In the modern age of messaging, images and gifs have become as important a part of communication as text. We share photos of our food, kids, dogs and use gifs to react to the silly messages our friends send in an overly-dramatic way. We feel that bot conversations should be no different. At the core of a chatbot’s value is the fact that it feels more human than web forms or landing pages. From this, it follows that if human beings use gifs and images in their chat behaviour, bot’s should as well. This is why one of the earliest features we added to our chatbots was the ability to insert gifs and images into the conversational flow. In that same spirit, today we are making it even easier for bot makers to implement images and gifs into their conversational flow through the image uploader feature.

What is the image upload option?

The image uploader is a way for bot creators to upload images stored on their computers directly into the tars builder without having to host the image on a third party service.

Why is it important?

The  old method of inserting images into conversational flows was a point of severe friction. Creators would have to either find a link to the image they’d want to use or upload the image to a service like imgur or post image to generate a link, and then paste the link into the url input field in the message bubble. This process was easy enough, but it was an annoyance. As we have found out the hard way, some image hosting services like postimage often go down, resulting in awkward gaps in our conversational flow

Also, handling all the new tabs used for uploading images made our browser windows a bigger mess than they already were.

The image uploader solves these problems. The uploaded images are stored on Tars servers, so as long as your bot stays up, your image stays up as well, thus immunizing your user experience from the awkward broken image tile. Since the images don’t need to be hosted on a third party service, that means fewer tabs for you.

In summary, this feature was designed to make your bot making process more efficient and ensures a better UX for your customers.

How can you use this feature?

Check out this awesome video Ish created to see how you can use this awesome feature:

Or check out this handy help doc.


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Arnav is the Director of Content Marketing at Tars. He spends most days building bots, writing about conversational design and scrolling through Giphy’s trending section looking for the gifs that go into the Tars Newsletter.