What is a Chatbot? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

March 19, 2019 |   3 minute read

What is a Chatbot? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

There’s a way to impress your boss and improve customer service at the same time, and it can be surprisingly simple. You can do it just by implementing an updated customer service approach: chatbots.

Older customer service techniques, like customer service help lines, are quickly becoming inefficient. That’s because answers to all sorts of questions are available on Google, and many customers expect or prefer quick solutions to their problems. Also, it’s sometimes nicer to ask a silly or basic question to a computer than to an actual person.

Of course, there are times when most people still like to have interactions with actual humans who can answer their specific questions. The problem is, customer service representatives often waste a lot of time responding to very simple questions that could be answered by a program, often delaying the more pressing problems a customer service representative has.

You’ve probably explored chatbots, the most common and popular solution to this problem. You’ve probably even chatted with one before. But in case you haven’t, this article will answer:

  • What is a chatbot?
  • What are some of the basic legal concerns around implementing them in Canada?

What Is a Chatbot?

A chatbot is a computer program written to mimic human conversation, usually for the purposes of collecting information or answering customer service questions. You may have already encountered one and not even realized it.

If you have ever used the chat function on a customer support site, you may have had a highly stimulating conversation with an artificial intelligence. Hopefully you didn’t make any plans for a business lunch!

Why Would I Want to Use Chatbots?

Chatbots are more user-friendly than an FAQ page (users don’t have to do the searching themselves because the chatbot will just send you the relevant link for your query) and are smart enough to answer multiple questions, can walk a user through signing up for a newsletter, or direct the user to an actual human support rep if needed, and the support team can take over at any time.

Are Chatbots Considered Spam?

chatbots laws and legistlations

 It’s worth familiarizing yourself with the key differences between a legal and illegal use of a chatbot. To use chatbots and similar social media tools in Canada, you must obtain consent from the user to send them electronic messages.

To get consent you must provide:

  • The name of your organization seeking consent
  • A mailing address and either a phone number, voice message system, email address or website where recipients can access an agent for more information
  • A statement identifying the person on whose behalf consent is being sought
  • The identity and contact information of any third-party or affiliate used to obtain consent
  • A free unsubscribe mechanism that lets recipients electronically opt-out of communications
  • The ability to opt-out of all types of communications sent by either your organization or a third-party partner

With these basic rules you should be able to implement chatbots correctly and impress everyone at work with the sleek new customer service model you’ve introduced, not to mention increasing the satisfaction of everyone who uses your site.

Looking for More New Inbound Marketing Strategies?

New call-to-action