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How to create a Facebook Messenger Chat Bot?
Published at October 11, 2017
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Chat bots are the most popular form of artificial intelligence used across all industries. Different types of chat bots are used in virtual assistants like Siri and Cortana. Various companies decide to add Facebook Messenger chat bot to their FB business page. In most cases, chat bots serve as customer service representatives or customer support.

They can extract users' data and seal the deal faster and more efficiently than online forms. Since they can engage users in free-flow conversation, they are more practical and useful support option than the FAQ pages and e mail contact forms. 

 

Facebook chat bots, as well as those that work through other communication channels,  can be created on chat bot building platforms or by using regular code. They can be written in phyton, or some other backend programming language. 

In this article, we will explain the basic procedure for creating a Messenger chat bot, on and off the chat bot building platforms. Instead of using Facebook, you can also add a chat bot to you website and start the conversation with every visitor. Unfortunately, not all platforms offer this type of functionality. Snatchbot is currently one of the rare platforms that allow easy and free deployment to websites. That is why we will use this platform to explain the Facebook Messenger chat bot building and the most basic functionalities of these programs.

How to make a Facebook Messenger chat bot on the free building platform?

Snatchbot is just one of the platforms that allow users to build Facebook Messenger chat bots, completely free of charge. There are also platform like:

  • Chatfuel – that lets you create chat bots for Facebook Messenger and Telegram;
  • Botsify – is a platform that offers Smart AI and drag and drop building features;
  • Flow XO – offers more than 100 integrations;

The most significant benefits of Snatchbot, comparing to these other platforms, including more options for connecting different answers and interactions, better A.I., payment feature and the easy web site deployment that we have already mentioned. 

Creating the welcome message for Facebook Messenger Chat Bot

Every chat bot creation starts from the welcome message. This is the first message that pops up when you enter the website or click on the ‘start chat' button on Facebook Messenger. The welcome message should greet the user and offer him or her one or a few options for continuing conversation. You can do this by using the menu or the quick answer feature.

Menu and quick answer features for Facebook Messenger Chat Bots

It is much easier for Facebook chat bot to communicate through commands than through regular conversation. That is why several commands allow users to choose one or a few answers. Quick reply offers one button (usually ‘Start,' ‘Ok' or ‘Let's go!') that directs him to another chat bot conversation block or opens an URL.

Menu function offers several answers, in the form of buttons and each one connects to another chat bot block or the URL address.

How to design conversations for Facebook chat bot?

Creating conversations for Facebook chat bots is the most interesting part of chat bot development. On Snatchbot and most other platforms, you can do that by defining keywords, phrases, and variables and then connecting them with other answers, interactions and the blocks of text. 

Unlike other platforms that require you to specify whole phrases and keywords, Snatchbot offers several options for connecting defined keywords and phrases with other blocks. You can establish a connection if the keyword is written in full, only partially, in the beginning of the sentence, at the end or if it is not written at all. 

Plugins for creating Facebook Messenger chat bots

Every platform offers at least a few plugins you can use. Snatchbot has the biggest selection of plugins that include the PayPal payment feature, integration on a wide variety of different platforms and a broadcast feature that allows you to send messages to all users, who have talked to your chat bot in the last couple of weeks.

Creating a Facebook Messenger chat bot with code-based frameworks

Creating a chat bot with a code-based framework is not much different from creating a mobile app or building a website from scratch. Still, since Facebook Messenger chat bots only have several functions, the process is much less complicated.

The main benefit of creating a Facebook Messenger chat bot in a code-based frame work is that you can turn it into a regular app, with a database and analytic functionalities. The best frameworks for creating bots are:

The bot framework development allows you to define all functions and classes, while on platforms you can only use the features that are offered. Still, for creating Facebook Messenger chat bots in a framework, you will need to master at least one programming language. 

On Wit.ai, for example, you can find frameworks in Python and JavaScript. Frameworks also allow you to design and customize your bot. This is very important if you are planning to deploy it on your website, because then the bot will need to use the same colors, fonts, buttons, etc. 

For this task, you should to learn the CSS styling language. If you want to know more about CSS and app and web design in general, you can check out our basic web design guide.

Hire a developer for Creating Facebook Messenger Chat Bot

The easiest and the most efficient way to creating a Facebook Messenger chat bot is hiring a developer. Virtual Spirit’s development team is experienced in chat bot development for Facebook Messenger and other similar communication platforms. You just need to contact us and explain us your idea, and soon you will have a chat bot that can overtake customer service and support tasks and help you to speed up your company's development. 

 

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