Chatbots in service

Design of an introduction concept of chatbots in B2B customer service for SMEs in the mechanical engineering industry


The aim of the research project "Chatbot in Service" is to develop a practical introduction concept for chatbots in B2B services, especially for SMEs of manufacturing companies. Important aspects that will be taken into account are a technology overview, data management, cost-effectiveness and acceptance.

Initial situation

The service business offers attractive margins and sales potential for mechanical engineering companies of over 40 percent in some cases. However, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in particular are not yet fully exploiting this potential. In the B2C sector, chatbots are already being used successfully in pre- and after-sales customer services. However, they are hardly widespread in B2B customer service so far - despite immense potential.

Solution approach

A paradigm shift is required for successful, efficient customer service, which goes hand in hand with the digitization and automation of certain service areas. To this end, beneficial deployment scenarios as well as vendor and technology screening for the use of chatbots in B2B customer service will be identified. Furthermore, organization- and data-based requirements of chatbots will be elaborated. In addition, acceptance-enhancing measures are developed and applied to an acceptance model for chatbots in B2B. Finally, the usage potentials are identified to achieve an efficient and effective service deployment.

Expected results

The project will develop a visually appealing and practical introduction concept in the form of a virtual introduction guide for chatbots in B2B customer service.

Benefits for the target group

SMEs have fewer human and financial resources in the area of service and aftersales, especially compared to large companies. The introduction concept of chatbots in service will enable SMEs in the mechanical engineering sector to use chatbots in B2B customer service. This creates a long-term competitive advantage through increased productivity, enhanced service quality and the internationalization of services.