When you imagine what the future will look like, what do you see? Are we travelling via teleportation? Are cars still driven by people? Do robots do everything for us? Whilst these all might have seemed incredible and revolutionary just a few years ago, driverless cars and artificial intelligence are already well developed and become more mainstream by the day.
Services which are led by an AI chatbot fielding mundane enquiries and collecting or presenting useful data, help human agents become less frustrated. They offer a better human interaction, unencumbered by clunky databases. Millennials and the generations to follow are already on board with automated, self-service technology. They’re also the customers of the future, so adopting AI automated services will ensure businesses serve them for years to come. Here’s why AI automated services will become the future:
AI-automated services can give customers and users the kind of proactive treatment that eliminates stress because of their capacity to gather data and insights in real time. AI can monitor a massive amount of activity within apps and websites to identify pain points for specific users. This can then be fed into a real-time offer of support by informing FAQs or a chatbot built into the website.
2. In your DMs
Chatbots’ presence within messaging apps gives them a distinctive advantage because they are literally where customers are spending a lot of their time. The number of chatbots on Facebook Messenger increased by ten times from 34,000 in 2017 to more than 300,000 in 2018. Businesses are waking up to the potential to generate sales and solve problems easily and quickly.
3. You don’t need to tell it twice
While an AI chatbot isn’t going to replace your customer service team entirely, employing it to take the many simple, and quite frankly, boring questions off the plate of your agents, does mean a saving in your hiring and training costs. Instead of re-training your team in the event of changes in company process, re-programming the chatbot will take considerably less time and money.
In job markets like India, AI is actually boosting livelihoods outside of call centres. Poorer farmers are using an AI powered weather monitoring app to help them plan and reap better harvests – good news for everyone.
4. It’s 24/7
In an increasingly connected world, customers are spread across time zones, and so customer service needs to reflect this. AI-automated services interacting with customers are always on, so whether the query is coming from Buenos Aires or Birmingham, you’ll be able to provide support. People don’t like to be kept waiting, and your ability to respond to their requests in real time will improve their impression of you as a brand.
5. Building positive relationships
As we said at the start, the best part of introducing AI into your customer service mix, is that it helps the people in your customer service team to do their jobs better. Customers are much more likely to start or continue buying products or using services if they have a positive interaction.
Agents who have to contend with a temperamental database or spend the majority of the call doing manual research, aren’t necessarily able to give customers the best service, and are more likely to have a negative interaction which could be detrimental to your brand.
6. Cheap at less than half the price
Isn’t it cool that you can now use your voice as your password? This is just one example of how AI is making customer service more secure and also quicker, whilst delivering a cost saving to your business. This kind of technology saves 60-80% compared with the cost of an outsourced call centre.
7. It’s fast
Surely we’re not the only ones who are annoyed by the clattering sound of hundreds of keyboards in a call centre? Well, not only does this typing hurt our ears, it also takes precious time, with customers no longer very willing to wait. With an AI-automated service in place, customers can have answers to their key questions in seconds. And if their question is more complicated, the data a chatbot can collect is going to help your human agent solve this problem much, much faster.
8. Help yourself
Millennials are the first digital native generation, and well accustomed to interacting with technology and self-service options, from supermarket checkouts to customer service queries. 72% of them believe a phone call isn’t the best way to resolve their issue – they prefer self-service options like FAQs, forums and chatbots.
The reality is that these folks are the future, so it couldn’t be more important for businesses to adapt to their needs. Not getting up to speed could negatively impact companies’ reputations if they remain wedded to outdated models.
9. It’s personal
Personalisation has come a long way from email subject lines. AI enables businesses to make precise recommendations to customers in ways that boost sales and customer satisfaction. AI can help present your customer service team with a much more in depth understanding of what your customers really want, their habits and preferences – so they can better serve them.
10. It grows with you
Businesses naturally go through fluctuations, with peaks around the launch of a new product or service. It’s an exciting innovation that you can bring in the equivalent of an extra team of agents simply by turning on another server to power AI automated services. This makes for a much more satisfactory experience for customers at a time when they might expect to wait a long time for a reply.
In many respects, if AI-automated services are the future, then the future is already here. Many businesses are already employing AI technology to provide seamless customer experiences. Millennials and the generations to follow are on board with the personalised and self-serve experience AI enables, so it’s imperative for businesses to follow suit if they want to be relevant and successful in the future. We can help you there.