to reply to the message. After that, you can’t reply. For more details, see WhatsApp 24-hour rule.