Five reasons to get an AI chatbot for your customer service-driven business:
- Reason 1: Reducing service time effectively
- Reason 2: Saving
- Reason 3: Data collection
- Reason 4: Self-service
- Reason 5: Employees’ satisfaction and motivation
Did you know that customer service is one of the most expensive aspects of any business? For most companies, salaries are usually the largest expense for a business. People can easily account for 70% of the company’s spending. Customer service and support depend on the time of the employees, yet up to 80% of the questions and tasks that are handled are routine. Customer service costs can get as high as 25% of the annual revenues of the business. That’s a huge chunk of the business budget that could be reduced by implementing an AI chatbot!
A customer service chatbot is a bot that uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to answer basic customer questions. The technology can be used for customer service and support to stimulate lead generation, customer retention, marketing, and sales, as well as decrease business costs by automating routine tasks and requests.
AI chatbots are changing the landscape of customer service and support. Businesses that want to stay competitive need to implement AI chatbots into their customer service strategy. AI chatbots provide a number of benefits over traditional customer service methods, including cost reduction and improved customer satisfaction. In this blog post, we will discuss the benefits of AI chatbots for customer service and how they can improve your business.
Why you need an AI chatbot for your customer service strategy
If your business is not using an AI chatbot for your customer service, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to improve your business. AI chatbots can help you save money, increase efficiency, and improve the quality of your overall customer service and support. The benefits of having a chatbot are a lot, the results that can be accomplished depend on your business needs and strategy. However, the two most important reasons for why you need a chatbot are hidden in your customers and the market itself. The constantly changing customer behavior and expectations – go digital, mobile, chat, instantly, do it now kind of attitude, are guiding businesses into investing in self-service tools. The competition is already on the path of digitalizing and automating all it can, including customer service and support. Get aligned.
How AI chatbots help improve customer service-driven businesses
AI chatbots offer several advantages over traditional customer service methods, such as e-mail, phone calls, and even chatting in messengers or live chat (forget about letters, fax, and other old fashion). The AI chatbot is available 24/365 for instant customer assistance, can do it simultaneously with hundreds and thousands of customers at the same moment, therefore reducing wait times for customers. One of the hotel AI chatbots of a 5-star hotel maintained on the Umni platform had answered over 140,000 questions from 16,000 users in the first 3 months of service. Sure, you can do the math how much time it saved for hotel employees, and even more – 45% of the communication happened at night when the human assistance was limited to a person or two at the reception.
Due to its technological nature, the chatbot assistance never varies in its quality or standards. Keeping the AI chatbot up to date guarantees all customers and employees always have instant access to accurate and well designed and presented information about the business’s products and services – the way the business wants to present them. Businesses-leaders in their industries that want to stay competitive already implemented AI chatbots into their customer service strategy, a trend since 2016-2017. So why not give it a try? The technology exists since 1966 and it is here to stay and keeps getting more and more exciting. Your customers will be glad you did it. At least the latest research says they expect it and want to have it as a self-service option. CBInsights keep updating and posting their report about 25% technologies that would change the world after the pandemic and the AI chatbots are continuously listed in the customer service and support chapter as The Tool to use. In addition, recently they named the AI chatbots a number 1 priority that business leaders have in the same area of operations.
Here are five reasons to get an AI chatbot for your customer service-driven business:
Reason 1: Reducing service time effectively
Customers do not wait and get answers instantly from the AI chatbot and the business is constantly available online.
One of the biggest advantages of AI chatbots is that they are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This means that your customers can get help and support whenever they need it – even if it’s in the middle of the night. This is a huge benefit for businesses, as it allows them to offer customer support around the clock without having to staff a call center 24/365. In the past 2 pandemic years, the Umni team noticed a trend among all chatbots about the time of chatting – the night shift from 18:00 to 8:00 has increased from 10%-15% prior to COVID-19 to an average of 35%-45% for businesses of all industries using the platform, and although the life is going back to normal, this new customer behavior of searching assistance before going to bed remains stable with just slight decline after the lockdowns and restrictions were lifted. Question: Does your business has staff on duty or established other ways to cover the questions around midnight, the new communication rush hour?
AI chatbots can also help reduce wait times for customers. Customers often have to wait on hold for long periods of time when they call customer service. With an AI chatbot, they can get an answer to their question immediately. This improves the customer experience and reduces the frustration that customers feel when they have to wait on hold.
It is more likely for customers to return to this business and its products or services again if the business offers such instant help and assistance!
For example, at the Reverse Dermatology Clinic, up to 80% of social media inquiries were unanswered despite the reception desk where staff has been focused on phone calls and on customers waiting for assistance. With the implementation of an AI chatbot as a dermatological assistant, the clinic was able to respond to all customer inquiries on time. In 16 months, the AI chatbot Dr. Ross has responded to over 10,000 messages sent by over 1,400 customers, mostly after business hours (35%). You can read the entire case study on the successful implementation of the Reverse AI chatbot here.
Reason 2: Saving
AI Chatbot saves business time and resources for overall customer service and support
AI chatbots can also help businesses save money. AI chatbots can handle a large volume of customer inquiries without the need to hire additional staff. This can help businesses reduce their customer service costs. In addition, AI chatbots do not get tired, do not have a bad mood, and can work for long hours without taking breaks. This helps businesses to improve their efficiency and productivity.
A study released by Juniper Research claims that chatbots will help businesses to save $8 billion annually by the end of 2022. IBM predicts that chatbots can help reduce 30% of customer service costs by answering 80% of routine questions and speeding up response times.
Reason 3: Data collection
AI chatbot collects more relevant customer data about customer behavior, needs, and interests
AI chatbots are increasingly being used by businesses to collect customer data. By engaging in conversation with customers, AI chatbots are able to gather information about customer behavior, needs, and interests. This data is then used to improve customer service and target marketing efforts. AI chatbots offer a number of advantages over traditional methods of data collection, such as surveys. They are less intrusive and can provide a more natural way of collecting data. In addition, AI chatbots can collect data from a larger number of people in a shorter period of time. This makes them an ideal tool for businesses that are looking to improve their customer service and marketing efforts.
An AI chatbot, made on the platform of Umni, automatically collects customer behavior data (compliant with personal data restrictions) about what customers are looking for, when they are looking for it, their problems, and needs. This data then is used by the business to analyze their customers’ behavior in the chatbot to offer better products and services, and better customer service and support, as well as to identify glitches in the operations, new trends, and opportunities.
Reason 4: Self-service
By using an AI chatbot, the business provides a self-service tool to customers and improves their online experience
Another great benefit of AI chatbots is that they allow the business to provide a self-service tool to its customers. Customers can use the chatbot to find answers to their questions and resolve their issues without having to wait for a customer service representative. This helps to improve the customer experience and reduces customer service costs. According to a report by Microsoft in 2019, over 90% of consumers expect the business to have some sort of self-service portal.
Customer experience and satisfaction measure how satisfied a customer was with a single support interaction. It seems like a simple thing, but there are some factors that can impact whether a customer feels satisfied or not, and ultimately if they’ll do business with that business again.
Factor 1: How fast the company replied?
When it comes to customer service, speed and accuracy are two of the most important factors for businesses and their customers alike. According to an article by Zendesk, 89% of customers say getting a quick response to their questions is essential when making decisions about which companies to buy from. By utilizing AI technology, chatbots can offer real-time assistance 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – without needing to sleep, eat, get breaks or sick, get off for holidays, and travel for a vacation like human customer support staff do. In a survey by Drift, customers were asked what they considered the main benefits of chatbots, the top two answers were getting round-the-clock customer service (64%) and getting instant responses to their questions (55%). This makes AI chatbot a truly valuable tool for businesses looking to deliver top-notch customer service at all hours of the day and night.
Factor 2: Did customers receive what they needed when they needed it?
AI chatbots can help ensure that customers always receive the information or assistance they need by providing answers to their questions 24/365. This helps improve customer satisfaction by ensuring that they never have to wait for a customer service representative to answer them because the AI chatbot helped them faster with the most relevant information they needed. And it depends on the business what the AI chatbot answers, what information to include in it, and the tone of voice. So, the business will have a branded AI chatbot as a digital employee that is created and managed up to all company communication standards to handle most of the customers’ inquiries.
Factor 3: Post-purchase experience and satisfaction
AI chatbots can help improve post-purchase experience and satisfaction by providing answers to customers’ questions about their purchase. If they have questions about guarantees, need to submit an inquiry about technical issues or others, they can ask the AI chatbot and it will redirect them to the right place – an answer, a form to fill, a file to download, a video to watch, or further human assistance. This helps improve customer satisfaction by ensuring that they always find what they need.
Reason 5: Employees’ satisfaction and motivation
Employees spend less time on frequently asked questions and focus on more complex and interesting tasks
AI chatbots are increasingly being used in customer service as they are able to handle straightforward, frequently asked questions quickly and efficiently. This frees up employees to spend more time on developing their skills and tackling more complex tasks with a higher value for both customers and the company. AI chatbot on the Umni platform has been shown to save staff 6-12 minutes per customer communication by answering routine questions (at least 70% of overall customer communication), allowing employees to be more productive overall.
In a survey in Aspect 5 years ago, at the beginning of mass chatbot implementation, employees in call centers were asked about their opinion of chatbot implementation. Customers service agents felt chatbots will indirectly lead to improving their value to the organization. 79% felt that having time to handle more complex customer issues would improve their skills. 72% shared that they felt by doing more complex tasks they have a bigger impact in the company. 64% praised the chatbots for allowing them to provide a more personalized service experience for customers they worked with. This resulted in 59% of interviewed staff saying they felt more satisfied in their jobs and more committed to the company.
With so many benefits, it is no wonder that AI chatbots are becoming more widespread in the customer service industry, and the customer service department benefits the most of all departments in a company from the AI chatbot implementation. If your business is looking for fast, convenient solutions to many of your business and customers’ problems, look no further than an AI chatbot.
By 2023, the use of chatbots will bring $11 billion in combined cost savings for the retail, banking, and healthcare business sectors as a replacement for customer service representatives. These savings will increase for other customer service-driven industries also if they implement the technology as one of their core communication tools.
The use of chatbots is inevitable in the next few years as businesses strive to cut costs, save time, and solve other business challenges like lack of employees. If your industry is customer service-driven, it’s important to start planning now by implementing AI chatbots into your business’s digital presence. The sooner your business makes the switch, the more cost savings, and efficiency it can achieve. If you’re not sure where to start, contact the Umni team today for a demo to get a better understanding of how an AI chatbot works and receive a free consultation on how a chatbot can benefit your business during the demo!
Get started today! You won’t regret it.