At first, it may be weird that chatbots have a health condition.
But they do!
A chatbot is a modern, powerful tool full of potential. But if you don’t take care of them, they may become obsolete over time and no longer function as effectively as they did on Day One.
One of the reasons for this is the ever-changing and growing user expectations.
This is why it’s important to make sure that your chatbot is as fresh and healthy as on the first day.
Four Things That Might Make Your Chatbot Sick
🤔 Misunderstandings. When creating a chatbot, we strive to respond to the most diverse messages possible. This is crucial as the bot has to understand the user in any circumstances.
Language evolves rapidly especially on the Internet, new slangs and phrases may appear, or more people start using a specific word differently.
As a result, the bot will not understand the user and this can lead to frustration.
🥺 Need For Functions. Designing a chatbot is always preceded by comprehensive research. This will determine the functionality of the bot after all.
Later, however, there may be fair user needs for new functions that were not planned at the time of development.
We also need to prepare the bot for these features to be available.
💁🏻♂️ Ignoring Human Assistance. Chatbots are not capable of everything. Nowadays, even AI-based language processing cannot understand a very long and complex issue.
But this is not necessarily a problem.
Bots are able to detect when to ask for human assistance. However, if the chatbot often makes the wrong decision about that, it may result in negative user experience.
⛓ Lack Of System Integration. Most chatbots work with external systems to get the information the user has requested.
Technology is constantly changing, and software are updated from time to time. Chatbot owners might also start using new systems that bots have to be able to work with later on.
Chatbot functionality should be adapted to updated systems, or the bot may not be able to handle user requests properly.
How To Keep Your Bot Healthy?
Chatbots losing their fitness is relatively noticeable, so it’s worth constantly checking how users use the bot.
This is no longer a new technology, users can meet numerous well-functioning bots nowadays, so they won’t forgive if a bot doesn’t work as expected.
It is worthwhile from time to time to see how people interact with the chatbot, what kind of questions they ask, what words they use, and how the bot responds to them.
It’s clearly visible when users try to access a feature that the chatbot cannot handle properly yet. Bots can and should be trained to these with post-development if we want to keep the chatbot healthy and usable, thus serving the needs of users.
An example of keeping a chatbot healthy is our own Sihuhu train timetable chatbot. To use the bot, you need to send the name of two settlements, and the bot shows train routes and schedules between them.
However, we have noticed that users started to give additional parameters to their questions, such as “without changes”, “tomorrow morning” or “last train”. In the beginning, the bot did not use these additions.
The need for making searches more specific is a fair demand. That’s why we have updated Sihuhu to take these parameters under consideration too, thus it became more powerful and comfortable to use.
Disclaimer: this is a translated version of an article originally posted on our own botblog.hu, on March 20, 2019.