The Best 15 Free Facebook Messenger Bot Builder Platforms in 2018 – Without Coding Knowledge | Chatbot Tutorial
19

The Best 15 Free Facebook Messenger Bot Builder Platforms in 2018 – Without Coding Knowledge

You’ve seen these cool Facebook Messenger Chatbots and also want one for your Facebook page? But don’t know where to start and coding is none of your strengths?

Then go no further.

I’ve made the ultimate list of chatbot builders (platforms) that help you to make a Messenger bot in just a couple of minutes. If you are new to chatbots, read this intro article first.

Fortunately, there are many people just like me and you who are also interested in building their own chatbots. This growing demand is coming mostly from small business owners and marketers that don’t know how to code. As a consequence more and more companies try to enter this market and get a share of the growing pie. They all try to make it easy for you to just drag and drop your content without having to deal with the backend processes.

As a consequence more and more companies try to enter this market and get a share of the growing pie. They all try to make it easy for you to just drag and drop your content without having to deal with the backend processes.

In this article, I would like to list the best 15 of these bot building platforms. (Last Update: September 2018)

Disclaimer:

I personally tested all these tools, but not actively use all listed here. So please take it into consideration when you choose your bot builder. Also, most of these tools have a freemium model and have some limitations for free users.

Having said that I try to write a bit of info about each builder. What I liked what I didn’t. Please note that there is no ranking here and I’m rather just listing the builders than describing them in detail. More detailed reviews will come soon as well.

Anyways, enough talk, let’s take a look at

 

My top 15 favorite Messenger Bot Building Platforms

1) Surveybot

surveybot logo

As its name suggests the Surveybot has a clear focus on surveys. To the degree that it even allows you to not use your own Facebook page as the bot host. You can easily sign up with your FB account and also connect or create your FB page just by a button click. Actually, creating and connecting is not solved the best way. No biggie had to start the survey from zero after synchronizing my pages.

Some useful (survey) functions:

-if someone revisits, you can let them start the survey where they left off
-you can make the survey anonymous (could still look data in Facebook Page I guess)
– email notification after a completion
– multiple answer possibilities (with checkboxes in webviews)

 

surveybot builder platform

You can choose the type of question you’d like to use.

 

Positive:

  • Makes creating surveys very easy
  • Offers great ways to collect and analyze data
  • Easy implementation for creating posts or Messenger Code

 

Negative:

  • Practically only good for surveys
  • Only branded version

Example: their own bot, Surveybot

Overall, was a great experience using it, the free version allows up to 100 panels (users) and 10 questions per survey. Pricing starts at $35/month for 1000 users and adding way more features such as Zapier integration.  

 

2) Gupshup

gupshup bot builder logo

Gupshup is a bot building platform that allows you to build your chatbot at a central place but publish it to different platforms. One can easily sign up with a Facebook or Github account and create the first bot fairly quickly.
In order to deploy the bot for platforms outside of Messenger, such as Google Now or Gmail, you cannot use the code-free bot building methods, unfortunately. Also, some of the functions are not available with the flow builder.

gupshup bot builder editor

This is how Gupshup lets you craft the conversation.

 

Positive:

  • premade bot templates for businesses
  • opportunity to use interbot for ‘microbot’ integration
  • WhatsApp is supported

 

Negative: 

  • No keyword function with the Flow builder
  • No broadcasting functionality

 

Example: Hi Poncho  (was featured on F8 last year).

They are a bit ambiguous about their pricing, seems like small users can use the platform for free.

 

 

3) Chatfuel

chatfuel bot builder logo

Chatfuel is one of the biggest Messenger bot building platforms out there. It was mentioned during the F8 as well. It’s not a coincidence, they have an aggressive growth strategy with no brand removal option.

Also, they started out on Telegram already and have collected a huge amount of experience since then. Great options for building a Messenger or Telegram bot. The Russian team is actively listening to the user’s feedback and works on improvements.  I’ve actually created a template for them for conference/event chatbots and also have a separate Chatfuel review on this blog.

Chatfuel bot builder's structure

This is how my template looks like in Chatfuel for an ‘imaginary chatbot conference’ 🙂

 

Positive:

  • Integration options such as Zapier or webhook
  • Fast updates to Messenger changes
  • A great number of functions overall

Negative:

 

Example: Techcrunch’s bot that delivers news from RSS feed in your Messenger.

The free plan comes with a mandatory ‘made by Chatfuel’ branding. It’s also limited to 5000 users. You can get rid of it by upgrading to PRO account and you’ll also have access to the ‘People’ tab. Prices start at $15/month.  As an official Chatfuel Partner, we can activate PRO accounts for our clients, and even offer to pay for Chatfuel for our Students in our Chatbot Tutorial PRO membership. 

 

4) ManyChat

ManyChat bot builder logo

It is also a very big Messenger bot builder. Actually, I’ve written a separate review about ManyChat. Similarly to Chatfuel it has its early experiences with Telegram and was prepared for the Messenger platform opening last year. It’s especially popular among marketers for its easy usage and segmentation functions. The support is so-so, takes a while to answer.

ManyChat sequences

One of the most popular functions of ManyChat is that it lets you send sequences and provides you valuable information

 

Positive:  

  • Growth tools – they help you to get people into your Messenger funnel
  • Live chat directly from ManyChat
  • You can see the Click-through-Rate (CTR) on the buttons

Negative:

  • Often stability issues regarding the broadcasts (mine and my students experience)
  • Hard to have an overview (They have a great flow builder thou)

 

ManyChat is a great option for simple chatbots, the free version has unlimited users supply, but with ManyChat brand. If you want to get some of their growth tools and get rid of branding, pricing starts from $10 according to the subscribers.

 

5) Flow Xo

Flow xo bot builder logo

As its name suggests flows play a big part of this chatbot builder. I like that focus as a key part of chatbot design is keeping the user’s flow smooth and frictionless.

Without coding and massive interactions, only simple chatbots can be created. Therefore they usually have a clear task to do. Such as booking the room. The designer has to look at the whole interaction, not separated units.

 

One nice thing Flow Xo offers is the implementation of other platforms. The use of this chatbot builder can get quite technical fairly quickly, you should be able to think in terms of attributes.

Flow Xo's bot flow builder

Flow Xo’s visual flow builder

 

Positive:

  • 5 platforms to deploy your bot to
  • Great implementation opportunities such as Google Drive, Trello or Gmail
  • Visual builder makes it easy to see the Flow

Negative: 

  • The flow system brings limitation to the design
  • For broadcasting you need a webhook or some other trigger, limited data provided

 

The free plan allows 5 bots and 500 interactions. Standard price starts at $19/month.

 

6) Motion.ai (Acquired by Hubspot)

Motion.ai bot builder platform's logo

Motion.ai is a bot builder platform where a team with different skill sets can work nicely together. The visual builder helps designers put up a nice flow for the bot. While modules such as Node.js enables developers to make more advanced stuff. Motion.ai has probably the best visual builder out there.

Similarly to Flow Xo, Motion.ai can also get quite technical, but one is able to build a chatbot without any programming knowledge for sure.

Motion.ai bot builder flow

Motion.ai helps you visualize the user’s journey

 

Positive:

  • Support for more platform such as SMS or Web
  • Bot Store – one can share templates, so no need to start from scratch
  • Active Community and help from stuff (in a Slack Channel)

Negative:

  • Interface needs quite a bit of time to learn
  • Brand removal only from Medium ($50/months) plan

 

The free version lets you build 2 chatbots, with a limit of 1000 messages.

 

7) Octane.ai

octane bot builder logo

I subscribed to their waitlist already in November 2016, so was happy when it opened its doors for me on the 1st of March.

You could say that is pretty late, and they have less experience, but I wouldn’t necessarily say that. One of the Co-Founders is Matt Schlicht who created Chatbots Magazine and the biggest chatbot group on Facebook.

A feature I really like allows you to see the statistics in the editor itself for every conversation you make.

octane.ai conversation

Octane.ai shows you how many people saw the conversation and how many users read them

They have shifted their focus to e-commerce and niched down to Shopify stores.  

Positive:

  • Great built-in statistics
  • Improving very dynamically
  • Some great features such as Forms and Campaigns

Negative:

  • All the flows show up automatically after your welcome message
  • Hard to have an overview/edit some parts

 

Example: 50 cent bot

They have a 30-day free trial as of now, and moved to paid only, so I’m going to take them out of the list with the next update.

 

8) Parlo.io

parlo bot builder logo

The Marketing Executive, Ryan Helmstetler, is an early member of our Chatbot Marketing FB group, so I’m aware of this bot builder for quite a while.  Communication with the company is very good, a friend of mine also was able to sit down with them for a coffee in SF effortlessly.

Unfortunately, the lack of broadcasting in the free version made me not use it much. One can see that they are after bigger clients, agencies, as the middle package costs $400 per months. If someone is a heavy user, however, their integration and feature list look really promising.

Parlo's visual bot builder

Parlo’s visual builder to create chatbots

 

Positive:

  • Great overview function for the flow (tree view)
  • Good support

Negative:

  • Strong limits on free plan (e.g- no broadcasting)
  • Hard to save, no testing opportunity

 

The free plan allows you to send 2500 messages a month, packages start from $400/month with more features.

 

9) ItsAlive

ItsAlive bot builder logo

I’ve known this platform for a while but didn’t test it up until recently. I knew there would be an update coming in April, so I was waiting for it. Now it’s May, so even the little things should be corrected by the French team after the update. Nice timing I would say.

ItsAlive bot builder trigger

You can choose different triggers for certain actions in ItsAlive

 

Positive:

  • Lets you nicely categorize the different recipes
  • Broadcast scheduling

Negative:

  • No proper failure message when I set up something incorrectly and was expecting it to work
  • Hard to have an overview and to connect recipes

 

Example: Web Summit Bot

ItsAlive just launched their 2.0 version. The Free plan offers 1 FB bot up to 1000 users.  Prices start at $19/month and besides more users they offer more functionality and brand removal.

 

10) Leadflip

LeadFlip bot builder logo

As its name already suggests, LeadFlip is focused on leads. Mainly in the Insurance and Finance sectors. After a nice onboarding, you can choose from 2 templates, Blank or Health insurance. Having 42 standard blocks to the health template is more than I expected, to be honest. Maybe that is a reason the finance template is still not in place though.

Leadflip's bot flow builder

Leadflip did not spare with the blocks when creating their template 🙂

Positive:

  • Great Builder overview
  • Website as platform
  • Easy data saving

Negative:

  • No way to add rich media like images
  • No broadcasting

 

They have a lead-based pricing model, 50 leads per month are free and all the functions they offer. For 150 leads you’d pay $50/month  and for $350/month you can have 1250 qualified new leads for your business with this chatbot builder.

11) Botsify

botsify bot builder logo

Botsify has been on my radar for a long time. As you can see on their feature list, they didn’t start yesterday. They also offer website integration for paid users. One of the things I’m most excited about is not deployed yet. Integrations with eCommerce stores such as Shopify or Woocommerce.

btosify bot langague teacher

Botsify lets you match entities or user phrases

Positive:

  • Overall great functions
  • Powerful language learning ability

Negative:

  • No gallery option
  • No segmentation for message scheduling

 

The free plan includes 1 chatbot up to 100 unique users. Prices start at $10/month with website integration.

 

12) Dialogflow (formerly Api.ai)

api.ai bot builder logo

Probably not the platform that you would consider for non-techies. However, you can manage to build a chatbot on Dialogflowwithout any line of code. Does it have an easy way to deploy as the others before? –No, but everyone who can read and copy paste some lines can do it.

Google’s last year acquisition is probably the most popular NLP (Natural Language Processing) platform out there. Actually, you can connect it with other platforms already mentioned here only for it’s NLP function.

api.ai language trainer

Dialogflow’s language learning tool

 

Positive:

  • Very powerful language understanding trainer
  • Many platforms to deploy to – like Google Home, Skype or Twitter
  • Great integration opportunities

Negative:

  • No broadcasting
  • Limited usage without coding or integrating with other software

 

Dialogflow is free to use. It also offers voice solutions where they limit the free plan.

 

13) Chatteron

chatteron bot builder logo

This platform is still in beta, but I think it has been open for quite a while. Anyways, a good visual builder makes it easier to have an overview on the bot. Chatteron offers a nice integration to monetize the bot via Radbots.

chatteron flow bot builder

Positive:

  • Funny looking but a great visual builder
  • Monetization integration

Negative:

  • No broadcasting
  • No built-in testing interface

 

The free version has a limit of 15 000 messages/month, the business plan costs $0.001/message.

 

14) Morph.ai – update – not free anymore

morph.ai bot builder logo

Morph.ai is a great platform to build a Messenger or a website chatbot. It comes with built-in small talk and overall a very good tool to have a great natural understanding for your bot.

The platform makes it easy to give the interaction over to a human and answer to the questions that surpassed the bots understanding capability.

Morph.ai's word addition

Morph.ai creates this from the words that the bot uses. Just a fun addition.

Positive:

  •  Advanced training and understanding modules
  • Website integration possibility
  • Advanced features like polls or forms

Negative:

  • It can be hard to connect and overview the flow
  • Limited targeting for broadcasting

 

Free plan is up to 1000 Messages a month, packages start at $49/month

 

15) Sequel

sequel bot builder logo

When I started to build chatbots, one of my ideas was to create a celebrity bot that can answer questions. My initial tests were on Sequel, one of the oldest bot builder platforms out there.

Within the bots, you can create different units – so-called episodes – that come with a nice visual builder. That way you can easily separate (but also connect) different flows inside of one chatbot.

Sequel bot builder flow

I’ve started to build a Ronaldo bot on Onesquel, but never really finished.

Positive:

  • Opportunity to connect to many platforms such as Kik or Skype
  • A great visual builder that lets you have a better overview of the user’s journey
  • Useful features such as a built-in poll or emoji support

Negative:

  • The broadcasting function is a bit hard to manage, segment
  • Couldn’t find how to set up persistent menu

 

OnSequel is a free platform, no information on pricing on the website.

 

That was my list of best 15 Messenger bot builder platforms out there. What are your thoughts? What is your favorite? Did I miss any? Comment below.

During my research, I tested quite a few more builder platforms.  I thought I would add them here as an extra. Who knows, they might catch up very soon, the market is very dynamic as you probably already noticed 🙂

 

Further Messenger Bot Builders

that didn’t make the list this time, but worth mentioning (they may later on…)

Rebotify

This beta bot builder platform has a strong start with its visual builder. Easy to understand and create a chatbot. Besides Messenger, they also provide you an opportunity to deploy the bot on Slack and the web (your browser). It seems that the Australian Rebotify only offers Text or Carousel units this time. Happy to see some improvements later on.

 

Converse.ai

I was amazed at the integration and channel options that converse.ai offers. Just to name some of them, Workplace as a channel and MailChimp or Hubspot as integrations. It was recently acquired by Smartsheet but will continue to be a standalone product.

However, I was disappointed by the builder itself. Not that it is not good, it’s just not good for this list. It seems to be very powerful and I can see more techy persons gaining huge value from Converse.ai‘s bot building platform.

converse ai bot builder flow

You can see how powerful it can be in the right hands

 

Firebot

firebot bot builder flow

The visual builder of Firebot looks actually really promising

The German company, Firebot.io welcomes us with a surprisingly nice visual builder for creating our chatbots. As I’m a fan of fast implementation I wanted to connect to my Facebook page to see how the flow goes. But I couldn’t. After giving the necessary permissions it just did not offer to choose a page.

Firebot's permission to build messenger bots

Even though I appreciate the different name (Wiesn – is a reference for the famous October Fest of Munich), I just could not set it up.

Jumping over to Firefox did not help either, and I even tried Edge as well. Where is the German prezisität?
Anyways, should be an easy fix and I can see potential in this tool.

 

Reply.ai

It has a nice signup built inside a conversation on the website. So they start with qualifying the users.

Reply.ai chatbot conversation

Reply.ai seizes the opportunity to collect some data inside the on-boarding conversation flow

Most likely I’ve fallen under they non-target audience as of now by giving a small number of expected users.

„Thanks! We have added you to the waitlist for our self-service platform, which we plan to launch at the end of Q1.”

Anyways, will update on this one, once Reply.ai opens up its self-service platform. – This has not happened yet (September, 2018Ö

 

Personify.ai

I created my first chatbot here in November 2016. Haven’t really used it since and was worried when I couldn’t log in now for writing my article. Internal server error [500] when I tried to log in, used different browsers as well. The blog hasn’t been updated this year. Not a biggie, but not the best signal to be honest. But tried a day later and it worked. The interface didn’t change (at least I didn’t notice).

Well, they haven’t answered my email for a week by now, also could not log in for a couple of days. So not sure what’s going on.
Anyways, I’ve found it positive that it lets you create White Label solutions for clients.
An example bot by Personify.ai is the @askelonmusk

Other Bot Builder Platforms I’ve tested:

Chattypeople

Recast.ai

Talkbot.io 

 

 

If you liked this article, please share it with others, so they don’t have to spend so much time looking for chatbot building platforms.

If you want to learn more about Messenger Marketing, register to my webinar in Messenger.

 

 
Balint
 

Founder of Chatbot Tutorial - Technological Marketing Enthusiast

  • Anonymous says:

    4.5

  • This is really good being able to quickly compare the pros and cons of each platforms. I’m part of the Flow XO team so was taking a look at the positives & negatives listed there. We actually DO support broadcasts =) … there’s various ways to broadcast to your bot users and to target or filter which audience will receive your content. There’s some information here (http://support.flowxo.com/article/160-broadcast) but our users can also benefit from our broadcast tutorial too (http://medium.com/flowxo/creating-a-subscription-broadcast-in-flow-xo-6c381e0f8828)

  • Priyanshu says:

    Hi Balint
    I am very curious to know which chat bot are you using currently ?

    • Balint says:

      Hi Priyanshu,

      Thanks for commenting.

      If you meant chatbots:
      I test a lot, but personally, don’t use many. I have had good experience and returning user of (and probably would use them even without being a chatbot freak 😉 ): Growth bot, Swelly or certain event bots (as a conference participant, partly the reason for my event bot article).
      I also like reading, well mostly swiping the headlines in the TechCrunch bot.

      If you meant bot builders:
      Choosing a suitable chatbot builder is not the easiest decision. That depends on the purpose of the bot/business. There is no 1 builder that fits for all…
      Will cover that a bit in the webinar on Thursday.

      Cheers,
      Balint

  • Vincent says:

    Hi Balint,

    thank you for your thorough analysis of the bot frameworks! You did a great job pointing out the different pros and cons. I am from the german firebot.io Team, and I’m sorry our system wasn’t really available for you at that time. We fixed this glitch.

    Keep on the good work!

    cheers,

    Vincent

    • Balint says:

      Servus Vincent,

      yeah, I said it’s an easy fix… Will take a look, later on, you have some great potential :).

      Gruß,
      Balint

  • DAVID says:

    Great round up. I am also interested to see which chat bot or messenger bot tools integrate support for Shopify & WooCommerce first. Both would be ideal! Especially if it could also tie in with their mailchimp segmentation which also is in tune with eCom stores now.

    • Balint says:

      Yes, integration with ecom stores and email providers is an important factor. Will write about that as well later on. Thanks for commenting.
      -Balint

    • michael Lam says:

      A bot platform I use, is one of them listed, Motion.AI, which offers a NodeJS package where you can connect/integrate with pretty much any web services out there.

      A very flexible platform.

  • Thomas says:

    Love this list. And I am impressed to see some of the companies actually reach out to you and thank you for the review – that actually really great support.

    When is the next update to this blog post? Would be excited to see what you have. Also willing to provide some feedback about things I find as well if interested.

  • Nishita says:

    Hmmm…interesting list. I however was thinking that you may want to include Engati as well. Engati is a chatbot platform that allows you to build, manage, integrate, train, analyse and publish your personalized bot in a matter of minutes. It presently supports eight major messaging platforms including messenger, kik, telegram, line, viber, skype, slack and webchat with a focus on customer engagement, conversational commerce, and customer service and fulfillments.

    Read more about it here http://www.engati.com/?utm_source=backlinks

  • Rings Basically says:

    Its wonderful as ypur other articles :D, regards for posting.

  • Amit says:

    Hi,

    Nice article. Is there any bot which learns from the chat with user to auto improve the answers. Not just the defined flows but a smart bot. We are looking for a solution for our ecommerce platform. (www.FleAffair.com)

  • Jimmy says:

    I have an Auto Detailing business in Atlanta and would like to set up a chatbot. Thanks for sharing this initial review, atleast it gave me something to start with. any recommedations are greatly appreciated

  • Anonymous says:

    5

  • >