Customer Service Chatbots

Chatbots that Integrate with your Contact Center and CRM

Chatbots, also known as Interactive Text Response (ITR), are a natural fit for delivering customer service. Many customers will choose SMS customer service or Twitter customer service over voice – and channels like Facebook Messenger and other over-the-top (OTT) messaging providers are also emerging in popularity. In addition, ITR provides a flexible platform for outbound notifications and reminders, with the power to transform the interaction into a two-way automated conversation, not just a one-way notification. The result are customer service chatbots that integrate easily with your existing contact center, IVR and CRM to deliver modern customer service offerings that customers enjoy using.

Digital Self-Service: Mobile Phone NLU

Using SMS Customer Service to Transform Your Outbound Notifications into Two-Way Conversations.

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Text messaging (SMS) is perfect for delivering outbound notifications like order confirmations and appointment reminders to mobile phones. For many customers, the convenient nature and additional privacy of interactions on text channels better fits their busy, multi-tasking lifestyle than a long phone call to an IVR or agent.

Aspect's Interactive Text Response (ITR) solution transforms one-way notifications into two-way conversations, empowering your customers to do much more, at a fraction of the cost of agent-assisted service:

  • Automated appointment rescheduling that increases patient show-up rates
  • Payment notifications that allow on-the-spot collections vs. mere reminders
  • Upsell opportunities for retail, telco, and more

Chatbots – A Wide Range of Deployment Options

Chatbots can live on any channel that are conduits for text-based dialogs with exposed APIs to enable the deployment of automated applications. These include:

  • Carrier channels
    • SMS
    • USSD
  • Non-carrier channels
    • Facebook Messenger
    • Twitter (public timeline or direct message dialogs)
    • WeChat, kik, LINE, Viber, …
    • Skype for Business
    • Slack
    • Microsoft Teams
    • (WhatsApp does not yet officially provide an API, as of May2017)
  • Embedded chat
    • On websites
    • Within mobile apps
    • On kiosk terminals
Using mobile phone

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What is a Customer Service Chatbot?

A chatbot (aka chat bot), chatterbot or bot for short, is an automated, Conversational User Interface (CUI) to any kind of service on the Internet. A chatbot exchanges information through text-based chat, leading a conversation using natural language, or a combination of natural language and buttons to advance the dialog. Chatbots are typically embedded in messaging apps such as Messenger or WeChat, but can also be offered on a website via web chat, or over the carrier channels SMS and USSD.

Customer Service / Customer Support Chatbots allow the customer to put a question into a message, then receive a response instantaneously. A combination of Artificial Intelligence and rules-based Natural Language Understanding techniques attempt to interpret the question and answer it automatically. If the answer to a question requires the system to ask a few questions first (such as “what is your order number?”), it engages in a short conversation with the customer before looking up the answer from the enterprise backend system. If the bot cannot successfully answer the customer’s question, it transfers the dialog to a customer service representative in the contact center (traditional call center or Customer Engagement Center), either by continuing the chat in the messaging system or moving it over to voice.

When applied to customer service, chatbots are also known as Interactive Text Response (ITR), a text-based version of well-known Interactive Voice Response (IVR).  Bots used for ITR have the full value propositions of IVR plus a better consumer appeal, for example, tapping into the 1+ billion users of services such as Facebook Messenger.