The instant messaging service will soon start invoicing business users for recently introduced features that help bridge the gap between businesses and consumers, WhatsApp COO Matt Idema told Fox Business.
“We want to put a basic foundation in place to allow people to message businesses and for them to get the responses that they want,” Idema said. “We do intend on charging businesses in the future.”
Unlike similar ‘free’ Messaging Apps which relies on advertising revenue, WhatsApp monetization model will involve streamlined communication features for fielding customer enquiries and sending out updates to followers. A dedicated verification badges will however differentiate business users from individual users.
Idema didn’t rule out the possibility that WhatsApp could introduce ads on the service for both business and individual users soon.
The good thing about the new move is that, in order to contact customers, companies will have to receive an approval from the user as the feature will work on opt-in basis.
Companies in Europe, Brazil, India and Indonesia are already running trials of the new features,
Facebook abolished the $0.99 sign-up fee when it first acquired the messaging service back in 2014.