"The customer is king." This old wisdom has not changed and is more relevant in the digital age than ever before. Whereas in the past, shops competed within a limited radius for the customer's attention, today the internet offers unlimited access to providers worldwide. And only one unsatisfying customer experience can cause them to switch to another company with just one click.

"About half of the customers state that they want to switch to a competitor after just one bad experience. If more than one bad experience occurs, the number rises rapidly to 80%." - Zendesk Report: Customer Experience Trends 2020

Long waiting times, limited availability, or constant repetition: For the customers, all this is very frustrating. Especially with simple requests, understanding dwindles quickly. Especially if the information is not immediately available or they are passed on from one responsible person to another.

But what do the customers expect and how can you react?

"I want a quick solution to my problem."

For more than 60% of customers, the fast processing of an inquiry is an important aspect of customer service. They expect their problem to be solved immediately and are annoyed when they have to spend a long time on hold.

The challenge is that companies have to process the numerous customer requests with limited human resources in the shortest possible time. Therefore the automated answering of standard requests can be a suitable solution. The bot understands the user input and filters out the customers' intentions by using the relevant keywords. It then assigns them to a suitable answer and plays it out in the chat within a few seconds. The speed desired by the customers can thus be guaranteed.

"I want an answer to my question at all times."

More than 40% of customers want a service that is permanently available, as the opening hours of the company are not always compatible with their own everyday life. But they also want to be well looked after and expect a competent response in real time.

It is therefore necessary that automation tools are used in the company in order to be able to offer customer advice around the clock. A chatbot is permanently in use and can take over the consultation when the employees are off duty.

"I wish to communicate with the company on the channel of my choice."

The way we communicate has changed a lot. Especially for the younger generation, communication via messaging services has already become the norm. One in three people would therefore like to be able to make contact in a flexible manner and via their preferred method of contact. Switching between different channels can be perceived as annoying.

The company should therefore be accessible via several channels to enable customers to contact it flexibly. If a bot is used for this purpose, the data formats must be adapted for each channel. This is a technical challenge on the one hand and very time-consuming on the other. With a channel connector or a suitable platform like BOTfriends X, the formats are automatically standardized and formatted. This facilitates the deployment and use enormously.

"I'd like to try to find a solution myself before contacting an employee."

76% of customers tend to look for a suitable solution themselves first, rather than seek advice from customer service. Especially for simple and frequently asked questions, the independent search is a good idea. If it is a banal question, they are more inhibited to ask a customer service employee. With bots, this inhibition threshold does not apply. With an automated solution, the customers themselves can be active and at the same time, the employees can be relieved.

For example, we developed a self-service solution for Energy supply and energy services company Süwag. Within a few entries, the user can communicate his own meter reading or take his electricity and gas contracts with him when moving house. The chatbot "Karl" is well received by customers and inspires them with its simple and uncomplicated use.

Chatbots as supporting customer advisors

Customer expectations of the service are increasing. As a result, companies must adapt the experiences they offer them. New technologies in particular offer new and versatile possibilities for this, transforming pure communication into interaction. The more comfortable customers feel with the service and the experiences, the more likely they are to commit to the company and recommend it to others.

"More and more companies are recognizing the value of investing in and prioritizing the customer experience." - Zendesk Report: Customer Experience Trends 2020

To increase customer loyalty, the customer experience must be improved. A chat or voicebot is ideal for this. It is especially useful for routine inquiries, because automated processing makes it possible to handle customer inquiries much faster. This reduces the workload on employees and allows them to concentrate on specific problems. With the help of Deep Learning, it can categorize questions, assign the appropriate answers and react in real time. It also recognizes when the user would rather talk to a real employee.

 

The quality of the services can be improved efficiently and quickly with a chatbot. By responding directly to the needs of the customers, customer satisfaction increases. But of course the bot cannot completely replace personal consultation - and it should not. Loyalty is not expressed by answering the standard requests, which could be eliminated by the bot. Customers especially appreciate the help with complex problems, which should be personal, authentic and honest.

Therefore, a balanced mix is ideal: a Conversational AI solution combined with authentic and enthusiastic employees.

A chatbot is still missing from your team? And you're ready to take your business to a whole new level and want to tackle your first voice or chatbot project?

In our white paper "No more POC Chatbots" we show you how to avoid the three most common mistakes when implementing a conversational AI project.