This article explains how businesses in different industries can use chatbots.
Chatbot solutions for any industry serving specific business functions
Customer service chatbots can be used for:
1- Answering frequently asked questions
In most businesses, 75% of customer service queries are made up of just a few issues. Some of these are simple enough, so bots can handle them in most cases. Thus, letting chatbots answer the frequently asked questions, for instance, can significantly reduce your call center workload.
2- Resolving customer queries
A chatbot should also complete the end-to-end sale process. For example, if customers frequently call to check the delivery time of their package, it makes sense to let the chatbot handle those questions.
3- Assigning customers to support team
If customer queries are too complex to resolve, chatbots can issue a ticket and direct the customer to a human agent. This application is also widely accepted by customers: According to Aspect Customer Experience Index, 86% of users expect that chatbots should always have an option to transfer to a live agent.
4- Understanding your customers
The chatbot can ask customers questions to store the data for further use and help the company know its customers better.
5-Collecting customer feedback
Chatbots ease the process of collecting data from customers to improve service/ product quality and conversion rates.
Businesses can also run more efficient chatbot analytics about the efficiency of their chatbots by storing users’ conversations.
6- Sales assistant (assistant to sales reps)
Integrated to your CRM system, your sales chatbot can act as an assistant to sales personnel, by notifying them when a lead has potentially been identified, therefore simplifying lead creation and updates. This sales strategy is also known as conversational commerce.
7- Selling/marketing the product in text-only channels
Deploying chatbots to official social media accounts (including WhatsApp) can help organizations attract customers. For example, Dominos launched its Facebook Messenger restaurant chatbot (so-called “pizza bot“) to ease the process of pizza ordering. Customers can reply with a pizza emoji or a keyword so that the bot understands the user demands a pizza and then the chatbot collects more info regarding the ingredients of pizza and delivery details.
8- Customer outreach
Customer outreach can be more efficient when bots are in charge. For example, while reaching out to SMEs, you can send automated emails and chatbots can respond immediately to leads.
9- Lead nurturing
Communicating with customers at every stage of the sales funnel can help them get more informed about your services and products. Bots listen to the needs of customers and provide the information and answers they need within a rules-based framework.
If you are wondering how to build a lead generation funnel with chatbots, Natasha Takahashi, CMO of School of Bots, is explaining the framework on the below video:
10- Keeping the pulse of your employees
This has never been easier. Integrate chatbots like Polly into your collaboration environment like Slack to monitor their satisfaction and productivity.
11- Answering common HR-related questions
This task is time consuming and boring for employees, but an ideal job for chatbots. Below image is an example of an HR chatbot demo where an employee is asking his available leave days to the bot.
12- Completing transactional HR services
Most employees, and especially new joiners, can have a hard time remembering where they need to fill in their absences and vacations.
Companies can leverage a chatbot that gets its answers from a knowledge base to help employees with their day-to-day queries. So the employee can ask, “where should I file my absences?” and the chatbot would give them the form, as well as the online portal where it should be submitted for approval.
13- Streamline expense reports
A virtual assistant can help in users creating expense reports, adding line items, adding transactions and approving expense reports.
14- Onboarding & Training
Chatbots like Botbot.AI can help organizations enhance the enterprise onboarding process by revealing insights from candidates’ conversational data. Chatbot facilitates the training of new employees when they are fed with orientation materials such as videos, photos, graphs & charts.
15- IT helpdesk
Helpdesk functionality can be easily embedded in a bot that can create/assign cases, notify users of updates and answer users’ questions.
Facilities and other support services
16- General helpdesk
All facilities related requests can be collected by a chatbot that will also notify users as their requests are completed.
17- Inventory management
Chatbots can enable organizations to check inventory levels. For example, bot can return the most current inventory numbers for a SKU.
Customers and suppliers can also track the present status of the shipment by typing the delivery number. LiveTiles has a retail inventory management chatbot that brings inventory tracking, supply chain tracking, and staff management systems to form a retail store management system on demand.
Industry-specific chatbot solutions
18- Shop with conversational commerce
Customers can use chatbots to order goods without navigating through the website.
19- Set price alerts
Amazon Price Alert bot is a Telegram chatbot that informs you whenever the price of a specified goods reaches a given threshold. The way it works is that the user provides the bot with the item’s URL and the price threshold, say $200 for a product currently priced at $250.
The chatbot then scrapes the URL every hour to see whether the price has come down or not. Finally, once the price reaches the given threshold, it automatically sends the user a text informing them about the situation.
20- Choose gifts
Evabot is a gifting chatbot that specializes in personalized gift recommendations. It starts by asking the user about their budget, and about the person whom they are getting the gift for, such as their age, gender, preferences, allergies, and so forth.
It then scrapes the web to find the most relevant and popular gift based on the inputs provided by the user, and online metrics, such as an item popularity, online reviews, and so on.
21- Add products to your wishlist
Customers can ask chatbots to add products to their wishlist.
22- Track orders
Most online retailer platforms today have chatbots that ask users the product ID to instantly give them the shipping status of their orders. Customers can ask chatbots about the whereabouts of their orders’ shipments.
Chatbot, for instance, sells a tracking chatbot that uses API to connect with a business’ various ERP systems to inform users about their orders’ delivery status.
23- Process return and exchange requests
Processing exchanges and refunds can be a menial and repetitive task for customer service employees. There are chatbots; however, that can automate and streamline the process.
Marker Bros offers e-commerce retailers a chatbot template that is able to help customers exchange an item they have bought, or give it back for a monetary refund or store credit.
To learn more about eCommerce technologies you can read our Top 10+ eCommerce Technologies: Use Cases & Examples article.
24- Book travel
Travelers can use travel agencies’ chatbots to book their travels for them, instead of doing it manually. The chatbot would ask them their destination, number of guests, and the time frame to book them a flight or a hotel room based on the given inputs.
West Jet, for example, has a Facebook chatbot that can book flights by asking the departing and arriving airports and the date.
25- Booking accommodations
Primarily for hotels, hospitality chatbots can ask guests for any special requests they might have, prior to their visit. Guests might require a wheelchair upon arrival, or they’d prefer a smoking room. They would write their needs on the chat and the chatbox will arrange their special accommodations, if applicable.
26- Get advice on topics like where to visit, what to see
Travelers can ask chatbots for recommendations on places to visit based on their criteria and parameters.
Engati, for example, has created a chatbot tailored to travel agencies for lead generation. The chatbot is able to provide users with personalized recommendations based on receiving inputs from travelers, such as the season, the region, and the type of vacation (business vacation, family trip, honeymoon, etc.).
27- Investment management
Chatbots could act as de-facto financial advisers (wealth management chatbots). KAI’s investment management chatbot, for example, learns about the user by asking them questions about their marital status, life and financial goals, professional career, income, current wealth, and retirement plan.
It is then able to manage their investment portfolio by instantly showing them their account balance, portfolio growth, probable investment projects in their budget, and increasing their financial literacy.
28- Credit applications
Mortgage chatbots can be employed on banking websites to automatically inform clients of their credit score, credit card history, their minimum credit payments, their APR, and credit rewards.
29- Money transfer
Chatbots can minimize the clicks it would take for a customer to navigate through the bank’s website to wire money around. They would be able to automatically ask the user what they want to do, how much they’d like to send, and the receiving account’s information to complete the task.
Bank of America’s “Erica” is perhaps the most successful banking chatbot on the market today. Erica is able to show FICO scores, make transactions, show credit rewards, inform users of duplicate charges, and more.
- To learn more about banking chatbots use cases and applications, click here.
- We have also an article which is dedicated on conversational banking.
Therapy chatbots can be an adequate, but not complete, substitute for human therapists due to their 24/7 availability, instant response rate, and lack of stigma.
Woebot is perhaps the most popular therapy chatbot on the internet. It is able to ask users questions about their day, their feelings, and provide insights. It is widely used for behavioral cognitive therapy, where it can help users change their behavior (for example, drug abuse) by transforming their thinking patterns for the better.
31- Handling insurance coverage inquiries
Specifically on healthcare provider websites, insurance chatbots can act as a 24/7 insurance representative informing patients on whether their insurance plans will cover their treatments or not.
- We have an entire article dedicated to explaining the use cases and applications of insurance chatbots.
32- Tracking prescription use
Chatbots can leverage API to automatically order re-fill for a given prescription drug once the patient submits a request. Of course, a medical professional would have to approve the request based on the patient’s prescription and history. Nevertheless, a chatbot would streamline the process.
- To learn more about healthcare chatbots, click here.
33- Provide advice to customers on choosing a neighborhood or street for their real estate investments
Much like traveling chatbots recommending vacation hotspots, real-estate chatbots could provide housing recommendation based on users’ inputs on neighborhood, nearby schools, and budget, among other factors.
For more on chatbots
To learn more about chatbots, read:
- In-Depth Guide to The Top 37 Chatbot Applications / Use Cases
- Top 60 Chatbot Companies For 2022: In-Depth Guide
- The Ultimate Guide to The Top 14 Benefits of Chatbots
Finally, if you decide to build your own chatbot, we have a comprehensive, up-to-date list of all chatbot platforms and voice bot platforms so your company can build its own conversation AI system. While some platforms require technical skills, others can be tackled by non-coders.
Cem has been the principal analyst at AIMultiple since 2017. AIMultiple informs hundreds of thousands of businesses (as per similarWeb) including 60% of Fortune 500 every month.
Cem's work has been cited by leading global publications including Business Insider, Forbes, Washington Post, global firms like Deloitte, HPE, NGOs like World Economic Forum and supranational organizations like European Commission. You can see more reputable companies and media that referenced AIMultiple.
Throughout his career, Cem served as a tech consultant, tech buyer and tech entrepreneur. He advised businesses on their enterprise software, automation, cloud, AI / ML and other technology related decisions at McKinsey & Company and Altman Solon for more than a decade. He also published a McKinsey report on digitalization.
He led technology strategy and procurement of a telco while reporting to the CEO. He has also led commercial growth of deep tech company Hypatos that reached a 7 digit annual recurring revenue and a 9 digit valuation from 0 within 2 years. Cem's work in Hypatos was covered by leading technology publications like TechCrunch and Business Insider.
Cem regularly speaks at international technology conferences. He graduated from Bogazici University as a computer engineer and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.
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