Have you ever thought about how quickly our views of technology change? We started the millennium terrified of Y2K. Years later we heeded warnings about talking to strangers online and internet privacy.
Flash forward a couple decades and our lives revolve around a tiny rectangle in our pockets, almost anything you could want to learn about a person is available on social media.
And more recently—think back to the early days of the pandemic. Food and grocery delivery apps, contactless payment, and even multifamily tools like events and amenities schedulers were not yet considered a daily necessity. But after a few years, going into a store without tap-to-pay can be a huge inconvenience.
Technology and our experiences with it is constantly changing. So it’s important to implement technology that has the ability to adapt to new priorities to ensure the best user experience possible.
Your digital presence, whether it’s your apartment website, social media, or Google Business Profile page, could be a prospect’s first or only impression of your community. And having a negative experience on your website, whether it be a slow response time, confusing menus, or a chatbot that is glitchy or unhelpful is not a very good first impression.
In this blog, we’ll explore four ways your website chatbot could be harming your user experience, and how to choose an AI leasing assistant that will convert more prospects to leads, and sign more leases.
Defining user experience
In technology, user experience, often referred to as UX, describes how people feel when they interact with your website, digital product, or service. This can include anything from your logo and branding to content, navigation, and yes, your chatbot.
Issues that negatively impact UX
A good website starts with a good design. But more than half of users won’t even make it to your site to see your website design if it doesn’t load fast enough.
According to Google, 53% of users will abandon a website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load!
Site speed can be affected by a number of factors, but it all stems from your website resources, including images, video files, and website scripts like chatbots and other automations.
Ensuring that the bells and whistles on your website aren’t slowing down your page speed is imperative when attracting visitors. And once they start interacting with the bells and whistles is when you can really hook them…
Chatbots + UX
If you’re an apartment operator in 2023, you probably have a chatbot or AI leasing assistant on your website.
And if not—we have questions. First, would you like to schedule a demo? 😜
Second, what are you waiting for?
Chatbots have a proven track record across all industries for improving user experience and website conversions. In fact, according to a Hubspot poll, 71% of users say that they would be happy to interact with a bot if it meant an improved customer experience, and 69% prefer using a chatbot because they provide instant responses.
The multifamily industry has seen exponential growth since the introduction of AI leasing assistants (a form of chatbot) thanks to its ability to automate prospect communications, lead nurturing, tour scheduling, and provide a more custom experience for prospects 24/7.
But it’s important to differentiate the good bots from the have nots.
What to look for in a chatbot or AI leasing assistant to improve your user experience
- Speed: When it comes to AI leasing assistant chatbots we talk about speed in a few different ways. First, there’s the website speed. You need to have a fast bot that won’t slow down your page load speed. Additionally, it should have the ability to respond to prospects fast, and provide them with instant answers no matter when they inquire. And finally, your AI leasing assistant should be able to speed up the leasing process, and reduce time between first inquiry and application.
Speed and accuracy should be top priorities if you want prospects to have a positive experience interacting with the bot. Not only does your AI leasing assistant need to be speedy for your website to operate efficiently, but also to provide prospects the answers that they need fast. As we discovered earlier, 69% of customers prefer to get a response instantly, rather than waiting for a human agent.
AI leasing assistants like ResMate have proven to reduce the time between first inquiry and application by as much as 53%.
- Availability: AI leasing assistants are truly a gift from above for onsite teams. So why not take advantage in as many places as possible to ensure your prospects can easily interact with the chatbot?
By implementing an AI leasing assistant that can chat on multiple channels, like web chat, email, text, phone, ILS, and even on social sites, like Facebook Messenger and Google Business Profile chat, your prospects can easily find answers on their preferred communication platform. Giving prospects the reigns improves their user experience.
Availability is also incredibly important for affordable housing communities that may struggle fielding an influx of daily inquiries. Not only do AI leasing assistants ensure that onsite teams are not overwhelmed by calls, chats, and emails, but also provides peace of mind for prospects searching for a new home. No prospect who qualifies for affordable housing should have to reach out to dozens of properties before ever hearing back. But with an AI leasing assistant, every prospect can get answers instantly to aid in their apartment search.
- Customizations: Many AI leasing assistants have customizable settings to change the look, feel, and tone of your chatbot to make it seem more personal to your community, and fit seamlessly into your established brand.
Not only will a custom chatbot feel more cohesive on your website, it will also improve user experience as you’re able to program custom responses, personalities, voice, tone, and even humor with AI leasing assistants like ResMate.
- Language: According to the 2020 census, 41.8 million people in the United States are native Spanish speakers, and 12.2 million more are bilingual. Having a chatbot that can speak both English and Spanish, and is ADA Compliant is incredibly important for a positive user experience.
Additionally, having an AI leasing assistant that can speak Spanish can help teams that do not have a fluent Spanish speaker onsite and opens the applicant pool to a larger percentage of prospective residents.
Chatbots can make or break user experience
Your chatbot is supposed to make your life easier. But if it’s slowing down your website, unresponsive, or inaccessible, it’s doing more harm than good.
Find out how your chatbot stacks up against the competition with this checklist, and reach out if you’re interested in improving your user experience with ResMate.