Technology has been driving change and of late, Artificial Intelligence is being discussed as one of the next big things. It is expected to alter customer interactions with the introduction of chatbots.
These are revolutionizing how we do business, how the customer service department works and how sales and marketing take place. Chances are when you reach out to a customer service representative via live chat to inquire about spectrum internet availability, a Chatbot is responding.
The Ever-Evolving Role of Chatbots
Leading organizations such as Salesforce feel that chatbots are likely to make a significant impact on the micro-moment exchanges. The VP of Mobile Messaging for Salesforce in an article discussed that chatbots have been relieving their agents. They are no longer stuck doing mundane tasks such as gathering information. Bots are taking over these tasks and agents are doing the real work now.
Chatbots can provide assistance in another business area i.e. marketing automation. Staffing employees for 8 hours a day is difficult. It’s almost impossible to keep them for 24 hours a day. Chatbots make for a great replacement as they can be available on the clock for 365 days.
Research by HubSpot says that ever since chatbots are integrated with Facebook Messenger, customers have become more respective when they are engaged via Messenger as compared to email. The average open rate for broadcasts on Messenger was 80 per cent whereas it was 33 per cent with email.
Ways Chatbots are Helping Businesses
Here are some ways chatbots are helping businesses around the world:
- Improve customer service: Often customers call the sales representative to get the answer to a query that’s already addressed in the FAQ section. Chatbots can give a quick response to customers regarding such queries.
- Automate online purchases: Chatbots are great at remembering the customer’s preferences as well as purchase history. They keep on offering suggestions to customers on the basis of that information. This eventually automates purchases.
- Better customer communication: Customers prefer remaining loyal to the brands that pay attention to them. There is no better agent than a Chabot when it comes to attention and personalized experience. Chatbots offer individual assistance to customers. The answer even the basic questions in a friendly manner. When a customer receives such a treatment, they are likely to come back again for future purchases.
- Improved response rate: No matter how mundane a message is, chatbots respond to every single query. In other words, it will improve the response rate of your business. This will increase the chances of converting visitors into buyers.
So, Will Chatbots Replace Humans?
If chatbots are such better customer service agents, they will probably replace humans, right? Hold on, chatbots may be smart and responsive but they are not emotionally intelligent like human beings.
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Bots can mimic human conversations successfully but they still struggle to comprehend them. They can’t accurately understand the tone and context of the message. It is going to take a few years for them to correctly interpret human emotions.
Therefore, chatbots can’t replace human. They are only taking over the mundane tasks which used to keep the agents occupied. Because of that, they couldn’t perform other tasks related to customer service which actually mattered.
What Do the Numbers Say?
If you check the statistics, they are swinging in the favour of bots. The Gartner report says that by the year 2020, 85% of the customer and business relationship will be without human interaction.
It seems that the use of chatbots will rise. Which is great because Chatbots will make a lot of business processes easier. That does not mean the role of humans will completely eliminate.
How Will Chatbots Improve Customer Service?
In the future, customers will get their problems solved or answered by chatbots before they would need the help of a human agent. Customer support will become more proactive. Whenever help is needed, smart tools such as chatbots will direct customers to the content that will answer their questions most of the time.
Technology will put relevant information at the fingertips of customers. However, human agents will continue to use their problem-solving skills and empathy to solve customer queries that bots cannot handle.
To this date, 40% of the customer service interactions take place on phone. By 2022, it will reduce to 12%. The human agents will be busy providing support via screen sharing, VR support, and video chatting, etc.
When chatbots will completely take over the mundane tasks, you can expect customer service to get more responsive and interactive. But one thing is certain, they can’t replace humans.