Cost of Building a Chatbot for Your Business Purpose
11 min.

Chatbots have become increasingly popular among businesses as a tool for improving customer service and streamlining operations. They handle tasks, answer common questions, and provide personalized interactions to boost customer support. 

But how much does it cost to build a chatbot for your business? 

In this article, ProCoders will explore the factors that can impact the cost of building a chatbot, including development time, complexity, and integration with existing systems. If you want a healthy and profitable boost for your business, integrating chatbot might be just what you need. Keep reading to find out if it suits you! 

chatbot app

Chatbot Market Overview

As we look ahead to the chatbot market in 2023, it is clear that the use of chatbots is becoming more widespread across industries. According to Grand View Research, the global chatbot market is expected to reach $10.08 billion by 2026, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 24.3% from 2021 to 2026.

Pricing Models for Chatbots Development, Maintenance, Customization

You may ask, “How expensive is it to create a chatbot?” When building a chatbot, one of the most important decisions is choosing a pricing model for the chatbot’s development, maintenance, and customization. Here’s what we found out during our years of experience:

Dedicated Team

Description: A group of professional developers  who work solely on a specific project or set of projects for a client. ProCoders provides a Dedicated Team service with skilled professionals and a Trial period for replacement.


– Stability. 
– Full-time attention from developers.
– Access to dedicated resources for your project.


– Hard to assemble. 
– Usually more expensive.

Time&Materials Model

Description: A type of contract used in project-based work, where the client agrees to pay for the time and materials used by the service provider to complete the project.


– The work scope can be adjusted as needed.
– The work process can start immediately. 
– No long-term commitment or any other obligations. 
– No payment for unused hours or days.


– Difficult to ensure clarity if there are no fixed deliverables. 
– Can lead to overspending or under budgeting.

ProCoders offers Time&Materials contracts for cost control and complete project visibility. We have a special Reaction period where we begin studying the task within two working days and start working on it within a week. We provide regular progress updates and are available to address any concerns.

Fixed-Price Projects

Description: A type of project contracting model in which the client agrees to pay a predetermined fixed amount for the entire project, and the contractor agrees to deliver a high-quality product within a specific timeframe for this price.


– Little to no risk for unexpected changes in budget, timeframe, or expectations.
– No unexpected costs. 
– The set price is attached to each deliverable.


– Can’t easily change the scope of work once it has started. 
– High risk of unrealistic deadlines.

ProCoders offers a team of experienced developers for your Fixed Price project. We provide a detailed project plan and ensure that our team has all the necessary resources to complete the project on time and within budget.

Monthly Subscriptions

Description: A monthly fee for ongoing maintenance and updates.


– A possibility to plan for the cost of maintenance and support. 
– A possibility to adjust the subscription level based on needs.
– Timely updates and maintenance.


– High risk of overpaying
– Not enough flexibility. 
– Difficulties while determining the appropriate subscription plan.

ProCoders can provide ongoing maintenance and updates for your chatbot project within our Outstaffing or a Dedicated Team service.


Description: A payment for maintenance and updates on an as-needed basis.


– Flexibility to pay only for the services used.
– No long-term commitment or upfront costs.
– Ability to scale up or down 
– Cost-effectiveness for businesses with infrequent or unpredictable maintenance needs.


– A client may not know the final cost until the project is complete. 
– The cost can quickly add up with additional maintenance.
– Less control over the maintenance process.

ProCoders can provide maintenance and updates on an as-needed basis for your chatbot project within our Time&Materials engagement model.

Customization Packages

Description: A set of pre-defined customization options priced as a package.


– Packages are priced lower than hourly rates.
– Clients can easily see the price of each customization the package.
– Customization packages already have a pre-defined scope of work.
– The development team works without delay.


– Limited flexibility to customize a chatbot to meet specific needs.
– Difficulty to determine if the package will meet all of the requirements before purchasing it.
– Limited support. 

ProCoders don’t provide set customization packages.

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Are you considering what pricing model will be more profitable for your business? Check with ProCoders experts.

Custom Chatbot Development or Chatbot Builder: All the Truth How to Choose The Best For Your Business for Now?

General Overview

Compared to Intelligent Virtual Assistant (or IVA), chatbots are easier to develop and maintain, and there are two main options for it’s

Custom chatbots are designed and built from scratch to meet the specific needs of a particular business. On the other hand, chatbot builders allow businesses to create chatbots using pre-built templates and drag-and-drop interfaces:

Popular Custom ChatbotsDescriptionExample
Customer service chatbotsDesigned to help customers find information, answer common questions, and resolve issues.Bank of America’s Erica
Sales chatbotsDesigned to help businesses generate leads and increase conversions. H&M chatbot
HR chatbotsDesigned to help employees with HR-related tasks such as scheduling time off, checking pay stubs, and finding company policies. Mya chatbot
Popular Chatbot BuildersDescription
ChatfuelPlatform to create chatbots for Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Telegram using a drag-and-drop interface.
TarsPlatform to create chatbots for websites and landing pages using pre-built templates and a drag-and-drop interface.
ManyChatPlatform to create chatbots for Facebook Messenger using pre-built templates and a drag-and-drop interface.

Custom chatbots

Advantages of custom chatbots:

  • Customization. You get a bot that fits your needs and has all desired functions.
  • Security. Customized assistants are safer because they don’t contain any code from a third party.
  • Performance. Because of the custom code, a customized bot can provide more functions to your audience depending on their needs, and it will also be able to work faster.

Custom chatbot disadvantages:

  • Price. The building chatbots pricing can be high. In accordance with Hyperise, the custom chatbot development price may vary from $5,000 to $150,000 as the cost is calculated and varies for every case.
  • It may take more time to plan and launch a custom chatbot. 
  • Technical Issues. As with any technology, custom chatbots can experience technical issues requiring troubleshooting and fixing. This can be frustrating and time-consuming, especially if the chatbot is an integral part of the business’s operations.

Chatbot builders

chatbot development

Chatbot builder advantages:

  • Simple in usage. Chatbot builders make it easy to add features, change existing ones and even delete them if needed. This helps you to focus on the most important elements and leave the less important ones for later.
  • Coding skills are not required. You don’t need any coding skills or knowledge of programming languages such as Java or Python to create a chatbot with a builder. 
  • Ability to customize by yourself. If you have some coding skills, you can customize your chatbot even further by adding your code.

Chatbot builder disadvantages:

  • Limited Customization. Chatbot builders typically offer a limited set of pre-built templates and tools for businesses to use in creating their chatbot resulting in limited customization options.
  • Integration. Chatbot builders may not integrate easily with other systems or platforms the business uses. This can be a problem if the chatbot needs to access customer information or other data from existing systems.
  • Isn’t a scalable platform. Once your bot has reached its limit of users, interactions, messages, etc., you may need to move on to something more robust.

Checklist how to estimate real costs and make the best decision

  1. Decide what you want your chatbot to do.
  2. Decide whether you want to outsource, outstaff or hire an in-house developer to do the job.
  3. Choose the right engagement model: Fixed Price project, Time&Materials contract, or a Dedicated Team. 
  4. Determine whether your project will be built on open-source tools or proprietary software.
  5. Consider how much time you have for development and how often you’ll need to update the bot’s features and functionality.
  6. Figure out how much it will cost to make a chatbot design, including icons, images, and other assets.
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Don’t Waste Your Time And Resources Trying To Build A Chatbot Yourself – Trust The Experts At ProCoders!

4 Steps to Estimate Cost of Building a Chatbot for Your Business Purpose

There are several factors that go into estimating how much does it cost to develop a chatbot for a website or an application, so you can figure out what your budget looks like and start making plans.

Step 1: Custom chatbot vs chatbot builder

A fully custom chatbot is more flexible but expensive, costing $5,000 to $150,000. A chatbot builder is more affordable and accessible, costing $10 to $1,000 per month, but may have limitations. The decision depends on the business needs and budget.

Step 2: Functionality

Consider the functionality your chatbot needs – should it handle payments or just basic commands like “Open my account”? What artificial intelligence features your chatbot needs? The more complex the functionality needs, the higher the chatbot development cost.

Step 3: Staff

First, take into account the number of people working on your project. The more people you have helping with design, programming, and testing, the more expensive it will be.

people you have helping

Step 4: Time and deadlines

Next, consider the time required for each step in the process: design, development, and testing. It’s crucial to account for all these steps in your estimate to be prepared for unexpected costs and delays.

Consider doing a Discovery Phase with ProCoders if you’re not tech-savvy and unsure about the essential features and cost of your chatbot. Our experts will assess your requirements, analyze competitor products, recommend enhancements for market competitiveness, and outline the development stages and estimated costs. You will receive the most detailed analysis of your business, which will allow you to avoid many mistakes at the development stage.

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How Much Does it Cost to Build a Chatbot?

The cost to develop a chatbot app can vary widely based on the complexity of the project and the features required. Here is a breakdown of the estimated cost of building a chatbot based on three difficulty levels: Basic, Level Up, and Advanced.

Basic Difficulty Level

A basic chatbot is a simple chatbot that can answer basic questions and assist users via live chat and text messages. It usually has limited functionality and does not require complex integrations.

Platform (messaging platforms or channels
that the chatbot will be integrated with)
$0 – $50/month
Design$500 – $1,500
Development$1,000 – $5,000
Testing$500 – $1,000
Total cost$2,000 – $8,000

Level Up Difficulty Level

A Level Up chatbot has more advanced functionality and may include integrations with external services or APIs. It can handle more complex queries and provide more personalized responses to users.

Platform$50 – $300/month
Design$1,000 – $2,500
Development$5,000 – $15,000
Testing$1,000 – $2,500
Total cost$8,000 – $20,000

Advanced Difficulty Level

An advanced chatbot is a complex chatbot that requires advanced programming and integrations with multiple APIs and external services. It can handle complex queries and provide sophisticated responses to users.

Platform$300 – $500/month
Design$2,500 – $5,000
Development$15,000 – $50,000
Testing$2,500 – $5,000
Total cost$25,000 – $60,000

These cost estimates are not exact and can vary greatly depending on the project’s specific requirements and the developer’s hourly rate. You can consult with a professional chatbot development company to get a more accurate estimate of the project’s cost.

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How to implement a chatbot and save the development budget? Get a Free Consultation on how ProCoders can Assist You.

How to Reduce the Cost of Chatbot Development?

There are many ways to reduce the cost of creating a chatbot for your business. Here are some tips to help you get started:

1. Use chatbot builders

A chatbot builder may be the most cost-effective option if the chatbot’s requirements are relatively simple. Chatbot builders are often more affordable than custom development and require less technical knowledge.

2. Focus on your niche market first

Focus on your target audience and their needs when building your chatbot, instead of trying to cater to all users with different languages and countries at once. This approach allows you to create a tool that works best for your audience and improve it over time as they become more familiar with it.

3. Use free services

Try services like Google Cloud AutoML Vision or Microsoft Azure Cognitive Services Image Classification. Also, there are many third-party services out there that can help make your chatbot development more accessible, including Natural Language Processing APIs (NLP), Machine Learning APIs (ML), and Image Recognition APIs (IR). These services provide prebuilt components that can be used in any chatbot project without having to build them yourself from scratch, which would save time and cost of chatbot development!

How to Find the Balance Between the Cost and Quality of Chatbots – ProCoders’ Experience

At ProCoders, we’ve found several factors to consider to balance cost and quality:

  1. Defining project scope.
  2. Selecting the right team.
  3. Choosing the right technology stack.
  4. Balancing customization and pre-built solutions.
  5. Conducting thorough testing.

We’ve also found that by carefully considering these factors in different use cases, we can build high-quality chatbots that meet our client’s needs while controlling development costs. Our team of professional developers, Q&A specialists, designers, and project managers are carefully selected through tests and interviews to ensure the best results.

How can we be sure of our specialists? Before hiring, every applicant takes tests and is interviewed by our team leaders before hiring, so only real talents come to the final stage. This is the only way we can be sure that when it comes to the work with our clients, our team members will perform the best result possible and will be able to provide tech support even after the product is developed and deployed. 

So do you need some help with chatbot development? Contact ProCoders today! 

What are the upfront chatbot costs?

Upfront chatbot costs include discovery, design, development, testing, maintenance, and customization. Amount depends on complexity, development approach, platform, and team expertise. Costs can range from thousands to tens of thousands or more. Note that with Time&Material engagement model, you only pay for first month’s work, avoiding a large upfront sum.

Do I need to hire new developers for chatbot development or servicing?

It depends on your team’s expertise and workload. If they have chatbot development experience, new hires may not be needed. But if skills are lacking or the team is busy with other projects, hiring or outstaffing may be necessary for effective chatbot development and servicing.

How much does an AI chatbot development cost?

The ai chatbot development cost can range from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands or more. It depends on the complexity of the AI-powered chatbot, the features required, the development approach used, and the team’s experience and expertise.

Are Chatbots cost-effective compared to the live contact center?

Yes! The business can save as much as 30% on the cost of customer interaction by deploying a human-like chatbot instead of a human agent. It also benefits companies that want to expand their operations and reach new customers.

What are the costs of premade chatbot implementation?

The most basic chatbot can be built for as little as $5,000, while more complex ones can reach a hundred thousand.The costs of a premade chatbot implementation vary greatly, depending on the complexity of your needs. 

Is chatbot customisation very expensive?

Customization costs for chatbots vary between $2,000 and $250,000 depending on level of customization, development approach, platform, and team expertise. While it may seem like a ready-to-use solution can be cheaper, the actual customization can significantly up the price. So if you want to integrate a chatbot into your website or app, carefully weigh the options: developing a chatbot from scratch is sometimes more budget-friendly.


The chatbot market is growing rapidly and presents a huge opportunity for businesses to improve customer service and engagement.To estimate the cost of building a chatbot, it’s important to consider factors such as complexity, functionality, and the platform the chatbot will be deployed on. However, there are methods to reduce these costs, such as using pre-built templates and integrating with existing systems.

Ultimately, finding the right balance between the cost of creating a chatbot for your business and its quality is key. By working with experienced developers and using the latest technologies, businesses can create chatbots that meet their specific needs without breaking the bank. With the right approach, chatbots can provide significant benefits and improve customer experiences, making them a valuable investment for any business looking to stay ahead of the curve.

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