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4 Disadvantages of Chatbots and how to fix them

Publish Date

March 30, 2024

You got a chatbot for your business, and you’re excited to automate customer service, save money, and maybe even increase sales. But once it’s on your website, the only thing that happens is….well, nothing.

While being incredibly useful tools, chatbots have their own limitations. We generally overlook the chatbot disadvantages and focus only on the upsides. 

And if you’re not careful, your chatbot might actually hurt your business because 73% of consumers switch to competitors due to bad customer support.

In this post, we’ll see what are disadvantages of chatbots that can actually cause problems. We’ll also talk about a way to overcome these limitations. But first, let’s be clear about why people use chatbots in the first place...

4 Impressive advantages of Chatbots

Chatbots are conversational interfaces that help businesses better connect with their customers. Here are some remarkable benefits of using chatbots that have made them one of the best AI tools in customer support and sales:

1. Chatbots reduce waiting time

Waiting to hear from the company’s support team is frustrating. Chatbots do a good job of ending this frustration.

Chatbots are available 24/7, so customers get immediate support, even during non-business hours. These bots can instantly answer FAQs like “Where’s my order?” or “Can I reset my password?” and completely reduce the wait times.

Chatbots can handle 80% of routine tasks and customer questions, which helps businesses automate this repetitive work. And quicker support means more customer satisfaction.

This image shows one of the benefits of using chatbots: Chatbots can handle 80% of routine tasks and customer questions. In the next section, we will discuss chatbot disadvantages.

2. Chatbots help you scale your business

As your business grows, so does the volume of customer inquiries. Chatbots ease this situation. One chatbot can answer dozens, even hundreds, of customers simultaneously. So you don’t have to burn your money to add more staff as your business grows.

Chatbots also help you expand your business to international markets. They can speak multiple languages to ensure you can support global audiences around the clock. 

This way, bots help you unlock more opportunities without exploding your budget. And this benefit gives tough competition to the disadvantages of chatbots.

3. Chatbots provide customer insights

Chatbots directly engage with customers and save those conversations. You can analyze those interactions to uncover valuable insight into your customer base.

You can understand your audience's common pain points and what they like or dislike about your products. This helps you avoid guesswork and make informed decisions. You can improve your product and optimize marketing campaigns to directly address your customers’ desires. 

4. Chatbots help you increase sales

Yeah, some chatbots are good at sales. They can make personalized recommendations based on customer’s needs and preferences. They can explain your product benefits in a way that convinces the user to act. 

Chatbots also streamline the checkout process. They can answer questions about payment options, solve shipping queries, and handle objections. 

Chatbots also collect inbound leads and help you book more sales meetings. This way, you get opportunities to nurture potential customers through targeted marketing campaigns.  

4 Disadvantages of Chatbots you must overcome

While chatbots are helpful, it’s important to remember they aren’t perfect. Let's look at some of the challenges you might face with chatbots. And in the next section, we will see how you can overcome those disadvantages of chatbots for the best customer experience. 

1. Chatbots can’t understand emotions

Most chatbots struggle to understand human emotions. They don’t get sarcasm, can’t understand frustration, and fail to pick up on subtle cues of distress. Hence, they sound unnatural and robotic.

For instance, if one of your customers is going through a complicated billing issue, and your chatbot responds with a “That’s awesome. I’m happy to help!”  

That would be really frustrating. In fact, 80% of people who interacted with a chatbot said it increased their frustration.

This chatbot disadvantage occurs because they often rely on certain keywords and pattern recognition to generate responses. They don’t understand the context of the words, so they fail to pick the underlying emotions. 

This image shows one of the disadvantages of chatbots: Chatbots fail to understand emotions and provide robotic answers that frustrates customers.

2. Chatbots can’t resolve complex issues

Chatbots may be good at handling basic questions and routine tasks, but they fail to answer complex questions. 

Their responses are based on the data they’ve been trained on. If a customer’s question falls outside of this data, the chatbot might provide inaccurate information or simply get stuck.

So, if a customer has a highly specific software issue that requires troubleshooting, the chatbot might provide only basic solutions that don’t solve the problem.

No wonder a recent survey found that only 8% of customers used a chatbot to get support, and of those customers, only 25% wanted to use that chatbot again in the future.

This disadvantage of chatbots means you still need an active customer support team to handle critical situations that require creativity and problem-solving skills.

3. Chatbots make mistakes

A common problem is the phenomenon called AI hallucination. It means an AI chatbot generates a response that appears to be a fact but is actually incorrect. 

And this happens because AI models can sometimes mix things up, invent “facts,” or draw false conclusions just to please the user.

For example, suppose a customer asks about the return policy for a specific product they recently purchased. Even if the actual return window might be 15 days, the chatbot may say, “You have 30 days to return your item for a full refund.” 

This disadvantage of AI chatbots can lead to big misunderstandings when dealing with sensitive topics like medical advice or financial information. 

And, of course, it adds to your customers' negative experience and harms the loyalty and trust you have built over the years.

This image shows one of the biggest disadvantages of chatbots: they can get hallucinations and generate inaccurate responses.

4. Chatbots carry a bad reputation

After years of dealing with dumb chatbots, people have now begun to hate them. They often don’t want to click on that chat icon in the corner and talk to a lifeless thing. 

That’s why many people associate them with frustrating experiences – all because of those unhelpful and robotic answers.

A study found that 72% of people feel using a chatbot for customer service is a waste of time. Although AI has significantly improved bot capabilities, they still carry a negative image. 

This disadvantage of using chatbots can make customers hesitant to engage with them in the first place. 

How to fix the Chatbot disadvantages

Chatbots are becoming essential tools for businesses, but if you don’t address their limitations, they can backfire. So, what’s the solution?

Well, the most logical thing to do is to go beyond chatbots. You can use tools like an AI copilot for website visitors. An AI copilot offers the same benefits as a chatbot while also overcoming those common disadvantages.

AI copilot is a search engine for your website that lets the user type their queries and get instant responses. It helps customers find exactly what they need without getting confused by the information clutter on your website. 

Here’s how an AI copilot for website visitors fixes the disadvantages of chatbots:

1. NLP-powered: An AI copilot uses advanced natural language processing (NLP) algorithms that help it identify the intent behind a text. This way, it can understand your customers' emotions and provide human-like answers.

2. Handles tough questions: No matter how a customer phrases their question, an AI copilot can understand and provide relevant answers. This way, it solves issues faster and reduces frustration. Plus, it constantly learns, so it only gets smarter with time.

3. Reduces mistakes: AI copilot understands your business inside out. It knows the smallest details about your products and services. So, there is significantly less chance of errors. An AI Copilot can even personalize responses to each customer, creating a better experience.

4. Unique appearance: Unlike chatbots, an AI copilot floats as a search bar at the bottom of your website. Customers see it right away and can start asking questions with just one click.

Go beyond Chatbots

The best way to fix the disadvantages of chatbots is to go beyond chatbots. You can use an advanced AI copilot like AI Nav for better customer support and increased sales.

Chatsimple’s AI Nav has some great features that can help you stand out. It captures inbound leads, supports 155+ languages, and can be integrated into messaging platforms like WhatsApp. You can easily train it within 5 minutes to make it your valuable sales assistant and lead capture tool.

20,000 businesses already trust Chatsimple as their Conversational Interface as a Service (CIaaS) provider. Visit this page to learn more about Chatsimple’s AI Nav.

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