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4 Simple Rules to Make AI Chatbots a Force for Good AI-powered chatbots can help take your business to new heights as long as you follow these rules.

By Reshu Rathi Edited by Heather Wilkerson

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Chatbots are still considered an emerging technology, but their use is rapidly expanding among all businesses. Why? Because chatbots offer many benefits, including better customer experiences, increased customer engagement and increased sales and conversion rates. Also, with the advancement of artificial intelligence, machine learning and natural language processing, chatbots are poised to become more and more intelligent -- which means even more businesses will adopt them.

Related: 5 AI Trends That Will Reshape Customer Service Over the Next 5 Years

Business Insider experts predict that by 2020, 80 percent of enterprises will use chatbots. We don't quite know why the other 20 percent is shying away, but we hope the realization dawns upon them soon. After all, chatbots can reduce your customer service costs by 30 percent.

Now, having said all that, we still recognize even those who have implemented chatbots don't necessarily achieve the results they set out to accomplish. Some fail miserably and offer poor customer experience. If this resonates with you, then you are not alone. You fail because you overlook the most basic rules of chatbot technology. But have no fear. You can mend your approach by playing by the rules. Let's take a look at four rules to make chatbots a force for good, shall we?

1. Respond like a human, but don't pretend to be one.

Your chatbot may have to think like a human, but it doesn't have to act like one. Regardless of your industry, when creating or choosing your chatbot, the focus should not be to make it human-like, but to make it helpful and good at what it does. And, yes, don't forget to introduce your chatbot to users. Being clear about what your chatbot can do will help visitors to have a more positive experience. So make an introduction that invites a response.

Also, don't forget to give your chatbot a personality that reflects the tone and attitude of your business. Though your chatbot cannot provide an exact human-to-human interaction, giving it a personality can help you connect with your visitors and create a seamlessly humanlike automated customer service experience. If you do it properly, your visitors might forget in a few seconds that they're chatting with AI-powered bots.

Related: How to Tell Whether AI and Other Emerging Tech Is Worth Your Startup's Time

2. Be wise when choosing an AI vendor.

Chatbots work, but only when they provide a good experience. To do that, they need to be designed properly. While some of them are designed in a way that makes them scalable and enterprise-class, but most of them are just homegrown unsophisticated bots.

Do you know that there are more than 2000 enterprise chatbots vendors available in the market? Not all of them are well equipped to leverage enterprise data. So the question becomes, which chatbot vendor should I choose? To protect your business from a negative experience, start by finding answers to these questions:

  • Does the platform support multiple channels?

  • Do they offer a breadth of services?

  • Do they have experience in your industry?

  • What level of security do they provide?

  • Are they easy to integrate with other SaaS products you are using?

  • Are they using their own platform to build bots?

Finding a chatbot solution provider is very easy. Picking the right one isn't. Put some time and effort into research before choosing one.

3. Get an idea about how conversational AI works.

Integrating intelligent assistants and chatbots into your business isn't tough anymore. But utilizing them effectively is unless you're prepared.

Everyone is talking about conversational AI, but there are very few people who know how it works. Most people think if they incorporate conversational AI technologies into their business, chatbots will take the load. But that's not true. The truth is, chatbots needs the knowledge to power them up. So, before you incorporate conversational AI technologies into your business, you need to do knowledge management. Otherwise, your chatbots will fail miserably.

Related: How AI-Powered Chatbots Have Transformed Customer Engagement

4. Focus on improvement.

With technological advances, chatbots have come a long way, and they're quickly evolving and becoming increasingly sophisticated. But there is still a lot of room for improvement. Start by continuously feeding them with real-time relevant information. Data is the key to make your conversational chatbots really effective. The more data they get, the more they will uncover the behavioral patterns, and the better the results will be in the future.

Remember, just like your business, your chatbots need grooming too.

Reshu Rathi

Marketing Manager

Reshu Rathi is an online marketing and conversion rate enthusiast. She has been in the internet marketing industry for nearly ten years, specializing in content and product marketing, lead generation and engagement strategy. She provides thought leadership for a variety of global publications.

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