Let’s be blunt, chatbots can not replace your operators. Not in 2022, not in the next 10 years. But, they can free up two-thirds of the time your agents spend on routine requests. A well-designed chatbot exists to provide quick responses, help outside working hours and handle a large chunk of common questions.

Moreover, your customers are used to chatbots. 80% of them have interacted with a chatbot before and 62% would prefer to use one to solve their problem. So having an operational chatbot seems like a no-brainer. All that’s left is to pick a bot builder.

How this list is organized

A quick intro. I’m Dmytro. In my work at Chatfuel I make and break chatbots daily to keep our knowledge base up-to-date. I’ve made countless chatbots from simple ones that ask for customer email to complex ones that use third-party integrations and dynamic content. In this article, I’ll help you decide which bot building platform to pick.

I’ve tested several leading bot building platforms. My idea was simple: build a bot to answer common customer questions and export all customer responses to a Google Sheet. Then I checked if I could set up my bot to respond to custom input (keywords) and tried out advanced features like re-engagement, analytics, and third-party integrations. In this guide, I’ll present each platform as follows:

  • ease of use: rookie, average Joe, pro.
  • supported platforms: website, social media, messengers, emails.
  • features: main bot building features, third party API availability, stand-out features, integrations.
  • pricing: free, paid options.

Chatbot

Chatbot.com landing page
source: chatbot.com

Ease of use

Average Joe – you understand how chatbots and conversational logic behind them work. You can create a simple chatbot using a pre-made template. You have solved somewhat technical tasks before like: editing a video or setting up ads in Facebook Ads Manager. You’re not afraid of dealing with somewhat technical tasks, but nothing too complex.

Supported platforms

  • Website: Independent plugin;
  • Facebook Messenger: Direct;
  • Slack.

Features

Feature Availability Details
Collecting user data Basic info (emails, phone numbers) + custom input.
Exporting user data 🟡 Only manual data export.
Keywords Respond to specific words or phrases within user messages.
Team roles 🟡 Only available for paid plans at $150 and higher.
Re-engagement Unable to send re-engagement messages.
Live Chat Track all conversations with your users.
Analytics 🟡 Basic analytics, unless on a paid plan at $150 and higher.
Third-party API integration Supports webhooks to trigger events tied to specific user actions during conversation.
Entities Create groups of words similar in meaning to find out what your user want.

Integrations

Zapier, Freshdesk, HelpDesk, ZenDesk, Shopify.

Pricing

Free: 14-day trial.
Paid: from $50/mo per 1000 chats.

Conclusion

Chatbot is good for creating simple bots with main focus on integration into an existing CRM system. There are plenty of integrations with even more coming in the near future. You can also get pretty creative with keywords and entities to customize responses and use training tab to fine-tune them after you launch your bot.

One of the key features I wanted for my bot is automatic export, but I couldn’t use it since Google Sheets export is not supported. And my biggest issue was the builder interface itself. While simple and pretty on the outside, I’m still puzzled by how the conversation logic works.

Tidio

Tidio landing page
source: tidio.com

Ease of use

Average Joe – you understand how chatbots and conversational logic behind them work. You can create a simple chatbot using a pre-made template. You have solved somewhat technical tasks before like: editing a video or setting up ads in Facebook Ads Manager. You’re not afraid of dealing with somewhat technical tasks, but nothing too complex..

Supported platforms

  • Website: Independent plugin;
  • Facebook Messenger: Direct;
  • Instagram: Direct;
  • Email.

Features

Feature Availability Details
Collecting user data 🟡 Only able to collect emails and phone numbers). No custom input.
Exporting user data 🟡 Only manual data export.
Keywords Respond to specific words or phrases within user messages.
Team roles Yes, but limits depend on the plan.
Re-engagement Unable to send re-engagement messages.
Live Chat Track all conversations with your users.
Analytics Sufficient analytics on conversations, leads and operators.
Third-party API integration 🟡 Supports triggering events via Zapier.
Rich customization Wide range options for customizing your chat widget.
Mobile app Track conversations with customers from your phone.
Operating hours Online/offline status. Set a schedule when you are available to receive new messages.

Integrations

Shopify, Zapier, Mailchimp, Google Analytics, ZenDesk, PipeDrive.

Pricing

Free: first 100 chats.
Paid: from $50/mo for unlimited conversations (3 operators limit).

Conclusion

I think Tidio is best at integrating several communication channels like Messenger, Instagram or email. If you have multiple channels per client, merging them together into a single chat in Tidio is quite a time-saver. I also liked their 40+ templates that seem to cover most business needs.

As for my bot, I couldn’t set it up. Neither custom input nor automatic export to Google Sheets is supported as of this writing. So, keep this in mind, if you’re looking for this functionality.

Manychat

Manychat landing page
source: manychat.com

Ease of use

Average Joe – you understand how chatbots and conversational logic behind them work. You can create a simple chatbot using a pre-made template. You have solved somewhat technical tasks before like: editing a video or setting up ads in Facebook Ads Manager. You’re not afraid of dealing with somewhat technical tasks, but nothing too complex.

Supported platforms

  • Facebook Messenger: Direct, Comments;
  • Instagram: Direct, Comments;
  • WhatsApp;
  • Telegram;
  • Email;
  • SMS.

Features

Feature Availability Details
Collecting user data Basic info (emails, phone numbers) + custom input.
Exporting user data Manual via built-in CRM or automated with Google Sheets integration (only on a paid plan).
Keywords Respond to specific words or phrases within user messages.
Team roles 🟡 Only on Pro plan.
Re-engagement Create campaigns and send one-time or recurring messages to users.
Live Chat Track all conversations with your users.
Analytics Basic analytics.
Third-party API integration Supported triggered events tied to specific user actions during conversation.
Facebook FAQs Custom buttons users will see before they send a message. When on Facebook Page the chat window will pop up to suggest possible questions.
Advanced keywords A number of flexible filters for keywords lets you fine tune little details.

Integrations

Zapier, Google Sheets (only on Pro plan).

Pricing

Free: a limited plan up to 1,000 chats.
Paid: from $15/mo per 500 chats.

Conclusion

Manychat has all the features necessary to build a simple or an elaborate bot. It’s a good choice, if you have various multiple channels, like SMS, Email and Facebook. I also found the platform quite intuitive and easy to navigate. Sadly, I couldn’t test some features since quite a number of them are Pro-only. I don’t think it’s a deal breaker, but it might be a problem, if you’re looking to see and test all the features before you pay.

Landbot

Landbot landing page
source: landbot.io

Ease of use

Average Joe – you understand how chatbots and conversational logic behind them work. You can create a simple chatbot using a pre-made template. You have solved somewhat technical tasks before like: editing a video or setting up ads in Facebook Ads Manager. You’re not afraid of dealing with somewhat technical tasks, but nothing too complex.

Supported platforms

  • Website: Independent plugin;
  • Facebook Messenger: Direct;
  • WhatsApp (requires a $143 plan and higher);
  • Slack.

Features

Feature Availability Details
Collecting user data Basic info (emails, phone numbers) + custom input.
Exporting user data Manually export available on all plans. But auto export with Google Sheets integration requires a $77 plan and higher.
Keywords Respond to specific words or phrases within user messages.
Team roles Yes, but limits depend on the plan.
Re-engagement Unable to send re-engagement messages.
Live Chat Track all conversations with your users.
Analytics Good analytics section with data on channels and operators.
Third-party API integration Supports webhooks to trigger events tied to specific user actions during conversation.
Expert directory Hire expert agencies to help you build a custom bot.

Integrations

Free integrations: Mailchimp, Zapier.
Paid ($77/mo+) integrations: Calendly, DialogFlow, Stripe, Airtable.
Custom plans integrations: Salesforce, Zendesk.

Pricing

Free: 14-day trial (up to 100 chats).
Paid: from $31/mo per 500 chats.
Note: WhatsApp access requires a separate plan that starts at $143/mo per 1000 chats.

Conclusion

Landbot is great if you want a chat widget for a website. The bot builder is intuitive and easy to get the hang of and you can customize pretty much anything about how your plugin looks and feels. It was easy to build my bot, but once again I couldn’t test auto export. Google Sheets integration is available, but only starting at $77 plan and higher.

Snatchbot

Snatchbot landing page
source: snatchbot.me

Ease of use

Pro – you have hands-on experience with chatbots. You know bots inside out and have built complex bots before. You might be a professional bot builder, an agency or a chatbot expert.

Supported platforms

  • Website: Independent plugin;
  • Facebook Messenger: Direct, Comments (paid plan only);
  • WhatsApp (starts at $75/mo);
  • Telegram;
  • Viber;
  • Slack;
  • Skype;
  • Email.

Features

Feature Availability Details
Collecting user data Basic info (emails, phone numbers) + custom input.
Exporting user data Manual via built-in CRM or automated with Google Sheets integration.
Keywords Respond to specific words or phrases within user messages.
Team roles Requires a paid plan for more than 1 operator.
Re-engagement Create campaigns and send one-time or recurring messages to users.
Live Chat Track all conversations with your users.
Analytics Basic analytics + Advanced analytics (only on a paid plan).
Third-party API integration Supported triggered events tied to specific user actions during conversation.

Integrations

ZenDesk, Salesforce, Zoho, Google Sheets.

Pricing

Free: Basic plan with limited features, but unlimited chats.
Paid: from $30/mo per 10,000 chats.

Conclusion

Snatchbot is the most advanced bot builder on this list. It allows you to build laser precise bots and connect multiple channels to them. It even has a free plan with limited features. But all of its strength comes with a price. Snatchbot is highly technical, I’d say borderline code. So it best fits advanced users who need multiple channels and complete control over every detail.

Botme

Botme landing page
source: botme.com

Ease of use

Rookie – you have used a computer mostly for browsing and socials. You might have edited a photo using presets inside a web editor or made a presentation in PowerPoint or Slides. You can solve a more technical task using a detailed step-by-step YouTube guide, but it’s hard to reproduce the same steps on your own.

Supported platforms

  • Website: Independent plugin.
  • Facebook Messenger: Direct.
  • Instagram: Direct;
  • WhatsApp;
  • Telegram;
  • Email;
  • SMS.

Features

Feature Availability Details
Collecting user data Basic info (emails, phone numbers) + custom input.
Exporting user data 🟡 Manual via built-in CRM. Automated export with Google Sheets included, but I couldn’t test it, since botme app is blocked by Google.
Keywords Respond to specific words or phrases within user messages.
Team roles 🟡 Available to all users. But I wasn’t able to send any invitations.
Re-engagement 🟡 Caution: Re-engagement feature included, but after several tests, I couldn’t make it work. Also, nowhere can you set up Message Tags, which are required for Facebook re-engagement. This might lead to a page ban.
Live Chat Track all conversations with your users.
Analytics Basic analytics + Advanced analytics (only on paid plan)
Third-party API integration 🟡 Available, but limited to basic functionality.

Integrations

Stripe, Shopify.

Pricing

Free: Limited free plan.
Paid: from $25/mo per 2,000 chats.

Conclusion

Botme is a good introduction to chatbots. Its has a simple minimal design and all of the basic functionality you’ll need. It is even possible to create a basic showcase for your products to then present them to customers.

However, it seems like some of the things included in the product are not functional. I couldn’t connect my Google Sheets account, since Google blocked the app saying Botme “tried to access sensitive info”. I’d also be cautious about Facebook re-engagement feature. There seems to be no way to add Message Tags, which are required when sending re-engage messages. This might potentially lead to Facebook Page ban.

Chatfuel

Chatfuel.com landing page
source: chatfuel.com

Ease of use

Average Joe – you understand how chatbots and conversational logic behind them work. You can create a simple chatbot using a pre-made template. You have solved somewhat technical tasks before like: editing a video or setting up ads in Facebook Ads Manager. You’re not afraid of dealing with somewhat technical tasks, but nothing too complex.

Supported platforms

  • Facebook: Page messages, Comments;
  • Instagram: Direct, Comments;
  • Website: Embedded Messenger plugin.

Features

Feature Availability Details
Collecting user data Basic info (emails, phone numbers) + custom input.
Exporting user data Manual via built-in CRM or automated with Google Sheets integration.
Keywords Respond to specific words or phrases within user messages.
Team roles No additional cost.
Re-engagement Create campaigns and send one-time or recurring messages to users.
Live Chat Track all conversations with your users.
Analytics Decent analytics with CSV export option.
Third-party API integration Supported triggered events tied to specific user actions during conversation.
Facebook FAQs Custom buttons users will see before they send a message. When on Facebook Page the chat window will pop up to suggest possible questions.
Strong support team Wide range support, be that some general help with the product or a specific bot building question.
Bot building services An in-house bot building team for premium clients. Simply put, they’ll build a custom bot based on your needs.

Integrations

Zapier, Calendly.

Pricing

Free: first 50 chats.
Paid:
from $14.99/mo per 500 chats.

Conclusion

Chatfuel works best for automating Facebook Messenger and Instagram support. Creating a simple bot with keywords, buttons and galleries is pretty straightforward and easy to do. But building more elaborate bots will require some time and effort to learn the rules and specifics of working with Facebook and Instagram.

Where Chatfuel shines the most is its team. Every support team member knows the platform in and out and helps each customer solve their specific problem. On top of that, Chatfuel has its own bot building team for premium clients. Simply put, they’ll build a unique bot for your particular business, if you don’t want to get into the minutiae of the building process.

Final comparison

Features Chatfuel Chatbot Tidio Landbot Snatchbot Botme Manychat
Collecting user data 🟡
Exporting user data 🟡 🟡 🟡
Keywords
Team roles 🟡 🟡 🟡
Re-engagement 🟡
Live Chat
Analytics 🟡
Third-party API integration 🟡 🟡
Pricing starts at $14.99/mo $50/mo $50/mo $31/mo $30/mo $25/mo $15/mo