For example, in video games, a Bot is an artificial intelligence that will help you in your goals, while in other contexts, a Botnet is a program that can perform certain automated processes, such as sending Automated Spam.
So to be on the same page, let’s define it as follows:
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“Bots are the technology that revolutionized the way we interact with our customers.”
You’ll be thinking: this technology is extremely recent; but in reality, the first Bot was created in 1996 by Joseph Weizenbaum, an expert in computer science and German-American nationality.
Also to discover : What was the first chatbot in history?
Eliza was the name of this Bot and was designed to behave like a therapist, of course, without any artificial intelligence and somewhat limited answers, but no matter this, he was already able to ask questions like “And how does that make you feel?”
Today the Bots have become incredibly complicated, and although they are also able to perform similar tasks as if it were the first Bot, they do so in a much more sophisticated way. In this article, we’ll focus on Chatbots for Business, which will help us automate our business and provide better customer service. These types of chatbots can range from the simplest and easiest to do, to the most sophisticated and impressive databases.
Even Mark Zuckerberg has been interested in them, taking it as a personal challenge, as he stated in his own words:
“My personal goal for 2016 is to build a simple AI that allows me to control my house in Jarvis style as in Iron Man” — Mark Zuckerberg
Plan de l'article
- The different types of chatbots
- Learning to develop a Chatbot in just 2 hours
- Let’s learn how to develop one:
- The design process:
- Things to keep in mind while generating planning:
Ok, ok, but not all of us own a Facebook
Even in small businesses, these tools can be implemented, as technology has changed the expectations of users, which now expect your questions to be answered quickly, and personalized. That’s why businesses should offer a more convenient and enjoyable experience.
The most influential changes are the following:
- Users have changed their computer to mobile phones, making them more expensive and difficult to reach them by traditional means.
- The apps took great relevance in the world, and for the same reason, all companies developed their own version, overwhelming the user and making them feel tired of having an App for each service.
- Through social media, users expect to stay connected 24/7 with family and friends.
- Users between the ages of 16-24 spend on average 3.26 hours in messaging apps a day, becoming one of the most used on mobile devices.
In the following graph we can see the rapid growth:
“The time users spend on social media has grown an impressive 394% over the past year, proving that these are the big boost in the growth of time spent on mobile platforms by 69%.”
The different types of chatbots
Chatbots, as I mentioned before, are personal assistants who have a certain level of intelligence, but there are different types: those that distinguish and those who do not distinguish between the number of users who are using them at the same time.
These are the ones used in instant messaging apps. They use personalized interactions and direct communication. For example, the Facebook Bot performs the interaction between the user and the system.
These Bots are really fascinating and much more sophisticated. The main problem that developers face here is dealing with multiple users, all wanting to interact with the Bot at once. These Bots are able to follow and understand conversations at a certain level. Some platforms have done a great job of designing them, an example may be Slack.
Other Bots can even distinguish users one by one, and rank it to keep a history of interactions. To better understand this concept, let’s take Alexa for example, the Amazon Chatbot. This Bot takes the house as if it were a team and assigns a profile to each user. In the future, you may be able to assign priorities and hierarchies to users, prioritizing the commands given to it.
Attending bots by brand:
These are the perfect helpers to automate our customer service, because by configuring them we will make all experts of our business. An example where they are especially useful are travel agencies, as they are able to notify us when there are discounts and to make reservations.
Another great advantage for the user is that it can interact with the Bot as if it were an App, giving the sense of modernity and cutting-edge that users are looking for today, without having to download or install absolutely anything on their devices.
These Bots are the combination of the features and possibilities of the above, becoming super smart, with a simply gigantic database and are usually able to answer virtually any question. As an example we can take the Amazon Bot, Alexa, who is able to give the latest news, weather or just hang out with you.
Bots in Business
These Bots are able to automate processes and help users on a 24/7 schedule, being usually focused on productivity, being a class of virtual managers, who coordinate processes, collect information and much more.
These Bots usually have a more relaxed contact with consumers and are usually more informal. Their conversations are much more fun and friendly. However, they are able to deliver good productivity when the design is right.
Learning to develop a Chatbot in just 2 hours
Yes, yes… chatbots are wonderful, but how can I have one without investing millions in its development?
There is a lot of noise around the Chatbots. In fact, some rumors place them as the next Boom in the world of UX. Facebook released its own version of Chatbot for Messenger, only people saw it more as an “Informational Bot” than a Chatbot.
A curiosity about AI chatbots is for example, Microsoft’s innocent Chatbot was corrupted in less than 24 hours by Twitter users, generating his early death.
Let’s learn how to develop one:
To demonstrate the true potential of this technology I have the following goal for this article:
“The project should not require any previous programming experience.”
So let’s get started
A big benefit of having a Bot is the ability to program it as a very decent customer service agent. As an example, to show you how one is configured, we will take “Barnie’s Restaurant” — where the Chatbot aims to automate processes and guide our customers through menus and different options, helping us improve the customer experience.
We’ll need 2 very simple tools for this process:
- A whiteboard and some markers
- A platform to create Bots
There are a lot of those platforms out there to choose from, and, with a simple search in a search engine, you can easily find. For my part, I chose Motion AI, because of its excellent templates and pre-built models ready to use. What’s more, its UX is fantastic and offers a simple and dynamic experience, even if you’ve never done anything like it or don’t have any programming experience. These features make it very friendly to the first time user.
Other platforms you can take a look at are Chatfuel or Botsify, but the latter can be a bit more complicated for first-time users.
The design process:
Before starting to configure our Bot, it is always advisable to reflect on the problem itself. When people hear the word “problem”, they usually think there is something wrong that needs to be corrected, but in reality we should look at challenges simply as questions that require answers. Some may be very easy to respond while others can be challenging.
At this point we must define the following:
- What is the main problem and how do you expect to solve it?
- How complex is the problem
- Do I really need a Chatbot?
Be sure to collect enough data about users. Not only quantity, but quality matters so you can answer the following questions:
- What best describes my users/customers?
- What kind of personality correlates best with my client?
To be able to answer these questions, you should have a pre-designed “Person” that helps you identify who your client is, if you don’t know how to make one, don’t panic, it’s not complicated.
For this example, our little assistant Nom-Nom Bot will have a slightly more casual tone.
Here the real magic begins; my blackboard at first glance may seem like a total disaster, but it actually has a logical path to go. You need to generate a similar one for your business:
Things to keep in mind while generating planning:
1.-Avoid upholstery everything with text:
You don’t need to write everywhere how amazing your company is, for that there is the “About Us” page, but if you really need to mention it, make a completely separate section for this purpose.
Your Bot isn’t a therapist.
Introduce your Bot in a friendly way and always keep the greeting short and clean, with no waste of time.
“A computer shouldn’t waste your time or make you work harder than strictly necessary.” — Jef Raskin
2.-Promise only what you can accomplish:
Don’t pretend your Bot is a human or smarter than you actually is, because this will only create a false illusion and in the end it will be a disappointment for your users, who unconsciously raised their expectations in your Bot.
So your greeting should look something like this:
I’m Barnie, assistant Nom-Nom Bot!
This simple statement lets us immediately see that we are talking to a Bot and try to keep the conversation simple, otherwise you can generate conversations that have nothing to do with your business.
3.-Offers unlimited exploration:
Think that your Chatbot is like an App, which users want to know from start to finish. During the interaction they should be able to select several options simply out of curiosity. The worst thing you can do is not give your customers a way to undo things, which will lead to regret interacting with your Bot and not wanting to use it again.
With Nom-Nom’s project Bot, make it very clear to the user from the outset that all actions that the Bot takes can be easily undone, without any impact.
4.- Optimizes also for mobile phones
You’ll think that because you’re digital you have all the space in the world, but it’s really annoying to have to be scrolling up and down just to be able to see your last interaction. Always keep it easy to find the information sought by the user.
5.-Have the most common answers ready:
The fewer steps the user has to take to find the information, the faster and smoother the interaction will flow.
This step is simply to fill out the form with the questions and answers that you should already have in mind.
6.-Safety first, always offer them an emergency exit
It’s a matter of business etiquette: offer them a clear way to exit the session with the Bot. The psychology behind this practice is that the user will always have the option to end the session with the Bot and talk to a real person, building confidence and comfort at the same time. This tip also applies to the world of UX and a good designer should always keep it in mind.
1 Always thank them for their time
It may be that they followed the whole process and the Bot converted the customer, or maybe they played for a while with him and left without buying anything, whatever, you should always thank the time they invested in you.
If you ever considered having a Chatbot to serve your customers my advice is… Do it! , it’s worth investing the time and effort, plus you’ll have a customer service agent specializing in your business working for you 24 hours a day. Plus, with the Hype around this technology it’s highly unlikely that your Bot becomes obsolete but even within a long time.