Chatbots are for websites what marketing is for brands – absolutely essential.

Research shows that chatbot adoption as a brand communication channel has risen by a whopping 92 percent since 2019. CNBC further reports that chatbots are projected to handle 75-90 percent of healthcare and banking queries by 2022. Additional data by Juniper Research estimates that chatbot transactions on eCommerce sites will reach $112 billion by 2023. Plus, 67 percent of consumers worldwide used a chatbot for customer support in 2020.

The takeaway is as clear as day: Chatbots are increasingly being utilized by brands to deliver a seamless customer experience and, in turn, boost their search engine optimization (SEO) efforts. On the customer’s side, chatbots are being embraced with open arms, and users are beginning to prefer this communication channel for quicker response rates, improved website browsing experience and great user satisfaction.

Now that you have a good understanding of why chatbots are instrumental to the growth of your brand’s communication, customer support and marketing strategy, let’s look at the top seven benefits of using chatbots for your website.

Why Use Chatbots for Your Website’s SEO and User Experience

1. Improved Customer Engagement and Search Functionality 

If you’re worried about the quality of customer engagement using chatbots, consider this: According to a study, 87.2 percent of consumers have neutral or positive experiences with chatbots.

In other words, customers like talking to chatbots. There are numerous reasons for this:

Chatbots offer 24-7/365 service, which is the number one benefit of using chatbots according to users. Additionally, bots act as a great tool for finding the relevant information, as shown below:

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They can also offer instant and effective query resolution.

According to research, 68 percent of consumers enjoy chatbots because they answer quickly, making them a must for websites of all shapes, forms and sizes. They empower customers to get answers to basic, FAQ-type questions with great ease:

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Finally, they allow customers to quickly search for answers with great accuracy and self-serve instead of waiting for the agent to assist them. This enhanced and accurate user experience can boost customer engagement rates through the roof.

And all these efforts and advantages can eventually lead to an improved customer experience and better SEO rankings

Pro tip: It is not enough to integrate a chatbot within your website and call it a day. You need to actively measure the performance of your user engagement by leveraging customer engagement analytics software. So make sure to do your homework and invest in a robust tool.

2. Increased Website Dwell Time

If you want to boost your SEO efforts, you need to ensure that customers are spending quality time on your website. In order to rank your website on search engine results pages (SERPs), Google looks at the time spent by users on your landing page to analyze whether customers are liking the website (or not). If users are abandoning the website at lightning speed, your SEO will suffer.

In other words, the amount of time customers spend on your website will determine your SEO. This is where chatbots can lend a helping hand. Disney’s chatbot, Zootopia, is an interesting case in point. The chatbot’s conversational user interface effectively engages users with fun and quality conversations:

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For example, chatbots can offer proactive support and ask the user if they need any assistance. This leads to better user engagement, which ultimately boosts the user’s website dwell time.

3. Personalized User Experience

One of the biggest advantages of using a chatbot for your website is the ability to personalize the browsing experience from start to finish. 

Consider H&M’s Facebook chatbot, for example. By asking the customers a series of relevant questions, the chatbot offers personalized product recommendations that are tailor-made to the customer’s preferences, choices and needs:

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That’s not all. The bot also provides style tips, uses emojis to drive customer interaction, allows customers to save, share and search for outfits and redirects users to the H&M website for purchase.

Since the customer experience on your website improves as a result of on-point personalization, your SERP rankings also rise.

4. Better Relationship With Customers

Chatbots aid in customer relationship building. That’s why they’re powerful additions to any website. Today, some advanced chatbots are programmed, keeping in mind the brand’s personality to boost user engagement. Take Casper’s conversational chatbot Insomnobot 300’s case:

Caspers chatbot
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The bot uses tongue-in-cheek humor to engage users and provide a superior customer experience.

Long story short, chatbots can act as a customer’s virtual guide and provide help round the clock. Moreover, these bots never tire or take sick leave or coffee breaks. This allows the brand to provide customer service at the customer’s beck-and-call and address the user’s needs and queries at the click of a single button, enhancing the user experience and driving customer loyalty for the brand.

5. Enhanced Website Functionality and Ease of Use

Chatbots double up as the perfect tool for improving your website’s functionality. How so? Chatbots can guide users down the sales funnel and provide immediate assistance across important points in the customer’s journey.

As a result, your user’s website navigation becomes seamless and linear and leads to a delightful user experience. All these factors collectively increase your website’s usability score – an important factor in boosting your website’s SEO. 

6. Optimized Website Ratings

The math is simple: The better your customer experience, the greater your chances of having positive reviews and ratings on search engines, apps and social media platforms. Hence, the higher your SEO ranking will be. So you see, customer experience and SEO are interlinked and mutually inclusive, both of which can be improved by leveraging a robust chatbot powered by artificial intelligence (AI).

For instance, chatbots can effortlessly mimic the in-store, personalized experience that store agents are known for. Plus, a chatbot can provide easy-to-use navigation for the customer. It lets the customer view your brand as a reliable, customer-centric company and encourages greater brand loyalty:

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Ultimately, the word-of-mouth publicity for your brand becomes more positive, and your brand ends up leveraging goodwill by way of impactful user ratings and reviews.

7. Ongoing, Real-Time User Data Collection

Finally, it is important to note that at the heart of effective customer experience lies real-time data – data that provides invaluable and actionable insights into the customer’s likes, dislikes, preferences, pain points, etc. 

Here too, chatbots play a central role. These bots can collect, store, analyze and extract critical customer-centric information throughout the buyer journey. They comb through chat conversations and provide details on where customers might be facing issues within the website. Plus, they can be used to administer real-time surveys that truly capture the pulse of the customer.

In simpler words, chatbots can provide real-time analytics into what makes the customer tick and what’s driving them away, leading to informed and strategic business decision-making. Furthermore, they lead customers to think that the brand truly cares for them and makes them feel appreciated and heard by the brand.

Closing Thoughts

Clearly, chatbots are no longer being used as mere customer service tools by organizations, big or small. Instead, these bots are increasingly multi-tasking to boost sales, answer customer questions, personalize the user experience, enhance customer satisfaction and improve the website’s SEO in the process. According to estimates, the average satisfaction rate of bot-only chats is 87.58 percent.

That said, it is important to ensure that your chatbot is offering real value to the user’s browsing experience, as opposed to being an annoyance, every time a user logs onto your website. So revisit your chatbot’s marketing strategy and think about how you can leverage this all-purpose tool to give your website the SEO lift it needs.

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By Margaret Blank

At the moment I am an expert-analyst in the field of search engine optimization, leading several projects and consulting on website optimization and promotion, I am actively involved in various thematic seminars and conferences.

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