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Published May 16, 2024 in

6 ways of how to use chatbot for small business

Learn about the benefits of having a chatbot for your small business, what it can do, and tips for choosing the right one.

Running a small business is challenging. It often means doing multiple jobs at once, limited resources, and difficulties balancing growth and quality. But there’s a different way—getting a chatbot, a powerful tool that will help you free up resources by automating communication with customers without compromising their experience.

Chatbot can become your best worker, handling multiple tasks and providing customer service 24/7 while saving you costs on hiring extra staff. Read on to learn how your small business will benefit from a chatbot, what jobs it can do, and how to pick the best chatbot for a small business and use it to its full potential.

5 reasons for small businesses to use chatbots

  1. 24/7 availability

Chatbots provide round-the-clock, accurate customer service. No more lost opportunities due to different time zones or limited work hours.

  1. Automated lead generation and qualification

Your chatbot can gather prospects’ information and filter high-quality ones. With repetitive tasks automated, you and your sales team can focus on promising leads.

  1. Improved customer satisfaction

Your customers expect prompt communication, and that’s where business chatbots shine. Whether it’s a question, a request for an order status update, or an ask for help, a chatbot can address it instantly. Timely communication lowers frustration and contributes to a better customer experience.

  1. Cost savings

A sufficient customer support team can be a budget buster for small businesses. The most cost-savvy way to provide excellent customer service is to use a chatbot. Let the bot handle straightforward and repetitive inquiries and redirect customers to human agents for a more personalized touch when necessary.

  1. Data insights

Your chatbot can collect customer data for you to better understand your audience and their needs. Also, actual chats with your bot are a goldmine of insights. Use them to create more relevant marketing campaigns and make smarter, data-driven decisions.

Types of chatbots for small business

Depending on your business needs, you may opt for a rule-based and an AI-powered chatbot.

Rule-based chatbots

A rule-based chatbot is a computer program that operates according to a specific set of instructions. It responds based on keywords or triggers. Simply put, such a bot matches customer inquiries with predefined answers from its database.

If you need to handle routine tasks and answer simple questions, rule-based chatbots are your go-to.

AI-powered chatbots

These are more effective bots that use artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and natural language processing (NLP). These technologies allow bots to interact with users in a more conversational and flexible way. Unlike rule-based chatbots that follow clear instructions, AI-powered chatbots understand context, learn from interactions, and adapt their responses over time. They can handle more complex queries and even recommend products based on customer preferences and behavior.

If you're looking to provide a more personalized and engaging customer experience, opt for an AI-powered chatbot.

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Practical use cases for small business chatbots

Whether a customer is curious about your product's features, pricing, or how your shipping policies work, chatbots are there to provide the answers in no time. Thus, your human agents don't delve into minor issues and can focus on more complex tasks.

Though customer support and answering FAQs are primary use cases, your bot can do more.

  1. Book appointments

If you run a service-based business, your chatbot can handle appointments. It will find and show available slots to your customers, book appointments, and send confirmations, all automatically.

  1. Communicate on your social media and messengers

Social media are an important marketing and communication channel for small businesses. However, they may take too much of your time. Luckily, your bot can handle your social media for you. Use it to automate communication in Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, or Instagram Direct. A bot can also automatically reply to comments, react to tags in stories and posts, and direct incoming inquiries to human agents if needed.

Setting up your chatbot is quite simple. For instance, here's a video explaining how to configure your bot to manage all incoming inquiries on WhatsApp.

Check our YouTube for more helpful videos on building chatbots for social media and websites.

  1. Qualify leads

Accurate lead qualification is equally important and time-consuming. With a chatbot qualifying your leads you focus on the most promising potential customers carefully selected based on the pre-set criteria.

  1. Provide personalized product recommendations

E-commerce businesses can leverage a bot's capability to offer personalized recommendations to customers based on their preferences and behavior.

  1. Recover abandoned carts

Another handy skill of e-commerce chatbots. To lower your cart abandonment rate, make your bot send automated reminders to encourage customers to complete their purchases. Some bots also integrate with third-party payment providers like Stripe allowing customers to pay directly in the chat.

  1. Collect feedback

A chatbot can also contribute to your understanding of what your customers think and want. They can engage customers in conversational surveys, polls, or feedback forms, helping you identify areas for improvement and make informed decisions, thereby improving the overall customer experience.

How to choose the right chatbot for your small business

Choosing the right chatbot for your small business can seem overwhelming. Here's a brief overview of what to consider.


Think about what you need your chatbot to do. Schedule appointments, capture leads, answer FAQs, collect customer feedback? Maybe, all together? Whatever it is that you need, make sure your chatbot can deliver. Prioritize features that will boost customer engagement and make running your business easier.

Ease of use

If you don't have resources for coding, choose a code-free chatbot platform. These platforms are typically user-friendly and understandable, even for those with limited technical skills. The best option would be a platform that makes creating, launching, and managing your chatbot simple and intuitive—like Chatfuel.

Chatfuel is a no-code platform that offers cost-effective solutions for every business. Whether you want to build a simple bot or need smart AI agents capable of performing entire roles rather than just individual tasks, Chatfuel has got you covered. Sign up for a free trial to explore Chatfuel's potential for your business.

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Make sure your chatbot integrates with the other software you already use. It can be customer relationship management (CRM) systems, email marketing platforms, e-commerce platforms, and others. Seamless integration means a more efficient workflow and omni-channel automation.


Picking the bot provider that fits your budget and business goals, watch out for hidden fees like usage limits and additional charges for advanced features.

Keeping these four factors in mind, you can find the perfect AI chatbot for small business.

Best practices for implementing chatbots in your small business

Set clear expectations

Let your users know they're chatting with a bot from the get-go. This not only prevents awkward moments but also helps manage expectations about what your chatbot can and can't do.

Give your chatbot some personality

Your chatbot is an extension of your brand, so make sure it sounds like it. Whether your brand voice is friendly, professional, or casual, your chatbot's language and responses should mirror that. This helps to keep the user experience consistent and on-brand.

Offer human handover

Chatbots are super handy, but there will be times when a human touch is needed. Make sure your customers can switch from bot to human agent if their query needs that extra bit of attention.

Monitor and optimize

Monitor the bot's performance and keep track of metrics like response times, user satisfaction, and conversion rates. Use this data to fine-tune your chatbot's responses and improve its accuracy over time. Just like us, chatbots can learn and improve. Continuous optimization keeps your chatbot effective and aligned with business goals.

Final word

A chatbot can be a valuable asset to your business. Whether you look to streamline customer experience, improve sales, or automate workflows, a chatbot is a cost-effective and scalable solution to address your unique challenges. Sign up for a free trial to unlock new growth opportunities for your business.