How to Build a Chatbot? (Chapter 4)

The 2018 Complete Guide to Chatbots

Chapter 4

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How to Build a Chatbot?

For a basic bot, there are three types of agents needed:  A support agent, a FAQ agent, and one or more conversational agents.

Support agent:  This agent handles all the basic questions such as “Where are you located?” or “What is your billing phone number?” A more complex support agent would answer questions like “What software do I use for product X?” or “How do I add XYZ feature to my ABC product?”  Support agents often have sub-intents for each product or service.

FAQ agent:  The FAQ agent answers all the general questions from a user. The questions may be from prospects or customers. The FAQ agent is not as detailed as a complex support agent, but it quickly answers the question or points the user to a page or a document that has the answer.

Conversations:  At least one conversion is needed just to introduce the chatbot to the user and ask how it can help. For leads and sales, a decision tree of questions is asked to either point the user to the right product or service, or to make the user understand the value of the product or service, gather contact information or make a purchase. In many cases, you will have different conversations on different sections of the site.

Here are two examples of where a conversation can be used.

  • If you have two products that serve five different industries, you have to ask which industry they are in, and provide the benefits and features for that industry.
  • If you are trouble shooting a support question, you must have some basic facts such as what product they have now, if they are using a Mac or PC, what browser they use, etc.

Here are the first three steps in creating the chatbot conversation.

  1. Create a spreadsheet that has a list of questions and answers along with button options and their actions. This will replicate the scenario of a customer talking to a salesperson. Start with the most common questions. Over time you will see questions that you did not think of, and you can add those questions to the spreadsheet.
  2. Think about how each question can be asked by the user. Break out each question into 15 to 20 different ways it could be asked. You can use wildcards to make this easier.
  3. Enter the questions and answers into the chatbot platform and test each question.

Here is an example of the question and answer spreadsheet:

Question Answer Button Action
What is your phone number Our number is 123-1223-1223
Do you sell cars? Yes do you want 2 wheel drive or 4 wheel drive? 2 wheel Go to URL…
4 wheel Show text….


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Greg Ahern

Greg Ahern Founder and President of Ometrics® is a fanatic about conversion rate optimization, chatbots and lead generation. Greg has been a successful Internet entrepreneur since 1994. He speaks at conferences and webinars and has built a number of internet businesses, including web marketing, web development and internet lead generation, which have been successfully acquired. Greg is the Denver Chapter Leader for the Digital Analytics Association. You can follow Greg on Twitter @gregahern and join his CRO Hacks Groups on Facebook and Slack.
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