Currently Messenger is one of the most popular and most intensively developed messaging platforms in the world. Most of us use it to send messages through Facebook. According to September 2018 statistics, Facebook Messenger had 1.3 billion users (Source: Statista, 2018).
Facebook is making a tremendous effort in order to develop the Messenger chatbot function. The chatbot messenger is an extended messaging platform, which automatically responds to send messages. It can do more than just reply to the received questions – it can provide information about available products and services, special offers, order status, etc. Sometimes it is also part of the sales process itself and this requires s technology much more advanced that traditional autoresponders. It also comes equipped with 'artificial intelligence', it is able to establish contact and interact with its interlocutor by way of holding an ordinary, human conversation.
State of the art technology means that a chatbot even understands colloquial and inaccurate statements, as well as jokes. Once a user initiates a conversation, a bot is given its name and surname together with a unique id number. Now it can use that information in a conversation, by addressing its interlocutor by name. Available 24/7 to customers, it automates office tasks, reduces the sales path, builds and improves company image, analyses consumer needs and constitutes a guarantee of data confidentiality and security. It is also possible to link current users of a website or online store with Facebook Messenger users through a telephone number or even to log into a store account straight from the Messenger conversation level.
The Messenger platform also includes a facility for executing secure payments using PayPal for example. Through Messenger, a chatbot can also collect data and the preferences of the current and future customers, promote products and provide information an o wide scale directly through the messaging platform (news, competitions, promotions, etc.). An account linking feature is also available. When a user logs into their online store account, a chatbot will record their every action directly under an IP address in the store. This segments customers on the basis of their buying practices and as a result a more personalised service can be provided.
As such chatbots today offer vast communication opportunities by replacing the traditional telephone or e-mail. Usually communication with a bot is of a less formal nature which helps customers ask additional, perhaps in their opinion awkward questions. A chatbot delivers smooth communication, immediate message deliveries (it is easier to read them on Messenger than try and find them in an in-box), it is easier for it to acquire new potential customers from the younger generation who appreciate cutting edge technology and solutions and also it makes it much easier to maintain long term relations with recipients.
In a global world, where time is money, there is a large chance that a user will take advantage of a service which is available to them non-stop, works accurately and saves their time.