When was the last time you spoke to a live chat which was actually live, responded instantly and did not ask for your email id to get back to you ‘shortly’?
You know what I’m talking about but who’s to blame? The humans on the other side?
Not so fast.
Why Live Chat Fails
Let’s face it, managing live chat support is way easier said than done. Setting up and monitoring engagement on your website, resolving audience queries and much more is a powerful way of building relations with existing and potential customers.
Except, what’s the point if the live chat is not live, is tedious and is taking up most of your time?
Not to mention, the overhead costs that go into buying a live chat service and employing real humans to chat.
The good intentions of live human assistance were definitely there; from increasing customer engagement and satisfaction to driving sales but time and again the means have just failed to match up to the intent.
Where Chatbots Win
With chatbots on the other hand, time, money and effort that go into installing and maintaining a live chat interface on a website becomes irrelevant.
And while big and medium enterprises might find investing in a live one-on-one support tool feasible it just does not add up for moderately small businesses, e-commerce stores, professional influencers, bloggers etc.
Thanks to the current scenario of artificial intelligence however, bots are getting better at the art of engagement and the way I see it they will replace live chat and virtual assistant services for the better. A number of elements make them a viable alternative to popular live chat services, I’ve listed the key ones:
1. Automation: Chatbots don’t need supervision
Undoubtedly the biggest feather in a bots cap lies in its auto-magic powers ie. it’s for hours without any help. The hours you would have otherwise spent sitting behind a PC and answering site visitors can now be spent on the 5638921 tasks on your to-do list.
Answering frequently repetitive questions over and over again can get monotonous and taxing, something bots can handle with ease and flair. Imagine the FAQs and queries- a bot could take care of it all in a jiffy.
2. Online 24/7: Alive and kicking all day
Another key feature that makes personal conversational bots the best live chat tool for all-purpose websites is its 365x24x7 presence. Simply put, anyone anywhere anytime can have a conversation with your trained bot and get instant responses.
3. Quick and instant responses: Chat on the go
While one can always chose to pour time, money and manpower into providing instant replies to website visitors, it’s just not ‘humanly’ possible to anticipate chats and be available at every visitors’ beck and call.
Chatbots make waiting for a reply a thing of the past
In contrast, chatbots are quick with their responses – they either know something or don’t and are quick to convey that. They make waiting on a live agent to reply or submit email ids a thing of the past.
4. Handles multiple chats at the same time
When it boils down to actual chat skills, bots dominate even the best of virtual agents. With responses being pre-trained, they can engage countless visitors in conversation simultaneously.
So say, you have a number of chats coming in on your landing pages, instead of giving half-baked answers to keep your readers content, a bot optimises engagement with each and every user.
5. Cost-efficient: Easy on the pocket
Popular live chat services can cost anything from $12 to $106 /month/agent, but why should you have to pay to talk to the visitors on YOUR site?
Chatbots are a pocket-friendly alternative and are way cheaper than their human counterparts and if you can get your hands on a free and simple chat bot platform, you should be good to go.
Plus, don’t forget the wages going out of your bank balance to pay your customer support team. Your free chatbot in contrast won’t ask for money, ever.
6. One Unified Interface and Dashboard
If you’ve ever worked with a live chat software you know that it comes with two-fold interfaces. One for the end-visitor: a chat box and the other, a dashboard cluttered with useful data, all live and past visitor activity and a variety of settings.
Now your business can invest time and money in on-boarding sessions to get your support team used to the software and continue to set live chat working knowledge as a hiring criteria, but why over-complicate simple, result-driven processes?
A bots presents one clean, powerful and unified interface where your visitor talks to your bot and the bot responds. Yet, you still have complete control on your bot in thee same interface where you can train and make your bot smarter by the day.
Chat bots are already emerging as the next step in the world of innovation, everyone’s raging on about the gaps they’re filling for businesses and individuals alike. Most importantly, they’re driving user engagement, sales, marketing, customer support and retention.
In case, sci-fi movies (think Terminator, Age of Ultron, etc) left an impression on you, bots are not here to replace us humans but to help us and make our lives much much simpler.
Is there any other reason why you think chatbots are better than live chat services or vise versa? Will bots improve our daily lives? Please feel free to comment or share and let your thoughts known.