We sink a lot of effort into product marketing. Maximizing discoverability and tempting users into downloading your mobile app is only half of the challenge of expanding your userbase. The other half of your quest is to keep them. This stage in your user journey is where they need guidance to get to know your app, lest they become frustrated and churn.
More than 67% of people shopping online have used a chatbot for customer support within the last year. That’s quite a large percentage. But chatbots aren’t only good for customer service! Onboarding and initial user data collection can be complex. Using chatbots to help bring new users up to speed might be exactly what you need to make your onboarding experience a smooth ride. Could a chatbot be right for your app?
It starts with onboarding
A commonly repeated marketing mantra goes that it takes 5 times as much money to acquire a new customer as it does to retain an old one. While the specifics on that one are hard to definitively pin down, common sense dictates that any user you’re able to obtain is one you’re going to want to keep.
So how can you make that easier?
When your onboarding process is as smooth and friction-free as possible, it increases the likelihood of successful adoption. Let’s talk about how to make their first impression of your app a good one that makes them want to come back for more.
Introduce them to a chatbot
Many apps these days require a user’s personal information to customize the experience. Chatbots can help app users accomplish a lot—from ordering coffee to personalizing their shopping experience to accessing their financial accounts. If your app needs to gather personal information from your users, chatbots for onboarding are an attractive and efficient way to interact with them. There are a couple of great reasons why a chatbot might be your next partner in onboarding.
Chatbots are personal.
When a user has an experience that feels personalized to them, it’ll make them feel more comfortable with your app (and more likely to make purchases). So, try doing it through a bot. There’s no trickery involved here —we can pretty much all tell the difference between a bot and a human— but even knowing there’s not a person on the other side of the screen, onboarding through a bot still feels a lot more like a conversation than straight-up data collection. And that puts people at ease.
Chatbots are scalable.
Employing humans for any purpose can get pretty expensive. It’s just not doable for most apps to have a live human waiting to help new users. But if you’ve got a bot, you can onboard as many users as you want at the same time, no matter how quickly your user base grows. No scheduling, no problem.
Chatbots are quick.
Unlike people, bots don’t have to spend time thinking about their next response. Chatbots can reply immediately, moving on to the next piece of information as soon as the user is ready. This means there’ll be a nice rhythm and flow to your info-gathering process. Done, done, and next.
Chatbots are fun.
Filling out a long questionnaire when you’ve just downloaded a new app is not all that enjoyable. Sure, if I’m using a banking or fitness app, it’s going to need to gather some info from me before I can start using it. But don’t make the data entry feel like a chore! The super-quick back and forth with a chatbot feels less like work, more natural, and more like fun.
How do I add a chatbot to my app?
So if you want your users to start onboarding with chatbots, how do you get started?
If you’re just using a chatbot for onboarding, then you won’t need to go through the trouble of making it “smart.” You can give it a series of questions and make your users choose from pre-set answers instead of letting them freestyle. You can also program prompts to upload documents, photos, and other supplementary materials. The experience will still feel quick and easy for your users while requiring very little work on your part.
If you’d like your chatbot to be more of an integral part of your app, you might need something a little more sophisticated. The great thing about chatbots is that many of them can be used for customer support and can reduce the flow of traffic to your customer service department. You’ll need to integrate a custom chatbot service with your app.
Custom chatbot services
Here at Instabug, we know and love Intercom. Their chatbots are smooth, sleek, and easy to use. You can build custom chatbots, add self-help articles, and integrate your bots with oodles of add-ons.
This Google service is built on Google’s extensive machine learning and NLP experience. Dialogflow can be used across multiple devices and platforms.
These AI-powered chatbots can be customized to include lists, cards, carousels and login forms, or whatever else you need to create a complete self-service experience.
And don’t forget that if you’re using Instabug, you can use in-app chats with your users to keep them in the know about bugs and features. When they need a human to talk to, you’ll be there!