Conversational UI: Does it really deliver?
No hello from the other side
Anushka here was the name given to our conversational chatbot (powered by Landbot.io). These type of chatbots have gained too much popularity recently with services like Landbot, Intercom, etc on the rise.
Conversational UI chatbots are being touted as the next big thing for the last 3 years. We understand the importance of a chat UI and we started with Intercom.io, which was a huge step forward in the right direction for engaging our hurried audience on starclinch.com.
StarClinch is India’s biggest Artist and Entertainer discovery and booking platform with over 60 queries coming in every day for booking or inquiring about one of our 17000+ artists. We take such queries through our Post Your Requirement (PYR) form, which is just a vanilla form with decent UI.
Like every company that’s in the growth phase, we decided to try something different so that our conversion rates increase.
It was about time that we spiced things up! 🌶
Our Post Your Requirement form was retrofitted in a conversational interface in Landbot.io, and it was live on our website right at the top, on the most prized real estate. Only on desktop because we could not make its UI work for mobile. For mobile, it needs to be the only thing on the page so as to avoid weird auto-scrolls on the onscreen keyboard open.
And so, for the next 15 days, came the rise of Anushka.
With a weekly traffic of 10,000 unique page views, we did expect some of the visitors to use or interact with the Landbot interface. Only some did.
Over the 15 days, a total of 77 conversations happened with Anushka, out of which 33 people gave in their email address, and only 5 people completed the whole conversation till the end. That is a conversion rate of only 6%.
6% is very very counter-intuitive to the type of conversion rates boldly hypothesized by Landbot.
Comparison: Landbot Form vs Our Traditional Form
Insights: Fleeting Audience 🏃🏻
Why such a skew with conversions you may ask?
The realization came to us much later on when we dived deeper into the mindsets of our target clientele.
A person who comes for booking an Artist or an Entertainer is in a rush. They want someone to fulfill their requirement immediately. God knows, maybe they are also putting their booking requirements on some other Artist booking website.
Seeing a slow moving chat interface, with no indicator of progress is a subtle threat to them. They fear it. They don’t have time for it. Simple.
This type of audience is known as fleeting audience, and they will fear using anything that they have not seen before.
All our audience expected was a simple one pager form where they could submit their requirement, and we reverted back to our normal homepage after these 15 days.
Should we have used a bot in the first place? Intercom spent an year and a half to make their operator bot and they ended up with a lifeless bot that, well, does its job. We learned our lessons, and we hope this analysis helps you to better target your type of audience.
You can still experiment with our Landbot interface here and let us know if you can find what we did wrong?
We are not discouraged. We will soon be releasing a new chatbot on Facebook Messenger which is the Mecca of all chatbots. The results will be shared here.