Chatbots are not new. They have been around for more than a decade, but they haven’t been as dominant and prevalent as they are today. Last year, Facebook launched its chatbot feature and the technology exploded. There are now more than 11,000 profiles and pages using chatbots on social media. They use these bots for everything–to answer inquiries, book appointments, and sell products. This means that these bots are essentially connected to more than one billion people who use Facebook every month.
These bots were not always perfect. Social media companies and businesses have to use tech PR to convince people to transact with chatbots. Many are still apprehensive about what these bots can bring to the table. But, for the most part, small businesses realized how essential these bots are in sales, marketing, and logistics.
What Are Chatbots?
In a nutshell, chatbots are computer programs that mimic human conversations. They use the chat interface to communicate with clients and customers. Chatbots are compatible with major chat platforms such as Facebook Messenger, Slack, and many more.
If you are familiar with artificial intelligence, it is what makes chatbots as effective as they are. Depending on their program, chatbots can communicate with customers like humans. They can provide information, make informed decisions, and guide customers throughout the whole transaction process.
Businesses Spend Less Money
With chatbots, businesses don’t need to spend that much money hiring social media managers, desk officers, customer relations, and sales representatives. When well-programmed, a chatbot can do all those things. They can answer inquiries on social media. They can provide information to customers who have negative feedback on your products and services. Bots can connect customers to you if the problem is beyond what it can do.
It’s the most affordable means to provide great customer experience. Instead of hiring someone to answer inquiries on the website and social media, a chatbot can do these things for you at a portion of the amount it will take you to keep an employee. They don’t take you away from important matters. They don’t bother employees from doing what their more important work responsibilities.
Easy for Customers to Use
Design your chatbot with the simplest interface that can deliver the same level of service to customers. Making the interaction easy is one of your goals as a business. When customers find it easy to transact with your company, they will not think twice about buying from you in the future again.
Chatbots Are Available All the Time
When are your customers most active? If you have consumers browsing your online store at night, wouldn’t you want to serve them better? However, paying someone to manage your website and social media at night is an expense your company cannot afford.
You don’t want to spend your nights dealing with customers, too. That’s when a chatbot becomes truly essential for a business. You don’t have to worry about the fact that no one is answering your customers’ inquiries at night. A chatbot can do that for you.
Better for Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Unless you are living under a rock this past decade, SEO is the king of the rankings game on search engines. Chatbots are one of the drivers of good SEO. Why? They increase the engagement on your website and social media pages, which is a crucial metric in determining where you rank among your competitors. The more engagement your website gets, the more that search engines such as Google will rank you higher on search results.
They Are the Future
Chatbots are the future. There is no business in the future that can survive without some type of artificial intelligence in its system. Chatbots will eventually rule social media and online marketing. There is no denying that. It has already started dominating online stores and social media platforms now. What more is going to stop it from being the standard of e-commerce in the future?
The pandemic furthered the importance of chatbots in today’s modern world. Since businesses are trying to cut expenses, they turn to chatbots to provide great customer experience, sales, and post-sales support. It has become even more important to respond to your customers’ needs immediately because the competition is tough on the e-commerce front. Neglect a customer for an hour and you stand to lose that customer forever.
The use of chatbots is growing across industries. Explore how this technology can help your business grow and provide a better customer experience. Chances are, one look into this and you will see how effective it can be for your company.