Eight Tips for Creating the Perfect Chatbot
For the third instalment of our series on Facebook chatbots, we wanted to share some tips for creating the perfect chatbot for your business. The key to most of them is making your chatbot seem as human as possible, so these tips are some things you can do to give your chatbot the human touch!
As a digital marketing agency, we can help you with all of your social media marketing needs, including the setup and maintenance of a chatbot for your business’ Facebook page that will alleviate some of the pressure from customer service representatives. Chatbots are a great solution for those queries that don’t need a person to answer. For example, “how long will my package be?” or “when do you close on Christmas Eve?”
1. Use Filler Words
Filler words are also known as discourse words and can be used to help your customer and your bot transition between topics in their conversation, as well as adding a human element to the chatbot. Try adding in words and phrases like ‘ah’, ‘uh’, ‘hmm’ and ‘um’ when your chatbot is responding to a question or the topic of conversation is shifting to something else.
2. Use Silences
Often your customers won’t say everything they need to in one message, so your chatbot needs to be able to react to this in the same way a human would – leaving time for the customer to finish typing. Your chatbot should avoid using prompts when it can see your customer is typing.
3. Keep Conversations Short
Most people will interact with your chatbot on a mobile device and can get distracted by other notifications, so its easy for them to forget what they’re doing. Make sure you chatbot is asking questions that get straight to the point with clear and easy to understand language.
4. Use Contractions
When your customers are talking to your chatbot, it shouldn’t feel like they are talking to a robot and using contractions can help with the human touch. Instead of your bot saying things like ‘cannot’ and ‘do not’, it should use the contracted forms ‘can’t’ and ‘don’t’.
5. Vary The Responding Words
If you want to maintain the illusion that your customer isn’t talking with a robot, you should avoid using repetitive language and messages. It is a good idea to write multiple versions of each message that you set up, so your customer’s won’t always get the exact same wording.
6. Share Expected Response Times
Your customers will often expect an immediate service or quick results with a chatbot, which will lead to frustration if they don’t know what’s going on. It is always helpful to tell your customers how long to wait for a response, for example, “We will answer your query in the next 5 minutes”.
7. Summarise Requests Back To The User
If your customers receive wrong information from a request they have made to your chatbot, this will leave them with a bad impression of your company. It is important that the bot checks that it has fully understood what is required of it. Making your bot repeat a query back to the customers with yes/no buttons will ensure there is no confusion.
8. Offer Other Options When The Bot Can’t Help
As with anything, there will always be some requests that your bot doesn’t understand, so you need to be able to leave your customers with an alternative solution. At a certain point, if the chatbot isn’t able to do what is required, it will need to give options for the customer to speak to a human, i.e. a phone number of email address to contact.