Have a Very Merry Chatbot
And we’re all dreaming about those wonderful, relaxing days off. There is one group of brand stewards, however, that will be hard at work throughout the Holidays – the humble chatbot.
Well, maybe not so humble. By 2024, Insider Intelligence predicts that consumer retail spend via chatbots worldwide will reach $142 billion—up from just $2.8 billion in 2019. Business chatbots, artificial intelligence, and conversational technologies are becoming big business.
So what exactly is a chatbot and why does your brand need to adopt chatbot technology?
Basically, a chatbot is a computer program that simulates and processes human conversations and allows humans to interact with digital devices as if they were communicating with a real person. A talking robot, you could say.
Now you might be wondering, “why would I want to replace my customer service team with a bunch of talking robots”? And we agree, that’s not very nice.
But what if these chatbots can lighten the workload for your customer service team and take care of simple, but time-consuming tasks?
Before we get into what a chatbot can do for your business, let’s take a quick look at how to develop a chatbot. There are basically two approaches to teaching a chatbot how to interact with your customers.
The first approach uses AI to make suggestions to your customer service team so they can improve their services and know exactly what obstacles your customers are facing.
The second way uses a deep learning chatbot, which handles all of the conversations itself and removes the need for a customer service team.
A deep learning chatbot is created using machine learning algorithms. Deep learning chatbots learn everything from their data and human-to-human dialogue.
The best way to decide whether or not your business would benefit from a chatbot is to learn what a chatbot can help you with.
Here are nine significant ways that chatbots can be a business winner:
- 24×7 support on autopilot
- Significant savings on customer service and marketing
- New leads without effort
- Easy to scale up
- Fewer human errors
- Improve customer satisfaction
- Easy setup and maintenance
- Seamless integration with your existing software
- Automation of repetitive tasks
Let’s take a closer look at each one of them and how chatbots can integrate into your current digital presence.
1. 24×7 Customer Support
Having a chatbot that works 24/7 means your customers get the answers they want any time, day or night.
Unlike a human customer service officer, your chatbot won’t get overloaded, and they pick up the slack when your customer service team is overloaded.
Plus, you won’t miss questions or waste time, and your customers get replies instantly. It’s a win-win arrangement.
2. Time and Money Savings
Customer service is a hard job. Chatting with people and solving their problems is sometimes rewarding but let’s face it—usually, it isn’t.
If you automate your live chat with chatbots, you can use bots that recognize common questions and send replies automatically. They use machine learning technology to detect different user intents. The human agent has to intervene only in the most unusual cases that require an individual approach.
3. Lead Generation Tools
These days very few people make a purchase the first time they visit your site. They look around. They think about it. They leave and (hopefully) come back.
You don’t want your potential customers to leave your site with a negative impression. You need to create a sales pipeline that includes lead generation. It’s unlikely you’ll score a sale on your first try. But if you convert your visitors into leads with chatbots, you’ll get unlimited opportunities to approach them again.
4. Better Productivity and Scalability
Even if you don’t want full customer service automation, chatbots can make your teams more productive.
Even the simplest chatbots can send a welcome message and offer help. If a customer starts a conversation, the chatbot can answer simple questions. After that, the operator can manually fire another chatbot that sends a predefined sequence of messages.
One agent—supported by an army of “minion” chatbots—can attend to several customers at once.
6. Fewer Mistakes and Human Errors
People make mistakes, especially when replying to messages in a hurry. Some of them are harmless, but sometimes they can result in losing a deal.
Grammatical errors and typos can seem unprofessional, but confusing customers who are inquiring about an order can be deeply frustrating and result in a negative service experience.
Mistakes are far less likely to occur if the conversation follows a well-defined script. Chatbots are ideal workers in this regard.
7. Better Experiences for Your Customers
There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Customers have their preferences when it comes to contacting businesses, and everyone has their favorite method.
Chatbots may have trouble catching the subtleties of language. But they excel at solving the vast majority of problems on the fly.
A faster response message from a bot almost always beats a long conversation with a human.
8. Low Maintenance Cost and Effort
What if you could have an unlimited number of automated agents for your live chat support?
You can create as many Chatbots as you want. And you don’t even need to know the first thing about coding. Today, anyone can build amazing bots with an easy visual editor and save thousands of dollars.
9. Integration With Existing Tools and Solutions
Does getting an army of chatbots mean you need to buy or overhaul your whole IT system?
The answer is a resounding no. You can seamlessly integrate chatbots into your existing customer service and marketing workflows.
You can integrate chatbots with all kinds of services. And you don’t need to know anything about web or software development to connect them.
If you’d like to know a little bit more about chatbots automating your customer service or what chatbots want for Christmas, we’d be happy to talk—human to human.
In the meantime, Happy Holidays from all your human friends at York & Chapel.