Sheer volume of messaging app users provides unlimited potential for chatbots, finds Strategy Analytics

Messaging is a semi-natural mode of communication that has evolved with the ascent of smartphones. The immense volume of users who communicate through messaging apps represents a valuable feature for chatbots geared towards services and support with virtually no barrier to entry.

A recent study from the User Experience Strategies (UXS) service at Strategy Analytics, “Conversational UIs: Discovering Serendipity investigating the emerging behaviours, needs, and pain points of consumers regarding use of conversational chatbots, has found that despite being more engaging and efficient than traditional methods of communication, discoverability, usability, and security are critical for widespread chatbot adoption.

Key report findings:

  • Conversational UIs, in the initial form of chatbots, are poised to shape the way users communicate with businesses, their smart homes and soon, connected devices.
  • Conversations with a chatbot can be open-ended; there is no defined protocol which can introduce unpredictability.
  • As chatbots become more successful in understanding users by leveraging AI, they will require more personal information which can raise privacy concerns.

Mathew Alton, senior analyst and report co-author commented, “The sheer volume of possible users across (free) platforms such as Facebook Messenger, Telegram, and WeChat makes chatbots a potentially lucrative means for users to engage with brands and services conversationally. But users do not gravitate towards messaging platforms because of chatbots—they use whatever their friends/relatives are using. As a result, messaging chatbots need to provide a meaningful, distinct, and compelling service to remain relevant.”

Chris Dodge, associate director and report co-author, added, “Widely-used platforms offer a range of discoverability options beyond pushing information at the user: various forms of marketing can be leveraged to drive users to chatbots. By allowing users to reach out to content, instead of pushing content directly at them, chatbots also have the potential to be a more trustworthy form of marketing.”

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