The process of building a chatbot involves a fair amount of planning and a healthy dose of trial and error. With Whisbi’s platform, the building and customization process is much smoother, but there are still some steps you’ll need to take.
So where should you start?
Define Your Goals
Before you start work on your chatbot, the most important first step is to clearly define what you want to achieve with it. What do you want your visitors to do?
This could be a number of things, such as:
- Make more purchases
- Book more appointments, meetings, or test drives
- Schedule more calls
- Filter & pre-qualify online leads before connecting them to sales agents
- Deliver more qualified leads to your sales teams
It’s important to be clear on this before you build the chatbot. This will allow you to decide on a tone, set appropriate questions, and define the KPIs that you will track to monitor success.
Who Are You Talking To?
Once your goals have been set, the next step is to work out who will be engaging with your chatbot. Get clear on who your target audience is and what they want. A chatbot on a site aimed at car enthusiasts will look different to one on an e-store for baby clothes, for example.
This will influence how your chatbot talks to its users and what kind of tone is employed. The questions themselves will, of course, be different depending on the product in question and the audience.
Decide On A Trigger
The trigger is the action that causes the bot to engage with visitors in the first place. It can be a number of things, from spending a certain length of time on a page to clicking a particular CTA.
What Will Your Chatbot Say?
Next, it’s time to decide what your chatbot will say. This stage will involve giving your bot a ‘voice’ and creating a list of set questions and responses to be used at varying points in the conversation.
This should be a simple and friendly sentence or two to engage the customer and offer help. It could be something like, “Hi there! Is there anything specific you’re looking for today?”
As with all chatbot messaging, this part should be tailored to the audience in terms of tone and approach.
This is a great place to use personalization. Whether that’s addressing your customer by their name, mentioning a specific problem they might have, or making some helpful suggestions, it’s a good opportunity to start building that all-important rapport early on.
Qualify and Filter Leads
Once you’ve established contact with the customer, the next stage is to qualify them and move the right leads through the sales process.
This is best done quickly, with minimal fluff. You want your messaging to be straightforward, clear, and to-the-point. Use as few steps as possible to put your visitor in touch with your sales team.
A starting question might look like this:
“Would you like to talk to the sales team or the support team?”
This quickly establishes whether the customer is interested in making a purchase, or might just be looking for some help. If they select the sales team option, your chatbot should then aim to narrow down what they want and gather more information.
Let’s say the chatbot is on a website for a hotel chain. The follow-up questions could be:
“Which hotel would you like to stay in?” and “What are the dates of your stay?”
Once this information is established, it’s time to make a sale. How your bot goes about this depends on whether you are using assisted or unassisted sales.
With an assisted approach, the bot might ask:
“Let’s connect you to one of our travel agents. Would you like to be connected via voice or chat?”
With an unassisted approach, the next question might be:
“When would you like to stay with us? Please select your dates to begin your booking.”
This way, your bot is guiding your visitors through the sales process with minimal friction. If the customer is less sure what they want, you can ask more questions during the ‘qualify’ stage. In the above example, you might ask how many people they are traveling with or what city they are going to.
Throughout his process, remember to keep your bot’s language personal and appropriate for your audience. It should be quick, efficient, and minimal without compromising on personality and charm.
Collect Data and Feedback
Chatbots aren’t just a fantastic sales tool, they’re also a rich source of data. On a busy site, chatbots can go through hundreds of interactions every day.
Over the last 10 years, Whisbi has been developing conversational sales solutions and implementing them as a sales channel across a wide variety of industries — fueling more than six million sales conversations and delivering over 2.7 million qualified leads to date.
Make Changes Over Time Using Chatbot Data
It’s unlikely that your chatbots will be perfect from the second they’re released. That’s not a problem, however, because you can tweak and optimize your bots over time.
Refer to the KPIs and goals you set at the beginning, and find out what’s working and what needs to improve. What can you do differently to get better results? That could mean using more effective language, asking better questions, and eliminating the questions that don’t move the leads down the funnel.
Be open-minded about making ongoing changes, run A/B tests, and treat your chatbot as a work in progress.
Keep Your Customers Hooked
People have a short attention span online, and interacting with chatbots is no exception to this. A good chatbot will work to keep their customers engaged, ensuring they don’t get bored and leave without making a purchase.
Of course, simply keeping your site speed to an acceptable level is one important step. But there is also a lot your bots can do. For example, making offers tailored to your customer’s history is a great way to remind them of your value and keep their interest piqued.
Answer Common Questions in Your Chatbots
Answering common questions in the chatbot is a great way to solve customers’ problems without the need for a human agent.
It might not work, of course, and they may still need to transfer. But if they’re only talking to the bot for a common issue, this helps take the load off human teams.
Offer Order Tracking
One common reason customers get in touch with chatbots is to ask questions about their orders and delivery. By programming your bots to resolve any delivery issues and answer questions, you can provide your users with important peace of mind and reassurance.
Some chatbots even have the option to track the progress of an order, so customers can get a quick update on their purchase without relying on a third-party tracker or getting in touch with a human.
Try to Minimize Cart Abandonment
Cart abandonment is a scourge of the ecommerce world, with abandonment rates across all sectors averaging at almost 80%. Fortunately, chatbots can be a useful tool in bringing this number down for your company.
Let your customer know if there are any incentives to paying right now. Is there an option to pay later? Are there any current discounts available that may expire? Are there any items you can upsell for a limited time only? All these things can make the difference between a sale and an abandoned cart, and your chatbot can raise awareness of them.