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Leveraging Chatbots In Your Online Business

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The rise of artificial intelligence has led to several innovations in various industries. It’s unlikely that you haven’t used a product that makes use of AI. You just might not know it. One application of artificial intelligence is the creation of chatbots

If you’ve never heard that word before, you might have an idea of what it means from the words it’s made of. Nevertheless, we would explain what it is and how you can leverage it in your online business. 

What are Chatbots?

Chatbots are text-based interfaces that can respond to your queries or carry out conversations with you to a limited extent. These interfaces are designed using a branch of AI called NLP or natural language processing.

You have probably come across chatbots before. They are used on a lot of online platforms to provide instant customer support to customers who need help. Although chatbots have been around for a long time, it’s only in recent times businesses began using them.

It has been predicted by Gartner that Chatbot adoption by businesses would rise significantly. It estimated that there would be a 70% increase in the interaction of white-collar workers with chatbots. The only reason we have such a number is because of the many benefits that come with making use of chatbots in one’s business. 

Application Of Chatbots In Online Businesses

There are several ways businesses use chatbots. In this article, we would focus on how you can leverage it in your online business. So below is a list of chatbot applications in an online business.

1. Dealing With Frequently Asked Questions: Every business revolves around its customers. Without them, these businesses wouldn’t exist in the first place. So it’s necessary to do everything possible to keep them satisfied to keep them as customers.

In a small online business, attending to your customers is usually easy as you do not deal with that many customers. So it’s easy to respond to any query they have in record time. But as your business grows, it becomes harder for you as the owner of the business and frustrating for the customers as you have to deal with a lot of customers with only a few customer representatives.

A good way to solve this problem is to implement a chatbot on the platform(s) you use for your business. This could be a website or a social media platform. A good number of the queries you get are repeated by several customers. You can have questions like this programmed into the chatbot so it handles such queries from customers. 

If a customer then asks a question the chatbot doesn’t understand, it can hand over the customer to a customer representative. This significantly reduces the pressure put on your customer representatives and reduces the wait time of your customers in getting answers to their questions.

2. Providing Up Selling  And Cross-Selling Opportunities: Chatbots can target customers based on their previous purchase and then recommend other related products or accessories to them. Through the chatbots, you can convince your customers to buy more of your product. This, of course, means more sales for you.  

3. Post-sale Services: Chatbots provide an opportunity for you to engage your customers after they have purchased a product. You can get feedback from your customers through the chatbot as well as provide more information to your customers on how to use the product. This shows your customers you care about them. And what’s more, it can be done to multiple customers at once.

4. Reduce Cart Abandonment: This has probably happened to you before. You see a product you like on an e-commerce site and add it to the cart, but then you forget about it. This loss of potential sales can be prevented or reduced by making use of chatbots to remind customers about such products and hopefully convince them to purchase them. 

5. Make Offers Based On Product Lifespan: Another way you can leverage chatbots to improve sales in your business is by predicting when a product purchased by a customer gets exhausted or worn out and then using chatbots to suggest a  refill or a new product to them. You can even make them enticing offers to further convince them to buy your product. 

Benefits

A lot of benefits come with using chatbots in your business. You can find some of them below.

  • Round the clock service: Chatbots enable you to provide 24-hour service to your customers. Chatbots are ‘machines’ and need not rest. So after closing hours, they continue to function. 

This is important to a business as a customer might need help outside of business hours. While some businesses have the resources to hire customer representatives that work in shifts round the clock, this isn’t a viable option for other businesses. 

  • Cost-effective: Chatbots are cost effective. You only have to spend money on its development or purchase compared to the recurring amount you have to pay your customer representatives.
  • Scalability: A chatbot can respond to the requests and queries of many people at once. This means your customers do not have to wait for a customer representative to be free before getting a response. 
  • Multi-lingual: You can make your chatbot available in multiple languages to cater to foreign customers. This makes your business accessible to customers who do not speak your language, and hence, widens your customer base. 

Conclusion

As you can see, there’s a lot to benefit from using chatbots in your business. You can either hire a developer to make one for you or purchase customizable ones. For simple use cases, purchasing a customizable chatbot is the best way to go. However, if you have a more complex plan for your chatbot, you’re better of hiring a developer to develop it for you. 

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