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Bots are fundamentally changing the way business and commerce work. Powered by Artificial Intelligence chatbots are now a critical part of digital strategy, automating customer interactions, with instant customer gratification. As voice technology becomes more popular and widely used, there are two chatbot options: text-based chatbots and voice-enabled chatbots. Which is the future?  

What is a Chatbot?  

A chatbot is a software application used to conduct an on-line chat conversation via text or text-to-speech, in lieu of providing direct contact with a live human agent. What makes a chatbot powerful, is its ability to answer queries. Natural Language Processing (NLP) extracts intent from utterances. NLP is what makes chatbots intelligent. It’s the artificial intelligence (AI) which powers their ability to learn and provide the most relevant information to each unique query.  

How Text-Based Chatbots Work 

As the name suggests, a text-based chatbot is the one that interacts and communicates through text or messaging. Text-based chatbots are amazingly effective and efficient because they quickly sense the need of the users and provide them with immediate outcomes. In addition, chatbots assist in gathering feedback and keeping the customers engaged by solving queries quickly.

Text-based chatbots are extremely efficient when programed to accurately sense the need of the user and can provide immediate outcomes. In addition, chatbots also gather valuable feedback and ensure customers are engaged quickly. Text-based chatbots are primarily used to handle customer interactions and are often merged with messaging apps, social media, SMS and other channels.  

But here’s the thing, chatbots are text-based which means they require typing, pressing, handling by the customer. 

How Voice-Enabled Chatbots Are Changing the Game 

A voice-enabled chatbot uses pre-recorded answers and text-to-speech to address customer queries. There are two ways to program these:  

  1. Users command the chatbots in either oral or written form, and then reply with their voice.
  1. Users make commands with their voice only, no text. For example, the popular voice-enabled chatbots such as Siri and Alexa.  

These “voicebots” are quite fluid, leveraging Conversational UI, or user interfaces based on human speech, written, or spoken. Instead of buttons, links or graphics, the customer uses spoken words to guide the conversation. What’s really neat is that as these bots continue to evolve, they can mix conversational UI with graphical UI; combining the intuitive nature of speech with the immediate gratification of graphics.   

Voice-Enabled Chatbots vs. Text-Based Chatbots 

The key to the decision between Voice-enabled chatbots vs. Text-based chatbots is to understand the preferences of your customers. According to a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers survey, approximately 71 percent of consumers prefer to use voice searches to conduct a query over the traditional method of typing. Recent reports estimate that 112 million people in the US will use a voice assistant at least monthly, up 10% from the previous year.  

Driving Customer Engagement with Voice 

Voice use is particularly relevant to people who are multitasking and need answers quickly, without having to put down what they’re doing and type or press a button. Voice-enabled chatbots are that next step forward for continuous, relevant customer engagement. They can be available 24/7 online and ready to serve anyone, anywhere, hands-free.  

Give Your Chatbot a Voice 

LumenVox Automated Speech Recognizer and NLU Gateway can give your chatbot a voice, boosting your CX strategy and increasing operational efficiency. To learn more, contact us here.  

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