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Upcoming WeChat Features 2018? Part Two: WePay International Expansion

With a figure of a billion monthly active users as of the second half of 2017, and undoubtedly increasing, WeChat is clearly doing something right. From WePay to mini-programs, WeChat has become a program brimming with functionality. In 2018, what more is there for WeChat to add? Over the next few days, we will be looking at several of WeChat’s newest features and how your brand can make the most out of them.


WePay International Expansion

Previously, WeChat’s attempts to expand to other markets have proved less successful than hoped. With widespread adoption of Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp in countries including the US, South Africa, Argentina and Italy – WeChat’s late entry into the market has somewhat hindered its progress.


Similarly, with a lack of localisation and the absence of many integrated features that make it so popular in China, it has failed to catch the imagination of consumers.


WePay Global Ecosystem

Nevertheless, WebChat is ploughing on, recently changing its globalisation strategy to focus on forming new partnerships with businesses rather than acquiring new users. What’s more, it is hoping to drive interest by partnering with firms to allow WeChat Pay in other markets.

Most significantly perhaps, it has rolled out its full WeChat ecosystem in Malaysia, meaning locals can link their bank accounts to WeChat Pay. With previous limitations on localised services, this could generate greater usage of other features within the app including booking appointments, taxis and so on, perhaps then leading to greater expansion elsewhere. It also means that Chinese travellers can avoid cash payments, and if this is replicated in other markets, will potentially make the app more travel-friendly.