What is a metabot? Why should you choose one for your chatbot project?


What is a metabot? 

In the past few years, businesses have increasingly started to implement Robotic Process Automation to handle tedious or repetitive tasks in an automated way. 

In the RPA field, metabots are part of the building blocks that allow complex automation. These bots orchestrate the processes and can call other smaller bots —also known as taskbots— to perform very specific tasks. 

But what is a metabot in chatbot applications?

Metabot and chatbot : links and connections

Chatbots are frequently really good at handling one type of request, usually, Q&A flows. However, if you are building a chatbot that needs to have transactional capabilities —i.e. allowing a user to create an account, upgrade or modify a booking, or order a product— chances are you’ll need to stack different bots to be able to process these complex requests. 

However, can you imagine how confusing it would be for a user to access four different chatbots to be able to perform an action like canceling a flight?

In chatbot applications, a metabot is a type of chatbot that connects with smaller bots – sometimes called microbots- and chooses which one of them is the best to handle a specific user request. These bots are able to perform actions having an impact on other platforms, like CRMs, ERPs, etc.

If your head is spinning, no worries. Let’s use an example to make it clearer.

Metabot example in chatbots

Metabot use cases

Imagine a bank that is offering clients the possibility to open a new bank account from the comfort of their homes through a chatbot interface.

A visitor opens the chatbox and asks to create an account. 

As much as the chatbot is able to provide a simple answer like “Yes, I’ll be happy to do that for you”, it probably won’t be able to actually open an account on the bank’s system on its own.

Luckily, there is another bot that can take care of that. 

The main chatbot (or metabot) then connects with the bot in charge of opening the account in the bank’s system and asks that it perform the action behind the scenes. Thereby, the user never has to juggle between different chatbot interfaces, despite the processes taking place in multiple bots.

As Tolkien would say, a metabot is “the bot to rule them all”.

A good example of that is the French bank BNP Paribas. On their contact page, they offer a chatbot that allows users to either make a question, find a nearby bank branch, or check the account balance. For the two last options, the chatbot acts as a metabot, connecting to smaller bots. The first one will use a GPS to locate the user and point to the nearest branch, for the second one, it will connect to BNP Paribas system to allow access to personal account balance. Of course, for account balance checking, users are required to sign in.

How does a metabot provide appropriate answers?

Differently designed metabots might choose answers in a different way depending on the approach they are built on. 

Some metabots will send a query to all the connected bots to see which one can get the answer they are seeking. 

Some other metabots, like Inbenta’s chatbot, use language processing technologies to aggregate all the chatbot contents. Then, they analyze the user query, and send it to the appropriate microbot, in order to get the right answer or action performed.

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What is MetaBot and why we should use it?

What are the primary benefits of using metabots?

Choosing to use a metabot instead of a simple chatbot provides many benefits, for both chatbot users and businesses.

  • Interconnection between systems. Keeping information updated across all your business systems can be difficult. Using a metabot allows you to connect different bot instances that talk to all your different systems and keep the information updated in an automated way. 
  • Single access point to different actions and processes. Users can perform different actions in a single interface. 
  • A metabot is an easily scalable solution that grows with your business. A metabot can be easily adapted to cater to new use cases (like voice-based search, connection to new platforms or devices, and more). 
  • Better user experience. Many bots redirect to new tabs in the browser whenever an action needs to be performed. With a metabot, everything can happen within the chatbox. Remember happy customers are loyal customers 
Free webinar: How to deploy a transactional chatbot

Inbenta’s chatbot module: your go-to metabot

Over the years, Inbenta has built a strong chatbot platform that allows users to perform transactions without leaving its robust chatbot UI. 

Adding functionalities to Inbenta’s chatbot so it can execute back-end processes and transactions is easy through webhooks, API, and SDK connectors. Plus, its ability to integrate with many third-party platforms gives customers the flexibility to connect with CRM integrations and billing systems or any other software in an easy way.

Do you have a transactional chatbot project in mind? Come talk to us about it and we’ll guide you through the possibilities. 

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