What is a chatbot?
- A chatbot is a piece of software that can converse with users automatically in a humanlike, back-and-forth style.
- Chatfuel bots live in Facebook Messenger. They can answer questions, recommend products, qualify leads, automate tasks, and perform other functions to benefit your brand. They're ideal for brick-and-mortar businesses, ecommerce retailers, nonprofits, and more.
What skills do I need to build a chatbot?
You don’t need any coding knowledge or previous experience to build a bot! Chatfuel is an intuitive, no-code platform that anyone can start using right away. 👍
How do I get started with Chatfuel?
- Log in to chatfuel.com using your Facebook account.
- Connect the Facebook page where you want your bot to live. Note: You must be an admin of the page to do this. (Use our troubleshooting guide if you have any page-connection issues. If you’re still struggling after that, reach out to email@example.com with a detailed explanation of the problem, along with screenshots and/or videos.)
- Begin building your bot! 🔧
Navigating the platform
This main view of Chatfuel is called the bot dashboard.
You'll see on the left panel that this dashboard has eight main tabs:
The Automate tab is where you’ll build your bot. We’ll cover the rest in other articles.
Can I change the language of my Chatfuel dashboard?
The Chatfuel dashboard is available in English only. However, if you access it in a Google Chrome browser, you can view a translation of the page in the language of your choice. (Did you know you can make your chatbot multilingual too? Get tips on how to switch the language of your bot. 🌎)
Basic anatomy of a Chatfuel bot
A chatbot is made up of blocks. A block is like a page on a website. Blocks are empty until you add content and functionalities in the form of plugins.
- There are simple plugins, like those that allow you to add text and images.
- There are also more advanced plugins, like those that allow your bot to capture and handle user data.
Here's a simple block with text.👇
Use buttons to allow subscribers to navigate from block to block. When someone clicks or taps a button, they receive the block you connected to that button.
Quick replies serve the same function as buttons. They’re just another way for subscribers to move through the conversation by navigating from one block to another.
By the way: A subscriber is someone who has engaged with your bot and is now considered “reachable” by your business via Messenger. It’s just like how someone who signs up for your email list is now reachable by your business via email. 🤓
You can see a list of all your Messenger bot’s blocks in the left panel.
- You can put them into groups there to keep yourself organized. (Groups are only visible to you, the builder.)
- Click on a block to view and edit its content (using plugins) in the workspace on the right.
Once you’ve set up two or more blocks, your chatbot has a flow, or a conversational path to lead subscribers through. 💬
To sum up:
- Bots are designed to mimic human conversation.
- A chatbot flow takes the same format as a conversation with a friend: questions, possible responses, and answers based on those responses.
- Blocks contain content your bot will share with users. Buttons and quick replies represent user options for responding to that content.
P.S. If you’re interested in learning more about what a Messenger chatbot can do for your business, visit our blog!