Apple Messages for Business overview

Overview of Apple Messages for Business features and capabilities
  • Messaging

Introduction

Apple Messages for Business enables brands to help customers resolve issues, schedule appointments, and make purchases or payments all within the Message app. Brands can leverage the rich features of Apple’s platforms to provide an integrated messaging experience that is branded, verified, encrypted and delightful. LivePerson has enabled hundreds of brands with Messages for Business, helping them to easily connect with their customers. Messages for Business is supported by Apple devices running on iOS 11.3 and later or macOS 10.13.4 and later.

Benefits of Apple Messages for Business

  • Expand your consumer reach - As of January 2022, Apple hits 1.8 billion active devices with ~89% of recent iPhones running iOS 15+. You can expand into a massive base of iOS users to offer true service and transactional use cases with a ‘Tango’ between automation and human agents.
  • Easy to connect, always in touch - Easy to start from a wide range of entry points and continue on the customer’s time across commerce and service flows.
  • Secure messaging - Apple’s strictly enforced Brand verification ensures consumer confidence and their rich, secure, interactive messaging capabilities drive optimal experience.
  • No Gateway Fees - Reduce costs by eliminating carrier gateway fees - Apple does not charge gateway or transaction fees for Messages for Business messages.
  • Rich Experiences - With interactive messages, customers can communicate with brands in dynamic, visual ways within the Message app.
    • Interactive capabilities native to iOS include Apple Pay for payments, iMessage apps to display business app features within the conversation, pickers to prompt customers to choose an item or timeslot, etc.
    • LivePerson solutions can also be leveraged such as automatic messages, secure forms, post conversation surveys and file/ image/ audio sharing.

How conversations start: Entry Points

Consumers can start a conversation with brands through Messages for Business buttons. These buttons can be enabled in places where customers might want to contact your business. Additionally, brands can also set up Message Suggest to further deflect calls and reduce voice support.

Entry PointDescriptionRequirementsLoETraffic
Message SuggestMessage Suggest allows for call interception as a way to help brands reduce call volume. When iPhone users tap on any of your registered phone numbers, an overlay appears allowing your customers to choose between voice and messaging.Registered phone numbers must be accessible on digital platforms.LowVaries by brand
Sticky & Embedded buttons on Website and App Sticky buttons float in the same location relative to the page, so even when the user scrolls, the sticky button remains in place. This is the easiest engagement on the website for a visitor to locate and communicate with your business. Embedded banners are fixed within the same place relative to the webpage. An embedded banner is the right choice if it is relevant to the context of a particular page. You can limit the display of the Apple Messages for Business engagement to Apple devices. Engagement Buttons can be added to the App as well.Add web tag in business website. Engagement design must be approved by Apple. Design must follow Apple's design guidelines, and include a call to action and context. If adding embedded engagement, a div tag in the webpage where the engagement should appear must be added [Contact your account team to learn more]MediumHigh
Conversation Links (Email, SMS and Social media)When customers click the Messages for Business URL on email, sms, social media, etc., they are redirected to the Messages app where they can send the initial message to your business.Conversation Links are generated once Apple approves your Messages for Business accountLowHigh
QR code and NFC tagTo allow for additional use cases through an offline entry point, brands can link QR codes and NFC tag on both digital and offline materials for customers to invoke Apple Messages for Business.You will need your Messages for Business conversation URL and a QR code generator.LowMedium
IVR DeflectBrands can deflect consumers from voice call to Apple Messages for Business using IVR deflection to SMS.You must have an IVR deflect system. [Please speak to your account team for accurate scoping]HighHigh

Apple Maps place card, Siri, Spotlight Search


Native entry points can be enabled to allow for customers to message you in Apple native applications like Apple Maps, SiriMessages for Business accounts must be ‘online’ and enabled.LowLow
Wallet passesBrand can have a direct entry point for Messages for Business on the back of boarding passes, loyalty cards, movie and event tickets, debit and credit cards, store cards, coupons, and gift cards.Brands should work with passes design and creation in order to make it work.HighLow
Augmented reality (AR)Brands can add AR to their brand experience as an entry point if the AR is on their website or app. The customer can check how an object looks in their house, and ask questions if they want to know more.For AR experiences initiated through the web in iOS 13.3 or later, brands should use custom action through which Customers can initiate conversation.LowMedium


Is Messages for Business right for me?

There are a few things you need to consider if you are thinking of adding Apple Messages for Business to your messaging strategy. Messages for Business is a great way to offer Rich Messaging, however it may not be for everyone. The channel is only available for your Apple customers. Check out the Operating System split of your customers’ devices – do you have enough Apple users engaging your business to warrant Messages for Business? A number of independent studies suggest that users on Apple devices spend more than their counterparts on other platforms. Check your web and app analytics to determine share of Apple users, and revenue generated by this group. If you still want to proceed, then we recommend offering Messages for Business to customers with Apple devices and other channels for Android users.

Additionally, Apple Messages for Business has a set of criteria that disqualifies a business from obtaining Messages for Business approval. See the list below.

Qualifying for a Messages for Business account

  • To qualify for a Messages for Business account, you must have live agents available during business hours and an asynchronous messaging strategy.
  • You must be willing to offer rich customer experiences and abide by Apple design standards and Messages for Business policies. To find out more, click here.
  • You must comply with Apple’s policies and best practices, as documented here.

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