Before you reply to a WhatsApp ticket, it’s important to understand how replies are affected by WhatsApp’s 24-hour rule. This is a WhatsApp rule (not a Zendesk rule) that applies to all WhatsApp accounts.
This rule states that:
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.
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.
This means the following:
The starting point for the 24-hour window is when the end user sent the message from WhatsApp. It’s not when the message was received by Support and the ticket was created, for example.
If you fail to reply within the 24-hour window, you can’t reply to the end user until the end user sends another message, reopening the 24-hour window. The 24-hour period restarts every time the end user sends a message.
If you reply after 24 hours, the reply is still added to the ticket and appears in the ticket interface, but the end user doesn’t actually receive the reply (meaning a reply in WhatsApp or an email ticket notification).
Error messages about the failure display in the upper-right portion of the agent interface and in the Events log.
If you don’t reply within 24 hours, it may be difficult to reconnect with the end user. If this happens, you may want to ask your admin about whether your company uses the (paid) templated messages feature in WhatsApp.
For the price list of template messages, see this article by WhatsApp official help center.