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Chatbot-Based Online Spending Projected to Soar

13 March 2020 - 08:57 by Graham Miller

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The amount of cash that consumers spend via safe shopping online with the help of chatbot solutions embedded in e-commerce sites will jump from the equivalent of just £2.2 billion recorded last year to over £110 billion in 2024, according to a report from Juniper Research.

Chatbots currently serve as a means of allowing consumers to ask questions and get support on retail sites without the need to rely on human operatives being available. As these AI-driven solutions evolve, they will become even better at coaxing prospective customers into making purchases rather than simply serving a support role.

Of course, a lot of the effectiveness of chatbots as a sales tool comes down to the accuracy with which they can process requests made by users and come up with sufficiently relevant and tailored responses. This is even more challenging in an age when more people are using voice-based solutions to search the web, as queries in this context are longer and more complex.

Within the next half decade, researchers anticipate that chatbots will improve to the point that at least half of all the interactions they conduct with consumers will be successful, meaning that they either lead to a sale or some other form of conversion further down the line.

Another trend which is expected to emerge in the coming years is for chatbots to not just be built into retail sites but also integrated with e-commerce apps so that mobile users can enjoy the same level of functionality as those shopping on other devices.

There has been a degree of scepticism amongst some consumers surrounding the effectiveness of chatbots, with recent studies suggesting that most shoppers would still rather interact with a human team member. If these predictions are to be believed, such concerns will melt away as chatbot technology improves.