robot and human hand touching pointing fingers

Do you want to get an assistant to finish simpler business tasks?

Before, you only had the choice of hiring an in-house assistant. Today, you can pick between a virtual assistant and an AI assistant. Both offer perks that allow you to focus on growing your business more.

In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at these two types of assistants and understand their differences. Keep reading to learn more about virtual and AI assistants. We included the benefits that each type of assistant offers.

[Considering a Virtual Assistant?]

What Is a Virtual Assistant?


There are two ways to understand the term “virtual assistant” or VA. In this guide, we will focus on the first interpretation.

First, it’s a person that offers virtual assistant service from a remote location. They do your scheduling, manage your social media, and keep your books. In short, a VA functions as a personal assistant, but they do the job online instead.

Another way of understanding the term is that it is a program or software. A virtual assistant is a program or software that automates your tasks and processes.

Human virtual assistants focus their services on improving your business. Like personal assistants, they must understand their client’s intent. Virtual assistants use their experience and expertise to learn about your company’s preferences.

Keep in mind that VAs don’t depend on AI technology alone. Rather, they’re using artificial neural networks (ANNs) to help them learn from historic input. It means they’re better at holding long conversations with people.

Feel free to learn more about the state of virtual assistants in 2021 here.

Benefits of Using a Virtual Assistant

Virtual assistants are also good for business owners who need constant assistance. It’s because these experts have a wide scope. They can carry out complex tasks such as:

  • Calling or messaging your contacts
  • Setting reminders and alarms
  • Adding tasks to your calendar
  • Handling smart home devices
  • Fetching data from the web

If you want to organize and execute routine tasks faster, get a virtual assistant. Compared to an in-house assistant, you can save more because you won’t have to spend as much money on full-time employment. You also limit the risk of errors related to workflow support.

Things to Consider When Picking a Virtual Assistant

Before you integrate a virtual assistant into your workflow, check that it’s the right one for you. Most virtual assistants have an area of specialization. For example, SEO VAs specialize in helping business website owners with site optimization.

[Considering a Virtual Assistant?]

What Is an AI Assistant?

Compared to virtual assistants, an AI assistant’s capabilities aren’t as extensive. The most popular use of AI assistants is chatbots. Often, businesses use them as website customer support.

AI assistants have Natural Language Processing (NLP) algorithms. These help them analyze and process natural language data. However, they don’t have ANNs, which limits the conversations you can have with them.

You may notice that most chatbots respond only to scripted responses. Thus, interacting with a chatbot can feel like you’re taking a multiple-choice test. In short, AI assistants aren’t as intelligent as virtual assistants.

Other than answering FAQs, you can also use AI assistants to collect data. Let’s say you have an AI assistant or chatbot feature on your website. You can use it to keep track of the topics of the queries that most users or clients have about your products.

You can also use your AI assistant to smoothen internal communication. An AI assistant can also schedule meetings and appointments on command. If you’re the receiver of such notices, you can also use AI to send instant acknowledgments to the sender.

Do you want to create the ideal environment with your AI assistant? Consider ones with smart home device integrations like the Apple HomePod. In 2019, 27% of people owned assistants like Amazon Echo and Google Home, which are also usable in the workplace.

Benefits of Using an AI Assistant

Because it has a limited scope, an AI assistant fits the data collection front best. Implement it as a chatbot. When visitors interact with it, it will track and record their conversations.

Use chatbots to improve customer experience and engagement. They are always available 24/7, unlike hired assistants. They can provide answers to visitors and reduce customer waiting time for responses.

Chatbots are easy to use as well. Plus, since you’re not hiring people, you can cut down your operational costs by up to 30%. You can also streamline your internal processes and increase productivity with AI assistants.

[Considering a Virtual Assistant?]

happy virtual assistant working with a headset


Choosing Between an AI Assistant and Virtual Assistant

If you’re still indecisive about which one you need, ask yourself a few questions. First, think about which assistant can better improve your productivity. If you want a bigger scope of assistance, you’ll most likely need a virtual assistant.

Do you want to improve customer engagement on your website with an assistant? If so, you’re looking for a chatbot or AI assistant. This kind of assistant can help speed up your sales and marketing efforts as well.

Do you want better customer engagement and increased productivity at the same time?

Consider getting both to help assist your company. Virtual assistants will help you focus on your workflow needs. AI assistants will face the customers and improve their experience.

Get the Best Virtual Assistant Today 

Now, you know the differences between an AI and a virtual assistant. The next step is to choose the type that best suits your needs. Once you know your company’s requirements, shop around until you find the right choice to accomplish them.

Did you enjoy reading our guide on the differences between an AI and a virtual assistant? If you want to learn more about virtual assistants and what they can do for you, send us your queries. Get in touch with us through our contact page here.


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