Get started with how to design a chatbot using these 21 ways to build trust

Chatbots are finally growing in popularity in North America. They’ve been popular in Europe for a long time, but they’re just starting to gain traction on this side of the pond. 

Chatbots have transformed customer service in many ways. They’ve helped customers get the answers they need at the exact moment they need it because they operate 24/7. They’ve also helped better organize and streamline customer feedback. On top of that, they’ve improved the quality of leads delivered to sales teams. 

But, like any other technology, they’ve experienced a few growing pains which may have caused some distrust in the technology. Unfortunately, studies show that many people who interact with poorly designed chatbots become frustrated and turned off from the brand. On the flip side though, some brands have done chatbots amazingly well, and the bots are helping to build customer trust and loyalty, while delivering warm leads.

How can you embrace all the benefits of a chatbot (save customer service time, sort inquiries to the right customer service agent for better service, build warm leads for better sales, etc.) while still building that critical trust factor with potential clients? 

how to design a chatbot
Photo by Tim Samuel on Pexels.com

21 Tips on How To Design a Chatbot To Build Trust

  1. Provide site visitors with relevant information in a friendly manner without sales pressure.
  2. Add humour and personality to your chatbot to make your brand more relatable and help users connect emotionally.
  3. A chatbot written in your brand voice will reinforce brand recognition. Be sure to share your style guide with developers.
  4. Design chatbots to quickly connect your customers to the right person on your team based on their input, so your customers don’t have to go through five levels of a call center.
  5. A chatbot means your customers can get help precisely when they need it. So have your chatbot always online, not just during regular business hours.
  6. Identify repetitive tasks that the chatbot could easily automate. That way customer service agents have more time to do their job well and take care of customers. 
  7. Implementing a chatbot with conversational AI allows for seamless question and answer interchanges. These chatbots respond fast, while your customer is still thinking about your product, not hours later when they’ve forgotten about it.
  8. Ensure your chatbot can respond to all questions along the customer journey. Chatbots are less intimidating for customers who just want a little info but aren’t ready to talk to a salesperson yet.
  9. Make sure your chatbot is trained on human intent. Chatbots with powerful conversational AI platforms can offer a personalized human touch with responses that take into account the tone of a person’s message, without needing to assign a specific agent to every inquiry.
  10. Ensure your solution is scalable. Chatbots can handle an unlimited number of customers at once. Your customers won’t have to wait on hold for hours on end.
  11. Build customer service tracking into the bot’s backend to save your team time. Chatbots will help you track, investigate, and respond to customer complaints quickly so you can resolve situations and improve your products. 
  12. Your chatbot needs to focus on the needs of your customers, so provide them with valuable information as the main goal.
  13. Use a headshot and the name of the person who actually handles your chatbot messages after initial contact, instead of something generic to make it more personal and relatable.
  14. Get your whole customer service team involved to detail all common questions to send to the development team. Your chatbot should be able to answer questions about your products knowledgeably. 
  15. You need to review your customers’ conversations with the chatbots and revise, adjust, and improve what your chatbot says based on these conversations. The AI will improve the conversations, but human intervention is also required.
  16. Don’t make your chatbot send a wall of text. It’s overwhelming. Short paragraphs, easy questions, and concise statements help your customers get what they need.
  17. Your chatbot’s intro message should clarify to the customer what the chatbot can help them do so that realistic expectations are set upfront. 
  18. If your chatbot makes promises (a customer service rep will call you in 2 hours), make sure you follow through so customers know they can trust you. And if there is a delay for some reason, build in an update message that lets clients know.
  19. When writing dialogue for your chatbot, focus on what your customers might ask your chatbot. This is not the place to try to cleverly insert how fantastic your product is. Make this about the customer.
  20. Use words and phrases that are similar to what your customers use. Drop the jargon. Make it familiar.
  21. Embrace anthropomorphism. Make your chatbot as human as possible, so it’s easy to relate to.

RELATED: How To Build A Chatbot: The Development Process

Customized Chatbot Solutions Are the Key to Building Trust

Just tossing a generic chatbot up on your website won’t have the results you’re after. If you want to reap all the benefits of chatbots, you need to lay the development groundwork to make sure your chatbot: 

  • reflects your brand voice
  • feels personal
  • focuses on your customers’ needs
  • gives customers value
  • builds trust

If you’re unsure about how to put any of these trust-building tips into practice, book a discovery call with one of our experts. We love to talk tech, chatbots and your business needs.

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  1. […] experience in ways that you may not have considered. Chatbots can also help nurture leads and build trust with potential and current customers. But to harness all of these benefits, you need to have a plan […]

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