Companies and brands have been using chat apps in their customer communications for a long time. Infobip’s latest research shows a growing preference for conversational experiences through this medium.
Cloud communications platform Infobip’s data shows an 80% and 62% increase in WhatsApp and rich communication services (RCS) interactions respectively in the first half of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021. Infobip analyzed more than 153 billion communications interactions on its platform globally from the first half of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021.
“WhatsApp is the widely used channel apart from the SMS and email,” said Charist Montenegro, country manager, of Infobip Philippines. “The use cases that WhatsApp can offer include promotion and two-way communication for the customers.
Companies consider chat apps as the most “cost-effective alternative for B2C interactions as these channels enable brands to set up touchpoints — marketing, alerts, and customer service — across the entire customer journey in one place.
The analysis reveals that customer communications today are more digital than ever, with a 68% increase in interactions across all digital channels. Alongside the growth in chat app interactions, some 99% of customer support and chatbot interactions are now on WhatsApp.
In terms of sectors that have been using WhatsApp, banking and finance posted 134% more WhatsApp interactions and 104% more in retail and commerce.
However, the study also reveals that interactions on traditional channels increased by 75% for SMS and 91% for emails, with Infobip seeing emerging uses around timely alerts and security solutions such as two-factor authentication. In fact, 155% of e-commerce and retail are using emails more.
The Infobip study noted the emergence of Rich Communication Services (RCS) with 1063% more RCS interactions in telecoms. RCS is a standard international protocol used in the telecommunications industry to improve SMS/MMS messaging.
Infobip said that companies that want to grow into the conversational future should first build strong omnichannel foundations with a mix of these types of channels. They can expand their channel portfolio and functionalities based on where consumers already are.