We live in a world that is more integrated than what any of our ancestors would have dreamt of. Someone in Sweden can instantly communicate with someone in Chile at almost no cost, other than the cost of your device and the internet connection. Businesses in India can communicate with clients in the U.K and offer them their products and services. All this interaction has created both benefits and problems for various businesses, for businesses that provide amazing services to their clients; this is their time to thrive because one satisfied customer will bring in 5 other customers. The only businesses that will not benefit from the current state of connectivity are the ones that sell an image of their product and service but do not deliver on the expectations; the negative reviews will spread like wildfire. The saying “customer service is the new marketing” is as true as it has ever been.
Companies have begun working on improving the quality and efficiency of their relations with their clients. Investing millions into hiring more staff to monitor and communicate with potential customers, while at the same time trying to figure out their preferences. To a certain extent this has highly improved customer service and relations, however, what has really skyrocketed for companies are the costs of operations.
Currently, on average, customer relation staffs reply to approximately 30% of all inquiries from customers, and this process takes weeks. And most customers ask similar questions such as “when will you be open” “how long is delivery time” and “how much is the product or service”. Now picture a small business receiving at least 300 such inquiries a day, how many people do you think they may need to employ to provide quality and timely customer service to the clients? The answerisquite a handful of people; but there now is an alternative to that for both big and small companies.
Have you ever visited a website and as soon as the page loads a helpful assistant politely asks you “how can we help you?” and you politely answer “I am looking for this particular product or service but I can’t seem to find it” then the assistant promptly directs you to the exact location of the product, with all the information you want, and you are left amazed at how the customer service operators of that website is so amazing and prompt. Well, chances are you were serviced by a Chatbot. According to the Oxford dictionary, a Chatbot is “A computer program designed to simulate a conversation with human users, especially over the Internet.” That definition makes Chatbot sound like some sinister A.I but that is far from the truth. Chatbots answer mundane and routine questions, not only improving the efficiency of customer interaction but also giving the users the best service possible with instant replies to their inquiries.
Chatbots also provide data analysis about the customer by getting customer insights such as user location, device, and asking a few questions about the customer’s preference. This information can give you an insight on preferential items and services that you offer, and how to improve the less popular aspects of your business.
The opportunities that Chatbots offer are endless.