Ever logged onto a website and this little fellow pops up says “How can I help you?” or “Need help finding anything?”...well that’s a chatbot. In more technical terms, they are a form of conversational AI (Artificial Intelligence) designed to simplify human interaction with computers. Using chatbots, computers can understand and respond to human input through spoken or written language. Many companies are using chatbots as the first contact in customer service (customer service) scenarios. This is to not only help customers get fast answers to commonly asked questions but also to keep human customer service reps available for the less frequently asked and more complex scenarios. For example, Bank of America has a “virtual financial assistant” named Erica. Erica is a chatbot that performs simple functions like, retrieving your account or routing number, or telling you your current balance. Chatbots are changing the way companies are gearing their customer service, in a time where millennials and generation Z make up the largest portion of consumers.
It’s no secret that when given the option, millennials will, more often than not, choose to perform a task online over making a call. The expectation is still real-time responses, though. That’s where chatbots come in. Your customer base can log on to your website and ask a question and get a response within seconds, without ever having to look up a phone number or email address. This technology is called conversational user interface, which basically means when you type a question and get a response it will appear something like what you see with Apple Imessage or Facebook messenger, even though it’s not a living breathing human on the other end, its a chatbot.
Using chatbots as your first line in customer contact has a few high ranking benefits. Firstly, chatbots can be on call to your customers when you cannot. Using chatbots also conveys to your customers that you are on the cutting edge of technology, and you are using it to their advantage. Chatbots are a knowledge-based system, which means, the more information you give them, the more they will be able to give your customers. They are evolving and learning, based on your companies knowledge base. This is going to reduce expenses for your business, by providing a new, repeatable, and inexpensive method of communications.
Implementing chatbots will enable your team to use their time in a more profitable way, such as introducing "customer success teams". They'll have more time to grow their knowledge base and in turn, help the customers get more value out of your products and services. If you’re interested in implementing chatbots in your org, call us today!