With 2022 around the corner, instant messaging platform WhatsApp has shared some predictions that could potentially change the business scenario in India.
WhatsApp believes that in 2022, India’s journey to becoming a digitally inclusive will come from the most simple, accessible and scalable technology solutions that have the power to bridge the urban-rural divide and address local challenges.
Here’s a list of everything WhatsApp predicts in 2022, especially with regards to digitization.
Citizen engagement and governance
Just like 2021, when WhatsApp chatbots, played a crucial role in helping authentic information reach the masses amid the coronavius induiced pandemic. In 2022, WhatsApp predicts more innovation in effective governance and efficient citizen engagement by city and state administrations, thus lowering barriers for citizens to access credible, authentic and useful services.
Digitization of small and micro businesses
Digitaisation will help revive small and micro business in the post Covid scenario. “15 million businesses in India rely on WhatsApp’s Business App to connect with their customers better. Additionally, this digitization has offered entrepreneurs across India, especially women in rural India democratized access to customer bases and helps them grow and scale their business, further bridging the gender digital divide,” the company said.
The social media company believes that the digitization of micro businesses is the need of the hour to propel the country’s economic recovery and growth.
Multilingual chatbots will be adopted impressively in the country. A multilingual chatbot is capable of supporting and conducting conversations in multiple languages to amplify your reach and scale your localization efforts.
WhatsApp said that businesses with high customer engagement are increasingly relying on chatbots to deliver a more natural and customized user experience. “In order to improve localisation efforts and broaden their reach, adopting multilingual chatbots will become vital for businesses to succeed in a geographically and linguistically diverse country like India.”
With the increased penetration of internet, digital payments will also witness boom in the country. The collective goal for players in the payments ecosystem in 2022 will be to scale financial inclusion through a seamless and frictionless payments experience by “enabling access to digital payments, digital banking services, micro-finance and promoting easy and secure transactions with service providers and businesses,” the company said in a press release.
Services will rely on simple user interfaces
In rural India, the number of internet users is set to surpass the urban areas by 2025 and many of those connected will be first time internet users in rural India.
To facilitate services to marginalized communities, companies will pushout simpler user interfaces that take away tech-inhibition and effectively lower barriers to mobile internet adoption, this will help further speed up the digitization of the Indian economy.
WhatsApp says that it conducted a survey which revealed that more people are comfortable conducting business through messaging. Atleast 75 per cent of people want to be able to communicate with businesses through messaging while 68 per cent are more likely to do business or make a purchase from a company that they can contact via messaging, the company said, citing the survey.
Another survey by Harris Poll suggested that 81 per cent of adults in India agreed that messaging (e.g. via chat app, text) is a quick and easy way to communicate with a business. 78 per cent of adults in India agreed that messaging with a business saves time compared to calling a business and said they are more likely to do business from a company that they can contact via messaging (e.g. via chat app, text) than with one that they cannot.
Additionally, WhatsApp predicts an increased reliance on AI driven customer service that will help drive business efficiencies and improve customer engagement.