We’ve completely updated our comprehensive guide to WeCom (formerly known as WeChat Work). Everything you need to quickly understand why WeCom is important, tips for implementing it at your organization, and deep dives into the essential features. Check out the links below to download the full eighty-seven slide presentation.
If you’re unfamiliar with WeCom, think of it like your company having its own version of WeChat: you control who can join your account, what apps your team needs, and just about every other small detail.
The most exciting feature is that WeCom and WeChat are now tightly connected. The latest updates mean your company can:
Post to your customers’ WeChat Moments feed from WeCom
Send targeted broadcast messages from employees’ WeCom accounts to any segmentation of customers, and
Create group chats for WeChat customers that can be managed with live streaming, bots, Mini-Programs, quick replies, and custom app integrations.
We’ve also included a new section in this deck comparing WeCom to its main workplace messaging competitors in China: Alibaba’s DingTalk, ByteDance’s Lark, and new entrant, Huawei’s WeLink.
Grata’s web chat got a big upgrade recently with a new chat layout option, custom chat icons and buttons, new agent avatars, advanced developer controls, and lots of smaller interface improvements. Web chat has never looked better! We’ve also added new report types on the backend helping you more easily break out your usage by channel.
Grata clients have a new option for chat layout: instead of aligning all messages on the left, you can now choose to have agent messages left-aligned and the customer’s messages right-aligned. This allows us to remove the “Me” username for customers, freeing up space for another new feature: agent avatars.
Agent Avatars can be set for each individual agent or shared by teams of agents. Below the name field, there is a second line you can use to display the agent’s team, title, or location. Agent Avatars support separate English and Chinese versions.
Here’s a look at the new layout with an agent avatar:
We’ve added lots of fun new button options to ensure you get just the right look on your site. You now have two new options when designing your buttons: 1) upload a custom icon to display on a Grata chat button, or for even more freedom, 2) you can design your own button entirely. For details check out our updated help material here.
We’ve also upgraded support for more Font Awesome icon styles. Select any one of their 7,000+ icons in any color and any one of four styles: light, regular, solid, or duotone. You can update the appearance of your web chat instantly, at any time, and never have to update the code on your site.
Did you know that any button or icon on your website can be used to launch Grata chat? If you would prefer to control the presentation of Grata, you can use your own button to replace Grata, or in addition to Grata’s button. Several clients, for example, use this on their “Contact Us” page.
To support this feature we have a new developer feature that notifies your site as soon as Grata finishes loading so you only reveal your chat button at the right time.
Grata users with multiple channels (eg. web chat, WeChat Official Accounts, Mini-Programs, etc.) will appreciate that we now break out reports for each channel. Your overview report will continue to give you your combined contact center data on your number of chats serviced, users serviced, and chat types, while channel-specific reports will help you segment the data by channel.
You’ll find your WeChat Official Account follower data now in your WeChat report. And we’re reporting new data in the web chat report that shows you how many unique users clicked on web chat. You can compare that to how many users started a chat to see how your chat interface and welcome greeting are doing converting web site visitors to chats.
Tons of optimizations to web chat interface for tablets, mobile image upload, UC Browser, IE 11, and iOS Safari
Upgraded password policy complexity and encryption techniques on passwords and personally-identifying information to the latest standards
Resolved a UI bug with the console quick reply menu positioning and second-level buttons
Squashed lots of bugs on the admin backend
If you have any feedback on new features you want or just something that you’d like us to do better, please contact us at anytime by email firstname.lastname@example.org or send us a message on WeChat @grata_co by scanning the QR code below：
Grata had the honor of giving our fourth keynote presentation on Global Messaging Trends at China Chat Shanghai on September 19th. We love giving this talk as it helps us take our WeChat blinders off and really look around at what’s happening outside of China. It’s also encouraging that the thesis we’ve been making over the years — that we are on an inevitable trajectory towards devices with always-on voice and visual input/output that has profound implications for messaging — looks to be on an accelerating trend.
Our high-level overview of the messaging industry touches on
The current crisis in disinformation, privacy, and security in social media,
Our prediction that voice will inevitably take over as our preferred method to interact with our devices,
Our prediction that smart glasses will no longer seem so strange after Amazon, and more so, Apple enter the market,
Updates on what’s happening at Snap, Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Telegram, Apple, et al
The latest update to WeChat Work (WCW) adds an early version of chatbots, enhancements to customer broadcast messaging, and a somewhat gimmicky email signature applet, among lots of smaller updates. You can read the original posts in Chinese for the updates discussed in this post for the admin backend for v2.8.8, v2.8.7, and v2.8.5, as well as the user apps v2.8.7 and v2.8.5.
The biggest recent product announcement is the addition of chatbots to WCW group chats; though the initial feature set is still pretty basic.
Admin users can enable chatbots from the WCW backend and whitelist employees who are permitted to add chatbots to a group chat.
Currently WCW only appears to be publishing the developer webhooks to enable you to manually connect your own services as a bot. We can safely assume a third-party marketplace for bots is coming.
Once you or colleagues have added bots, you can then easily add them to group chats from the desktop or mobile WCW apps.
WeChat Work Customers
While incremental, the updates to WeChat Work Customers are more immediately exciting. The powerful feature to push personalized broadcast messaging through employees to their customers now supports advanced segmentation on customers and more content types: images, link cards, and mini-program cards.
When employees chat with customers in WeChat Work, they have access to their own stored Quick Replies. Now brands can manage shared FAQ content alongside an employee’s own stored answered.
iPad User Interface
The iPad app got an all-new interface in the 2.8.5 update. It now supports split-screen mode while simultaneously using another app. With 2.8.7 you can now drag-and-drop files shared in WeChat directly into WeChat Work.
Email Signature Snippet
The only new feature released with 2.8.8 is a small code snippet that you can use to add a link to your external contact QR code to your email signature. Customers or suppliers can scan your external code in either WeChat or WCW to add you as a business contact.
To enable it, click on your Business Card from the WCW app and select the new option at the bottom right to “Set as Email Signature”.
The snippet adds a pretty basic “business card” to your email signature that opens a new tab in the user’s browser when clicked.
In internal group chats, the group admin can now enable/disable the ability for users to @all whenever needed.
Mini-Programs can be shared before publishing, as a demo, to WeChat Work users for testing.
Group-level admin users can be designated to automatically receive admin rights over all sub-groups of the group.
There is a new class of admin rights to designate a user as an “app admin“. App admin can be granted permission to send and receive app messages, both one-to-one and broadcast messages. Admin can use the WCW desktop app to send messages without having to login to the WCW backend.
Admin can now designate some employee contact details as protected. If an employee needs to, say, view a protected phone number of an employee, the action to view the number will be logged, to prevent leaks of employee data.
The Approvals App now has a nifty history button. When reviewing, for example, an employee’s leave request, tap the history button to see their current and previous leave requests for context.
The Punch In/Out App gets several updates to help employers more granularly manage their work schedules and rules. Admin can now set custom behaviors when employees attempt to punch in from outside the office, designating these events as normal or abnormal in reports, or block the employee entirely from clocking in outside of the office (using GPS radius or wifi signal). Employees with exceptions to the rule can be whitelisted.
Admin can also now customize the amount of time an employee is allowed to punch-in late, and similary the amount of time an employee can punch-out early.
Finally, the number of shifts an organization can manage on the Punch In/Out backend has increased to fifty.
Connect Official Accounts to WeChat Work
Install Grata’s apps in your WeChat Work account to connect customers on your WeChat subscription and service apps to your mobile workforce for on-demand customer service and sales. More details at grata.cn or check out Grata’s comprehensive bilingual Guide to WeChat Work.
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WeChat and messaging
Check out recent updates to Grata’s live chat software, including URL tracking, new WeChat follower greeting options, enhancements for Mini-Program chat, and real-time pageview tracking for web chat.
If you have any feedback on new features you want or just something that you’d like us to do better, please contact us at anytime by email email@example.com or send us a message on WeChat @grata_co：
URL Tracking Manager
If you use UTM parameters to track the sources of your web traffic and performance of campaigns, we’ve now made that a lot easier to manage for links shared from Grata. Easily setup parameters on your Grata backend and we will dynamically append each link card, Mini-Program card, URLs in your quick replies, and any URL of your domain an agent types into the console with parameters noting which channel, which agent, and what type of content was shared.
We have clients already tracking products recommended in a live chat conversation through to purchase and paying commissions to agents based on sales. Check out the relevant new fields on the Team, WeChat, and web chat pages, as well as a new Tracking page to manage default parameters by content source.
The basic WeChat backend only lets you save one greeting message, sent whenever someone follows your account. Articles and Mini-Program cards are not supported. Grata has updated our Greeting page to store up to five multilingual greetings, including any mix of text, images, articles, and Mini-Program cards. Are you a hotel with a booking MP? Retail brand running an MP campaign? This is an excellent opportunity to get visibility for your MP.
The new follower event is usually your peak engagement with a user and your best opportunity to introduce your value proposition, your call-to-action, and the services you provide. It’s a great time to tell them 1) they can contact your team on WeChat, 2) when you are online, and 3) some suggested use-cases with which your team can provide assistance. Check out the updated help center content for more detailed instructions.
We’ve rounded out our MP service chat features with support for users to share a screenshot of the current MP page when they start a chat. If you’ve already linked your MPs to Grata, you just need to add “show-message-card=’true'” to your start chat buttons to use the new feature. Whenever an MP user clicks your chat button, they’ll briefly be presented the option to share a screenshot of the page they were on to help agents understand the context.
It’s now easier than ever to add chat support to your WeChat Mini-Programs. Check out our help center content for instructions on how to get started. With Grata you can drag-and-drop links to your MPs from within any WeChat Official Account or MP Service Chat. You can also add links to your MPs in the menu editor or send featured MP cards when users follow your account.
We’ve added a new tab in the console for web chat users to display their current page and browsing history on the site. The Tracker tab loads as the default tab when agents open a chat with a web chat user. Agents will see all browsing history since the user last cleared their cache/cookies, and the Tracker will update in real-time as the user navigates to new pages during the chat.
Fixed a bug that was causing some Reporting Subscriptions to fail. Manage your weekly and monthly reports from the Subscriptions tab on the Reporting page.
We’ve updated the Average Wait Time and Service Level metrics on your Grata dashboard to exclude chats that come from outside your business hours. （Calculations in Report exports have always excluded offline chats.）
Customer Satisfaction Surveys have been updated to get sent to users as one card to fit with new WeChat Platform policies.
We’ve updated Grata’s web chat files to be delivered by CDN for a slight performance boost. You can update the web chat code snippet on your site to load from cdn.grata.cn instead of www.grata.cn