A Default Answer is a bot's response to an unrecognized message. It is automatically sent every time your chatbot doesn't understand what the user said. The main goal is to prevent your users from hitting a dead end.

It should say something like "Sorry, I didn't understand that". And then offer navigation options to help users find what they need in some other way. This could include:

  • typing another message;

  • returning to the main menu;

  • selecting an available Button or Quick Reply.

📌 If Default Answers are not set up, your users will get frustrated, confused or won't know what to do next. As a result, they might just leave the chat.

Setting up Default Answers

There are two Default Answers, one for Facebook and one for Instagram. To set them up:

  1. Go to Configure > Default Answers.

  2. Choose a Flow for Messenger and a Flow for Instagram.

📌 You can delete Default Answers if you want. Keep in mind that you will need to respond to all unrecognized messages manually in Live Chat.

You can also choose to send a Default Answer every time a user sends an unrecognized message or only one time within 24 hours. Choose between always and once in 24 h in settings.

To make it easy, we've made a Default Answer template. Copy it to your flow, edit to your liking and connect it in the Configure tab.

Best practices

A good default answer:

  1. Tells users what's happening. "Sorry, I didn't understand you" that takes care of this part. A phrase like this acknowledges that the Messenger chatbot can't respond.

  2. Manages users' expectations. It's helpful to remind the user that they're chatting with a bot, not a human. Something, like "I'm just a robot", can work.

  3. Gives users options. Finally, your Default Answers should give the user a way to continue the conversation.

Set up a Default Answer to be sent once a day

The following is a guide for Blocks. Our legacy builder.

Step 1

  1. Go to Automation > Blocks on the left panel.

  2. Create a new Block but leave it empty. This block will be triggered when the user already received the Default Answer. Because it's empty, the bot will not process the user's message without sending a response.

  3. Go to Default Answer Block, create a Redirect to Block plugin.

  4. Add Set User Attribute plugin.

  5. Create a new attribute. Name it and set the value.

  6. In the Redirect to Block or Flow plugin check if the value is equal to what the Set User Attribute plugin assigns to it.

  7. Link Set User Attribute plugin to the empty block.

📌 Make sure the order of the plugins is correct. The order should always be Redirect to Block or FlowSet User AttributeDefault Answer message.

When a user triggers Default Answer for the first time, Redirect to Block or Flow won't do anything, because the attribute value is empty. Then Set User Attribute plugin sets the attribute and shows all the content below.

When a user triggers Default Answer for the second time, attribute value matches the value in Redirect to Block. A user is sent to an empty block.

Step 2

Create a new Sequence to set Default Answer to be set once a day

  1. Create a new Sequence and set it to be sent After 1 day.

  2. Create Set User Attribute plugin that sets the attribute you've created previously to Not Set.

  3. Create Subscribe to Sequence plugin after Redirect to Block or Flow plugin in Default Answer Block.

  4. Link it to the newly created sequence.

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