Integrating WhatsApp with Independent Software Vendors (ISV) and System Integrators (SI)

Twilio customers that wish to work with independent software vendors (ISVs), system integrators (SIs) and other third parties must follow a specific process for initiating Twilio's WhatsApp implementations. This guide explains the procedure for setting up a WhatsApp integration for third parties. The following topics are covered:

Click any of the above topics to skip directly to the corresponding content.

Implementation prerequisites

Prior to requesting production access to WhatsApp, Twilio recommends third parties and their customers complete the following prerequisites:

Third parties: Create a subaccount

Twilio strongly recommends any third parties implementing WhatsApp solutions on behalf of their customers use the Twilio subaccount structure. This helps separate billing concerns, provide cost transparency and keep accounts organized. The new subaccount's Account SID will be needed when submitting the customer's access request.

For instructions, see View and create new Twilio subaccounts.

Customers: Accept the WhatsApp Terms of Service

Customers need to login to their own Twilio project, and accept WhatsApp's terms of service.

Notice: This must be performed independently in each customer's own Twilio project. Third parties also need to agree to the terms of service in their own project, but can't agree on behalf of the customer. A business that fails to independently agree to the WhatsApp terms of service can result in shutdown.

  1. Access the WhatsApp page in Console.
  2. Review the Terms of Service. To continue, check the agree box, and then click Confirm.
    Review the Terms of Service, and then agree and Confirm to continue. 

Customers who already have access to the Twilio WhatsApp Sandbox have already accepted the Terms of Service, and can continue to Create a Facebook Business Manager account.

Customers: Create a Facebook Business Manager account

Customers must have their own Facebook Business Manager account in order to be approved for WhatsApp access. This is used by WhatsApp to identify your business, and associate your phone numbers. The Facebook Business Manager ID will be needed when submitting the customer's access request.

Customers who don't already have a Facebook Business Manager account can create one at business.facebook.com.

If you already have a Facebook Business Manager account, you can find the ID via the following process:

  1. Access the Business Settings page on Facebook.
  2. Click Business Info.
  3. Your ID will be listed under "Business Manager Info".

Customers: Verify your Facebook Business Manager account

WhatsApp requires most customers to go through the Facebook Business Verification process. We recommend starting the verification process early in the process, as this can take more than 1 week for Facebook to complete.

You can request Facebook Business Verification via the following process:

  1. Access the Business Settings page on Facebook.
  2. Click Security Center.
  3. Scroll to the "Business Verification" section, and then click Start Verification.

For full details, see Business Manager: Verify Your Business (facebook.com).

Submit a Twilio WhatsApp access request

Once the customer and third party prerequisites have been completed, a Twilio WhatsApp access request can be submitted. The request requires customers (or a third party on their behalf) to submit an application with information about the customer's company. This information is used to screen for use case, vertical, region, and compliance with other WhatsApp restrictions (see WhatsApp's Commerce Policy).

To submit a request, please complete the form at twilio.com/whatsapp/request-access.

Notice: To maintain compliance with WhatsApp's terms of service, all ISVs, SIs, and other third parties that work with multiple clients must ensure this process is followed for each unique business. A third party's approval for their own Twilio project cannot be applied to other companies.

To avoid delays in approval, please ensure the request form is filled out correctly, including the brand’s Facebook Business Manager ID. Additionally, keep the below clarifications in mind when filling out the form:

  • Email: The third party's email address where Twilio will reach out with the next steps for registering.
  • Facebook Business Manager ID: The customer's Facebook Business Manager ID, not the third party’s.
  • Twilio Account SID: The customer's Twilio Account SID where the WhatsApp Terms of Service was accepted (from Prerequisites), not the third party’s account.
  • Alternate Account SID: The third party’s subaccount SID. This is where access to the Twilio API for WhatsApp will be granted.

Access requests can take several weeks to be reviewed, depending on the volume of requests. If you are working with a Twilio Account Manager, ask them about the status of your request - they may be able to expedite your request.

Third Party: Register a WhatsApp Business Profile

Once the access request has been screened, an approval or denial email will be sent. For approved requests, the third party can now create a WhatsApp Business Profile in the subaccount that was created for their customer. This profile includes the business display name, address, website, and more information that’s visible to the end user in WhatsApp. Here's the process:

  1. Access the customer's subaccount in Console
  2. Access the WhatsApp Enabled Senders page (Programmable SMS > WhatsApp > Senders).
  3. Click the Plus sign + icon.
  4. Complete and submit the form.

Notice: Prior to submitting, make sure the Business Display Name matches the Display Name rules. Facebook Business Verification is also strongly encouraged to avoid delays.

Profile registration can take several weeks to be approved, depending on the volume of requests. If you are working with a Twilio Account Manager, ask them about the status of your request - they may be able to expedite your request.

Customer: Approve Twilio's invitation

Once a WhatsApp Business Profile has been registered, Twilio will send an invitation to the customer's Facebook Business Manager account. This request empowers Twilio to send WhatsApp messages on your behalf. Customers must accept the invitation to continue. Here's the process:

  1. Access the Business Settings page on Facebook.
  2. Click Requests.
  3. Click Approve on Twilio's request.

Third Party: Template Approval

Outbound messages to any WhatsApp users that have not responded to you in at least 24-hours must be sent using a pre-approved template. These are generally transactional messages (delivery alerts, appointment reminders, etc.) sent to users who have opted in to receive messages from you.

Templates are managed in the customer's subaccount on the WhatsApp Enabled Senders page in Console. Here you can see previously approved templates, and create submit approval requests for new templates.

For full details, see Creating messaging templates and submitting them for approval (Twilio Docs).

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