Chatbots have significantly improved from ELIZA, the first bot to the powerful online business marketing tool it is now.
Bigwigs like Google, Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft, among many others, adopting them is a clear indication that it is online marketing’s next big thing.
However, it is not only for large scale companies as many would believe; small scale businesses can also unravel the immense potentials chatbots have to offer in their online business marketing.
Business owners and marketers are now busying themselves with the creation of formidable chatbots that will help automate all they would normally do (and more). It is safe to say that the results so far have been nothing short of impressive.
Nevertheless, as impressive as they may be now, the current chatbots are only but a swipe in a massive wave of progress that will fully usher in the best approach to online business marketing we have seen so far.
Therefore, with that being said, there may never be a better time to take advantage of this new age marketing tool for your online business than now.
What are Chatbots?
A chatbot is a virtual program that can simulate conversations with users over the internet.
They can also be integrated into several platforms like social media, websites, mobile apps, emails, and many more.
Chatbots have improved significantly from simply simulating conversations to what they are being used for today in online business marketing.
From ELIZA to Artificial Intelligence
ELIZA was the first chatbot, but it was very limited in its capabilities and could only answer simple decision tree questions.
Its limitation has been significantly worked upon to what we now have as Artificial Intelligence (AI) chatbots.
Artificial Intelligence chatbots are capable of simulating conversations with your customers like actual humans.
With machine learning, your bot will be able to train, improve, and learn new words and phrases on its own. And with natural language generation, understanding, and processing, there is little to worry about when it comes to the “flow” of the conversation.
Combine the above with semantic comprehension, and you have a tool capable of changing the way you do your online business marketing.
AI Chatbots in Customer Satisfaction and Operational Costs
The way you engage your customers nowadays has become significantly important in gauging how successful your online business is.
Asides from the increasing competition amongst online businesses, there is also the impatience of customers. Your customers now not only expect you to always be in contact with them but also quicker replies in real-time.
Forbes has described conversational marketing as “the new way to do business.”
With recent studies showing that up to 95% of people who message an online business expect a reply within the first ten minutes, it has become important for you to be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days, a year.
But that can prove difficult or in fact, humanly impossible. Shuffling between selling products, marketing, and advertising, keeping records, and also maintaining a good customer relationship will be a tedious task for you.
This is one place Artificial Intelligence chatbots have stepped in and revolutionized online business marketing.
With the way chatbots are built, especially the impressive AI chatbots, they can conveniently multi-task and serve as many customers you have simultaneously.
Whether you have only one customer or a million, none of them will be left unattended. When customers are answered to in due time, and everything is done seamlessly, they will leave happy – happy customers will not only always come back, but they will refer as well.
Also, chatbots do not need to be paid wages or salaries or bonuses like health hazards and other unavoidable expenses.
Of course, it may take some money to set it up, but that cost is nothing compared to the recurring costs that come with the human workforce.
Chatbots cut costs of operation while ensuring that even while you sleep, or a customer agent takes a coffee break or sick leave, your business keeps running, and your customers remain happy.
Humans get tired or sick. It is not possible to go on and on to replying to customers, answering questions, selling products, making appointments, marketing products to all your customers while trying to ‘remain professional’.
Yes, there may be shifts, but shifts mean more employees and more employees mean more expenses.
AI Chatbots in Online Business Sales and Marketing
The dream of most online businesses is to increase productivity and reduce the cost of production while having boosted sales and profits.
AI chatbots are already making this dream a reality for most online businesses in their sales and marketing units.
For example, chatbots can help in getting more customers with quality lead generation, and more customers mean a boost in sales.
Leads are your potential customers, and chatbots will help you locate them quicker and faster. With open rates ranging from 70-95% compared to email marketing’s 10% (at best), you can increase your customers quicker.
How about personalized adverts? Instead of sending ‘one size fits all’ messages, you can personalize the way you deliver advertisement and content to your customers which will give customers a feeling of belonging.
Through blasts, bulk SMS, and web ads, AI chatbots can deliver your services to new and existing customers with ease.
And by using their intelligence and information gathered from user data, preferences, and previous conversations, they will deliver what each client is interested in them.
AI Chatbots in the Records Department
Chatbots can gather and store user data and preferences which you can use to serve your customers better. Your customers provide this data and information.
As your chatbot records these data, you will be able to classify your customers into different categories and suitable demographics which in the long run will help you satisfy them.
Your chatbots can also use information like their emails to build massive lists that will be used by your online business for marketing.
AI Chatbots and Revolutionising Online Business Marketing Tools
There are also several impressive features and tools that chatbots use to automate your online business marketing.
A tool like abandoned cart recovery reminder that helps remind your customers to complete their orders will serve you well in getting more sales.
There are also tools that help post your products to more than one platform simultaneously. With AI chatbots, there is neither any need to post manually to different platforms or even post manually at all.
You also do not need to remove comments or reply to them manually as the comment automation does that seamlessly for you.
Indeed, the possibilities with what can be achieved with chatbots are endless. As chatbots are being improved upon daily, we are surely experiencing our best approach to online business marketing in history!