Chatbots are now becoming more common that ever before. They are popping up everywhere. Banking, Insurance are early adopters of the technology in India. More and more brands in India are trying to figure out a way to implement one.
In a survey done last year people said they would prefer to chat or text with companies instead of talking on the phone – a perfect fit for the chatbot. Business are loving them, the response times are quicker, queries get resolved automatically without the need of paid human intervention.
What about other stats ?
Are people comfortable using them ?
Do they still need to speak to a human ?
You need to ask these question before you look to implement one for your business.
Ok, let’s start with the basics – do people like chatbots? Well, yes and no. In a survey done, they asked 5,000 people how they felt about them. 39% of people surveyed felt positive about their experiences, while only 11% felt negatively. The rest simply hadn’t had enough interactions with them to make a choice, but you expect that number to continue to drop as conversations with chatbots continue to become a more normal part of our customer service experience and people form their opinions.
Next, let’s look at what people are using chatbots for. According to the same survey, an overwhelming 67% of those surveyed used a chatbot for customer support in the last year, but only 14% have used one to help with productivity. As the technology advances, these numbers will most likely change a bit, but chances are that your normal, typical interactions with chatbots will stay in the customer service sphere. It should also be noted that of those surveyed, 47% said to skip on the conversational UIs and focus on delivering a chatbot that’s straight to the point.
Chatbots are here to stay. There’s no question there. The only questions remaining are how to implement, where to implement, how to set conversational tones, and other questions about the operations of your chatbot.
Why “now” for the Chatbot?
First, people already text a lot. There are billions of messages sent every hour. Humans have substituted verbal communication (human to human) with written communication (human to machine to human). From the very beginning of computers, humans have communicated in our language – If X, then Y – which is then interpreted into machine language of Ones and Zeros. Humans are already chatting with computers and Chatbots make it possible for the machine to chat back!
Next reason, we are in App overload. Think about your own smart phone. Research shows that we only use about about 5 regularly, and half of these are social media apps. Most of us are at our limit for apps and dont need another one. Chatbots don’t need an app to engage with customers.
We already use them. The original Instant Messaging platforms used very basic Chatbots to respond to text. So the chances are that we’ve all used them sometime along our digital journey and just not know about it.
Finally, evidence suggests email has run its course. It’s great for sharing information but horrid at conveying understanding. Which is why alternatives to email, such as SLACK, allow humans to communicate in a more responsive way than email. People are more engaged with a digital chat experience than they are with an analogue email exchange.