oratio Report 2016: Messengers for Business (Part 1)

As an avid reader of oratio Insights, you probably know by now that mobile messengers rank among the most popular apps on peoples' phones.

WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Viber and Co. are are already attracting billions of users on at least a monthly basis who might spend an average of up to 60 minutes within one particular messaging app.

Messengers on the rise

These thriving numbers shouldn't come as a big surprise though. Simply by observing your surroundings it becomes evident that the majority of people you are in touch with own a smartphone and with it also at least one or more messaging apps.

While this trend mostly reflects how we communicate with each other in private, the question arises how businesses can take an active role in this flourishing market.

At oratio, we can look at a growing customer base who already established messengers for customer service and sales as a major part of their business. One could say that certain countries already surpassed the 'early adaptor' stage and are growing their business through messaging apps have become common practice.

Take a look at which countries are already benefiting from messengers as an added customer communication and sales channel.

🗺 Top 5 countries using messengers for business

Here are the countries who already use oratio for their business and trust in customer service via mobile messengers:

  1. Mexico: 14,6%
  2. India: 13,2%
  3. Brazil: 8%
  4. Indonesia 5,6%
  5. Singapore 3,9%

Mexico takes the top spot in our oratio customer ranking. In general, it can be said that the South American market is relying heavily on messaging for business. Interest coming from markets such as Brazil, Chile, Argentina and more is growing day by day.

The second most popular region is the Asian market with India, Indonesia and Singapore as its most prominent representants. One thing that becomes clear is that Western countries currently prefer to talk about trends such as conversational commerce or messenger marketing whereas developing countries have already taken action and are clearly on the forefront of mCommerce.

Why exactly these countries?

At oratio we experienced early on that a lot of interest for messengers-based communication is coming from emerging countries. Unlike users from Western countries with multiple devices available (desktop, tablet, laptop, smartphone), the go-to devices for users in emerging markets are smartphones.

Hence if smartphones are the primary device for using the internet, the channels for communication are changing. Messengers are a very important tool for everyday communication between friends, family and now, businesses.

📱 Top 3 messaging apps used for business

Now that we know which countries are using messengers for business, it's time to take a look at the strongest channels:

  1. WhatsApp: 48,3%
  2. Messenger: 24,4%
  3. Viber: 18,3%

WhatsApp clearly takes the top spot when it comes to messengers usage. Second most popular messaging app for business is clearly Messenger followed closely by Viber.

WhatsApp and Messenger have a monthly active user base of about 1 billion users each and both are already belonging to Facebook.

Their messaging strategy is clearly paying off and by enabling chatbots to handle eCommerce processes automatically for example with the oratio Shop Assistant, Facebook has clearly paved the way for businesses to prosper in the messaging space.

This is Part 1 of a series of articles. Part 2 will be released next week.