What Are Chatbots, and How Can They Help Your Business?

What are chatbots? How can they help your business to thrive? If you’re asking yourself these questions, you may be interested to learn about the multiple roles that chatbots are beginning to take on in modern businesses. From customer support to marketing, chatbots can work in many parts of an organization. Read on to learn more about chatbots and find out how you can use them in your business.

What are Chatbots?

Chatbots are computer programs that have some ability to understand human language and talk back to a human user. Whereas some chatbots only understand text queries, some use voice recognition technology to process audio information. They can provide information that answers a user’s questions, or pass the user on to a human agent when they are not able to help.

People have been asking “what are chatbots” since the 1960s, when an early bot called ELIZA was created. Since then, chatbots have become much more sophisticated. Modern chatbots can learn from the conversations they have with users, gaining knowledge and learning how users are likely to react to the things they say. The more time this kind of chatbot spends talking to users, the more capable it becomes.

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What Are Chatbots Used For?

Chatbots are great at providing timely customer support. Most organizations don’t have enough human customer support agents to immediately deal with every customer query. Many customers prefer talking to a chatbot to waiting on hold to talk to an agent. If the customer’s question is simple, the chatbot may be able to provide an answer. For more complicated questions, the chatbot can transfer the customer to a human agent in the right department.

Some businesses are also experimenting with using chatbots as salespeople. Although chatbots can’t completely replace a highly skilled sales team, they can take the burden off the sales department, allowing the human team members to focus on more specialized tasks. Chatbots are useful in situations where customers need help finding the right product for their needs. For example, if your online store contains a confusing array of technological products, a chatbot can explain the features of the different products and recommend one that meets the needs of the customer.

Finally, chatbots are useful for marketing purposes. They can talk to customers who are browsing a company website, inviting them to join the company mailing list or schedule a call from a salesperson to find out more about the products. These leads can be very valuable to the marketing and sales teams, who can follow up with them later in order to close a sale.

Are Chatbots Right For Your Business?

If your business doesn’t have the human resources to scale easily, chatbots could help to take up the slack in your customer service or sales department. They’re also a great option for businesses that sell primarily to younger people, who are often very willing to chat with a bot to find out the information they need.

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