Artificial intelligence in customer service – how to use Conversational AI successfully

Artificial intelligence in customer service – how to use Conversational AI successfully

Mara is already waiting for the visitors in the online store and helps with product questions or suggestions. She welcomes visitors and starts a dialogue with the user by asking specific questions regarding their preferences. But, Mara is not a customer service employee,  it is a chatbot. Thanks to innovative technologies, artificial intelligence (AI) supports companies in modern customer communication. If a customer has a question about their products, they contact customer service and expect to receive a competent answer quickly and in a friendly manner. By using Conversational AI, a form of artificial intelligence, companies can significantly increase the efficiency and quality of their customer service and turn prospects as well as customers into fans. 

Find out everything you need to know about the possible uses of Conversational AI in customer service and what benefits they offer in this article.

The faster, the better – higher customer satisfaction through Conversational AI

Customer expectations are high: the permanent availability of companies is almost taken for granted and the speed of communication plays a major role in customer satisfaction. Response time is becoming a decisive success factor in customer support. With the help of Conversational AI in customer service, long waiting times belong to the past! Customers receive immediate responses to their individual requests – regardless of opening hours. Even in case, the bot cannot provide the answer,  the notification that someone will take care of the issue in a timely manner shows the customers that they are taken care of, which has a positive effect on their satisfaction. The chatbot acts as a virtual assistant that provides answers immediately and is available at any time. By using digital tools, companies can extend their service hours and offer customers support that is independent of time and location. 

The chatbot not only enables round-the-clock availability but also the flexibility to contact the company on the preferred channels.  Customers are no longer enforced to contact the company through one channel such as phone or email, through the integration of chatbots and AI companies can offer omnichannel customer service. Social media, messengers, live chat, or contact forms – the customer can choose a channel and seamlessly switch between them without having to start the communication from the beginning. For example, if a request was started via a chat window on the homepage, the conversation can be continued on the phone and concluded via email, all relevant information is always up to date in the CRM. The customer can send their request on their way home while being on the train via Facebook Messenger on their smartphones, or during the weekend, via iPad using the chat window in the online store. Offering different communication channels improves the customer experience by responding to consumers’ needs and making it much easier to get in touch. Thanks to Conversational AI, customer service is available at any time on any channel.

Individual communication with numerous customers

By nature, humans can only handle a certain number of tasks at the same time, and this also applies to customer inquiries. No matter how skilled and motivated customer support staff may be, simultaneous communication with customers is limited: communication in live chat with short standard messages is possible with a maximum of three to four customers, while only one conversation per customer advisor can be realised on a phone call. A chatbot, on the other hand, can communicate with numerous customers simultaneously, without sacrificing service quality. Even if the number of customer inquiries increases, both the response time and the quality of communication remain at a consistently high level. By evaluating keywords in a matter of seconds, chatbots can respond immediately to the customer’s query. Creating the possibility of personal communication with many customers at the same time! 

Goodbye copy-and-paste. Hello automation

When it comes to customer support, the majority of service requests are repetitive: inquiries about products, opening hours, shipping options or purchasing processes are often similar or identical. This is tiring for customer service employees because answering repetitive questions doesn’t need emotional intelligence, talent or skills. The integration of Conversational AI can remedy this situation and take over the repetitive tasks as a virtual colleague. Conversational AI enables the bot to act as a contact person by conducting a linguistically real dialogue. It responds to frequently asked questions defined in advance in a fully automated manner. Agents thus save valuable time,  are able to focus on more complex and challenging customer inquiries, and can provide the best service to their customers. 

In addition, AI can support with useful services in the background by classifying incoming support requests, the messages are pre-qualified and forwarded to the relevant customer agent. Processing time is significantly reduced, as the requests get immediately assigned to the right contact person. By integrating chatbots and AI, companies expand the bandwidth of their customer communication without using additional employee capacities. Automating routine tasks not only saves costs but also positively influences customer and employee satisfaction.

Active customer interaction thanks to Conversational AI

Every company wants to interact with prospects and turn them into customers with the appropriate communication and information, but often all you find on the homepages is a standard contact form, passively waiting for the customer to make the first move. Chatbots increase customer interaction by actively starting a dialogue with visitors on the website. Customers inquiries are taken over and given immediate assistance by routing visitors to the information they are looking for. The bot guides the visitor step-by-step through topic suggestions, proposes suitable products based on the answers given, or deals with the customer’s questions.

With every customer query, Conversational AI collects valuable data that is analysed and evaluated. The needs of the target group can thus be better identified and focused on customer service today and in the future. Customer data is transferred directly to third-party systems (e.g. CRM systems) and supports agents by quickly responding to customer requests and identifying alternative courses of action. Both the company and the Conversational AI learns with every interaction and thus continue to improve.

Convenient communication for customers – fast, simple and straightforward

The future is becoming increasingly digital. For many customers, online communication with the company is preferred and expectations regarding response time and flexibility are continuously growing. Responding to all service requests quickly, personally and competently is impossible without automation. Conversational AI provides the best possible optimisation of customer service and personalised responses to customer requests. According to LivePerson, 73% of consumers prefer messaging to calls when making airline, hotel, or other travel-related reservations – and this trend is increasing. Particularly the younger generation is becoming accustomed to virtual customer service, with the percentage increasing to 90% for younger travellers who prefer messaging. This generation will increasingly turn away from companies that do not offer this personalised service. 

The use of innovative tools such as chatbots and artificial intelligence show customers that the company is adapting to continuous changes in their environment and continuously adapts to their customers’ needs.

To learn more about increasing your customer service with Conversational AI, schedule a demo with e-bot7 here.

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