Many global enterprise companies are benefiting from deploying useful chatbots for customer service, marketing, human resources, communications, and scheduling. Customer service chatbot applications are the most popular, followed by using chatbots for marketing purposes.
Many companies using chatbots for marketing are finding them effective in personalizing the experience and improving sales results. Another place to use a chatbot for enterprise business efforts is in human resource management as a recruitment tool. Chatbot technology can be used effectively to communicate with both the public and employees.
Increasing Chatbot Use
A 2018 study of the SurveyMonkey audience, about using a chatbot for an enterprise business, found the following:
- 38% of those surveyed used an online chatbot during the past year.
- 30% communicated with companies via a mobile app.
- 28% contacted businesses through social media.
Companies using chatbots need to be aware that the use of messenger systems is increasing, while the downloading of a company-specific mobile app is decreasing.
Useful Chatbots Integrate with Messenger Systems
Enterprise companies that use chatbots as an interface with the public are integrating their useful chatbots with the social media messenger platforms to achieve wider distribution.
The top messenger apps reported by Inc. (September 2018) are:
- WhatsApp — 1.5 billion users
- Facebook Messenger — 1.3 billion users
- WeChat — 1 billion users mostly Chinese
- Viber — 300+ million users
- LINE — 203 million users
- Telegram — 200 million users
- IMO — less than 100 million users
Why People Use Chatbots
Just because an enterprise makes a chatbot available, does not necessarily mean that it will be used. In fact, poor implementation of chatbot technology may frustrate users. This creates the exact opposite of what is intended when trying to provide excellent customer service.
The top reasons for the SurveyMonkey study about why people use chatbots are:
- 37% use a chatbot to get a fast answer in an emergency
- 35% use a chatbot to resolve a problem
- 35% want a detailed answer to a question
- 34% use a chatbot to get the help of a live human operator
- 33% of chatbot users make restaurant reservations or book a hotel room
- 29% use a chatbot to pay a bill
- 22% use chatbots to buy things
- 22% use a chatbot to browse for items to consider for purchase
- 22% use a chatbot to join a mailing list or sign up for a news feed
Top Ten Uses for Enterprise Chatbot Systems
Chatbot deployment is a critical part of an enterprise communication strategy that is outward-facing towards consumers and inward-facing towards employees. Deployment of chatbots on social media messenger systems like Facebook has become the best way to reach a wider audience. Advertising opportunities on messenger systems are also expanding.
For chatbots to be effective they need to be easy to use and provide relevant information; otherwise, users quickly become frustrated. There is still some resistance to using chatbots, with about 50% of the users still preferring an interaction with a live human operator.
This currently makes a hybrid system of human operators working along with an AI chatbot, the preferred solution for many enterprises. However, the megatrend is that AI programming will improve to such an extent that answers from an AI-driven chatbot will be more accurate and helpful than any provided by human operators.