Chatbots: a useful guide for financial services

What is a chatbot

A wave of automation is sweeping across the workplace and has the power to revolutionize many aspects of our daily lives. The transformation is already taking place in financial services where AI solutions like chatbots are increasingly commonplace. By simulating human conversation, chatbots can ease the workload of advisors, standing in for them as a first port of call for customers seeking advice.

Types of chatbots

There are two different types of chatbots that can fulfill different roles within financial services operations.

  • Dialogue bots offer a one-to-one dialogue, or conversation, with customers arriving on the site or application, in what is known as the onboarding phase - guiding the customer through these initial first steps. They also function to close the interaction during offboarding - closing the customer experience in a seamless way that leaves them with a positive lasting impression.
  • The role of Conversation Observing bots is to identify a message in a conversation or other event. This will then trigger a real-time webhook notification - essentially an automated message sent from an application. These webhooks are then translated into a format that can be understood by the Bot framework, after which the bot will chime in, instigating a conversation.

Chatbot use cases in financial services

Chatbots can serve different purposes in financial services, and their diverse uses make them a powerful tool for improving the customer service experience.

  • Firstly, chatbots can be used for customer self-service. For example, if a customer encounters a problem when attempting a simple transaction like paying a bill or transferring money. They need a solution right there and then. It’s a low-stakes problem that chatbots can resolve just as well as a person, and this frees advisors up to focus on more complicated problems.
  • The support that chatbots provide is instantaneous and available 24/7. Customers no longer need to scroll through the FAQ pages looking for an answer to their problem. They have help right there, and in the intuitive context of a conversation. The issue is resolved quickly and they are left satisfied with the experience, and more likely to return.
  • In complex customer service inquiries, chatbots also have a role to play. Questions around mortgages and insurance are sensitive, requiring expert knowledge. Although chatbots are capable of increasingly refined conversations and can serve as a first port of call, customers should have the option to transfer to an advisor. This way, no risks are taken. The customer always gets the help they require.
  • Finally, chatbots can also be used as a marketing tool. During a conversation with a visitor, the chatbot can suggest particular products and gauge the level of interest. Any positive leads can be sent to the sales team who will then follow up. This is all done with minimal additional cost to the bank - and yet can massively improve lead generation.

Learn more about chatbot use cases

Chatbots and live chat

Chatbots and live chat can be used together in a complementary way, together improving the customer service experience. Chatbots can serve as a gateway, sorting simple low-stakes problems from those that are more complicated. Any issues requiring extra care and caution can be sent on to an advisor to deal with via live chat.

Read more about live chat and chatbots

Chatbot benefits

Introducing chatbots into your financial service operations has a multitude of benefits - all of which function to make the customer experience smoother and more streamlined.

Save time

One major advantage of chatbots is the speed with which they can resolve queries. As soon as a customer encounters a problem, they can speak to a chatbot who can provide a response in real time. And even if they can’t resolve the problem, customers can then transfer to an advisor who will take over.

Increase customer satisfaction

This increased efficiency and speed is all provided without the risk of alienating customers or leaving them frustrated, unable to get the answer they need. Customers have the option to transfer smoothly over to an advisor who can talk to them. They still have access to all the reassurance and familiarity of talking to a real person.

Reduce costs

Advisors are able to delegate a portion of their workload to chatbots to answer instead. Furthermore, as they are machines, chatbots can answer questions far faster than people, and also answer multiple queries simultaneously. More problems are processed more rapidly. In this way, customer support costs are dramatically reduced.

Better leads

Chatbots are there to guide customers through tricky parts of a process, offering advice and support at times when they might otherwise abandon the transaction. Similarly, they can chat to customers, suggest products and services, and gauge the customer’s interest. These leads can then be passed to sales teams for follow up.

Learn more about how chatbots work in financial services

Chatbot trends and statistics

Chatbot usage is on the rise and automation is transforming digital services. In retail banking, customer experience is being revolutionized by tools that make the process more efficient and enjoyable.

Many people, especially younger people, already interact with bots to solve problems when banking. Talking to chatbots is becoming increasingly familiar. For example, 59% of millennials and 60% of Generation Xers in the US were reported to have interacted with chatbots in 2016 (Business Insider, 2016). To keep up with changing consumer expectations, banks need to take advantage of this new technology.

In retail banking, chatbots offer a simple and easy way for customers to get solutions. Many customers are eager to make their banking experience more efficient and so are happy to talk to chatbots. In fact, in one study, 35% of respondents said that in online retail, they would prefer to answer questions from a chatbot or virtual assistant (Statistica, 2017).

Read more about chatbot trends and statistics

How to choose the best chatbot software for your business

To choose the best chatbot software for your organization, there are a few questions you can ask your vendor to ensure you get the best technology for your particular needs.


How do I get chatbot on my website?

The central Bot Integration component connects Bot frameworks with the Unblu Collaboration server. Webhooks and actions from either the Collaboration server or Bot framework are translated so they are understandable at both ends.

What are the best chatbots?

The best chatbot technology depends on the service you want to offer. Unblu Chatbot API offers customers a hybrid experience; the ease and efficiency of chatbots interactions, but with the added reassurance of being able to transfer to an advisor.

What is the best way to integrate chatbot and live chat?

You can integrate chatbot and live chat via Unblu’s Chatbot API, which creates an omnichannel experience. Customers begin by talking to a chatbot but can transfer to an advisor at any point.

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