Website design features often come and go. Many sites have tried internet features like animation, then thought better of it. Some have put video on the front page and sometimes it works; mostly not. Now, the trendy feature for any site is a chatbot.
These little interaction points can serve as navigation alternatives, help start off a customer inquiry or provide some much-needed personality for a site.
There are many successful examples out there, depending on what the company needs. Chatbots have been used as promotional tools – think Jamie Oliver’s emoji based recipe bot, which generated huge amounts of press, despite limited utility.
Some use simple scripts, while others can use AI and access to web or other information sources to provide a deeper level of insight. They have been deployed as time savers, helping resolve the 90% of easily-answered customer support inquiries, only directing complicated, serious or essential calls to actual support personnel, or they work as an out-of-office alternative.
Reasons to have a chatbot
A simple chatbot is easy to setup and operate on your website, built into an app or Facebook Messenger, you can test and deploy one using a service like Snatchbot. Rather than just adding one because you can, consider the business benefits first.
Will it save your company time, help raise its profile with a little PR effort, or can it bring in revenue to the business? Find a use for the chatbot first, then focus on how it provides value to the customer or client. Most people consider chatbots useful when they don’t want to talk to a technical person or customer support agent. Others are happy to use them for making simple table bookings, food orders and so on, without the need for a detail form to fill in.
In an age of ever-increasing focus on online customer service, a chatbot can be a useful feature for your site. Do ensure it
Do ensure it fulfills a purpose and is friendly and has some personality. It won’t be long before chatbots appear as the first port of call for people using health and other essential services, so everyone will soon be used to using them and your competitors will most certainly be making maximum use of a chatty website feature.