What is a chatbot and why do you need one?

Your customers need to be able to interact with your business. Whether that is face to face with staff, on social media or through your website.

Online customers don’t have the ability to talk to a team member face to face, which is where chatbots can help. These intelligent systems allow customers to communicate with a business, find out the information they need, and ask questions. From a business standpoint, this allows you to open lines of communication and begin providing great customer service.

But what else are chatbots capable of, and why should you think about using them?

What is a chatbot?

Chatbots are programs designed to simulate human interaction and conversation. This is normally with a view to advancing a customer enquiry and providing information that helps users find what they need.

By using workflows and recognising key terms and phrases, chatbots are able to automate large parts of the initial interaction with a customer. This allows them to chase up order enquiries, provide information about products, process payments, or arrange appointments with customer service team members.

A chatbot is in some cases the first contact a customer will have with your business. So it creates an opportunity to make a great first impression, and support your customers as much as possible, helping them to form a more positive image of your company.

How it helps a business and its customers

Chatbots have a variety of uses and can be incredibly versatile in what they are capable of doing. From acting as a greeter on your website to responding to customer complaints, there are lots of ways a chatbot can benefit a business.

Some of these benefits include:

24/7 point of contact

Chatbots don’t need downtime, or breaks. This means having one for your site or social media channels allows you to maintain 24/7 customer service support.

Workflows allow you to record a query or request that would normally require a human response. Chatbots can then arrange a call back or contact when customer support staff are back at work.

This means that customers can feel a constant connection to your business, helping them and you to feel supported.

Time-saving responses

Chatbots look for key phrases and responses to help move conversations along. In some instances, such as checking up on an order status, or checking if an item is in stock, a chatbot can deal with a customer enquiry ­– without ever involving a member of the customer service team.

This is a great way to save time and ensure that staff are dealing with more involved requests instead of simple tasks. Automating some of your customer service in this way also means that a lot of queries, which cause delays and keep customers waiting around for help, can be handled much more quickly. This can improve the overall efficiency of your customer service.


Chatbots can be used across social media, mobile sites, email, websites and more. They provide businesses with an ability to control the initial introduction to a customer, and provide a level of consistency in communication across a brand.

If you run a business that gives customers a number of options for getting in touch, this level of consistency is important as it guarantees a certain level of control. It also lets you predefine the quality of interaction when it comes to communicating with your customers.

This broad integration also allows you to update any key information, such as offers, your company policy, or details which customers should be aware of. This helps to ensure you provide customers with accurate information at all times.

Links services together

Chatbots are able to integrate with a number of different systems within your business. This can be a huge benefit to your internal organisation. For instance, a customer gets in touch to arrange an appointment to speak with a financial advisor in your business. This appointment is arranged via a chatbot, but it uses information gained from internal diary programs and calendars to work out when the advisor is available.

This helps to not only provide impeccable levels of service which can benefit the client, but also helps to keep staff organised within your business.

How Flow XO can help with your customer service

Providing your customers with a high-quality and consistent level of service is a crucial part of ensuring they continue to make use of your business. A powerful chatbot can be a cornerstone to build this customer service around, and this is where Flow XO can help.

We provide businesses with powerful chatbot systems that:

  • Integrate cross-platform – With over 100 integrations, we can place chatbots wherever you need them within your organisation
  • Provide intelligent responses – Powerful workflows allow you to create logical, robust systems that meet the needs of both your business and customers
  • Are business ready – Setting up Flow XO is simple, meaning you can get effective chatbot software in place fast

To find out more about how Flow XO could help your business, visit our features page.

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