A Chatbot for the Automotive Industry: BMW Virtual Assistant

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In a short time, webpage visitors and the users of Yandex.Station will be able to choose a BMW model and schedule a test drive using a chatbot.

Nanosemantics Lab has developed a virtual assistant for BMW Group Russia. The chatbot is already operating on the VK social network and will soon be released on the company’s Russian website, Facebook Messenger. Moreover, this bot will be available as a Yandex Alice skill.

The BMW chatbot communicates with clients in natural language and assists them by guiding through the model range, trims, specifications, prices and available options. It also wxplains the available options to less experienced motorists. For instance, it describes what a parking sensor is or what the BMW Driving Assistant can do.

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The dialogue window on the BMW Russia website.

The chatbot helps the user choose a car and find the nearest dealership. In addition to that, it is possible to schedule a test drive of the selected model or make a commercial proposal.

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Sheduling a BMW X5 test drive at a dealership in the city of Tula

The BMW chatbot can also sign a person up for a newsletter and suggests relevant special offers to return users. BMW Group Russia strives to use the most modern methods of communication to provide its clients with the most convenient and quick access to information about the company and its products. From the company’s point of view, a chatbot for the car business is one of those methods.

According to SimilarWeb, the Russian website of BMW Group grows from 0.5 to 1.3 million visitors every month. Client support service gets over 100 requests per day, ranging from car purchase to advice on car operation. The company states that it plans to further develop the new format of client communication. To this end, a new project group has been assembled from employees of various departments.

The BMW chatbot is not the first of Nanosemantics’ projects for the automotive industry. In 2013, the company developed a chatbot for a promotional website of another US automobile brand – Ford Kuga. During its interaction with the potential customers, The chatbot represented the Ford Kuga car and told the users about its specifications and advantages, handled website navigation, scheduled test drives and car purchases.

In the first two months of its operation, the chatbot received 347,893 questions. The fact that 28.6% of clients who made a purchase had interacted with the chatbot prior to, which signifies that the project was a success.

“Chatbots are a flexible solution that may be suitable not only for banks or online stores, but to the automotive industry as well. Chatbots allow the automation of the majority of client interaction, attract and retain client attention, attract new clients and achieve high results in the client service field,” comments Stanislav Ashmanov, Nanosemantics Lab CEO, on the project with BMW Group Russia.