In today’s tech-focused world, everyone wants answers the moment they have questions. It has become the standard of customer care quality to ensure that anytime, any day, anywhere, a customer or prospect can contact the company to get a response to their queries. But giving instant replies to the users on a 24/7 basis is not possible at all from the human end. Here is how to improve customer experience with AI Chatbots.
In order to help fill those gaps, developers introduced the idea of chatbots. With this new option for organizations and their customer service departments, many embraced this new technology to help them offer a more robust communication mix. Many people embraced the service, while many were unhappy with the utility. One thing is for sure, even as we are in the early days of chatbot technology, we have already seen significant strides toward more valuable AI.
What Exactly is a Chatbot?
Chatbots work with chatbox interfaces and offer users responses based on their queries. Some operate similarly to the algorithms used in search engines (command-based), while others strive for a more ‘real’ conversation using AI.
Chances are you have run across one of these while interacting with companies online. Some of high quality can trick you into believing you are talking to a real person until a query is unanswerable.
Usually, chatbots are used to help answer some of the FAQs without the requirement of labour involved. But much like phone systems, the chatbot can help the person get to the right area of the business, website, or person to simplify and streamline the customer service process.
Chatbots are possible by using Natural Language Processing (NLP), which works to decode human conversations by looking for keywords, context, and non-verbal cues (i.e., emojis, or something like the meaning of ‘….’). They are also moving into the ability to figure out human emotions like anger, anxiety, etc., to help better serve them in a manner suited to their current state.
Benefits of Chatbots
There are many upsides to chatbots. Here is a quick list of the ones our team think is of the most value.
Instant customer service – With no limits on the availability and no waiting time for the individual engaging the bot, chatbots open the door to interacting with and satisfying customers or potential clients while your team is enjoying some much-needed rest.
Brand Integration – The ability to align the chatbot with your brand and tone can help humanize and align the connection with the desired brand elements. As the AI grows and gathers more data, this will only improve.
Personalization – The ability for chatbots to personalize customer experiences using AI is one thing that can eventually give them a leg up over interactions with a human agent. The ability to compile past experiences, feelings, and conversations to use that data, complete with other data sets from their purchase history or cart activities, will allow them to tailor the conversation to the individual and, in some instances, hypothesize the reasoning for that conversation prior to that interaction.
Easy Integration – Using chatbots can integrate into multiple ways to other tools. For example, they can be embedded directly into websites, apps, or messaging tools for ease of use while leveraging APIs for quick and easy sign-in.
Limiting the Stress – Customer relationship management and customer services can have their share of stressful situations. Taking the emotion out of the situation on one end while offering timely responses can help temper those elevated situations and help make them more manageable.
As chatbots improve, people are growing to like getting their solutions from them. Of course, there still are times when talking with a human being is required, and for this, you must have your customer service plan integrate that option. But as time goes on, more and more critical issues will be solved via AI.
Continuous Learning – Like us, chatbots are continuously learning to help improve the quality of their service through the help of AI. The more time, the more interactions, the better your service will be.
Downfalls to Chatbots
The downfalls of chatbots are slowly dissipating, and the balance between benefit and cost is starting to widen. However, there are still some concerns when moving to an automated system. Things revolving around ethics are always at the forefront. People need to understand if they are talking to a bot or a person. They also need to have transparency from the company about things like information privacy. Data security and management with all of this information must be very tight. How that data is used must be understood.
Again, even with all the advancements in chatbots and technology, there are still instances where human interaction is required. Companies like Facebook, which have moved to a fully digital model, have felt the brunt force of displeasure from their users for the inability to contact a human when they have a problem the bots cannot fix.
And the issues surrounding the dehumanization of interactions are a growing concern. With rampant AI improvements, there are many questions about what the future of work will look like. There are also many questions about what personal interactions will be like in the future. Are chatbots helping or hurting us socioculturally? This is yet to be known.
Do I Buy or Build?
Chatbots are so popular now that there many options for individuals out there. Meaning, most of your needs are accessible in prebuilt options through many offerings. Even CRMs are starting to create their own chatbots to integrate into their systems directly while increasing their opportunities to their clients. The only time you will want to ask whether or not to build will be based on your business being linked to either extensive, complex data collection or the custom-designed infrastructure that will not integrate well with a buy option. Here are some of the most popular chatbot options currently on the market:
The use of automated technologies is widely accepted as the norm, and we see their integration into more and more companies planning. To ignore this trend is to ignore the benefits to the company and the desires of your client base.
Chatbots are still in their introductory product lifecycle stage, but their acceptance is growing much quicker than anything we have seen in the past. This means that even if you are not fully ready to implement chatbots into your current plans, it should be very high on our organization’s list for future planning.
If you still feel unsure, please get in touch with our team to learn how this tool could benefit your unique business. We can help you through the decision-making process and even look for opportunities to use one on a trial run.