Digital marketing trends are constantly changing and a new player has come into the spotlight over the last few years- the chatbot.
What comes to your mind when you hear the term “chatbot?” Why have chatbots become so popular? Are they just hype or something truly exceptional? If you don’t have the answers, don’t worry. This post aims to give you a complete guide on chatbots and the important role they can play in your startup.
What is a Chatbot?
A chatbot, also known as an ACE (Artificial Conversational Entity), talk bot, chatterbox, chat robot, or chatterbot, is an AI (Artificial Intelligence) program, designed to simulate interactive human communication online. It is often known as one of the most advanced expressions of communication between machines and humans.
Essentially, a chatbox is an assistant that interacts with people as a virtual companion. Chatbots can be integrated into apps, websites, or instant messengers. Basically, it’s an automated system of interactions and helps businesses get closer to their clients, without investing in hiring customer service representatives.
That may sound like a cheap shortcut, but customers can also benefit from chatbots. A study conducted by ResearchGate shows that there are several reasons why people prefer to interact with chatbots. The survey noted that customers like the quick and effective solutions chatbots offer and the exclusive client support they get, as opposed to calling a customer support center and having to wait to speak to a representative.
Types of Chatbots
There are mainly two types of chatbots:
- Simple or Scripted Chatbots - These chatbots work on predefined keywords. If you ask a question without using a specific keyword, the chatbot will not be able to understand it, and as a rule, the chatbot will respond, “Sorry, I didn’t understand.” These chatbots are usually easy to implement but their limited responses could prove to be frustrating for customers.
- Intelligent or Smart Chatbots - Instead of keywords, these chatbots rely on AI, using Natural Language Processing (NLP) to better understand a customer’s question. Rather than offering pre-prepared answers, these chatbots can provide users with more personalized answers.
Why Startups Need Chatbots
Being an entrepreneur, you might be familiar with the pressure to yield a maximum output with minimal resources. Here are some valid reasons why startups should adopt this AI technology.
- Startups usually can’t afford to hire extra employees like a customer support team due to limited finances. Chatbots are something that can pay for themselves; making them a valuable asset.
- They are easy to build.
- They deliver straightforward services.
- They emphasize the image and brand of the company.
- They make client service your stronghold.
- They enable startups owners to focus on their core business.
How Can Startups Use Chatbots?
Chatbots are becoming incredibly popular, and they’re here to stay. The primary reason for the existence of chatbots is to increase customer satisfaction, which can enhance business sales and profits. Therefore, if you’re investing in a chatbot, you need to ensure that it is performing at its best.
Here are some ways you can use chatbots to improve customer satisfaction and boost business performance.
1. Keep Chatbot Information Up-to-date
Businesses that install chatbots have to commit to optimizing them. A chatbot needs sufficient information; it needs to be instructed on how to behave. It can be time-consuming to optimize chatbots as the data needs to be updated regularly to remain relevant. Make sure there is a dedicated person within your company who is responsible for the chatbot and can keep the chatbot information updated.
2. Make Chatbots Respond to Emotions
Of course, chatbots are not humans and therefore cannot understand emotions. That’s why a part of their training must include sympathy responses. A chatbot must be set up to capture the emotions of clients during a conversation and response appropriately. Analyze which emotional situations the chatbots are not understanding correctly and keep training them to show satisfactory behavior.
3. Effective Client Resources
A chatbot is a lot smarter than people assume. For instance, chatbots actually remember all the details customers tell them. They learn from this information and use it to help future clients. You can use chatbots as a front-line client resource, mainly to deal with fundamental concerns and questions.
4. Simplify the Sales Procedure
Besides delivering information, chatbots influence sales as well. A capable chatbot can automate the sales procedure to streamline it from beginning to end. Startup owners can use chatbots to simplify the sales process for you and your customers.
5. Use NLP to Make Chatbots Look Natural
The tone and language used in a conversation are important. People should feel like they are talking to a real person rather than a robot. Therefore, startups must enable chatbots to recognize real language through NLP (Natural Language Processing) so that they can use this information to give customized solutions to each user for improved customer satisfaction.
The Key Takeaway
With chatbots becoming more and more popular, in the future, you can expect most client interactions to be handled by chatbots. That’s why businesses must enhance their chatbot game to stay competitive and improve customer satisfaction. This technology is under progress, and its capabilities are increasing every day. Consider investing in creating a chatbot for your startup business and be at the forefront of creativity and innovation!