BUILDING FOR NEXT BILLION USERS

WhatsApp for Small Businesses in India

BUILDING FOR NEXT BILLION USERS

WhatsApp for Small Businesses in India

BUILDING FOR NEXT BILLION USERS

WhatsApp for Small Businesses in India

BUILDING FOR NEXT BILLION USERS

WhatsApp for Small Businesses in India

Customer-Vegetables-WhatsApp-for-Business (4)
Customer-Vegetables-WhatsApp-for-Business (2)
Vegetable-Owner-WhatsApp-for-Business (2)

THE PROBLEM

Small Business owners in India need to connect with customers that are important to them

Millions of local shop owners, restaurants, and home service providers want to reach out to a larger number of people to grow their business.

These are small businesses operated either individually or by less than 10 people. A bunch of customers buy products/services from these businesses. So they need a better way to:

  1. Engage with their customers
  2. Sell and manage product/service deliveries 
  3. Target specific customer audience
  4. Show products/services availability

Though WhatsApp recently announced that it is coming up for business, it’s still a mystery that how it will be used for the small businesses?

So I decided to design this concept imagining how WhatsApp could be tailored for small businesses.

Introducing WhatsApp for Small Business

A small concept showing how technology is set to revolutionize the world of small business owners in India opening many doors of opportunities to build greater engagement with their customers and attracting new prospects.

Introducing WhatsApp for Small Business

A small concept showing how technology is set to revolutionize the world of small business owners in India opening many doors of opportunities to build greater engagement with their customers and attracting new prospects.

Introducing WhatsApp for Small Business

A small concept showing how technology is set to revolutionize the world of small business owners in India opening many doors of opportunities to build greater engagement with their customers and attracting new prospects.

How will this work for business owners?

Consider the case of Mahesh (a local vegetable vendor) taking orders via WhatsApp. He just needs to promote his WhatsApp number and inform his customers to visit his profile to view available vegetable items and then place an order.

Owner flow
WhatsApp-for-Business
WhatsApp-for-Business-Customer-Business (5)
WhatsApp-for-Business-Customer-Business (7)

How will this work for customers?

A customer needs to have a WhatsApp number of the business. He will initiate a WhatsApp chat on this number. He gets to explore the available items with the business along with pricing details and other description.

Customer flow
WhatsApp-for-Business Customer
WhatsApp-for-Business Customer
WhatsApp-for-Business Customer
WhatsApp-for-Business Customer
WhatsApp-for-Business Customer
WhatsApp-for-Business Customer

USER STORIES

Why did I choose to design for small business owners in India?

Lets us see what these small business owners are currently doing

USER STORIES

Why did I choose to design for small business owners in India?

Lets us see what these small business owners are currently doing

Mahesh – Vegetable vendor Pune
Nayen Das – Tiffin Owner
Mumbai dabbawals go high tech

"WhatsApp Message marketing is growing and it has taken an important role in daily lives of these small business owners"

How are the consumers responding to these approaches adopted by small business owners?

Kunal Nayyar – orders from WhatsApp
Mohini – an It employee

Why to chose WhatsApp for digitally empowering small business owners?

WhatsApp is undoubtedly one of the most used products in India.

Here’s how a typical day of an Indian user look like

No points for guessing that the day begins and ends with checking WhatsApp messages. (Source)

Life-of-an-Indian-internet-user

How will this improve a local food delivery service?

Below is the demonstration of how a local small restaurant could make use of WhatsApp for Business.

How will this improve a local food delivery service?

Below is the demonstration of how a local small restaurant could make use of WhatsApp for Business.

Create Profile

  • A restaurant will register using its contact number
  • Add all the required details name, description, location, business category, and offered products/services
Onboarding-WhatsApp-for-Business
whatsapp-for-small-business2

Maintain food items you offer

  • Add/edit/update all the food items that are available on the menu.
  • Include necessary details — the name of the food item, photos, description, price, and availability.
List-Item-WhatsApp-for-Business-Owner flow
Edit-Item-WhatsApp-for-Business-Owner flow

Customer explores your offerings

  • See the food items updated by the restaurant
  • Place an order for the food items
  • Share location for delivery purpose

Customer explores your offerings

  • See the food items updated by the restaurant
  • Place an order for the food items
  • Share location for delivery purpose
WhatsApp-Food-Delivery
whatsapp-for-small-business1

Receive order and send confirmation

Group 2 Customer FOOD
Group 1 Customer FOOD

Few other features that I explored

Story-Promote-WhatsApp-Business

Promotion using Stories

Verified Profile WhatsApp Business

Verified Business

Payments-WhatsApp-Business

Unified Payments Interface

Closing Thoughts

So this was my small attempt towards imagining how WhatsApp could be used by small businesses in India. This design reduces the learnability curve needed to learn the new app since people are already familiar with the usage of WhatsApp. I believe we should think of ways to get into the users’ existing behavior and habits rather than always creating new apps and platforms.

 

Thanks for reading!

Note: I’m not associated with WhatsApp Business in any way. I did this because I like solving people problems. I strongly feel a concept like this is worth exploring.

Thanks to  Kunal Bodke, Sandeep Jagtap, Pushkar Joshi, and Vedang Narkar for valuable suggestions

Also published at https://medium.com/@kartik.design/whatsapp-for-business-in-india-b6dd7e8cde66

Feedback, suggestions, and collaborations are welcome!

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Get in touch!

Connect with me on linkedin or email me at raok@iu.edu

Get in touch!

Connect with me on linkedin or email me at raok@iu.edu

Get in touch!

Connect with me on linkedin or email me at raok@iu.edu

Get in touch!

Connect with me on linkedin or email me at raok@iu.edu

Get in touch!

Connect with me on linkedin or email me at raok@iu.edu