Chatbot is certainly a hot zone nowadays. With around hundreds if not thousands of enterprises wanting to sell their bots, there is always some or the other buyer beware attached to it. Chatbots are one of the most complex application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) as the solutions they offer are mostly different from one another. Well despite so much of Chatbot blather, surprisingly it was hard to find a bot that is actually a good product. So, what’s the ground reason? Let us dig into why no Chatbot received a worldwide recognition or could prove that they were much better than apps.
What do we expect?
Be it a Chatbot or any other product, there are basically three deliverable we expect from them. The first being a simple interface, then its ability to work 99% of the time followed by the reduction in the friction of any task you expected them to complete. But there were many real-world instances where these so-called “epitome of Artificial Intelligence” inflicted just inconvenience on the consumers. So before you go on deciding the release of your next bot, take a step back and analyze the justification and then go forward with the implementation.
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1. Truly Intelligent Bot! Really?
Well, it is a tough job to figure out if the Chatbot is really intelligent or not. There are certain factors that decide on the intelligence level of a bot. The traits include whether or not the bot is smart enough to get better with time and if or not you are able to ask anything and it offers solutions spontaneously.
Social Media giant, Facebook faced a massive failure with their AI bots and had to pull out of all the research and abandoned the experiment on a whole when its two smart bots who initially were expected to negotiate trade started to talk gibberish (strange language only they understood)
Microsoft too in earlier 2016 launched a Twitter bot, Tay, that was supposed to be responsive to tweets and chats in Kik and GroupMe. The bot turned out to be a disaster and was shut down with its impotence to recognize when it was making offensive and racist statements.
The entire idea of automating one to one conversations using technology might look pretty interesting and appeal to tonnes of brands but does it seem to work that well? Not so sure!
2. Cooler demos but Clumsy User-Interface:
Most Chatbots miss out on the minute details and if executed well they might lead to huge business benefits. Though their initial demonstration may be jaw-dropping, in reality, they turn out dysfunctional if compared to the applications. For apps, the interface is kept simpler where it is much of tap and click but with Chatbots since most of them are not yet voice-enabled, the user literally has to type everything instead of a continued conversation. This, in turn, becomes a time-consuming task and leaves the user hanging at the end.
3. Inapt Bot Deployment
Whatever the bot hype, the deployment of the app matters. Chatbots are not acute enough to understand the context every time. They are incompetent to decipher when users mix two or more languages. They generally fail to read between the lines and harm the entire user experience altogether.
Well, the actual disconnect happens when enterprises develop bots without considering the user and the internal customer journey.
For instance, a Mumbai based beauty products and service provider, Purplle happened to develop a bot for catering a good experience for their users and thereby increase the customer base. But the whole essence got lost somewhere as people started to use the chatbot for their grievances related to the orders and returns.
4. Cold User Experiences
Bots do lack the conversational flow that we as humans master. With a gazillion of bots available across devices, they are a very few that leave a mark. The conversations totally lack personality and are robotic and clunky.
For instance, the CNN News Bot deteriorate the entire flow when asked for any information except the programmed script. It doesn’t always have to be a human-like conversation but the user needs to have a clue of his problem being solved at the end of the day.
Also Read: Simple Rules to create a Chatbot
5. Lack of Transparency
The bots that are successful ensure that their users know that they conversing with a bot. They don’t seem to hide their identity. But many Chatbots are not limpid and do not reveal their real character thereby making the end user less forgiving of any mistake the bot might commit.
6. The pressure of doing “Everything”
The major reason why Chatbots fail to deliver is the dire need to do everything at once. With an unreasonable aim to complete everything, they compromise on quality. Bots fail to understand that they can quite never replicate the irrational aspects of human behavior.
The best examples here are Siri and Alexa. They typically are expected to answer anything. But is it possible? Definitely No! It will require immense engineering effort to figure out everything and that compilation will happen with time and even then they are more likely to under-perform. Viv, a similar brain tech faces same difficulties. Humans learn all their life and to imitate their behavior and responses is an extremely daunting task.
If there are major challenges, there are tips and tricks to overcome them as well. Here are some potential resolutions that you may use to power your bot and ensure that it flourish over time.
1. Delight your customers
The end goal must always be to put a smile on the face of your consumer. Believe when we say it is a win-win situation. Make sure your bot does this.
- Keep the language and context simplified. There is no need to complicate the things unnecessary.
- Ensure that the bot aligns with your brand value. Also, anticipate the areas that aren’t related to your bot.
- Don’t intimidate the user with large chunks of data. Maintaining steadiness across content always comes handy.
- Focus on developing the bot personality. Attach some background details so that it does not go blank when asked questions like “Where does the bot belong from?”
Also Read: Bot Benefits in the Finance Industry
2. Focus on Build, Refine, Launch, Repeat
For a successful bot, a consistent training process is required. Bots must be efficiently programmed with the ability to learn from the conversations they have with their users so that over time they just get better.
Also, the tech that drives Chatbot like Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML) are in their initial phases so no matter how simple bot you own you need to keep developing and growing it with time.
3. Human Escalation Protocol
It is extremely crucial for a matter to transition between bots and humans. For instance, if your bot is presented with a query they should be discerning to know when to engage a human operator. Also, make sure that the entire flow is seamless and is not clumsy to hamper the user experience.
4. Be strategic
Attach a specific set of goals to your bot and structure instructions around the action the user wills to take. Build a Chatbot that delivers some value and strives to achieve a goal no matter how deviating the conversation gets.
Also, always encourage for interesting two-way conversations that become equal parts for both humans as well as the bot. If executed well, the bots can turn out to be exceptional brand drivers and can build customer loyalty and satisfaction.
Also Read: Chatbot in the Retail Segment
4. Know your customers
Get a better understanding of your end consumers along with the technology that is currently available. Don’t use overly lengthy conversations to intimidate the users without an appropriate benefit. Integrate polling and surveys, CRM systems and identification services to get a good grip on your consumers.
To get a perfect Chatbot always set the expectations right. Also make sure that the Chatbot live upto the customer expectations. They need to be simple, human-like, and easy to understand at the end of the day.
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