WhatsApp Business is launching a new way for small business owners to leverage the app to share products in conversations. Catalog allows users to share a photo, price, description, and link in order to make a purchase or see more. The Catalog is available today for Android and iPhone smartphone users in Brazil, Germany, India, Indonesia, Mexico, the U.K. and the U.S.
WhatsApp first shared plans to introduce the feature at the F8 developer conference earlier this year. The Catalog can be created in the Business Settings section of the app and be shared as part of a business profile or by a business owner when speaking with a customer using the app.
WhatsApp Business now has 5 million users, while WhatsApp’s main chat app has 1.5 billion monthly active users. The main WhatsApp service got fingerprint lock for Android in October.
Facebook introduced the business offering to let companies reach customers through greeting messages, quick replies, and business profiles in 2018. Few changes have been made to WhatsApp Business since then.
Growth of business offerings and efforts to connect businesses with customers via WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger are part of the company’s plan to make messaging a larger part of its long-term revenue strategy.
Earlier this week, WhatsApp made it possible for users to choose whether they’re added to chat groups by everyone, their contacts, or only specific contacts.
WhatsApp filed a lawsuit in a federal court in San Francisco last month against Israeli company NSO Group for the exploitation of a vulnerability that allegedly allowed government spies to access the conversations of 1,400 journalists, political dissidents, and others in countries like Mexico and the United Arab Emirates. Sources familiar with the matter told Reuters that WhatsApp was used to track the conversations of senior government officials in more than 20 nations around the world.