“Be where your customers are” is more than just a basic principle of marketing. It is the foundation of effective marketing, delivering a quality customer experience, and establishing a competitive differentiator.
Consumers have a wide array of channels to choose from when engaging with businesses. But, chat is one of the leading channels for attracting new customers. 69% of shoppers in the US demand chat features from a business.
However, this communication channel has a big issue: live chat is difficult to scale. When you reach a certain volume, one-to-one communication becomes too expensive. That’s why more and more businesses are investing in chatbots – more than 80% of businesses plan to implement chatbots for converting leads this year.
Chatbots represent a huge opportunity for you to leapfrog your competitors, with minimal investment. They provide a conversational way for you to convert website traffic into sales-qualified leads while offering support 24/7.
Benefits of a chatbot
If you’ve ever used a chatbot, you know it can be useful for things like customer service or getting quick answers to simple questions. But did you know that chatbots can also be used for more complex tasks? For instance, chatbots can be used to schedule appointments, make travel arrangements, or even purchase a product or service.
As artificial intelligence continues to evolve, so too do the possibilities for chatbots. In the future, we may see chatbots that are able to carry on full conversations and replicate the experience of talking to a human being. This will certainly be helpful for both businesses and their customers.
As we mentioned earlier, it’s challenging to have a representative constantly available for live chat. This is where a chatbot can step right in. An effective chatbot will:
- Answer promptly
- Respond accurately
- Provide basic customer service
- Refer the customer to an agent if necessary
When responses to a customer are delayed, your business is missing out on an opportunity.
If a customer asks a question and has to wait too long for an answer, they’ll probably move on to another business ready to help them.
Also, keep in mind that a chatbot’s response should be conversational – both in tone and timing.
Your chatbot should always answer customer questions with relevant and accurate information.
You’ll need to dedicate some time to write thoughtful, detailed answers to common customer questions. That way, your chatbot’s pre-determined answers will always be correct and helpful.
For example, if a customer asks, “Where are you located?” – you’d expect the chatbot to respond with your address and phone number. But what if the customer asks that question in a different way like: “What is your address?” or, “Are you still located on Washington Road?”
If you don’t plan ahead, the chatbot may deliver an unrelated answer that can frustrate the customer.
Basic customer service
There are some basic customer service questions that your chatbot can, and should, handle. Questions like:
- “What services do you offer?”
- “Do you accept checks?”
- “What are your hours on the weekend?”
If your chatbot can answer these baseline questions, your customers will receive the information they need without the hassle of a phone call or email.
Refer the customer to an agent
Finally, make sure you have a backup plan in case a customer’s question is too complicated for a chatbot to understand. You’ll want to redirect the customer to either a livechat representative or business text.
8 best practices for converting leads with chatbots
Now, let’s dive into some best practices that you can start using today to convert more leads with chatbots.
Get started with Robin: Birdeye’s chatbot for converting leads
Generate leads 24/7 with Birdeye Webchat
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Originally published Sep 29, 2021 1:12 PM, updated Sep 22, 2022