Is your company planning to invest in a chatbot? We recommend first referring to our previous post on homework for a chatbot project. Moving forward, in this post we have suggestions for some questions and topics we recommend discussing with a potential chatbot provider.
1. What technical platform is the chatbot made for?
The term chatbot contains multiple meanings and technological aspects. A chatbot can be built on top of Facebook Messenger or, for example, be a customised solution to fit the needs of a large company.
Find out from the supplier of the chatbot what technical platform is their solution built on. Is the chatbot developed by the company itself or do they perhaps sell a system developed by someone else? If the system or part of it is developed by another party, which areas do they deliver themselves and which come through partners?
2. Do they offer a chatbot editor?
The chatbot editor makes it easy to edit bot paths yourself without having to request changes separately from the chatbot provider. To learn more about chatbot editor read our article on the benefits it can bring.
3. How customisable is the solution they provide?
”One size fits all” is most often not ideal when it comes to chatbots. Therefore the potential for customisation should be ensured in the early stages of cooperation.
Ask your chatbot provider, for example, of challenges or problems they have previously built custom solutions for.
4. What is the implementation process of the chatbot like?
A chatbot is not a ready-made solution that can be simply turned on at command. Ask your potential provider to describe the key steps for the implementation of the chatbot and what is required from you as a customer at any stage of the implementation.
5. Where are things most likely to go awry (if they should go that way) ?
A reliable and experienced provider of technical solutions such as chatbots usually has experience on situations where things do not go according to plan. Ask your potential provider what are, in their experience, some of the most common situations where the project might get messy (if it were to).
6. What kind of support and help do they provide?
Within the business of chatbots there is no one size fits all solutions and a lot of planning and testing is required to achieve ideal results. In a lot of cases the help of an experienced partner is immensely valuable.
Ask your potential chatbot provider to give an example or a recommendation for a service they could offer in addition to the technological system.
7. Is the chatbot system compatible with other systems?
An important part of a chatbot is its ability to be integrated with your companies other systems such as customer service channels. Therefore we recommend asking your potential provider if their system is easy to integrate with other systems.
Find out what ready-made integrations for the chatbot tool are available and what kind of customised integrations the supplier offers their customers.
8. What is the pricing model of the service?
When planning your chatbot project, it is good to also allocate costs. The pricing for chatbots is often based on a combination of project-specific implementation costs and an ongoing, annual or monthly license fee.
9. What are some short-term development plans of the company?
You may wonder, why we are talking about short-term development plans at this point. Well, all providers certainly have long-term plans to ”grow to be number one in the market” or ”expand around the world”. But you can get more concrete information about the supplier’s plans and development cycles by asking about short-term plans.
10. What functions or improvements are up next for the chatbot system?
It can be important to be prepared for upcoming features when, for example, thinking about customer service resources .