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Are Chatbots Just a Hype, or Worth Investing?

A few years ago, chatbots sprung up like mushrooms. Suddenly, every company joined the hype and created a chatbot. But the problem was that most of the bots were not really ‘smart’, and therefore not successful.

They can recognise basic keywords, but they don’t really understand the customer. As a result, customers mainly experienced them as irritating. So the question rises, are chatbots still worth investing in? You will find out in this article!


Beyond the Hype?

Using chatbots for customer service is a waste of time if customers are mostly annoyed by them, instead of being helped by a nice bot. So, the hype around chatbots has kind of died down. People have realised that it will never be the same experience as with real people.

And of course, chatbots will never completely replace humans. But, that was never the intention at all. Chatbots can be a great help to human customer service agents. And in the end it’s all about the perfect mix between human and chatbot.


Why Should You Still Invest In Chatbots?

Although the hype has passed, the use of chatbots by companies and the use of chatbots by consumers continues to grow. So it certainly doesn’t mean that they are not (going to be) used anymore. Instead, they are so common now that most companies have them as a standard feature.

Although they were not really appreciated by consumers in the beginning, and companies didn’t have much use for them either, things have changed overtime. With a few years of knowledge and improvements, they became more and more advanced. In addition, the more chatbots are used, the better they can be adjusted. And the more they ‘learn’.

The idea is that they ultimately contribute to the customer experience, and certainly not cause any irritation. So make sure that the chatbot passes the baton to a human chat operator at the right moment. Once the chatbot is working properly, it can really improve customer satisfaction. It significantly improves the speed of a response, for instance. With a chatbot, customers get an answer to general questions within a few seconds.

As a company, you should never use a chatbot just for the sake of it. It’s especially important to use them in the right way. Always do proper research beforehand, and create a strategy to make the bots work optimally for your company.


Future Vision

We know that chatbots can add a lot of value to customer service. Not only now, but also in the future. With a projected worldwide market size of more than 1.3 billion by 2024, chatbots will be a driving force for business communications.

To harness that value, we need to look more at the data in the process. What you should do as a company to keep innovating, is to collect all the interactions a chatbot has with a customer. That data can be used to create better versions of chatbots. But also to learn more about your customers and your business.

To improve the technology of chatbots, you can look at things like unanswered questions, or the words that your customers use for example. With that information, developers can create new triggers and add new answers to expand the bot’s capabilities.


Final answer

Chatbots are therefore certainly suitable for use in customer service. Not because they are a hype, but because chatbots could really support your already busy customer care team. But bear in mind that contact with customers can never be fully automated. There will always be customer questions that require a more complex or empathetic response. Do you want to work with an optimal mix of live chat and chatbots? We are here to help you! Contact us for more information.

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