What Is A Chatbot? A Chatbot Beginner’s Guide for AI Newbies

Artificial intelligence, or AI, is one of the most fundamental aspects of the integration of technology with our society. Artificial intelligence has allowed tasks that were once menial and burdensome to run as efficiently as possible. The trajectory only seems to be moving upwards, as AI has essentially made our lives easier.

One example of AI being used in an effective manner is through the use of chatbots. Businesses are always searching for new ways to make operations smoother, and using a chatbot has proven to be fruitful. There are many interesting uses of chatbots in the retail sector, such as using this technology to enhance customer service automation, answer customer inquiries, or improve customer engagement.

If you are curious about what is a chatbot, here is a beginner’s guide to help you learn about the AI technology:

What is a chatbot?

For relative beginners to AI, the superficial elements of what is a chatbot may be confusing. In the simplest terms, a chatbot is essentially a computer program designed to kickstart conversation with human users on various topics. Google Assistant, or Siri, is a common example.

What these topics and subject matter may entail is up to the respective business employing the chatbot. Most of the time, a chatbot can be used for business or consumer-related purposes, such as guiding customers through a mall. The potential for chatbots is almost limitless, due to their sheer accuracy when in use.

The more intricate your chatbot becomes, the more it may seem like you are talking to an actual human being. That’s what makes these computer programs so unique: they deliver all the answers you need!

How do chatbots communicate?

Another confusing part about what is a chatbot has to do with its communication technique. When an individual is using a specific interface, the chatbot will communicate in the way it was meant to. For example, in the previously mentioned mall sample, a user can simply text a phone number regarding their inquiries. The chatbot, acting as a respondent, will analyze the question and send back an appropriate response.

Communication is not just limited to text messaging. Businesses usually employ chatbots as a means of assisting users during their exploration of a website. Should a person require direction with how to navigate a section, for example, a chatbot can be contacted to get the necessary answers. Chatbots are very flexible with how they communicate, which is a huge advantage!

How to build a chatbot

Chatbot beginners may be interested to learn how to build this interesting technology. The main tip you should be aware of prior to creating your own chatbot is knowing what its goals are. If they remain undefined, this may be counterproductive to your overall goals regarding the business. Once you have clearly laid out what you want the chatbot to do, the actual structuring can commence.

Usually, there are two ways of building a chatbot; using available software, or from scratch. Depending on how comfortable you are with relevant algorithms, you may choose to do this yourself or outsource the construction of the chatbot to a third-party. After you are comfortable with what has been conceptualized, you may proceed to launch it!

Using chatbots to improve engagement

Modern-day businesses are always looking for ways to reel in new customers. As such, actively improving online engagement is paramount. A chatbot can come in extremely helpful in this situation.

Take a look at Facebook Business pages that go unanswered, when many inquiries are sent in. Instead of leaving them untouched on your company’s Facebook page, use a chatbot on your relevant website. They will always deliver a one-hundred per cent response rate, which will inevitably convert more visitors into buyers.

Using chatbots to avoid repetition

Before AI was integrated into our daily lives, we usually had to manually conduct tasks of varying magnitudes. This is especially true of the activities that weren’t of any value, and were just tedious in nature. Chatbots were created to eliminate this tiresome repetition altogether.

It all comes down to the outright automation of these activities. Most of the time, customers are looking for basic information, regarding a company’s operations. Instead of having them look around endlessly for a contact page, using a chatbot to ask them what they are looking for will eliminate mundane searching!

Benefits of chatbots

If it hasn’t been made apparent so far, the benefits of using a chatbot go beyond just the initial elimination of repetitive tasks. Chatbots are accessible at any time, for any inquiry a user may have. In addition, whereas humans could only handle a few interactions at a time, a chatbot’s capacity surpasses that. This allows it to handle multiple conversations with literally thousands!

Chatbots are a cost-effective means of practicing business, while also being recognized as a huge factor in overall customer satisfaction. With such a wide array of applications, it’s no wonder this type of AI has become an integral part of our daily lives.

About Author

Justin is a journalism student from Ottawa, Canada. Since a young age, he has felt a passion for writing along with a knack for asking curious questions, which guided him into his current path today.