Difference Between Live Chat and Chat Bot: What Is Better for You
September 30, 2020

Difference Between Live Chat and Chat Bot: What Is Better for You

Have you ever heard of online support? Have you ever encountered the terms ‘live chat’ or ‘chatbot’? All three terms pertain to a convenient method of attending to your customers, regardless of how big or small your business is. Web-based client assistance has become more significant since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. It enables various services to continue operations, carry out deliveries, and address user queries.   

People are seeking for more convenient assistance from brands they support. In response, companies are working full-time to meet audience expectations and expand the breadth of their online help desk services.

But the real question is, is a live chat feature relevant? 

How can it be of any assistance?

This blog will help you determine which is more ideal for your business, chatbot or livechat. 

Are robots more intelligent than humans?

If so, then does this mean that it is capable of answering all possible questions of each customer? The seemingly never-ending debate about chatbot vs live chat has become more prevalent lately. Although customer assistance can now be delivered using live chat, software developers came up with the idea of automating responses even without the presence of a support agent. They did so to make transactions less time-consuming and guarantee that customers get speedy help even if they send a query beyond business hours.

In that regard, is it safe to assume that computers are better than human-powered customer service? 

In this blog, you will get a more comprehensive comparison of the pros and cons of chatbot vs conversational agent. By the time you finish reading this post, you will also gain a clearer picture of which type of support service is more suitable for your business.

What is Live Chat Support Service?

 

It is otherwise called “instant messaging” because end-users directly converse with the representative in-charge of attending their concerns. It is a platform where people instantly receive answers to their queries without having to wait for a couple of days or hours.  

Companies use live chat to connect with their clients and attend their concerns when customers visit their website. Through this type of customer service software, visitors can seek help and interact with the agents by clicking on the chat widget to commence a conversation.

Say, a person has to purchase a product or wants to avail some of the services. By checking out the website and chatting with available agents, they can validate if the product is authentic, confirm the span of delivery, mode of payment, or ask about available discounts and promos.

Other uses of instant messaging service include sales, marketing, and lead generation. In essence, using live messaging service delivers the “human touch” that most buyers seek whenever they have an issue they want resolved. Although communication is done digitally, site visitors are still able to converse with real people. 

Pros and Cons of Using Live Chat

Utilizing live chat effectively increases customer approval and trust, builds business-to-client rapport, aids in spreading the business’ popularity, and ultimately drives higher sales, conversion, and return of investment (ROI).

Pros: 

  • Efficient Use of the Customer’s and Agent’s Time— There will no longer be long queues or extended waiting times before users receive an answer. Live chat agents are able to focus on each query with less pressure. Each chat is well-managed because support representatives will not leave the customer unattended or put them on hold until the problem is solved. Likewise, if the customer confirms that they have no follow-up questions, agents seamlessly end the conversation and transfer to a different customer.
  • Non-Intrusive Offers— In some instances, businesses also use the chat widget feature on their website to offer their patrons alternative products, coupons and promos based on their search history and previous purchases on the website. The approach helps visitors find just the right solution to their circumstances.
  • Broader Knowledge of the Service— End-users get frustrated with bots because the answers they get are often limited to what the AI is programmed to reply depending on the question. In contrast, client assistance representatives deliver more detailed responses that aptly gauge the scope of each lead or buyer’s concerns.
  • Superb Communication— It is no secret that clients are more comfortable talking to real people than bots. Phone calls tend to be intrusive. Emails take a while to get a response. With live messaging, people feel they have more freedom to voice-out our concerns while being assured of an instant and real-time response. In that sense, natural intelligence outperforms Artificial Intelligence.

Cons

  • Limited Availability of Agents— E-commerce websites entertain questions on a given time frame to accommodate more customers and ultimately increase sales and boost brand engagement. Most companies offer live chat support eight hours a day and once business hours are over, there are no support representatives available to entertain site visitors. When incorporating live chat in your website, you need to specify whether to make the live chat service available 24/7 or not.
  • Hiring Support Staff Requirement— A company needs to hire trainable support staff with the capability to absorb information and adapt to the setup easily. Not all queries are answerable by canned responses; and you also need to factor in the key details of your services and products. All these will take a significant chunk of your time and funds.
  • Non-Multilingual Support— Language barriers is a common hindrance in attending to the concerns of and communicating with clients. Auto-translation features are not always accurate. Unless you have a high monetary level to hire a well-versed and multilingual team to talk to people in different languages and enhance your business reach, then you are good to go. 

What is Chatbot?

A chatbot is a type of computer program that acknowledges and handles  human concerns by automatically asking them a series of questions related to the website or product they are checking out.

Other terms used to refer to chatbot include, “Bot”, “Talkbot”, “IMBot”, “interactive agent”, and “artificial conversation entity”.  Bots are commanded through voice or text for better experience. The information it provides are typically based on a business’ FAQs. These queries, along with the corresponding responses are embedded into its system and commands.

There are also different types of chatbots, some of which include:

  • Button-based Bots— It opens a conversation and leads customers to give a clearer picture of their concern by providing them with a range of options. It specifically gives users a range of options from A, B, C, and so on, which they have to click depending on which choice corresponds to their query. A good example for this is Google Assistant.  Button-based bots are ideal also for sales support, surveys, on boarding as well as simple and fast transactions.
  • Hybrid Bots— This bot is designed to offer improved options to customers. Aside from offering site visitors with a multiple-choice option, it delivers extended help by encouraging the latter to type additional questions in the chat box. Similar to a button-based bot, hybrid bots are also powered by NLU {Natural Language Understanding} for easy and smooth communication. Additional features of hybrid bots include storing conversation history between the clients and agents.
  • AI Bot These bots help the company in maintaining user-generated data from chat engagements with previous customers. AI Bots record and store conversations and use it as a key reference especially if the client is a repeat customer. Each bot values confidentiality, and the systematized function makes it an ideal choice for companies with a littler over twenty staffs and needs assistance in assisting end-users.
  • Omnichannel Bot An omnichannel bot is a type of bot that offers two-way communication. When a person visits a website, the omnichannel bot automatically pops up. In some instances, the visitor is redirected to the bot once they click or visit a particular portion of the page. It will ask default questions before redirecting the customer to a human chat agent. The process gives an overview of the concern so that the agent assigned to a particular department generates the appropriate answers.
  • Voice-powered Bot This type of bot receives commands through verbal questions or instructions. It is a lot like having a normal conversation with a real individual. It is important to provide clear and concise commands or queries to get the desired response from the bot. Otherwise, end-users might have to rephrase their sentences.

Pros and Cons of Using Chatbot

Talkbots are very much ideal for businesses with limited finances and are more inclined to using skeletal laborers. It is also a great alternative for companies that cannot entertain customer’s concerns simultaneously.

Pros:

  • Less Supervision— Other companies receive more requests and queries from their clients, thus they opt to install bots to attend to their concerns. It is convenient since people’s requests are quickly given solutions and even recorded for future references.
  • Simultaneously handles multiple requests— Chatbots deliver flexibility. They can handle multiple requests simultaneously even without much supervision. The best part is bots can be arranged to respond to concerns 24/7.
  • Fast Response Time— Artificial Intelligence easily processes user requests minus the long waiting queues. Since chatbots are a type of software, their responses are accurate to the business. At the same time, bots are more equipped and seamlessly programmed to communicate in various languages.

Cons:

  • Limited Range of Responses— The performance of chatbots are largely based on the key details that businesses want people to understand the most about the services or products they offer. Beyond that, bots cannot answer questions that are beyond their body of knowledge and the functions they are programmed to accomplish. Customers also have to be specific with their queries so that bots can answer them effectively.
  • Absence of Human Interaction— Talking to a chatbot is a completely different experience. End-users feel how chatbots are systematized and offer pre-arranged responses. It lacks the human element that most customers seek when they have concerns that want answered or solved. Agents offer alternative solutions, aside from the default range of details about the services.
  • Right Spelling and Specificity is a Must— People need to ensure that they spell out their sentences and questions correctly. Otherwise, bots may misinterpret their query or fail to comprehend their problem. Some chat bots can handle errors in languages and minimal incorrect spellings but customers need to avoid these mistakes to ensure a smooth-flowing conversation.

Which is more ideal: Chabots or Live chat?

Online support provides a brilliant experience for the customers by helping them in effective decision-making. 

Livechat vs Chatbot, you ask? Well, you will never know until you try one of them. Yet, usually, some businesses go for both for their business not to miss anything as they communicate with their clients. 

If you are just starting up your business or you have a small business where common questions are being asked, then it is just ideal for you to use chatbot instead. Chatbots are relatively more affordable than hiring live chat agents because it is easy to install and does not entail labor costs.

On the other hand, if you regularly receive tons of inquiries, have a growing need to promote your brand to a bigger audience, and wish to offer a new selection of products, you need to use live chat and employ a trained team of agents to bring high-quality service to your target audience.

Chatbot vs. Conversational Agent

Both provide specific advantages to businesses that utilizing both at the same time is also ideal. Suppose there is an instance where chatbots can handle the questions by giving customers stored data then the requests will be processed independently. But, if it is outside the scope of the chatbots, then customers will also be directed to live agents to address their concerns.

In the end, live chat and chat bots may vary depending on the nature of your services and the audience for whom your products are designed. As long as any of the two suffices your objectives, then whichever you choose should enhance your efficiency and credibility as a whole.

How important is Live Chat Fairies?

Are you still confused over the difference between live chat and chat bot? Are you still figuring out which option is better for your brand?  Live Chat Fairies offers flexible and cost-effective live chat services for all types of businesses. We have multilingual agents to help you out, and you can also avail our customizable chat widget for your website. Outsource our instant messaging support representatives if you need additional resources for your online support service. You are also given the option of enabling 24/7 for your customers. 

So, why hesitate in acquiring services from us? Don’t miss out on this offer!

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