In the modern world, instant response is the standard for online communication. Slowly but steadily, this trend has transcended personal messaging and became the norm for customers browsing business websites. Real-time chats and social media are fundamental for businesses but the direction is slowly changing towards intelligent chatbots.
As you will soon learn, chatbots won’t be able to replace human interaction for businesses just yet, but they definitely offer a great alternative for some use cases.
The usage of chatbots for business communication is a quarter of the number of people who use telephones and emails. 15% of consumers have used chatbots to communicate with businesses in 2017, according to the State of Chatbots Report by Drift – a number that businesses shouldn’t overlook.
Visitors cite getting answers to questions and resolving problems as the main reasons to interact with a chatbot. 37% expect quick answers to simple questions, while 35% would like chatbots to resolve complaints, problems and answer detailed questions.
This lines up with the most popular pain points for consumers. The most common complaint is the quality of company websites – they’re often hard to navigate and can’t quickly answer simple questions nor provide basic details about businesses.
Chatbots shouldn’t be treated as a permanent fix to
With that being said, the fourth most common reason to use a chatbot shows that people aren’t ready to trust them yet. 34% of customers say they would use a chatbot to contact a human assistant.
This is in line with the major chatbot pain point for consumers – 43% prefer to deal with a real-life assistant. Almost a third of respondents said they’re worried about chatbot making a mistake.
It’s clear that chatbots won’t become the be-all and end-all of business communication soon but if used right, they can become a great asset for your company and a convenient way for your customers to get quick, instant and 24-hour service.
The latter is the most common benefit cited by the customers. 64% said they like the fact chatbots offer a 24-hour service. The instant response came second, tied with answers to simple questions (55%).
Shortening the communication process benefits both sides, saving time and resources. However, it’s important to keep the pain points in mind.
Your business will benefit from smart usage of chatbots but can take a hit in conversions if you expect them to cover the entire customer service. It’s crucial to make it clear what your chatbot can help with. Otherwise, instead of making the communication easier, the effect will be the opposite, causing frustration for your visitors.
Offer your visitors a way to switch the communication channel directly from the chatbot window. Ensure your chatbot can guide customers to the contact channel that suits their needs.
Don’t treat chatbots as a replacement for your current contact options. Combine them the traditional business communication channels. You will streamline your customer service process and improve your response times.
At Nerd Cow we understand the value chatbots bring to a website. We work with best-in-class partners to deliver an impeccable chatbot experience and offer advice on artificial intelligence usage on their site. Contact us to request a free consultation for your business website.
Originally published Feb 21, 2019 9:38:42 AM, updated October 22 2020.