Beginner’s Guide to Chatbots for Business

Chatbots: A Beginner’s Guide to Custom Chatbot Development & Integration

Are you a business considering utilizing chatbots on your website or app but want to know more about what they are? Well, you are in the right place, as this article will discuss all you need to know about chatbots/chatbot developer.

Chatbot development are gaining popularity, and you can see them on most reputable websites, applications, and services. Some examples include voice assistants such as Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, and Google’s Assistant.

Let us dive right in and find out what chatbots are and how they can be a helpful feature to your existing customer service program.

What are Chatbots?

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A chatbot is an artificial intelligence (AI) based software application that uses both AI and natural language processing (NLP), machine learning. This allows the chatbot developer to understand what you want and offer you the right information, solution, or instructions.

The artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP), machine learning based chatbot development /  chatbots learn from each interaction and use the information in future scenarios. However, this requires extensive “training” time for the chatbot development.

In 2016, Facebook integrated the chatbots into its eco-system, and Google followed the trend by introducing its very own Google Assistant.  Apart from that, chatbots are available in all forms on several websites, social media platforms.

The idea to deploy chatbot development on these multiple platforms is to save you from the trouble of hopping from one app to another manually to get what you want. Chatbot development offer a one-stop solution for a pleasant and convenient user experience with faster and simple life-like interaction.

Importance of Chatbots

You can use chatbots to streamline the interaction between your brand and the customers. This is a unique and state-of-the-art opportunity for your company to improve the customer experience via efficient customer engagement.

Moreover, chatbot developer can help eradicate several operational expenses, such as reducing your customer service budget. In simpler terms, chatbot developer can help your company operations become more efficient and error-free.

That said, you will still need some human intervention to configure, train, and optimize your chatbot development based systems.

How You Can Use Chatbots in Your Company

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Like the companies relying on physical artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP), machine learning based robots to improve their business operations, chatbot development are the digital equivalent in the customer services department. Tech giants such as Facebook, Google, and Skype use chatbots with many other start-up businesses using these cutting-edge helpers for impeccable customer services.

Here are some ways chatbots or chatbot developer can assist your company.

Customer Service

You can use chatbots to offer initial digital assistance to your customers/ visitors on your websites. They can collect information from the customers, answer their questions, and provide an adequate answer, information, or solution.

Digital Order Processing and Payments Management

If you are a business selling products and services online, you can use chatbots to simplify the shopping experience for your customers.   A chatbot developer can assist with online purchases, provide information to shoppers, and simplify payment processes.

Chatbot developer can also help perform searches for your customers and offer them products similar to their interests.

Promoting Your Company

Think of chatbot applications as a digital brand ambassador.  You can use a chatbot developer as your strategic digital marketing assistant to send promotional news to your customers.”

Leads Generation

You can program a chatbot to capture information such as name, contact details, emails, etc. Moreover,  a chatbot developer can forward this information to the relevant sales department to follow- up on the human conversations between the chatbot applications and the customers.

A chatbot developer can also filter and identify the qualifying leads by asking specific questions. This enables your sales team to get only potentially valuable leads to make a sale.

3 Steps to Choose the Right Chatbot

In order to make the most of the chatbot, you must use the most appropriate solution for your business. The below-mentioned steps will help you pick the right kind of chatbots & Chatbot developers for your business.

1. Research

First, you must research what type of artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP), machine learning capabilities you need in a chatbot. Find a chatbot developer system that can learn from the interactions and adapt to future situations without any intervention from your end. This will be a one-time exercise because your chatbot will use valuable data from each interaction and improve its capabilities.

2. Personalization of Chatbots

Integrating a chatbot system into your digital infrastructure will allow you to build a personalized online experience for the customers. Your chatbot will learn from your customer’s online activity on your website and identify what each customer is looking for.

Ensure by your chatbot developers that your chatbot system has enough training to deal with the most probable scenarios and queries related to your business.

According to Statista, 32 percent of customers say that their chatbots’ interaction has been unsatisfactory due to lack of usefulness and confusing results by the chatbots.

In order to offer an impeccable user experience, you must train your chatbot with the help of chatbot developers to engage in a natural conversational ai with the customers. This will help make each interaction more credible and authentic.

3. The Design Phase

You do not have to revolutionize the interface of a chatbot system. There is no harm in taking ideas from other competitors or services and customize them as per your needs. You can personalize the color, images, and emojis to make the system your own chatbot.

Integrating predictive text, proposed response, and autocorrect can be useful tactics too  by chatbot developers. You can even get off the shelf customizable chatbot systems.

How to Implement a Chatbot System

Whether you build a chatbot system from scratch or buy a ready-made one, the challenge is to integrate it into your existing eco-system smoothly.

Whether it is web developmeng & a website, an app, or any other interactive product or service, it requires rigorous testing to improve your new chatbot system’s performance with the help of chatbot developers. Moreover, it will allow you to make adjustments to the chatbot’s functionality for optimal user interaction and experience.

There are three main phases of chatbot integration into your company’s existing eco-system.

  • Integration – How your chatbot performs depends on how well you have integrated it into the system. Where some chatbot systems only require presenting a ‘Call-to-Action’ (CTA) to a customer, others may require performing more complex tasks. Therefore, you must ensure full integration of chatbot into the eco-system in order to perform the task you intend it to.
  • Hiring the Right Team –While chatbots are becoming increasingly independent and automated, you will require a team to handle the technical end of the system. If you are using a chatbot system for customer services, you will still need a team to ensure that chatbot passes on issues to the appropriate customer service team.
  • Supervision and Evaluation – Your job is not over after deploying the chatbot system/ deploy chatbots. You must keep an eye on its performance. You can always reach out to the customers and ask for their feedback on interaction with your chatbots.

Industries Using Chatbots

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Here are some facts and figures of companies using chatbot systems on a full scale.

E-Commerce

E-commerce retail has been booming and reached sales of $2.3 trillion globally in 2017 globally, and this figure is going to double and reach $4.88 trillion by 2021.

You can imagine how challenging it can be for traditional customer support or sales teams to handle this kind of growth rate. Therefore, using a much more advanced and efficient means such as chatbots seems the right way forward.

Chatbots such as Wingstop Chatbot has been helping companies such as Facebook, Twitter, Amazon and microsoft bot. Your customers can also order food, access the menu, and make payments via Wingstop chatbot. Kip is another chatbot system helping teams manage group shopping convenience.

Chatbots have been helping the e-commerce industry to generate revenue. Moreover, they are making operations time-efficient to shorten the purchase cycle and boosting conversion rate.

Medicine and Healthcare

The Healthcare industry demands a lot of attention to detail and can be very hectic for medical healthcare professionals such as employees, nurses, and doctors. Research suggests that physicians waste their time and energy by spending one-sixth of their working hours on administrative tasks.

This is where chatbots come into play and synergize healthcare workers. That is why Data Scientists, UCLA scientists created a chatbot system for clinicians. This way, a clinician can ask chatbot relevant questions and refer patients to the radiologist if need be.

Similarly, you can use Medwhat and talk to a chatbot asking general health questions, conditions, and symptoms. SafedrugBot is another chatbot helping healthcare professionals to make the right decisions for breastfeeding women.

If you wish to connect with your care navigator throughout the recovery period, the artificial intelligence AI patient engagement chatbot by Northwell Health is leading the front.

Human Resources

A Business’ HR department has a plethora of operations to deal with. Using an HR chatbot can help you make your HR more efficient. A chatbot developer can help you handle interest generation, candidate screening, running background checks, and communicating with qualifying candidates.

Verloop is one such HR chatbot that can increase your company’s HR engagement by identifying adequate representation of your employees’ performance.

Finance

A chatbot / chatbot developer allows the companies in the financial sector the ability to offer 24/7 customer service. You can train chatbots for several jobs, such as a digital version of a personal banker, loan service advisor, ATM locator, wealth manager, etc.

One of the most promising examples is Bank of America using Erica in their online banking app.

Erica is a chatbot that streamlines all banking features for online consumers. It can send personalized offers to the customers and assist them with their online banking sessions via chat. Erica can also provide information about account balance and credit scores.

Several other banks, such as Chase, Wells Fargo, Capital One, etc., are also using their own versions of financial chatbots to help their customers.

Cleo is another financial chatbot that allows customers to inquire about personal budgeting, financial transactions, etc.

Customer Services Industry

Chatbots in the customer service industry come in a wide variety depending on business needs. According to IBM, their chatbot Watson can reduce customers’ waiting time by 99 percent. Companies use chatbots on their platforms to answer frequently asked questions.

According to Tec inStore, their customer services received 80 percent more positive reviews from the customers.

Other examples include:

HubSpot’s HubBot can book meetings, and you can integrate it into a complete ticketing system that offers links to self-service support blogs and articles.

Insurance Industry

Insurance agents are constantly communicating with businesses and customers answering queries, providing quotes, informing them about premiums, balances, and payment dates. Chatbots such as Nienke and GEICO have been helping their proprietary owners to communicate with their consumers.

Automotive Industry

Now you do not need to visit an automobile shop or a car dealer to get the information. A chatbot/ chatbot developer allows you to get all the information you need without feeling pressured into buying.

YourMechanic is one of the leading chatbots in the automotive industry with the capabilities to book, receive quotes, and offer technical technical environment or advice on mechanical issues. On the other hand, IBM’s Watson is a chatbot offering handsfree assistance to passengers in self-driving cars.

Logistics Industry

The ability to confidently offer 24/7 visibility of customer’s orders can be a huge advantage. A chatbot developer can help avoid long queues while offering real-time tracking information to your customers.

Instead of making a call or waiting in a queue, a customer can simply ask the chatbot about their shipment status. You can now merge a smart assistant with your UPS account. This will enable you to verbally ask the chatbot to check your order’s shipment status, delivery date, and location. Similarly, DHL is using Amazon Alexa to offer similar services.

Real Estate Industry

The real estate industry is always booming, especially now when the interest rates are at their record low. Missing a customer in real estate comes at a huge cost; therefore, in order to capture as many visitors on your website and not miss a potential lead, you need an efficient chatbot.

Zapier and Manychat are some of the most efficient and widely used chatbots used in the real estate industry.

B2b Industry

B2b transactions are way larger and more complicated. Unlike salespeople dealing with your regular customers, b2b sales professionals are experts in their area. As your customers are the experts, you need a salesperson or customer service representatives that are also well-versed in their niche.

Therefore, you must hire and train the right kind of people. However, this will take a lot of time, effort, and money to train a team of b2b sales experts.

B2b business deals are more value-centric, and buying companies are more quality and value-conscious. Therefore, you must get all the assistance you will need to nail the deal.

Instead of going through all that trouble of hiring and training a sales team, why not deploy a chatbot system. The artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP), machine learning based assistant will have access to the most extensive database of information to correctly answer all the b2b client’s queries. Most importantly, it will learn from its previous user interactions and get better with the passage of time.

Moreover, you do not have to worry about weekends, pandemic lockdowns, or closing hours. Your chatbot will be a 24/7 assistant available online to offer valuable services to your b2b clients.

6 Reasons Why Chatbots are Essential

Chatbots vs Email

Here are seven reasons why chatbots are becoming a must-have solution in your digital services arsenal.

1. Efficiency

Modern-day customers want accurate information, and they want it fast. According to a survey, 70 percent of customers expect the business to reply to their queries within 4-hours of their initial interaction.

The longer you take to reply to the customers, the lower the chances to convert the lead. Chatbots rectify that issue as they can respond immediately without any acknowledgment from your end.

2. Satisfaction Rate

Customers prefer using chat to interact instead of talking to a representative over the phone. 75 percent of the customers feel satisfied using live chat as a mode of communication. Thanks to smartphones, as most of us, prefer texting and using chats for communication.

3. Boost in Conversion Rate

Customers are more likely to purchase from you if you have a live chat/chatbot available on your website or application. According to 79 percent of the companies using live chatbots, they have seen an increase in sales, revenue, and customer loyalty.

4. Chatbots are Effective

Billions of messages go through WhatsApp and Facebook on a monthly basis. Moreover, most customers are familiar with chatting platforms and chatbots, so why not use this tool in your business platforms such as apps, websites, and other applications.

Chatbots are easy to communicate with, available 24/7, save times for both customer and the business. According to a report, the healthcare and banking industry save 4 minutes per inquiry by using chatbots.

5. Enhancing the Revenue Generation

The idea behind deploying chatbots into your eco-system is to create an efficient sales funnel. The quicker you can provide the information; the more are the chances of the customers to buy. Leave it for too long, and the customers may move to a different competitor.

According to statistics, chatbots can help businesses yield up to 70 percent savings in the customer service arena.

Moreover, chatbots offer a wide range of functionality. Not only do they give a face to your company, but they are instantly available 24/7. If you are looking for an AI-based tool to lay the foundation of your business’s conversational ai marketing strategy, chat bot are the solution.

You can train your chatbots to offer customized customer service to each visitor and help them find a product they want or may be interested in.

According to a survey, most CIOs and CTOs are already using chatbots in several domains, including sales, after-sales, and customer service.

Other areas include

  • Customer relations management
  • Sales
  • Marketing
  • Finance
  • Supply chain management
  • Accounts and finance
  • Research and Development (R&D)
  • Manufacturing
  • Product development
  • Application development 
  • Communication and information technology
  • Human resources

6. Chatbots Can be Your Personal Messengers

Now you can use chatbots to send your promotional offers via text, chat, or email to potential customers. It is possible only due to the massive data collection capabilities of your AI-based chatbots. They collect information from the customer and learn about their purchasing behavior.

Moreover, your chatbot learns the email address, phone numbers, and other information about the visitors. The chatbot developer then uses this information to formulate a personalized promotional message to the potential customer.

Some chatbots can remarket your brand to the shoppers. You must have experienced this when you receive a prompt by a chatbot you complete the purchase for the item left in the online cart. Apart from that, you can also use the chatbot’s data to create customized campaigns for targeting or retargeting the customers.

For example, a customer bought a pair of shoes from your online store a month ago. However, the chatbot learned that those customers also checked another pair of shoes or left them in the cart. You can use this information to retarget that customer with a promotional offer.

Another example is a customer searching for a specific product on your website, but it was not in stock. A chatbot/chatbot developer will record this information, and you can inform the customer once that product becomes available.

Learn from questions a customer asks your chatbots. Did a customer ask about a certain product or service when shopping or visiting your website?

You can update them whenever that product or service becomes available or provide any other valuable information. This will help build rapport with the customer and gain their trust and loyalty.

Some chatbots even let you chat to the entire list of contacts. Moreover, you can even integrate some chatbots into other marketing tools to build a text or email campaign. The best part is that chatbots serve businesses of all sizes and sectors.

You can customize a large scale chatbot solutions according to your business goals, needs, and budget with the help of a software developer.

Conclusion

Growth of Chatbots

Now that you know what chatbots are and how they can assist your business by complementing its digital marketing strategies, you can seek experts’ help to design and deploy a chatbot system from our software developer. Engage our custom software development agency to create a customized chatbot system to make your operations more efficient by our chatbot developer.

Ryan Nead
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