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What are Chatbots and Why are They Becoming so Popular?

Are you ready to embrace the robot revolution?

What are Chatbots and Why are They Becoming so Popular?

We’re living in a world of constant digital transformation. According to Professor Klaus Schwab, the fourth industrial revolution has arrived, driven by things like mobile supercomputing, and artificial intelligence. Indeed, we can see evidence of AI in almost every environment, from our interactions with virtual assistants like Microsoft’s Cortana and Apple’s Siri to our conversations with chatbots.

Chatbots are just one component of the AI environment, and they’re appearing at a rapid pace throughout the communication industry. These simple bots help to answer questions and complete repetitive tasks on behalf of businesses so that employees can be as productive as possible at work, and customers can enjoy better service.

What are Chatbots and How Do They Work?

Chatbots are intelligent assistants that communicate with people through text messages or instant messaging online. These virtual agents can be integrated into applications or websites and have even begun to appear in instant messaging services like Facebook Messenger.

Most chatbots come in one of two formats. The first type of chatbot is the simple bot that responds to questions based on a pre-established selection of integrated answers. These basic chatbots are a lot like an interactive FAQ, responding to questions based on their recognition of certain keywords.

Simple bots are limited in their ability to understand specific queries, as they can only use the information they have in their data banks. Alternatively, “smart” chatbots use machine learning when communicating with users, to build their database of potential answers over time.

Why Are Chatbots so Popular?

Chatbots are easily one of the most well-known examples of artificial intelligence. They’re useful in a business because they save time and effort by automating various aspects of customer support. According to Gartner, by 2020, around 85% of our interactions will be handled by bots instead of humans. However, the possibilities of chatbots aren’t limited to answering customer questions. Chatbots are also ideal for collecting information about users, helping to organise meetings and more.

Startups and existing companies alike are beginning to access chatbots in their workforce to help with:

  • Improving Customer Service: Customer experience is the ultimate differentiator in today’s marketplace, and surveys show that around 83% of online shoppers require some support during their buyer journey. Your clients may need help understanding which step they need to take next when buying a product, and chatbots can provide real-time assistance, accelerating the path to purchase
  • Cost savings: Generally, implementing an intelligent chatbot is much cheaper and faster than hiring a new team of employees, or creating cross-platform Chatbots allow companies to handle a range of consumer interactions at once without over-spending on employee costs. Additionally, the accuracy of chatbots can reduce human errors
  • Gaining customer insights: The easiest way for any business to upgrade their customer service is to monitor consumer data and collect insights. Chatbots can gather information from consumer feedback and use that data to deliver insights into how you can improve your products and services
  • Automate repetitive tasks: Chatbots can also help to eliminate some of the repetitive tasks associated with the call centre and business environment. This doesn’t necessarily mean that chatbots will take over employee roles, but they will ensure that staff can spend more of their time on crucial tasks

Investing in Chatbots for Your Business

Chatbots can be a fantastic addition to your business strategy, but you’ll need to consider whether you need something simple, or whether you can benefit from true artificial intelligence. If you want to get involved with machine learning, then you’ll need to teach the chatbot to understand the language of your customers, and this can take some time. The good news is that chatbot technology is becoming more innovative every day.

Got a comment?

2 Comments
Ian TaylorIan Taylor 09:14, 14 Feb 2019

AI and ML have a lot to offer in call volume reduction, IMHO, even just in the form of automated FAQs. Done well, they’re great, done badly – very annoying!

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ChatBots in the News 04:13, 13 Feb 2019

[…] What are Chatbots and Why are They Becoming so Popular? […]

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