I set up an AI chatbot at my site andreas.com.
Try It Out
Go to andreas.com and click my cat (lower right corner of the screen). Ask anything and if it's on andreas.com, you'll get an answer. You can talk with the bot.
Why I Did This
To learn about this, get experience, and teach it to my classes. Students will set up AIs for their websites.
BTW, I don’t expect this catbot will lead to lots of traffic at my site. I’m doing this to learn how it works.
Why You Should Do This
An AI-powered website lets your visitors ask anything. You choose what the AI knows, so you can offer more information.
I suspect soon all websites will have an AI chatbot.
Chatling.ai and Other AI
- There are more than 30 chatbots, including tidio.com, chatling.ai, chatbot.com, sendbird.com, brevo.com, landbot.io, zapier.com/ai/chatbot, ChatSimple.ai, m1-chat.com, meetcody.ai.
- AI bots for leads and sales include Newo.ai, GoSameDay.com, and TrueLark.com.
- To see more, search for “comparison of AI-powered chatbots for a website.”
I chose Chatling.ai because it offers a free-forever plan and (best of all) no credit card for signup. That meant it would be easy for me to test it. See their pricing at https://chatling.ai/pricing
I looked at several; they’re mostly the same. There may be a better one. I haven’t seen a comparison of chatbots. If you find a good one or a comparison table, let me know.
Most of these chatbots are built on ChatGPT-3.5. If you upgrade, it uses GPT-4.
What You Can Add to Your Chatbot
Chatling accepts PDFs, a website URL (it’ll scan the entire site), a list of URLs (you choose which URLs), an XML sitemap (another way to choose the pages), and plain text.
PDF works well. I converted two of my books to PDF and then used drag-and-drop to add them to Chatling. It processed the books in a few minutes.
You can also add FAQ (a list of questions and answers).
Chatbot may soon add Word Docx, PowerPoint, Excel spreadsheets, and so on.
How to Add to Your Website
This is really easy to set up. I did it in 15 minutes. If you know how to add Google or Facebook tracking tags to your site, you can add an AI to your website.
Chatling gives you a line of code (similar to Google or Facebook tracking tags). Copy and paste into your webpage. If you use HTML5, open the HTML and paste. If you use a CRM such as Wix or WordPress, use a tag manager to add the tag.
The icon appears immediately on your web page. The chatbot works on both desktop and mobile, Android and Apple.
Configuration and Options
You can set the image in the icon (your logo, your face, your cat), colors, and many other items.
I added "show source" so people see the URL at andreas.com that has the answer.
I added a few prompting questions to the catbot:
- Ask about digital marketing.
- Ask about SEO.
- And so on.
Stuff I’ve Added to My Catbot
- 220 pages from my website.
- My blog postings from 2003-onwards.
- All tweets from 2008 to present (Go to Twitter, get an archive of your tweets, save this as a text file, and copy/paste into Chatling.)
- My books on digital marketing.
- PDFs of articles that I’ve written.
- PDFs of PowerPoints for my classes.
What People Are Asking My Catbot
You can also see what people are asking your chatbot. There are lots of interesting questions that I’d never imagined. BTW, you can’t see the identity of people who are asking questions.
Upgrade to a Larger Account
The free account accepts up to 500,000 characters (letters). (For example, “cat” is three characters.) I quickly reached the limit, so I upgraded to a $15/month account.
About the Number of Characters and Words
- On average there are 4.64 letters per word, 250 words per page, and ~1,160 letters on one page of text.
- 2,250,000 characters is about 2,000 pages of text.
- The free account (500,000 characters) can handle about 400 pages.
- The $15 per month account can handle 2,250,000 characters, which is about 2,000 pages of text.
BTW, it's not bytes or megabytes. Chatling counts characters. One of my books is 180 pages in paperback. The PDF is 1.77 MB. Chatling counted that as 305,130 tokens.
The Future of AI Chatbots
- These things will evolve rapidly. They will offer more features, more capacity.
- Microsoft or Google may offer chatbots as part of your account. These will likely be free.
- AIs can OCR a text, so it’s likely you’ll soon be able to upload scans of pages. A law firm or a large office can use a photocopier to scan and submit pages to the AI.