Voice bot: The Definitive Guide (2022)

Introduction

This article is the guide for voice bot in 2022.

If you want to learn about voice bots to increase your profits with voice, you’re in the right place!

In this article you will learn:

  • The fundamentals about voice bots
  • How to differentiate all kinds of bots
  • Why brands are so interested in voice bots
  • How voice bots will change the retail industry

Let’s jump in!

Voice bot fundamentals

In this chapter, we will cover the basics of voice bots.

(Including what they are, what they are used for, and how they work)

But most importantly how they can increase your revenues.

Voice bots are a big part of voice technology and it’s not a surprise that the most popular blog about voice technology is called voicebotai.

voice bot

Let’s start!

What is a voice bot?

The words “voice bot” correspond to:

  • Voice 
  • Bot (for robot)

A voice bot is an AI-powered robot that can maintain a voice conversation with a user. 

A voice bot can perform several tasks such as: 

  • Multi-criteria voice search;
  • Voice navigation (from one page to another);
  • Offer suggestions of complementary products or services;
  • Provide voice satisfaction surveys.
voice bot

As of today, the most popular voice bots are Siri from Apple, Alexa from Amazon, Google Assistant, UNI from Vocads (more)

What is a voice bot used for?

Currently, voice bots are mainly used for customer support over the phone:

  • They enable companies to save resources as some tasks don’t need humans to be performed.
  • The robots can determine when to pass the job to a human.

Or through voice assistance devices to perform daily tasks such as:

  • Provide the weather;
  • Activate the music or the radiators in a room;
  • Or provide any information from google.
voice bot

I think that sticking voice bots to customer support and basic daily tasks only is a big missed opportunity.

We don’t exploit them to their full potential. It’s a bit like keeping Lebron James on the bench in an Olympic game final: the potential is here but not exploited!

How does a voice bot work?

A voice bot relies on artificial intelligence with sophisticated speech-to-text and deep learning technologies. 

So let’s make it simpler and check out how it works step by step:

  1. The user speaks to the electronic device where the voice bot is hosted
  2. The AI converts the voice message into text thanks to a speech to text technologies. According to Statista, Rev.ai has the most accurate speech to text accuracy with 86% accuracy which is better than Google, Microsoft or Amazon. (2020)
  3. The voice bot analyzes the produced text to determine the user’s request
  4. Then the voice bot finds the most suitable answer according to the user’s request
  5. Then he converts the most suitable answer’s text back to speech and answers vocally to the user ((text to speech technology) ex Acapela or Readspeaker). 

I didn’t go into too much detail but here you already have a clear idea!

For more details on the AI behind voice bots, check out our post on conversational AI!

Let’s take an example to make it even clearer:

(step 1) User: “I am looking for a bracelet for my mum”;

(step 2)  “I am looking for a bracelet for my mum” is converted to text;

(step 3) The text: “I am looking for a bracelet for my mum” is analyzed;

(step 4) The voice bot understands the intent to buy something and finds the ideal product;

(step 5) The voice bot puts forward the bracelet with additional information.

How can implementing a voice bot increase your revenues?

Ok, now that you know what a voice bot is, what it is used for and how does it work?

Any idea on how it can increase your revenues?

It saves time and resources! Voice Bots are not here to replace humans but to be complementary with them. Their collaboration will provide better value to the customers as well as better efficiency.

Humans will only perform the task where you need a human, thus saving time, money and repetitive work.

On a different note, a voice bot generates previous data for your company. It enables you to understand your customers better so you can provide them with the right solution that suits them.

You can push the products you want by implementing the right voice marketing strategies. We have a full guide on this that could be very helpful. 

If you’re in the retail industry you will also want to have a look at this voice commerce guide.

These articles will explain to you in detail how you can increase your revenues with voice.

Voice bots and their alternatives

Now that we have covered the basics let’s take a look at the alternatives to voice bots.

We will compare them to identify the advantages and disadvantages of the voice bot compared to its competitors.

Voice bot vs chatbot

voice bot

A chatbot is a program that processes written human conversation via a digital device.

Voice bots and chatbots have the same goals which are to guide the user and provide information to them.

They are both based on AI but the chatbot works only with text, not voice.

Linking back to our explanations above, this means that the chatbot will skip the speech to text step (step 2) and text to speech step (step 5) that we discussed earlier.

This doesn’t make the process faster! 

You might wonder why? 

Let’s look at the advantages of a voice bot:

  • Voice is faster: when we speak, we give 5 times more information, 5 times faster than when we write text!
  • Voice is more convenient as you can do other things at the same time.
  • Voice is often more accurate as you tend to give more detailed requests when speaking compared to writing.

Disadvantages:

  • There can’t be any mistake in speech recognition with chatbots as this step is skipped.

Voice bot vs call bot

voice bot

Call bots are a subcategory of voice bots.

A call bot is a bot on the phone. When we use the word “call bot”, we usually refer to customer service on the phone handled by a robot.

When I say on the phone I mean when you call a number, not the phone device itself!

You can see the voice bot as the big brother of the call bot; he can perform the same task and additional ones.

Concretely, a call bot is designed by a specific company for its customer service and will be able to handle tasks that are specific to the company.

A voice bot can be either general (Google Home, Amazon Alexa) or adapted to a specific company on a website or an app.

Voice bots tend to be more flexible as they often haven’t got a straightforward design path compared to call bots where there usually is a straight line with a precise set of questions.

The voice bot is able to perform voice search for instance, which is rare when it comes to calling bots.

Voice bot vs virtual agent

voice bot

A virtual agent is an avatar of someone who gives “an identity” to the backend which is the technology of a voice bot.

Most of the time this avatar has a human-like representation.

The virtual agent can adopt a non-verbal behaviour like imitating the human in gestures, mimics and facial expressions, which the voice bot doesn’t do on its own.

The disadvantage is that the virtual agent can sometimes be confusing knowing you are talking to a robot that looks like a human.

Some people might not be comfortable with this.

Example of a voice bot

UNI is the voice bot from Vocads!

It stands for “Understand Natural Interaction”.

Through natural voice conversations, UNI enables multi-criteria voice search, guides users through voice navigation (from one page to another or towards external websites),

and offers suggestions of complementary products or services.

UNI can also run voice satisfaction surveys. 

Combine all of UNI’s capacities together to create the ultimate user experience!

She is our mascot here at Vocads. We all pay particular attention to her and make sure she is completely satisfied at every moment. 

She is the one that talks with the user.

Don’t worry, she is very nice and I’m sure you will get along with her. Don’t be rude to her or she will give you a hard time. But no worries she forgives quickly (you just need to reload the page 😉 ).

Here is an example of performance from UNI :

Do you want to talk to her? Ask for a demo on your own website!

Why are brands so interested in voice bots?

Now that we’ve figured out what each technology is named, let’s take a closer look at voice bots and why brands are so interested in them.

Voice bots can bring several benefits so let’s go through them one by one!

Meet customer needs

Most customers feel like waiting time on chats and phones is too long and most people prefer to find answers to their questions by themselves rather than calling someone.

Everyone just wants to save time!

voice bot

Thanks to its direct access to the website’s database and amazing processing speed, a voice bot will give you an answer quicker and more accurately than humans (apart from if you have an incredible memory with the entire database in your head). 

Users can give up to 5 times more information 5 times faster when speaking compared to writing and having a quick and accurate answer without needing to call someone and wait for the answer increases customer satisfaction.

Know when to pass to a human

Voice bots are not here to replace humans, they’re here to help us!

I think that cutting all kinds of customer assistance to go 100% AI will make you miss out on the best benefits that AI can bring.

AIs can deal with a large number of requests faster than a human and can be more accurate for some requests. 

However, Some requests go beyond the AI capabilities. This is where humans step in to only deal with the most interesting queries.

So by having AI and humans you can get the best out of both. Humans don’t suffer the burden of repeating boring repetitive tasks that the voice bot will manage easily. This enables human agents to focus on more interesting tasks that require their expertise. 

On top of this, they will need to speak less time with the customers, thus saving time as the voice bot will have done all the preparatory tedious work and transferred the answer to the human.

Everyone saves time and effort!

Time-efficient and cost-saving

Today companies have less time, and fewer resources and more are facing more and more requests from clients

They are always in a rush, trying to maximize their resources. 

voice bot

Customers are also trying to be as time-efficient as possible and the amount of requests they make is skyrocketing.

A few years ago, all these requests were manageable by humans.

Today assigning these tasks exclusively to employees will cost a lot of money and will make companies lose a lot of time, and would make the job of quite a few people really boring.

According to Juniper Research, chatbots will save over $8 billion per annum by 2022.

And that is only with chatbots: think about how much it would be with voice bots which are way more convenient and user-friendly!

A voice bot saves you time, money and effort.

The only effort you have to make is to implement the voice bot.

This may look daunting, you may be scared because you have no clue how to code and think that this step will take an eternity …

And you couldn’t be further from the truth! 

With Vocads, you don’t need any coding skills; use a drag-and-drop interface, outline conversations and have your own voice bot running on your website in minutes!

Exciting isn’t it?

Click here to ask for a demo!

Young people dictate what the future will be

We always say that what youth are using the most is an indicator of what will become massive in the future.

Well, voice bots have been adopted by the younger generation as well as young adults more than anyone else!

This is a very good sign for the future of voice bots.

Accessible at all times and personalization

No one can work 24/7 but a voice bot can.

This enables your customer service to not be bombarded by requests at 9 am when your phone line opens and to have your employees having to deal with 2,000 unread emails on a rainy Monday morning.

Thanks to this 24/7 support, customers will get an answer to most of their questions at any time!

And don’t forget that voice bots can provide a personalized experience to customers. We’re not in the 90s anymore: technology has grown up and is now very mature.

More people want a customized experience when they buy something. 

For a voice bot to stand out from the crowd it has to give a personal experience to the user.

This can include:

  • Using their names 
  • Making recommendations about what they like
  • Implementing a loyalty program
  • Sounding as human as possible

This is a shortlist and the way you will personalize your voice bot depends on what your company is doing but there are plenty of things you can do to personalize your customers’ experience.

Wondering about the cogs behind personalization? Learn more here with our post on voice biometrics.

How will voice bot change the retail industry?

To make things more concrete let’s look at how Voice commerce will reshape the commerce industry.

For this chapter, we will take the example of the retail industry.

On the spot, find a product while doing something else

The dishes.

You feel the warm water flooding on your wet hands, plate after plate you’re getting this done.

Soon, all your cutlery will be shining and the feeling of that makes you smile.

Close to the end of cleaning, you realize that your sponge is not in shape at all anymore, you throw it into the trash willing to get a new one.

You think: “That’s fine, I’ll buy new ones at the store later”.

voice bot

You walk 10 minutes to the bus stop, then spend 25 minutes on the bus and 3 more minutes walking to the store.

You spend 45 minutes shopping and another 40 minutes on the way back.

The whole operation took you 2 hours but you are now happy that you’ve done it and relieved to reach home.

You cook your favourite meal with all the fresh ingredients you just brought and share this delicious preparation with your loved ones.

You then go to clean your dishes! (it’s a great habit to clean that just after eating, congrats)

You get everything off the table, the warm water flows onto your hands once again, you get ready to wash and … no sponge.

Feeling a bit stupid, you check all the bags you brought from that grocery store, look at the shelves and drawers in the kitchen and, nothing.

You spend 2 hours of your day getting those groceries and forget the sponge.

Do you want to know what’s worse? Next time you go to the supermarket, you may also forget those bloody sponges, and your frustration will be even bigger when noticing that!

So, what are you going to do? You’re 2 hours away from the store, that’s not ideal …

Well, had you had a retail voice assistant, you would only be 1 sentence away from sending your order. No need to worry about forgetting the sponges again, you can now order them the second you think about them. 

A voice bot is a way to avoid this. 

You can add something to a list or buy something on the spot while doing something else!

This way you never forget to buy anything!

This increases sales for retailers, as well as troubles and time spent on the bus for buyers.

Everyone is winning! 

Push the product that your customer wants the most!

We can all agree on the fact that ads are not always accurate.

Well, with voice, people tell you exactly what they want.

They make longer sentences which makes their request more accurate!

If you don’t have the item that matches their request you will be aware of it because they just asked you through your voice bot what they are looking for!

Next step you add what people are looking for to your catalogue and make more sales.

Voice makes requests clearer and increases transparency between you and your customer!

Get reviews for your product

When a customer doesn’t like a product you will know it instantly.

This gives you:

  • A better understanding of the customer;
  • An instant review of the product;
  • A lot more data to work with in the future to create a more personalized experience for your customer.

This way you will know which product people like and don’t like more accurately.

Here it’s not just about whether the customer buys the product or not, it can also be whether or not he asks for more information about it.

This way you will be suggesting better products, which will increase your sales.

How many times have you been on a website and the first product suggestions are absolutely not what you would like to buy?

voice bot

Too often!

Getting live reviews during a natural conversation is one of the best ways to personalize your customer journey!

A better understanding of your customers

I already mentioned it in the previous section but I’ll go into more details now.

Basically, voice provides more accurate data because all the feedback you get is 100% authentic.

You have a written transcript of the exact words coming from your customer’s mouth.

Then your understanding (and decisions) will be based on some authentic data, not some prediction model that tries to predict what the customer might like when it’s only the first time he comes to the website.

Voice really brings your customer understanding to a different level.

From prediction and hypothesis to authenticity and certainty!

Improve sales funnels and CTRs

Every human likes to be guided, that’s just how we are! 

Let me give you an example:

When willing to lose weight,  prefer to have a fitness program that guides us through every step rather than a list of all the exercises and a sentence saying; “if you do these exercises, you will lose weight.”.

Coming to a big website with lots of different information can be overwhelming at first. Including a voice bot on your website helps guide your customer where they want to go and where you want them to go, because you know what your best products are.

It’s like being there to give your customer some advice on your website and guide them according to their responses.

To set all of this up, you can use a no-code tool like Vocads which enables you to create voice conversations on a website in minutes. 

This tool will empower you to have a conversation with the user from the moment they enter the website until the moment they are about to pay. 

It’s just like entering a clothes shop with an employee there ready to guide you and help you find what you’re looking for.

Sales funnels by voice are a lot more straightforward than written ones and on top of that, they are interactive.

voice bot

At the end of your sales funnel, it’s always better to have a Call To Action (CTA) and in a voice sales funnel you can have a voice CTA.

We all wish we could say something to that customer that is spending too much time on your sales page because they are hesitating to buy.

Indeed, a call to action is always more motivating by voice. Designing the perfect CTA with your voice bot for your customers will significantly increase your sales.

Conclusion

Here we are, you now know everything there is to know about voice bots.

So what is your opinion on them?

Would you consider them useful for your business?

Or just a fun gadget but useless for your business?

Maybe you haven’t made your mind up yet, debate this with your friends or business collaborators!

Anyway, let me know in the comments! And don’t be shy, share this article on social media, some people might need it!

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