The effect of the use of emojis in chatbots on the user experience

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Chatbots have gained popularity since they were first developed. First, they were primarily created for entertainment, but they are now extensively used as a useful tool in many different fields. Therefore, it is interesting to see what factors can improve the user experience of chatbots. The more you know about what makes a chatbot pleasant, the more you can improve it. There have been positive experiences with chatbot behavior that resembles people. Making the chatbot more human-like by adding anthropomorphic traits is one way to enhance the user experience. Emoji usage is an example of one of these anthropomorphic characteristics. Therefore, this research aims to test the effect of the use of emojis in chatbots on the user experience. To do this, an IBM Watson was developed that focused on recommending users a vacation based on their input. An experiment was performed that used a between-subjects design with two cases: one where the chatbot used emojis, and another where the chatbot did not use emojis. The hypotheses tested were made according to the TAM model. The results of this experiment showed no clear significant difference between the means of the variables in the emoji case and the means of the variables in the non-emoji case. Except for the perceived usefulness. A chatbot that used emojis was perceived as less useful that a chatbot that did not use emojis. The results are discussed and leave openings for many future works.
Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen