Visit an e-commerce website today and the chances are that you will be greeted by a small window popping up on your screen and a customer service agent asking whether you need any help. Welcome to the world of chatbots, which are helping businesses to engage with customers in richer ways and seeing their conversions rise as a result.

How does it work, and why do you need to know about chatbots as a business owner? Chatbots are either human-led or robotic online chat services that enable customers to rapidly find the information they need about a product, to ask a question about a process, and to generally solve any problems they might have there and then. Research shows that customers like chatbots and their ability to answer a question at any time of day without needing to follow up with a phone call to a service centre. Businesses that offer a chatbot facility tend to see their online conversions increase as a result.

Where chatbots are human-led, highly-trained customer service agents are on hand; where they are robotic, the AI technology uses an in-depth and ever-growing database of questions and answers to find what the customer needs. The conversion gains showed in some studies have been up to 50 per cent against websites without a chatbot. The good news for businesses is that this technology is easy to implement as a plug-in solution to most modern websites. It is also cost-effective, typically as a monthly licence cost.

Other advantages to having a chatbot include better engagement, a chance to identify website errors in real time, and a better opportunity to deliver a great brand experience from the start. Rich analytics also provide valuable data to help further develop your website around what customers need. In short, the addition of a chatbot to your website could provide real benefits – from brand awareness through to conversions – for a minimal investment and a very quick set-up of an off-the-shelf and supported product.

If you are thinking about improving your digital customer offering with a chatbot facility – and perhaps rebuilding or enhancing your website in the process – Century Business Finance offers flexible access to finance for all business purposes.

Our unsecured loans are on offer from £25k to £500k at interest rates that start from just 4.8 per cent. Choose a loan term of six months to five years to suit and enjoy no upfront payments or hidden fees. You can even repay early without penalty – you simply pay less interest overall. Fixed payments make planning and budgeting easy for your business.

The process takes just five minutes, with a short online application form and no meetings or paperwork requests. We make a decision in just a few hours so that your funds can be in your bank account the following day. Even better, we accept nine out of ten customer applications, making us one of the most generous and ready business lenders in the market today!

Call our helpful finance team to discuss your situation or apply online for your business loan without delay – we are open for business and ready to lend!