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Streamlining activities. Optimizing customer experience. Automating processes. Avoiding spend on needless outsourcing. Increasing engagement with clients. Increasing conversions and achieving a higher sales percentile. If any of these things sound like one of your regular goals, you owe it to yourself to find out what bots can do for your business and acquire these solutions with haste.

What is a bot? Well, a bot is an automated system to handle a given set task (or set of tasks) to streamline operations for humans. These bots can often replace human work. To provide an example, a chat bot would enable a customer service representative to be available on your ecommerce site in a 24/7 manner; often an impossible undertaking for a small business, unless you happen to have employees situated all over the world running a 24/7 shift schedule. Put simply in terms of business context, leveraging a bot can enable you to reach a goal of 24/7 coverage of customer support for your website without the expense of wages and hassle of managing an entire team of personnel dedicated to such a massive undertaking.

Bots function within the scope and context of most artificial intelligence and machine learning mechanisms, leveraging (at the forefront) the simple premise of inputs and outputs. In a context most “normal people” would understand, an input would be a string of text, such as a question of “where can I buy this product?” or “do you have this shirt in blue?” and associates these inputs with appropriate outputs such as “on our website directly or Amazon” or “yes, we stock this shirt in blue in these sizes.” When a bot is developed, it is “taught” these commands, and the bot is then ready to use. Taking input in the form of languages and providing output to your appropriate target audience is the cornerstone of the function of our beloved bots. If you’re not able to stay awake 24/7, you can trust your bot to answer questions for your customers and secure sales for you in your sleep. Without a bot, these customers would give up, likely never to return with their money. Thus, bots are a critical aspect of your customer relationship management strategy.

The use of bots is far from limited to ecommerce stores, or businesses selling products. For example, any online entity with a large social media presence, or even a smaller entity with a variety of social media platforms, could benefit from utilizing the amazing technology we know as bots. For example, the growth of internet communities across hundreds of topics has been parabolic over the last two decades, fostering an increased need for bot mitigation, preventing users from doing undesired actions such as spamming links or scamming community members. Bots can be configured to automatically greet new community members, automatically delete suspicious links, or provide information about recent events to the community. In essence, your bot can serve as a butler.

Bots are in more demand than ever to give people the competitive edge in their businesses and communities. The need for top tier virtual customer assistance has grown with a correlation of the boom of the internet and ecommerce, and for good reason: customers and clients expect the best, and businesses have been forced to adapt to this new set of expectations. It is arguable that having a bot for your customers is seen as a best practice, if not a must-have, across the ecommerce realm, and much more increasingly so is this becoming the perception across thousands of other types of internet communities and services.

Bots are not limited strictly to websites with an ecommerce presence, or websites directly at all. In fact, bots can be developed for numerous platforms, including some of the most well-used ones, like Twitter, Facebook, and Telegram. Selecting the right platforms for your bot to function on is important, since interoperability is something bots can do- but never perfectly, especially if self-made by a novice. If you desire a bot that can answer well, especially across a variety of platforms, it is often worth looking into a bot-building platform so you can do it right the first time.

The future of sales is the future of your business. While sales is not the only key performance indicator (for those of you running SaaS or community-based/subscription based entities,) engagement with your base of clientele is the absolute most critical area to keep focus on. Responsiveness (in terms of time and quality) is seen as one of the only key performance indicators, or KPIs, that now exist in every industry, and due to the importance of this KPI, bots are becoming known as the future of sales. It would behoove you to get ahead of the power curve and look into getting your own bot before your competitors do.

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