Soon, the days of waiting on hold or refreshing your inbox for a customer service response will be a thing of the past. Enter chatbots, the online assistants who aim to improve the consumer experience. Companies and consumers alike have been benefiting from AI in customer service. So, why are chatbots for business so successful in improving customer service? Learn about chatbot uses, benefits, and the future of customer service bots below!
What are Chatbots?
Chatbots are automated computer programs or artificial intelligence systems used to conduct conversation with human users, most commonly over the internet. These bots can be found on websites, apps, and instant messaging tools. In recent years, many companies have implemented chatbots for business to better connect with consumers and improve customer service. Chatbots for business can be personalized to fit a brand’s voice and build relationships with the audience and customers.
While there are many uses for chatbots, they can be broken into two general categories based on their creation methods and functionality capabilities:
- Simple chatbots depend on basic, pre-programmed commands and answers to respond to customers. These bots cannot process requests outside of what is coded.
- Advanced chatbots adapt speech in response to consumer feedback via advanced artificial intelligence technology. These bots can learn preferences and produce more personalized conversations.
Ways to Use Chatbots for Business
Using bots for business is a great idea for those looking to grow their customer relationships without completely expending time or resources. Some of the top ways to use chatbots for business are:
- Automating Repetitive Tasks
- Boosting Social Presence
- Providing Personalized Experiences
- Improving Customer Service
- Enhancing Mobile Usability
- Streamlining Sales Processes
The Benefits of Chatbots for Customer Service
One of the biggest perks of using chatbots for business is the on-demand, around-the-clock availability to improve customer service. According to Drift’s 2018 State of Chatbots Report, survey results show that 64% of users expect 24-hour service as a main benefit of chatbots. Along the same lines, results show 55% of users wanting an instant response and 43% wanting complaints resolved quickly.
That being said, there are plenty of other benefits of using chatbots for customer service! From availability to ease of use, using bots can improve customer service for businesses and consumers alike.
Sometimes, you just need your questions answered immediately. Unfortunately, most businesses don’t function 24/7. For many companies, small businesses especially, extending business hours or staffing employees to be available at all times unrealistic. The solution? Bots in customer service! Chatbots can assist customers with general questions and tasks regardless of the hour, some even imitating a live representative for personalized communication. This keeps customers tended to after business hours while giving your business a chance to have down time.
For the average consumer in this day and age, picking up the phone and being put on hold, sending an email and waiting for a response, and being put in a long queue for a chat are three undesirable tasks. Using AI in customer service allows for easy communication that cuts out the frustration of wait time or the anxiety of speaking with a stranger. Opening an app, messenger tool, or site and having the option to immediately communicate with a company saves time and energy. Making the process as easy as possible leads to happy customers and employees who can focus their time elsewhere.
Neutral Customer Service
While having a pleasant chat with another person is great, having an unpleasant chat can ruin your day. Chatbots for business allow for a neutral communication field, where neither the consumer nor the business can affect the customer service experience with an attitude. Whether a customer is frustrated with a situation or an employee is flustered with tedious tasks, everyone has bad days – except for bots! Neutral chatbot customer service can reduce the potential for conflict while quickly solving the customer’s needs. Less conflict means a more positive relationship with the audience.
Quick Answers & Solutions
Along the same lines as 24/7 assistance and easy communication, 37% of users are typically looking for quick answers and solutions when speaking to chatbots for customer service. Quick answers can include product descriptions, price checks, and service updates. Quick solutions are for those facing issues or simple tasks such as password resets. For when speaking with a live representative is needed for more complex situations, the 2018 State of Chatbots Report found 34% of consumers intending to use chatbots to get in contact with a human customer service assistant.
The Future of AI in Customer Service
Any company looking to make their customer service more efficient and effective should look into implementing chatbots for business, especially when it has such a bright future. We can expect this trend of using AI in customer service to continue to evolve and grow. As artificial intelligence becomes more advanced and systems continue to learn, consumers and businesses will benefit from this service.
For consumers, questions and issues can be resolved within seconds right at their fingertips. For businesses, internal resources can be used in more meaningful ways instead of focusing on menial tasks. This doesn’t mean customer service jobs will be a thing of the past, however! Chatbots for business are great for the basics, but their function is not intended to replace the human experience. Real representatives still provide creative problem-solving skills and an emotional range that bots just can’t imitate.