Understanding WhatsApp Pay, How It Works & Its Importance On Business
WhatsApp has officially launched its WhatsApp Pay, an in-chat payment feature that allows users to make transactions via WhatsApp to their contact list. It is UPI-based payments service that allows you to both send and receive money.
This is big social media news that should be celebrated widely especially in Africa, WhatsApp’s otherwise third biggest market with over a hundred million monthly active users.
WhatsApp wants to be the primary way small businesses can interact with their customers. Hence, it is goodbye to Banks and all transaction fees involved with the most convenient, seamless application.
Launching the application, WhatsApp boss Mark Zuckerberg indicated that it would first be launched in Brazil and it has been in use for over a month now.
“We’re making sending and receiving money as easy as sharing photos. We’re also enabling small businesses to make sales right within WhatsApp. To do this, we’re building Facebook Pay, which provides secure and consistent way to make payments across our app. I want to thank all of our partners for making this possible. We’re working with local banks, including Banco do Brasil, Nubank, Sicredi as well as Cielo, the leading payments processor for merchants in Brasil. Brazil is the first country where we’re widely rolling out payments in WhatsApp. More to come soon!” announced Mark Zuckerberg, the company CEO and Facebook founder.
In order to understand how it works, the application is not as different from WeChat used widely in China.
Some basic use of the application include;
– Hail a cab
– Book doctor appointment or apply for a visa
– Repay credit cards, pay bills, buy virtual currencies
– Transfer money
– Send money to friends
– Play games
Users who sign up for payments on WhatsApp will do so through the company’s Facebook Pay feature, which is also rolling out on Messenger and Instagram and one can get started by linking up their WhatsApp account to your Visa or Mastercard credit or debit card.
Safety is not really a big issue considering WhatsApp primarily uses end-to-end encryption security, however, the application will work by way of a six-digit PIN or fingerprint to complete transactions.
WhatsApp says on its blog post that the payments service is currently free for selected consumers in the said countries (India and Brazil) but, businesses pay a 3.99% processing fee to receive payments.
As for subsequent regions for launching the service, it’s not clear when WhatsApp pay will be open for African users or what kinds of payment methods and selected banks that will be permitted to transfer WhatsApp pay funds. But it is part of a developing cool platform that has the potential to ease the doing of business in Africa.