How Free Messaging Apps Like WhatsApp & WeChat Make Money

How Free Messaging Apps Like WhatsApp & WeChat Make Money

These days messaging like WhatsApp and WeChat has become a part of our life. Gone are the days when there were charges for sending text messages. We all love to use free services and at some point, we all think about how these companies earn money even after providing everything for free.

Let’s peep inside WeChat:

WeChat has more than 900 million monthly active users. These users just don’t use it for messaging but also for ordering food online, buying groceries, and even paying at offline restaurants. The user even enjoys lots of games produced by Tencent. WeChat helps offline businesses to use an online platform to sell items where it earns a commission from the sales.

Nowadays the similar competitor such as WhatsApp, Viber, Line, Facebook Messenger has started to follow the business model similar to WeChat.

Let’s see what’s in WhatsApp:

The revenue model of WhatsApp was introduced in 2014, where a user was entitled to pay $0.99 as a membership fee for a year. With this model, it was able to earn $1 billion in only nine months. But this doesn’t last long when the $19-billion deal with Facebook was signed. With the new boss, the charges were removed.

WhatsApp is currently on top of its game with over 1.3 billion active monthly users. Experts believe that WhatsApp is aiming to be a platform that can be used for the exchange of services. Messaging service providers like WhatsApp know that people are using them for business purposes also and they want to make a profit out of it. Having this in mind, a new business app was introduced by WhatsApp recently.

With a business app, Whatsapp charges owners to pay a specific amount for some extra features that will be available only to the paid users.

Where is the fund coming from?

Line has a different way to make money. Line is popular for its free games on the app. Line uses free-to-play games that generate money from in-game purchases and many other additional services. Line even earns from its stickers which a user buys to send as messages. Line has also a special paid service available for popular businesses and celebrity’ accounts which they use for sending promotional messages.

In other words, the free messaging apps like above can earn money with

Subscription charges for extra features



Official accounts



In-app purchases

Payment gateways

There is a huge audience for each of these apps and they all have ample opportunities to earn although the service is worth a penny.

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