Chatbots are no longer the stuff of science fiction, or experimental tools used only by companies with deep research and development budgets. They are being used by organizations of all sizes to provide better service to their customers and automating processes. If you haven’t implemented a chatbot solution, now may be a good time to start exploring your options.
Before we dive into our list of chatbots that should make your short list, let’s explore a few of the benefits.
When you think of IBM Watson, you may recall that wants and appeared on Jeopardy a few years ago, and actually won. IBM's Watson chatbot isn't quite as exciting, but it does use artificial intelligence. It's also a pretty solid chatbot tool.
In spite of its famous name, this is pretty standard stuff. Like many other chatbots, you set the tool up you buy defining intents and entities. Then you give examples for each of these. After deployment, IBM Watson and then takes examples it gets from real life users and attempts to apply those using the established entities and intents. You then further train the bot by correcting any instances where intents and entities I have been identified improperly.
There is a tiered pricing plan here. If you take the free plan you get five chat box, 100 intents, 25 entities, and 10000 API calls each month. Under the standard plan you will pay $0.0025 per call, 20 chatbots, 1000 entities, and 2000 intents. There is also a premium pricing plan you can discuss what IBM if these do not meet your needs.
Amazon Lex uses Amazon’s well known Alexa technology which is powered by AI. Developers can harness Alexa’s deep learning capabilities to build chatbots that can be used for any application for any business. This isn’t a tool for beginners though, as it does require development skills. Still, most seasoned developers will find Lex quite easy to use. Users will be up, running, and active in just a few minutes.
Lex is a great system if you are looking for cloud integration, ease of use, and pay as you go pricing. It has speech recognition as well as sophisticated, natural language capabilities. Lex works for both voice and text. Amazon Lex has the ability to create conversational interfaces, and can even suggest topics to customers as a way to further conversations.
Lex works with web apps, legacy chat applications, and mobile apps such as KIK or Facebook Messenger. It can also communicate with Marketo, Zendesk, Salesforce, and other tools.
Users can then use the Amazon Lex console to create and deploy speech or text chatbots directly to new or existing chat applications, web apps, and mobile devices like Slack, Kik, Facebook Messenger, or SMS.
MSG.AI is an artificial intelligence solution that allows businesses to automatically provide customers with the answers and information they need via website, messenger apps, mobile, and email. This tool stands out as it was designed to engage with customers throughout the customer journey providing information on pricing, recommending products, and otherwise nurturing the customer through the sales funnel.
Nanorep offers a variety of AI enriched customer support and self-service options that can be used across a variety of online channels. Businesses that implement this solution can provide customers with personalized, unique answers to their queries as well as customized content. The tool has the ability to use voice analytics as well as understand customer intent in order to provide answers and recommendations that are truly relevant.
In addition to providing a web based solution, Nanorep can also integrate with several different social media and messaging platforms. Customers who cannot be helped through the tools automated features, are routed directly to customer support agents for further assistance.
Botsify was designed to allow users without tech experience to design chatbots. The tool comes with templates that can be used for specific industries such as healthcare and restaurants. Users can also opt to develop their own without using these templates if they prefer.
Chad Barrett of Trust my Paper says, “One particularly interesting feature of Botsify is the capability to capture user responses and save them to a form. This has great data collection potential as responses can be easily exported using the tools web-based interface.”
Botsify offers a tiered pricing plan. There’s a free version for very small businesses without much user interaction. Then there are $10, $30, and $50 monthly subscriptions. The tool integrates with both messenger and Alexa.
Small to medium sized businesses looking for a chatbot solution that they can implement relatively easily should seriously consider Morph.AI. This cloud based solution allows companies to deploy a useful chatbot directly to their websites.
Morph.AI bots are capable of learning an impressive number of questions and answers, developing knowledge through interactions with customers. When the tool cannot recognize a question or inquiry, it routes the consumer to a live customer support agent.
In addition to engaging directly with customers online, Morph.ai also allows its users to send announcements, notifications, ads, and other content to targeted consumers. It also has reporting capabilities, and the ability to integrate with the most commonly used social media tools. Pricing is done by subscription, and businesses that engage with fewer than 50 customers per month are qualified to use the free version.
Dialog Flow is owned by Google, and it develops natural language technologies. Its conversational interfaces work with a wide variety of devices. These include smart speakers, automobiles, phones, and mobile devices. Dialog Flow offers two packages to consumers. The Enterprise edition is a paid product, while the Standard package may be used at no cost.
Currently, Dialog Flow has integration capabilities with Alexa, Facebook Messenger, and Google Assistant. It uses NLU modules to interact with clients using natural, conversational language. Customers investing in Dialog Flow may select from a collection of previously built agents that they may then customize according to their needs. While it’s not exceptionally complex, this tool is best for organizations that have access to someone experienced in chatbot setup and administration.
Botique.AI was developed by a New Jersey software firm that specializes in AI chatbots and conversational machine learning digital agents. Their bots use both Natural language understanding and Natural language processing algorithms to assist customers by providing 24/7, automated customer support solutions. Botique can be easily customized, and allows users to set and track metrics through its analytics tool.
Botique comes in three versions. There are the premium and business packages that are paid, and designed for medium to large businesses. In addition to these, there is also a free package that is ideal for small businesses. Botique setup is easy and intuitive with keyword suggestions, alternative question suggestions, and alyses. It includes multi-language support, and engages with customers using human like language. The bot works on multiple channels including, web, email, SMS, and Facebook messenger.
ItsAlive is an easy to use tool that allows users to develop a Facebook chatbot. It requires no development experience, and provides users with the opportunity to engage with their existing Facebook followers automatically. It utilizes keyword detection, and then responds with relevant content when followers use those keywords. The end result is the delivery of relevant, customized content, on demand without human intervention.
AIVO presents a very user-friendly customer service solution that is ideal for businesses where there isn’t on staff expertise in building or setting up bots. AIVO integrates with many of the most popular third-party software applications including WhatsApp, Zendesk, and Salesforce.
If you are seeking a bilingual solution, AIVO is definitely one to consider. It comes with Spanish integrated into its NLP out of the box. The tool is highly customizable as well as being easy to learn.
ChatBot is a development platform that allows you to build your own chatbot in just a few minutes. This is another ideal tool for the non developer who wants to experiment with chatbots, and build their own solution quickly. The tool uses stories as an intuitive means to train bots to respond appropriately to customer inquiries. Bots created with this tool can also respond to customers using predefined images. They can even add items to the customer’s shopping cart.
Landbot actually uses its own chatbot to help you create your chatbot. It allows you to build your own chatbot from scratch, or to use one of its many templates. Landbot can be integrated with a variety of apps including, Slack, Facebook, and Twitter. Once you build your chatbot, you simply install the HTML snippet on your website.
Chatfuel allows business owners to create Chatbots to interact with their customers on Facebook. This means that customers can receive immediate responses, while businesses don’t have to constantly monitor their social media feed. Users can build their own, or purchase development services directly from Chatfuel.
Collect.chat uses a simple, drag and drop interface that allows users to build chatbots for their websites. These are then implemented to answer basic inquiries, and to collect data for future sales and marketing purposes. The tool has helped many companies increase both lead generation and conversions.
ManyChat is yet another helpful tool for creating a Facebook messenger bot. Companies that do so enjoy the ability to engage with customers 24/7 while also saving money on live support. The tool works with a graphical, drag and drop interface. Then, you simply attach your businesses Facebook account, and go live.
Check out these Chatbot examples from a variety of successful brands.
Whole Foods uses a Facebook messenger bot to interact with its customers. There, it curates recipes, cooking tips, products, and more. Users can share their preferences with the bot through a series of filters in order to quickly drill down to the foods and recipes that are best for them. Customers can even engage with chatbots using emojis. That means a customer sending a burger emoji will be sent a burger recipe.
The makers of the language learning app have created a native chatbot that allows users to brush up their conversational skills. This is a great way for people to learn practical skills such as ordering food or making an airline reservation using the language they are learning.
Techcrunch has implemented a chatbot that allows users to automatically subscribe to and unsubscribe from receiving content. Users can inquire about specific types of content, and receive that information from the chatbot. They can also instruct the bot to subscribe them to the content that interests them.
The great thing about many of the chatbot platforms available today is that they have been designed for business professionals, not software developers. Because of this, you can get your chatbot solution up and running quickly. If you haven’t begun to explore your options, start with these 15 options.
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