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One of the key advantages of WhatsApp Business API is the ability to start a conversation with a client. This is done via HSM templates. This article will tell what these are, how to create them and how to send them to your client.


  1. What is a HSM template
  2. HSM template advantages
  3. How to work with a HSM template
  4. Creating the template
  5. How much does it cost
  6. Additional features

What is a HSM template?

HSM template (Highly Structured Message) is a preset generic message to send to a client through WhatsApp Business API. You can substitute the client's name, order number, quick response buttons, images and other background information into it.

How have HSM templates emerged?

WhatsApp policy forbids mass mailing to the users. Therefore the messages sent by  businesses too often might be considered spam, and the account could be banned.

The only way for the business to have a conversation with the client freely is if the client started it. After that you will have a 24-hour-long window for the conversation. The window closes 24 hours since the latest message. Then you will have to wait for the message again.

In order for the business to have the ability to initiate the conversation WhatsApp developed HSM templates. You can send them even to the clients who never texted  to the business. Once the client responds to that message you will have a window open for 24 hours.

These templates have a restriction – they can’t contain any advertisement. Their purpose is to notify clients, for example about the status of the order, the decision for their ticket or a complaint. That’s why every template has to be sent to WhatsApp for approval. You can do it yourself on the website of your WhatsApp Business API provider or through a mediator, in this case the chat center Chat2Desk.

HSM template advantages

  1. Outgoing messages. HSM template is an opportunity for the business to start a conversation with a client. This is sort of a legal and safe mailing which will protect your account from ban.
  2. Speed. If you are using unofficial connection there could be delays up to 10 minutes for the messages to arrive. The delivery speed of HSM template in WhatsApp Business API is only 3 seconds.
  3. Customization. HSM templates contain variables that you can customize specifically for each client.
  4. Usability. With Chat2Desk you don’t have to type out the text from scratch all the time: you can find the required template in the service interface.

How to work with HSM templates

What do you need a HSM template for

  1. Notify the client about the order status. After the order is ready, tell your client it is waiting for the pickup.
  2. Notify the client about the ticket status or the decision made.
  3. Remind of the upcoming events: a flight and a flight number, hotel booking or a webinar that your client entered.
  4. Establish new contacts. If the client submitted a review or a feedback form, send them a template inviting to continue the conversation,
  5. Send service messages, inform clients about account errors, missing information or documents, etc.

What kind of HSM templates WhatsApp won’t approve

  1. Texts aimed at advertising and promoting your business.
  2. Discounts, promotions and special deals.
  3. Questionnaires and interviews.
  4. Insults, threats or extortion.

What is HSM template made of

The template consists of the text and up to 3 variables. Additionally, you can add images and interactive buttons.

A formed and ready to be sent template has several lines:

  1. @HSM@ label. It is required for Chat2Desk system to know that the operator is sending a label and not any text.
  2. Template name and language. The template name is agreed on with WhatsApp. In order to do that you need to contact WhatsApp Business API provider. The language stands after the name separated by a vertical bar If the language isn’t specified or is unavailable the message won’t be sent. The template can also have multiple languages at once (ru - Russian, en - English)
  3. Variables. Here you can set the name for the client, operator, set the order number and other personal information.

Making the template together

First, let’s write a text that we want to send, for example:

Hello, {Client’s name}! My name is {Operator’s name}. Your order № {Order number} is ready for pick up. You can get it from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. at 8721 Sutor Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11215

This text is what you send for approval to WhatsApp Business API provider or to Chat2Desk.

The agreed template in the Chat2Desk system will look something like this:


Then set up the variables, it will look like this:


The client will receive the following message:

Hello, Michael! My name is Jennifer. Your order № 197227 is ready for pick up. You can get it from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. at 8721 Sutor Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11215

You can also send a media HSM template and attach images, documents or contacts to the message. In that case you will have to add a |media variable:


How to connect a HSM template

  1. The templates only work with WhatsApp Business API accounts. If you are still not using this connection, send an application through our website or text us in the chat.
  2. Write a text for the template and send it for approval through your personal account on the WhatsApp Business API provider website.
  3. In up to 3 days the template will be ready and its status in your personal account will change.
  4. Add the template to your Chat2Desk account.

How to send a template

  1. Open the conversation with the client in Chat2Desk interface.
  2. Click on the “Template list” button.

  1. Select the “HSM templates” tab.
  2. Click on the required template and it will appear in the typing area.
  3. Add the required variables and send the message.

You can edit the templates in Settings - Templates section

How much does it cost

HSM templates are actually free. You only pay for the dialogs, or more precisely, for the 24-hour sessions. They are divided into incoming and outgoing. Their price depends on rates in Euro and the country where the client's number is registered. The final cost are stipulated in this table.

The minimal amount of templates to connect is 1000. They don’t attach to the month and don’t disappear, so if you haven’t used all 1000 templates in one month, the rest will pass onto the next one. However, if you reach the limit, you can buy extra ones at any time.

HSM templates are only available for WhatsApp Business API accounts. The price for one account is $120/month. The next ones will be available at $99/month.

Additional features

WhatsApp Business Card

This is a welcome message that is delivered in chat to the user after a phone call. It is based on your HSM template which you set up in advance and coordinate with WhatsApp. Once the client calls you, the script will send them a message inviting to join the chat.

CTA buttons

Add interactive buttons to your HSM template. The client could use them for a quick response, go to the website or call back.

You can find more information about CTA buttons in our article.

Communicate without any restrictions

HSM template is a tool in service with every WhatsApp Business API user. Now you know how they work and how to connect them. All that’s left to do is to send us the text of the template and start communicating with your clients.

Bonus: 5 Templates to start working with WhatsApp Business API

  1. Hello! Your request № {{1}} is processing. The solution will be ready in {{2}}. If you have more questions, please ask them in this chat.
  2. Hello! Unfortunately, we couldn’t answer your call because all of our operators were busy. If your question is still relevant, respond to this message and we will call you back.
  3. Hello! Thanks for submitting a request for {{1}} in our company. Please send “Yes” if you would like to continue the conversation in this chat.
  4. Hello {{1}}! Your order № {{2}} is waiting for you at {{3}}.
  5. Thank you for choosing our company. We will offer you a personal discount for {{1}}. You can see more details in your personal area {{2}}.


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