As customers, we will never go backwards. We will keep demanding more and better and faster. If we don’t get it, we will vote with our feet and our social media voices.
As businesses, if we don’t invest in continuously improving customer service we can only compete on price, that joyless race to the bottom.
If you’re serious about a great customer experience then it’s time to get real about artificial intelligence (AI) because the return on investment is measurable and significant.
Businesses implementing AI in their customer experience are not replacing their existing model, they are augmenting the model where it makes financial sense. So where does it make sense?
Customer Support Cost Reduction
As organisations add new customers or new products and services their customer support request volumes increase. Using an automated agent as a first responder resolves the simple, repetitive requests that don’t require human intervention.
When the requests are more complex or require escalation the automated agent delivers a warmed up customer where the live support agent is briefed on the customer need and the customer does not have to repeat the basics of their issue.
Reduction in support requests requiring a live agent and/or a phone call.
Live agents maximise productivity in dealing with a smaller volume of more complex tasks that only a human being can solve and reducing the brain drain of answering repetitive questions.
Machine learning from automated agent conversations is more rapidly mobilised into website FAQ and support documentation.
Expansion of Customer Self-Service
Companies with developed customer portals already allow customers to manage their own accounts, but customers still want and need a helping hand even if they are logged into a portal.
Once authenticated, automated agents can better support the customer based on their personal history within the portal. Transactions, previously logged support requests and access to rebates and discounts are just a sample of what an automated agent can serve up all in one place and in one conversation.
Reducing customer churn. Providing an adaptable, personalised experience and delivering information in a timely and useful way is critical for customer retention.
For organisations it provides real time feedback on how well the customer portal is functioning. Easily gauge and improve on the customer experience by understanding what is used and/or confused.
Improved Sales Conversions
For eCommerce sites reducing any point of purchase friction is a critical, but sometimes frustrating pursuit. In the case of some businesses the retail experience is only online, and overheads are already stretched across multiple areas of the business and staffing a phone or live chat 24/7 isn’t financially viable.
Using a combination of automated support and personalised data retrieval, customers receive timely advice, supported by previous purchase data and available loyalty rewards.
Improved Bottom Line
- More sales conversions per site visitors and/or unique sessions
- Less abandoned carts
- Improved sales through remarketing efforts
Using AI to enhance the customer experience has clear financial benefits, but it also helps improve the person to person experience too.
As customers we want to know our money and our time is valued and adding AI to the customer support experience doesn’t just say that, it SHOWS it.