What Are Some of the Best Uses of Chatbots?
A chatbot can be anything from a simple service giving you a local weather forecast, to a complex enterprise-grade integrated IT solution that power sales, HR or the like.
Some of the best uses of chatbots we have seen come from those that solve a problem better than any other way of solving that problem.
I realise that sounds a little cryptic.
What I am saying is if a chatbot does not get its user to their end goal faster than a mobile app, web app, email, telephone call or anything else, then there's no point using a chatbot for this job.
A chatbot is a brand extension
A chatbot is also an extension of a brand. Instead of a brand being reliant on design, colour, logo and iconography, a chatbot makes it reliant on language, tone, humour and words.
A chatbot is an opportunity for a brand to engage consumers in almost-human levels of conversation. The best uses of chatbots arise when a user's time and requirement are respected and understood.
More recent best uses of chatbots
In 2016 and so far in early 2017, some of the best uses of chatbots in business have been in sales and customer service. They are rapidly being implemented as the 'voice' of a brand. It becomes the service consumers use to ask questions about products or complain when something has not gone quite right.
As an example of how broad the best use of a chatbot can be, an enterprise client we are working with is planning a staged roll-out of a chatbot over the next 12 months.
The first stage is in sales, they want to streamline their visitor to customer sales journey, and a conversational interface is the best way to do it. Once they are confident it is providing an ROI and customers are happy, we will move to the next stage in development.
The second stage is for us to train the chatbot to be able to handle customer enquiries. It will be available across most of their digital channels providing on-demand support. After this stage, the chatbot will be both a customer service and sales tool.
The next stage is for the chatbot to become an internal solution.
They want it to grow and support sales staff in both training and personal development. We will teach the chatbot how to provide best practise and advice on their specific sales processes.
Finallly, the last planned stage is for the chatbot to also help alleviate the burden on HR. It will be available to answer to staff on the more routine, general questions around annual leave allowances, employee guidelines and administration.
So, to wrap up, although on paper this real-life case study it is just a 'chatbot' and a single solution, once you analyse this use case closely you can see it satisfies multiple best uses of chatbots.