Conversational AI is the use of chatbots, messaging apps, and voice-based assistants to automate customer communications with your brand.
How do they do that?
From providing customer support to guiding them through the various products that you offer, it can be used for a variety of purposes.
The adoption of this technology is being fuelled by the rise in the usage of messaging apps and voice-based assistants.
How popular are they?
WhatsApp, the most popular messaging app, has over 1.6 billion users, followed by Facebook Messenger with 1.3 billion users.
Image Source: Statista
So, what does that mean for your business?
Well, if you are not using conversational AI platforms yet, you should start now. These chatbots can not only help you improve customer service but can do a lot more.
But, before we delve into the popular conversational AI platforms, let’s first take a much closer look at what they are and how they can help your business.
What is Conversational AI?
Conversational AI is the technology that powers automated conversations between a business and its customers. These conversations could be text-based or audio-based and can be done on any messaging or voice-based communication platform.
Please note that conversational AI is the technology behind chatbots and voice-based assistants, but is not synonymous with either.
So, you can use a messaging service, a website chatbot, a voice-based assistant, etc. and use conversational AI to automate conversations on it.
AI technology has developed to a level where it can mimic human conversations with a great level of accuracy. They use Natural Language Processing (NLP) to fuel these human-like conversations. It helps them understand speech, text, and intent, decipher different languages, and respond as a human would.
What’s more, you ask?
Some conversational AI technologies are advanced enough to even understand the context and personalize the conversations.
But, what’s the purpose of conversational AI?
The main purpose of conversational AI is to automate conversations and customer interactions to provide accurate, round-the-clock support.
However, that’s not the only use of conversational AI technology.
Businesses use this technology for a variety of purposes.
Want to know what they are?
Keeping reading, because I will tell you in the next section.
How Can Businesses Use Conversational AI?
Conversational AI has numerous business applications and can be used both for customer acquisition and retention. It can help you provide a better experience to your customers and resolve their problems quickly and efficiently.
You can also use conversation AI technology to create user-friendly chatbots that can generate leads and drive more sales.
Want to know more about the different use cases of conversational AI for business purposes?
Here are some of the most common ways in which businesses today are leveraging this technology:
The first and most common use of conversational AI is to provide round-the-clock customer service. You can use it to answer commonly-asked customer questions, resolve problems, and provide solutions.
You can build your own customized database of information that you can feed into your conversational AI platform to make it more accurate.
Wondering how you can use conversational AI to improve customer service?
Here are some things that you can try:
- Customer support chatbot for your website
- Chatbots for Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, or other messaging services
- An interactive voice response (IVR) service
Want to see an example?
Here you go:
The leading bank, HSBC, uses a conversational AI-powered chatbot on their website to answer customer questions.
Image Source: HSBC
Providing a service like this means that your customers don’t have to wait very long to find the answers to their questions. This improves their experiences with your business and fosters customer loyalty.
Lead Generation and Conversion
Conversational AI can be used to provide product recommendations to your website visitors based on their search histories and past online behavior.
You can use a website chatbot that interacts with users and directs them to the right pages, products, or services. This, basically, directs leads down the sales funnel.
Another way in which it helps drive conversions is by cross-selling or upselling products to customers.
If a customer interacts with your chatbot to ask for a product recommendation, you can train it to also suggest complementary or higher-value products.
You can also use your conversational AI platform to deliver offers and promotions to your prospective or existing customers.
As far as lead generation is concerned, conversational AI-based chatbots can schedule appointments and collect email addresses during non-working hours. You can then pass that information on to your sales team, who can then nurture those leads.
Customer Research and Feedback
Conversational AI’s key purposes are to:
- Interact with customers and prospects
- Understand their concerns
- Provide solutions
You can use the data collected from these conversations to better understand your customers and their challenges.
Basically, you can use this as a means to collect customer feedback and improve your products and services.
Want to know how?
Well, for one, you can simply ask customers for their feedback during or after these automated conversations. All you have to do is train your conversational AI platform to do so.
You can also identify the most common challenges faced by your customers by analyzing the conversations and the questions that they ask.
If the majority of your customers is seeking information about how to perform a certain task, then maybe you need to make it easier for them.
Or if a lot of customers are facing the same issue with a product or service, then you need to fix the issue.
Now that you know the different ways in which you can use conversational AI for your business, let’s take a closer look at the top conversational AI chatbot platforms that you can use.
Want to know which conversational AI platforms are best?
Read on to find out.
Which Are the Best Conversational AI Platforms?
Here are five of the best conversational AI platforms for you to choose from. Read their features, pricing, pros, and cons to decide which one of these best chatbots suits your needs the best.
Conversational AI Platform #1: Kore.ai
This conversational AI platform is designed keeping in mind the needs of enterprises in mind. Using this platform, enterprises can design, test, create, and deploy AI-enabled assistants.
Kore.ai platform offers features to improve the overall employee experience, customer experience, and agent experience. From media and entertainment to the retail industry, it has use cases for all types of businesses.
Check out the key features of the platform here:
- Comes with a multi-pronged NLP engine
- Supports over 30 channels
- Flexible deployment model
- Easy integration with custom ML models and custom channels
- Detailed analytics
For details on their pricing plans, you need to contact their sales team.
- You can customize it easily
- It comes with domain-trained use cases
- It can humanize bot interactions
- Free demo and trial
- May not be useful for small and medium-sized businesses
Pro Tip: Understand the features by taking a demo and then use it to build a customized chatbot for your industry.
Conversational AI Platform #2: SAP Conversational AI
This is a powerful conversational AI platform from the software giant, SAP. You can use their technology to integrate their AI-based chatbots into your business. These chatbots are power-packed with natural language processing (NLP) technology.
So, what does that mean?
It means that they can talk to a user just like a human would, instead of providing cold, robot-like answers that most chatbots do. This can enhance your customers’ experience and should result in better-quality conversations between your brand and customers.
It has the NLP technology available in numerous languages. So, no matter which language your customers speak, this conversational AI platform can talk to your customers.
If you’re already a SAP user, then you can start using this technology in no time. It integrates with the existing SAP software suite very quickly and smoothly. However, it can be integrated into non-SAP solutions as well.
Still not convinced?
Let’s round up some of its key features:
- Powered with NLP technology
- Fast time-to-market
- Comes with a powerful analytics dashboard
- Can support multiple languages
- Can be voice-activated
Want to know the best part?
It is absolutely free to use. It is a community-powered product where developers can create as many chatbots as they like.
- Free-to-use open-source platform
- NLP capabilities
- Supports all languages
- You need some technical knowledge to develop a chatbot using this platform
Pro Tip: If you use SAP, then integrate it with your suite to get the best results.
Conversational AI Platform #3: KAI
This is a conversational AI platform from Kasisto that specializes in the finance and banking industry. It can provide your customers with answers to all their queries and solve their challenges in no time.
You don’t need to train this conversational AI platform, as it comes pre-packaged with financial knowledge and skills.
And guess what?
It is more than just conversational AI, it is a full-fledged virtual assistant to help all your customers.
KAI offers three different business solutions:
- KAI Consumer Banking
- KAI Business Banking
- KAI Investment Management
It also has natural language processing capabilities that allow it to converse with your customers like a human. It does not just answer questions but also has the ability to ask follow-up questions.
Want to know the best part?
It uses machine learning to get smarter with each conversation that it has. It is not restricted by any rule-based systems and is a self-learning conversational AI platform.
Pricing information is available on request.
- Self-learning AI-based platform that gets smarter with time
- NLP capabilities
- Meant only for banking and finance companies
Pro Tip: This is a specialized platform, so, if you are in the Banking or Finance industries, you should give preference to this over generic platforms.
Conversational AI Platform #4: MindMeld
This is another powerful conversational AI platform with natural language processing capabilities. This platform can be used for both voice interfaces and text-based chatbots.
And, unlike the previous platform, this one is not limited to any one industry or use case. In fact, it can be used by companies in different industries, for a variety of purposes.
If you want to build a simple food-ordering interface, you can do so by using this conversational AI platform.
Or let’s say that you want a virtual home assistant to control all your appliances, you can build one using MindMeld.
As such, this is a platform that can be used to build different types of chatbots and is not a single product. This allows a lot of flexibility in what you can do with this conversational AI platform.
What about pricing, you ask?
Well, this is an open-source platform for developers and is completely free to use.
- Free-to-use, open-source platform
- NLP capabilities
- Requires technical knowledge to develop a chatbot using this platform
Pro Tip: If you have the technical know-how, use this free platform to develop a customized chatbot suited to your needs.
Conversational AI Platform #5: Mindsay
Image Source: Mindsay
This is another great conversational AI platform that can help improve your customer support and increase sales revenue.
Wondering how it does that?
It provides several customer support solutions that can be helpful for your business. It is capable of answering more than just FAQs and can provide dynamic responses to questions.
And, if it cannot answer a question, it is smart enough to handover the conversation to a human agent.
What’s more, you ask?
It supports 110 different languages to cater to your customers worldwide.
That’s not all. It also offers conversational marketing chatbots that can automate your marketing and sales process and get you more revenue. It can act like a 24×7 sales rep that never gets tired.
Let’s have a look of some of its key features:
- Supports 110 languages
- Time-to-market is 4 weeks
- Enterprise-level capabilities
- Two key products—customer support chatbot and sales chatbot
- Can work for different industries
Want to know how much it costs?
You will have to get in touch with their team to find out.
- No technical knowledge required on your part
- Takes 4 weeks to launch
Pro Tip: A versatile platform like this is great for enterprises that may want to build different chatbots for their different business entities.
Conversational AI Platform #6: Passage AI
Passage AI is an NLU/NLP platform that can help you develop a deep conversational interface with ease. You can deploy their conversational interface on your mobile app or website.
Additionally, you can also deploy it with messaging platforms like Slack, Telegram, Facebook Messenger, and Kik.
This platform also comes with an end-to-end bot builder. Using this platform, you can provide automated responses to their queries. Their site claims that their platform has shown a high accuracy of up to 95+% in field tests.
That’s not all.
Here are the key features of this platform:
- Provides native NLP support for over 100 languages
- Has the same console for bot building, training, deployment, and analytics
- Comes loaded with voice and text capabilities
- Offers real-time analytics reports
- Has options to classify the intent of messages for bot training
For details about their pricing plans, you can get in touch with their sales team.
- It comes with integrated bot testing
- It has a drag-and-drop intents editor
- You can easily import knowledge-base APIs
- No free trial
Pro Tip: While there is no free trial, you can always ask them for a demo to get an idea about the interface and features,
Conversational AI Platform #7: Clinc
This is a powerful conversational AI platform that not only has NLP capabilities, but also machine learning. This makes it smart enough to learn from past conversations and keep improving its responses over time.
According to research conducted by their team at the University of Michigan, it has a 92% NLU accuracy rate. So, you can rest assured that it will provide a human-like conversational experience to your customers.
Want to know more?
Let’s have a look at some of its key features:
- Supports over 80 languages
- Holds more than 12 patents
- Comes equipped with NLP and machine learning capabilities
- Can be used for any industry or business
The pricing information for this is available on request.
- Can be used by anyone without needing any technical knowledge
- A powerful self-learning platform that grows smarter with time
- This is a paid platform and you can get a similar product for free
Pro Tip: If your priority is to build a sophisticated chatbot that can provide human-like interactions, then this is the best option for you.
Which Conversational AI Platform Will You Choose?
Did you find anything that you like? These are some of the best conversational AI tools out there that you can try.
Some of these are open-source platforms that you can use to make a chatbot, while others provide an already-developed product.
Do you know of any other such tools? Let us know in the comments below.
Q1. What is conversational AI?
A. Conversational AI is an advanced technology that makes it possible to automate conversations online. Voice-based assistants and chatbots are powered by conversational AI technology. Through conversational AI, it is possible to automate audio-based as well as text-based conversations on different platforms.
Q2. What is a conversational AI platform?
A. Conversational AI platforms enable you to develop chatbots and voice-based assistants to improve your customer service. These platforms make it possible for you to integrate virtual assistants into different websites, messaging platforms, mobile apps, and other channels.
Q3. Why is conversational AI important?
A. Conversational AI can help businesses improve their customer service as it enables them to resolve queries more quickly. Additionally, you can leverage it to provide product recommendations to get more leads and conversions. Through these platforms, you can also ask questions to your prospects and analyze their preferences.
Q4. What is an AI bot?
A. An artificial intelligence-based bot is a software program that can simulate a virtual conversation with online users. Programmed with Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning, they are designed to understand human queries.
Q5. What is the future of conversational chatbots?
A. The global conversation AI market is slated to grow to USD 13.9 billion by 2025, according to a report from ResearchAndMarkets.com. From 2020 to 2025, it is expected to grow at a CAGR of 21.9%.
Q6. What are the top players in the Conversational AI Platform Market?
A. Here are some of the best conversational AI platforms:
- SAP Conversational AI
- Passage AI