Pandorabots was the chatbot builder behind one of the most advanced chatbots, Mutsiki, a 5-times winner of the Loebner Prize. But should you use this chatbot builder to create your own chatbots?
Let’s find out!
When you are going to create your chatbots in Pandorabots, you can use the “Chat design” feature, allowing you to visually create the questions and answers of your chatbot:
If you want a less visual experience, you can also use the “Intents Tree”:
Lastly, Pandorabots is open source. This means that you’ll have always access to the code of your chatbot. Pandorabots is built on AIML, which stands for Artificial Intelligence Markup Language and it is a programming language to create chatbots with. In Pandorabots, you can just create an AIML file and edit the contents:
You can use these interfaces interchangeably, allowing both marketers and developers to work on the same conversations.
Moreover, you can test your chatbot in Pandorabots:
In my opinion, the interface of Pandorabots is pretty easy-to-use and can be used by different types of users (the visual interface for marketers, the code editor for developers).
But, I do not think it is easy to set up a chatbot. When you are going to create your chatbot flows, it is important to handle context and this is not possible without coding AIML. So in order to create a good chatbot with Pandorabots, you first need to learn AIML.
- Visual Flow Builder
- Test chatbot
- Interface easy to use?
- Easy to setup a chatbot?
Pandorabots provides many chatbot elements you can use in your chatbot.
They only lack a few elements, such as Audio and Attachments, but these are definitely no deal-breakers.
By the way, it is possible to have Email/Phone/Date validation in your chatbot, but you need to code this yourself using the AIML editor.
But still, enough elements to create a good chatbot!
- Gallery (Horizontal list)
- Vertical list
- Persistent Menu
- Quick Replies
- Free text input
- Location sharing
- Email validation
- Phone number validation
- Date validation
In Pandorabots, you can ask a question to the user and store the answer in a variable.
But, you can only use that variable in the conversation itself. It is not possible to save that information to a database and use it when the user comes to your chatbot for the second time.
And this is a drawback. Because if you want to store user information permanently (for example, the email address of a user) you need to create an integration with your own database (and you probably need a developer for this).
- Custom fields
- User segments
Unfortunately, the chatbot cannot start a conversation in Pandorabots, because the conversation is always started by the user. This means that it is not possible to use broadcasts and sequences, which is a drawback.
On the other hand, it is possible to use conditions in our chatbot flows.
Moreover, it is possible to build a chatbot in any language, but it is not possible to handle multiple languages at the same time.
- Multiple languages
- Easy to translate
AI & NLP
With Pandorabots, you can understand the intent of the user and automatically reply to it.
Unfortunately, it is not possible to use Entities in your Pandorabots chatbot.
- Dialogflow integration
Pandorabots provides 8 channels to put your chatbot on:
- Your website
- Facebook Messenger
- SMS (using Twilio)
- Apple Business Chat
- Google RCS Business Messaging
Pandorabots has a built-in live chat, which is the most important integration of any chatbot builder.
However, there are two drawbacks with this live chat. First of all, you can only use the live chat with the webchat and landing page and not on other channels, such as Facebook Messenger and Telegram.
Secondly, you cannot automatically pass conversations to human agents. You can only use live chat when a human agent manually pauses the chatbot, which doesn’t seem logical to do.
Moreover, Pandorabots provides a Github integration, which is especially useful for developers.
Lastly, you can create your own webhooks using the Pandorabots API.
- Google Sheets
The marketing possibilities of Pandorabots are pretty limited.
You can only put a native widget on your website or create a landing page with Pandorabots.
Also, you can change the colors and text of the website widget so that it matches the branding of your website:
Unfortunately, it is not possible to set up different greetings per page.
- Facebook website widget
- Native website widget
- Landing pages
- Facebook Ads
- Facebook comments auto-reply
- Button creator
- Custom URLs for your chatbot
Pandorabots provides a free plan which allows you to test out their platform and decide if it is a good fit for you. This free plan gives allows you to create a decent chatbot and test it out on the Pandorabots platform (but you cannot publish it on one of their channels).
If you want to actually publish your chatbot, you need the Developer plan, which starts at $19 for 10.000 messages per month. With this plan, you can put a chatbot on your website, Facebook Messenger, Telegram and SMS (using Twilio). What is important, is that you cannot use the live chat in this plan.
If 10.000 messages are not enough, you can go with the Pro plan, which costs $199 for 100.000 messages per month. Also, this is the first plan that comes with live chat:
For more channels – such as WhatsApp, Apple Business Chat and Google RCS Business Messaging – you need to choose the Enterprise plan which comes at a custom price per client.
- Free trial
- Free plan
- Price per month19
- Monthly pricing available?
- Money back guarantee
Pandorabots provides a dashboard that shows the number of interactions, users and sessions:
Also, they provide the raw logs of every conversation with your chatbot:
In my opinion, these analytics are pretty minimal and don’t allow you to easily improve the answers of your chatbot. This is a huge drawback to me. It seems that Pandorabots is so focused on AI and understanding the user, you would think they had a better analytic system.
What is possible, is that you send the raw logs to an external system (such as a Firebase database) and create your own dashboards based on it.
- User input
- User retention
- Sent messages
- Open rate
- Click rate
- Conversion rate
- Fall back rate
- Volunteer users
- Custom dashboards/reports
Unfortunately, Pandorabots doesn’t provide any direct eCommerce integrations.
- Buy directly within the chatbot
- Cart abandonment
Templates & Cloning
Pandorabots provides 1 Small Talk template that you can use to get started with your chatbot.
Moreover, because Pandorabots is open source, you can just copy the contents of your AIML files and share these with others.
This allows you to copy your chatbot flows and easily share them with others!
- Make template
- Share template
- Duplicate chatbot flows
- Duplicate chatbot elements
With Pandorabots it is not possible to do any optimization, such as A/B Testing.
- A/B Testing
Pandorabots provides video tutorials on Youtube that explain the features of the platform. Also, they provide documentation on how you can use their platform.
Moreover, they provide support via email.
- Customer support
Should you buy Pandorabots to create chatbots?
So, should you buy Pandorabots to create your chatbots?
No, I wouldn’t recommend that.
And this is because of their live chat. With Pandorabots, it is not possible to automatically pass the conversation to a human agent when the chatbot doesn’t understand the user. It is only possible to manually open the conversation and pause the chatbot, but how do you know when to pause the chatbot? Exactly, you don’t.
But what if their live chat isn’t a problem for you? Would I recommend it then?
I think I would only recommend it if you are a huge company or a developer. If you want to create a good chatbot flow, you need to code in AIML. Also, if you want to store user information, you need to create a connection with an external database. I think for most companies this isn’t doable, unless you are a huge company or you are a developer.