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What is the Best Way to Create a Chatbot: Custom or Platform

CHATBOT
Updated on
Feb 2, 202410 min read
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    Table of content

  • What is Custom Chatbot Development?
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  • Pros and Cons of Custom Chatbot Development
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  • Benefits of Custom Chatbot Development
  • What Is Platform Chatbot Development?
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  • Pros and Cons of Platform Chatbot Development
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  • Benefits of Platform Chatbot Development
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  • Factors To Consider for Chatbot Development 
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  • Use Cases and Examples
  • Conclusion
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  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Chatbot integration with a website or mobile app is a win-win strategy for your company and customers. 

Why? 

Chatbots can raise revenue by up to 25%, lead creation by 9.5%, and client engagement by 35%, depending on the use case. 

Second, your customers have a better UX experience when locating and ordering goods or services, paying for them, etc. 

Are you prepared to incorporate a Chabot into your company plan? Great! but are you stuck at, "Should I build my own Chabot or use a Chabot building platform?"

Let us clear your doubts. 

This blog will delve into the pros and cons of custom and platform chatbot development and help you decide which path is your ticket to chatbot success. 

What is Custom Chatbot Development?

BotPenguin AI Chatbot Maker

Creating a custom chatbot from scratch means developing a unique chatbot tailored specifically to your business needs, going beyond standard features. It involves a team of developers building a personalized chatbot solution for you.

Custom chatbots can be tailored to any level of complexity, integration, and personalization, unlike platform chatbots, with certain limitations on functionality, customizability, and adaptability. 

Therefore, custom chatbot development requires expertise to build it right.

Pros and Cons of Custom Chatbot Development

Like every technology solution, custom chatbots come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages.

Pros of Custom Chatbot Development

  • Tailored to Your Business Needs: Custom chatbots are built specifically to address your business requirements, ensuring a personalized and efficient solution tailored to your industry and processes.
     
  • Enhanced Brand Alignment: With customization options, you can align the chatbot's features, personalities, and workflows to match your brand image seamlessly, providing a consistent brand experience for users.
     
  • Competitive Edge Through Unique Features: The flexibility of custom development allows you to integrate unique features, setting your chatbot apart from generic solutions and giving you a competitive advantage in the evolving landscape of chatbot innovation.

Cons

  • Higher Time and Cost: Creating a custom chatbot demands significant time, effort, and financial resources. You'll need a team of developers, analysts, and designers to build the chatbot from the ground up, aligning it with your business needs. This process is not only time-consuming but also involves substantial financial investment.
     
  • Technical Expertise: Developing a custom chatbot necessitates a team of technical experts proficient in artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing technologies. Building a chatbot from scratch requires a deep technical understanding and subject matter expertise to ensure it meets your business requirements.

 

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Benefits of Custom Chatbot Development

Benefits of Custom Chatbot Development

While custom chatbot development comes with certain disadvantages, these are far outweighed by the benefits your business can reap with a custom chatbot:

Seamless and Sophisticated AI Integration

Custom chatbots offer flexible Natural Language Processing(NLP), Machine Learning(ML), and sentiment analysis to provide a superior customer experience. 

The chatbot analyses and understands the customer's queries in concert with AI technologies, helping provide accurate, contextual, and personalized responses within seconds.

Brand Representation

Custom chatbots can precisely represent your unique brand personality, image, and style. Custom chatbots allow branding to be top-of-mind and engaging. 

The chatbot can be customized to offer personalized greetings to give users an engaging and welcoming experience.

Improved Customer Service and Retention Rates

Custom chatbots allow businesses to provide an enhanced customer experience through timely responses, proactive support, and accurate solutions. 

Furthermore, custom chatbots allow businesses to customize the chatbot engagement, thus creating parallel experiences for end-to-end interactions. This will increase customer service and satisfaction and boost customer retention rates.

And beginning with a custom chatbot development isn't that tough. Meet BotPenguin- the home of chatbot solutions. 

With BotPenguin you can easily train your chatbot on custom data, paint them with your logo and branding, and offer human-like conversational support to your customers. 

And that's not it. BotPenguin makes sure to offer custom chatbot development for your specific business needs:

What Is Platform Chatbot Development?

Chatbot Development Platform- BotPenguin

Platform chatbot development involves utilizing ready-made tools or platforms to create and deploy your chatbot. 

These platforms typically come with pre-built functionalities and frameworks, allowing users to develop chatbots without extensive coding knowledge or technical expertise. 

With platform chatbot development, businesses can leverage AI technology, NLP, and pre-existing UI/UX elements to create chatbots that fit their specific needs.

Pros and Cons of Platform Chatbot Development

Like any solution, platform chatbot development comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Let's take a closer look:

Pros

  • Ease of Use and Simplicity: One of the biggest advantages of platform chatbot development is its user-friendly nature. These platforms often come with intuitive interfaces and drag-and-drop features that make it easy for anyone to build a chatbot, regardless of technical expertise. Platforms provide templates, predefined workflows, and pre-built responses, reducing development time and simplifying the overall process.
     
  • Lower Development Time and Cost: Compared to custom chatbot development, platform chatbot development typically requires less time and resources. The pre-built functionalities, UI elements, and integration options available on the platform streamline the development process, allowing businesses to launch chatbots quickly and cost-effectively. This is especially beneficial for small businesses or startups that need more resources.

Cons

  • Limited Customization Options: While platform chatbot development offers convenience, it does come with limitations in terms of customization options. Since the chatbot is built on a pre-existing framework, there may be restrictions on your customization level and flexibility. Design options, conversational flows, and branding elements may need to be improved, preventing businesses from fully aligning their chatbot with their unique brand identity.

Suggested Reading:

10 Innovative Ways to Use a Custom Chatbot in Your Business

Benefits of Platform Chatbot Development

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Despite the limitations, platform chatbot development offers several benefits for businesses:

Efficiency and Scalability

Platform chatbot development enables businesses to deploy and scale chatbots as needed quickly. 

With pre-built features and frameworks, businesses can leverage the efficiency of these platforms to provide instant customer support, automate repetitive tasks, and gather valuable data for business insights.

Integration Capabilities

Most platform chatbot development tools offer seamless integration with popular messaging platforms, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, and other business tools. 

This allows businesses to connect their chatbots with existing systems and streamline operations, enhancing overall efficiency and productivity.

And now, if you are in favor of a quick solution like platform-ready chatbots, no worries!

BotPenguin has got that covered too.

With all the heavy work of chatbot development already done for you, simply use its drag-and-drop feature to build an AI-powered chatbot for platforms like: 

Factors To Consider for Chatbot Development 

Types of Chatbot Development

Several factors come into play when deciding between custom and platform chatbot development. Let's compare and discuss the most crucial ones:

Business Goals and Requirements

Understanding your business goals and requirements is the first step in making the right choice. Consider what you want your chatbot to achieve. 

Are you looking for a highly personalized solution tailored to your business processes, or do you require a more straightforward solution to handle basic customer inquiries? 

Custom development allows for more complexity and tailored functionality, while platform development offers a simpler, plug-and-play approach.

Budget and Resource Constraints

Budget and resource constraints play a significant role in determining the development path. Custom chatbot development generally requires more financial investment and a team of skilled developers, analysts, and designers. 

Suppose your budget is limited or you need more in-house resources. In that case, platform chatbot development can be cost-effective, as it often involves subscription-based pricing and comes with pre-built features and functionalities.

Technical Expertise Available

Consider the technical expertise available within your organization. 

Custom chatbot development requires a high level of technical understanding and expertise in artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. 

Custom development may be the way to go if you have an experienced development team or the resources to hire one. 

However, if you need more technical expertise, a platform development option eliminates the need for extensive coding knowledge, allowing non-technical teams to develop and deploy chatbots easily.

Desired Level of Customization

Think about the level of customization you require for your chatbot. Custom development provides limitless customization options, allowing you to create a chatbot that perfectly aligns with your brand identity and unique requirements. 

On the other hand, platform development may have limitations in terms of design, conversational flows, and branding options, making it less suitable for businesses that prioritize extensive customization.

Suggested Reading:

7 Reasons Why BotPenguin is the Best Custom Chatbot Builder

Use Cases and Examples

Let's explore some use cases to understand if custom or platform chatbot development is preferable:

Use Cases for Custom Chatbot Development

  • Highly Complex Business Processes: If your business operations involve intricate workflows, diverse integrations, and sophisticated data analysis, custom ai chatbot development is the ideal choice. A custom chatbot can be tailored to handle complex scenarios and provide personalized solutions, ensuring seamless customer interactions.
     
  • Unique Brand Identity: A custom chatbot is the way to go if representing your brand's unique voice, tone, and personality is essential. Custom development allows for deep customization of the chatbot's appearance, conversational style, and overall user experience, ensuring brand consistency and loyalty.

Use Cases for Platform Chatbot Development

  • Basic Customer Support: If your primary goal is to automate basic customer support inquiries, such as FAQs or order tracking, and you don't require extensive customization, a platform chatbot can be a suitable choice. The platform's pre-built functionalities and integration options can quickly enable efficient customer support.
     
  • Limited Resources and Quick Deployment: Platforms provide an advantage if you have limited resources or need to deploy a chatbot quickly. With pre-built features and user-friendly interfaces, platform chatbot development allows rapid prototyping, testing, and deployment.
     
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Conclusion

So, what's the best way to create a chatbot: custom or platform? Well, it all comes down to your unique business needs and circumstances. 

Chatbots differ in terms of complexity, usage cases, and industry. Nonetheless, with such a wide range of options, you will find one appropriate for your company's requirements. To do so, you must answer the following questions: 

What is the chatbot's purpose?

Will you use it in a message, a website, or an app?

How intricate should it be?

What kind of features should it have?

Is it necessary to interface with third-party services like analytics or a payment gateway?  

After answering these questions, you'll know whether to create your custom chatbot or use a bot builder. 

Looking for a hassle-free solution? Try BotPenguin

We've worked hard for you, so no coding or complex setups are needed. Just choose your chatbot type, customize its appearance and messages, and decide where you want it to be. It's that easy, with everything just a click away. 

On top of that, we can also create a custom chatbot for your business use case integrated with the AI model of your choice. 

The best part? You can get started for free with our "Free Forever" program. Here's what BotPenguin offers:

Total customization for your chatbot.

Integration with over 60 platforms - no coding required.

A single dashboard to manage all your chatbots.

Flexible pricing - pay only for what you need when upgrading.

Ready to get started? Click the button below to join our "Free Forever" Plan. No need for a credit card.

Suggested Reading:

How to train a custom chatbot on your own data with ChatGPT?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are the key benefits of creating a custom chatbot?

Complete customization, bespoke functionalities, and the capacity to fulfill specific company demands provide clients with a unique and personalized user experience.

How do platform-based chatbots compare in terms of development costs and time-to-market?

Platform-based solutions typically have reduced development costs and faster deployment times, making them a cost-effective and time-efficient choice for enterprises wishing to integrate chatbot functionality.

What are the limitations of custom chatbot development regarding scalability and maintenance?

Custom solutions require extensive resources for scalability, ongoing maintenance, and technical support, potentially posing challenges for businesses seeking rapid expansion and seamless long-term management.

How do platform chatbots ensure ease of integration with existing systems and tools?

Platforms often provide seamless integration with popular business tools, such as CRM systems and marketing platforms, enabling businesses to streamline operations and improve overall workflow efficiency.

What level of personalization and user engagement can businesses achieve with custom chatbots?

Custom ai chatbots enable businesses to achieve high levels of personalization, offer tailored recommendations, and engage users in more meaningful and interactive conversations, enhancing the overall customer experience.

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