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31 Billion Messages and Counting: Gupshup’s Festive Season 2023 by the Numbers

On December 31, 2023 | 5 Minutes Read
ChatbotsConversational AIConversational CommerceConversational EngagementConversational MarketingConversational SupportCXGenericWhatsApp Business API

Every year, as October, November, and December roll around, the vibrant atmosphere at Gupshup’s office becomes palpable. Conference rooms burst with energy as teams passionately delve into innovative go-to-market strategies. The diligent engineering teams work tirelessly, seamlessly managing the surge in volume with dedication and skill. Meanwhile, the Slack channels for customer support light up like a festive display, with each notification signaling the team’s unwavering commitment to providing top-notch service.

 And this time with the Cricket World Cup during the same time, it was an unusually busy festive season. Through some key stats, we are going to tell you what transpired at our platform during the festive season.

But first of all, why do brands prefer messaging? The answer lies in the exceptional open and response rates that messaging platforms provide. Moreover, messaging apps dominate consumer’s mobile usage, capturing 65% of time spent digitally in India. So brands want to engage users where they already spend most of their time. With features like CTWA (Click to WhatsApp Ads), bots, and payments, our platform enables brands across industries to build personalized, automated conversations that feel natural. 

Lastly, with rising data costs and app fatigue, messaging lets brands acquire and assist customers without expensive app installs. Quick 2-way conversations keep users constantly engaged even without an app. The growing popularity of Conversational Engagement can be gauged through our messaging volumes across the months of September, October and November. And if you thought that this was high, our full-year numbers are all the more eye-popping- 112 billion plus Conversations.

Gupshup's messaging volume during the festive season
Gupshup’s platform saw messaging volumes peak during the festive season


While these numbers tell several stories about the demand that we see and our capabilities, it’s also a testament to the breadth and depth of our platform, which can handle significantly high volumes. And this demand is not just from India. Given the Black Friday, Thanksgiving and Christmas season in international markets, we also witness huge demand from LatAm, SEA countries and the Middle East.

A lot of action in messaging today is being driven by WhatsApp. WhatsApp Business API (WABA) has emerged as the favorite tool for brands looking to enhance customer experience through 2-way engagement.

Messaging volume growth on WhatsApp

After all, it’s easy, intuitive and just requires basic texting skills. Be it a bill payment reminder or a deal on a new pair of headphones, it’s easy to respond with CTA buttons on WhatsApp. The data below gives a sense of 2-way exchange happening on WhatsApp through our platform. And now with Flows, it’s become all the more convenient for customers to express interest.

WhatsApp saw massive reach and engagement in the festive season

Click to WhatsApp Ads (CTWA), a new form of digital advertising that brings users to WhatsApp instead of a landing page is also witnessing huge interest from advertisers and marketers. Landing pages, as Gupshup’s CEO Beerud Sheth says in this piece on Conversational Internet, are not optimized for emerging markets and therefore by adding a layer of messaging, brands can bring engagement and thus higher conversion rates.

It’s a highly effective and cost-efficient lead generation tool, allowing brands to capture the name and number of the lead directly on WhatsApp. In fact, several brands on Gupshup’s platform leveraged CTWA for lead generation during the festive season. But beyond lead generation, CTWA is the gateway to offering a bunch of other services across the customer lifecycle. Brands are building Conversational Commerce journeys and even using it to offer post-purchase support.

Click to WhatsApp ads leading to strong lead gen numbers for brands

Given WhatsApp’s large user base in LatAm and Middle East, CTWA is finding increased preference among brands in these countries. Brazil with 139.3 million users is WhatsApp’s second largest market.

Countries that are most active in using Click to WhatsApp Ads

While the festive season leads to a boost in consumer sentiment across sectors, with people willing to splurge, some sectors such as e-commerce and BFSI were very active in proactively reaching out to customers.

Sectors that are most active on messaging

 This led to a higher traffic for these platforms, eventually resulting in bumper sales. It’s clear that Conversational engagement leads to higher conversions, reduced cart abandonment and increased transaction success rates. Across verticals, the engaging two-way messaging ensured customers found the right products or services during seasonal high-demand. also reflected in the value we were able to create during the festive season.

While Conversational Commerce and support on WhatsApp is gaining traction, a large chunk of messages deployed during the festive rush were predominantly marketing focussed. To make response frictionless, call-to-action buttons for ordering, paying or applying were embedded wherever relevant. Finance teams could simply click and pay EMIs, while shoppers could immediately place orders without leaving the chat. And for lead generation, application forms were served directly within messaging allowing instant submissions.

Gupshup generated huge value for brands in the festive season

On several occasions where brands had already deployed it, Generative AI elevated marketing campaigns across regions. These bots can hold natural conversations, understand content and context, and perform tasks for end users. Brands leveraged Gupshup’s ACE LLM to build responsible and useful AI-driven conversations that delighted customers this festive season.

Gupshup's Gen AI bots

This festive season showcased the immense value Gupshup has built for brands across verticals and geographies by making conversational messaging accessible. The ability to securely deploy solutions on WhatsApp, SMS, RCS and other messaging apps at scale has brought the power of conversational internet to companies big and small. As Gupshup continues innovating across emerging technology like generative AI, the business benefits for brands will multiply further. Most importantly, the progress means more people in developing markets can benefit from safer, cost-effective and meaningful Conversational Engagement.

Vandana leads content and communications at Gupshup. Before turning to communications, she was a journalist for more than 13 years, writing stories across varied subjects- from equity markets, policy to consumer tech. In her current role, she crafts engaging content and PR strategies that helps drive the company's marketing efforts.

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