What is a chatbot?

A chatbot is an automated interlocutor. It creates a conversation between a human and a computer. Usually you have a conversation with another person through an app (such as WhatsApp), but chatbots don’t talk to another person, but to a computer.

Chatbots are very interesting, and in this blog post I’ll explain what they are, how they work, why you need them and how to make them.

Read also : Can we recover data after formatting a hard drive ?

An example of chatbot

EpiReads is a good example of a chatbot. It advises bookreaders on which book they can read. Someone can choose a book/author who likes it or choose the mood that it is currently in. Based on these preferences, the chatbot immediately suggests possible books that they can read. The chatbot is currently live, so if you have Facebook Messenger, you can try it here.

See also : How to use a chatbot

Source: EpiReads chatbot A chatbot is an automated interlocutor. It cares for a conversation between a human and a computer.Chatbot meaning

How does a chatbot work?

A chatbot works pretty simple. I’ll explain it with an example.

  1. A user starts a conversation with a car dealership chatbot. He asks “What red cars do you have?”
  2. The chatbot reads the message and recognizes the words “red” and “cars”.
  3. Based on the words the chatbot recognizes, it will search for “cars” that are “red” in a database.
  4. Eventually, the chatbot will return a message with the red cars found in the database.

In general, most chatbots work this way. It’s also possible that the chatbot doesn’t understand the question and then answers with “I don’t understand, could you ask in a different way?”

Want to know more about how chatbots work, and the more technical side of it, check out this article!

A bot isn’t the same as a chatbot!

The terms bots and chatbots are often used interchangeably. However, there is a significant difference between these two terms. Bots are software applications that perform automated tasks. For example, a bot could be a software program that automates your accounting or social media messaging.

A chatbot is a software application that performs automated tasks, but differs in the fact that it also has a conversation with the user.

Where are chatbots used?

Chatbots are mainly used in three places:

  • Websites Often, a chatbot is added to a website for asking standard questions, qualifying leads, or to send the customer to the good department in the company.
  • Social media platformsSince social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter have integrated chatbots into their platforms have been created a lot of chatbots. Chatbots can be used for a variety of purposes, from buying products to mental health to entertainment.
  • AppsThis is the least used option of the three. Chatbots can be integrated into apps for asking standard questions, questions about how the app works, or getting customer service. Integrating a chatbot into an app is much more difficult than on a website or on a social media platform.

What can a chatbot do?

Chatbots are used for a variety of reasons, but in general there are 3 roles:

  1. Digital Assistant role With the role of digital assistant, the chatbot helps the user to do certain tasks. They are mainly used to increase productivity and do things more efficiently.
  2. Role of information provider With the role of information provider, a user questions to the chatbot who in turn answers these questions. They are mainly used to obtain help and information.
  3. Role of General Chatbot With the role of general chatbot, a user uses the chatbot to have a conversation for entertainment or emotional support.

Benefits of chatbots

But why do you need to use a chatbot? Here are 6 benefits of chatbots:

  1. Save time and money on customer service With a chatbot, you can save a lot of money and time on customer service. 80% of customer service questions are standard questions that can be easily answered by chatbot. The result? The ability to save up to 80% on customer service.
  2. Increase your sales With a chatbot, you can increase your sales considerably. You can sell your products/services directly to your customers and people pay in the chatbot.
  3. Get more leads With a chatbot, you can easily get more leads. An example of this is to link a Facebook ad to a chatbot. Once someone clicks on the ad, they will automatically receive a message from the chatbot in Facebook Messenger.
  4. A chatbot is always online and can be reached 24/7 With a chatbot, your business can be reached 24/7 to your customers. Wherever they are, when they want to reach you. Your customers can even ask questions in the middle of the night. According to Chatbots Magazine, this is one of the main reasons why people use chatbots.
  5. Reply in seconds, instead of days A chatbot can respond to questions from your customers right away. Instead of customer service, where you often have to wait minutes or even hours before your customer gets an answer to their question.
  6. Send real-time, personal messages to customers With a chatbot, you can send a personal message to your customers at just the right time. This makes them likely to talk to your chatbot and possibly buy your products/services.

Want to learn more about why you should use chatbots? Check out this article!

How to create a chatbot?

A chatbot can be built in two ways: programming a chatbot itself or using chatbot software. The option you choose depends on the purpose of the chatbot and the time/budget you have for the project. I’ll go through the benefits and disadvantages of both alternatives below.

Self-programming chatbot

When you create a chatbot yourself, you need to be able to program. You can do this yourself (if you’re a developer) or you can hire a software development company to do this for you.

Advantages

  • You can make it exactly the way
  • you want it: You have complete control of the chatbot design
  • ,

  • you can make changes easily

.

Cons

  • It’s more expensive than using chatbot software
  • .

  • It takes longer than using chatbot software
  • .

Using Software

You can also use chatbot software. This doesn’t require programming knowledge to create your own chatbot. Most software companies also have (video) tutorials and templates on how to create a chatbot, making it even easier. Examples include Chatfuel, Manychat, Octane AI, and Mobile Monkey.

Advantages

  • It takes less time than programming a chatbot yourself
  • ,

  • it’s cheaper than programming a chatbot yourself
  • .

  • You don’t need programming knowledge
  • ,

  • you can easily deploy it on multiple.

Consplatforms

  • Less flexible
  • :

  • You have little or little control over the chatbot design
  • .

  • Sometimes the software only allows for one platform
  • .

conclusion

Many people are beginning to understand the value of chatbots. They can automate conversations that allow you to:

  • Drastically lower your customer service costs
  • You can increase sales
  • ,

  • your leads can qualify automatically

This technology is still in its infancy and many companies don’t use it yet. By deploying this in your business, you are very much rehearsed.

Are you convinced to invest in a chatbot? Leave a comment!

General FAQ

What is a chatbot?

A chatbot is an automated interlocutor. It creates a conversation between a human and a computer. Usually you have a conversation with another person through an app (such as WhatsApp), but chatbots don’t talk to another person, but to a computer.

How does a chatbot work?

A chatbot works pretty simple. I’ll explain it with an example.1. A user starts a conversation with a car company chatbot. He asks “What red cars do you have?” 2. The chatbot reads the message and recognizes the words “red” and “cars” .3. Based on the words the chatbot recognizes, it will search in a database for “cars” that are “red” .4. Eventually, the chatbot will return a message with the red cars found in the database.

Why do I need a chatbot?

They are always online and therefore available 24/7, they can cost your customer service drastically decrease and increase your sales considerably.

How to create a chatbot?

A chatbot can be built in two ways: programming a chatbot itself or using chatbot software. The option you choose depends on the purpose of the chatbot and the time/budget you have for the project.

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