AI in Customer Service: A Game Changer for Businesses
Do you think the benefits of using artificial intelligence or AI in customer service are massively overhyped? Think again!
Customer-centric brands have already started incorporating AI in their customer service strategy. Ignoring the potential of AI might allow your competitors to surpass you. With that in mind, we’ve detailed 4 key benefits of using AI in customer service that is sure to be a game changer for all businesses – across industries, locations and team sizes.
#1 AI-enabled chatbots enhance customer experience
Offering the right solution on time has a huge positive impact on customer experience. In fact, according to the new rules of engagement report, 42% of customers consider 1-3 minutes to be the acceptable wait time to speak to a customer service representative, and 31% of customers are willing to wait no longer than 5 minutes. Deploying an AI-enabled chatbot is a sure-shot way of ensuring that customers receive immediate customer service, 24/7. AI-enabled chatbots are backed by artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and natural language processing (NLP) – this technology powers chatbots to provide customer service with unparalleled speed and accuracy.
Here’s a closer look at how chatbots improve customer experience:
– Provides a better self-service experience
AI-enabled chatbots offer an interactive and intuitive way for customers to find answers on their own. Chatbots understand the customer’s questions and suggest the most relevant answer from your knowledge-base. Additionally, AI-enabled chatbots elevate the self-support experience by detecting intent and following up with the right question or message and thus provide a delightful customer experience.
– Offers instant resolutions
Chatbots that are built with automated workflows are capable of delivering resolutions to complex issues in the blink of an eye. By automating resolutions for frequently reported customer requests such as order reschedule or replacement requests, customer wait-times can be significantly reduced. In the example below, a Freddy-AI-powered chatbot is offering an instant resolution for a refund request:
– Provides a uniform experience across channels
Omnichannel support bots that can be deployed on websites, mobile applications, chat, and across popular messaging channels such as Facebook Messenger, or Apple Business help ensure that customers receive a consistent and uniform customer experience.
– Answers questions around the clock
Chatbots are available around the clock to offer real-time assistance in the medium that customers are most comfortable with – messaging. Chatbots never tire and can engage in customer interactions 24/7. Plus, chatbots that are deployed in different languages help ensure that language does not pose a barrier while interacting with customers.
#2 AI augments the role of customer service agents
There is a general concern around the impact AI will have on support teams – if you make customer support more efficient or outsource it to the robots, are you putting your current team out of a job?
However, in reality, agents have quickly adopted AI as they no longer need to spend time on manual tasks that they had to do before. AI is perfectly suited to automate repetitive tasks like surfacing documentation to customers for simple questions. Today’s agent-facing AI has evolved and can now automate complex backend workflows that involve cross-product activities such as updating the billing system according to recent account changes. Let’s find out more about the functionalities and benefits of using an agent-facing AI.
Top 3 ways in which AI augments the role of human agents
i) Provides personal assistance to every agent in the team
Empowering customer service representatives with the right support and resources can go a long way in improving their productivity and boosting their morale. An efficient way to enable support agents to get assistance and access to the required resources is through agent-facing-AI, specifically an AI-powered chatbot that’s popularly known as an ‘agent assist bot’.
The Freddy-AI-powered Assist Bot serves as an interactive self-service module that agents can use to find out the next best step or resource. You can also set up pre-configured flows that are tailored to different scenarios or groups on the Assist Bot. By doing this, you can ensure that support agents are able to find the right guidance at all times.
ii) Offers smart recommendations for each customer request
A majority of the customer queries that come in are repetitive in nature and the best way to tackle these frequently asked questions is to leverage solution articles or canned responses. However, searching for the right article or canned response from the respective content repositories can take up quite some time. Here’s where the agent-facing AI in customer service comes to the rescue.
AI scans through customer questions, identifies keywords, and suggests relevant solution articles/ canned responses that agents can add to the response in a single click. These intelligent recommendations help in lowering response and resolution times.
iii) Improves productivity by automating complex processes
There is no dearth of backend processes that support agents need to run on a daily basis. The most tedious ones require agents to log in to another tool such as CRM or order management software, and look up information to give the customer an update.
With robotic process automation (RPA), these lengthy and complex backend processes can be automated. RPA helps in saving an agent’s time and energy, and thus improves their productivity. Plus, with RPA connectors, an AI-powered feature, agents have access to execute these processes right within their helpdesk software. For instance, within Freshdesk, agents can use Robo Assist, to execute these processes at the click of a button.
Implementing automatic answers and routine task automation actually improves the agent experience by giving them more time to deliver amazing experiences at every interaction. This helps empower your team to do what they do best – be human. – Charles Myers
#3 AI makes the life of customer service admins and managers easier
As an admin or a manager, ensuring that each incoming ticket reaches the right agent is a top priority. So is tracking and measuring metrics that are a true reflection of agent as well as team performance. Luckily, AI has proven to be helpful with both these tasks.
How does AI benefit customer service admins and managers?
– Automatically classifies incoming tickets
Using natural language processing (NLP), AI can “read” a ticket and direct it to the right team instantly. AI and machine learning can derive quantitative data from the qualitative – much faster than humans can.
For example, Uber built an AI-system called COTA (Customer Obsessed Ticket Assistant) to help route tickets better and suggest answers to customer support agents. They found that better ticket routing increased efficiency by 10%. Plus, measuring customer satisfaction through surveys, they found that CSAT stayed consistent or improved through the implementation: “By empowering customer support agents to deliver quicker and more accurate solutions, COTA’s powerful ML models make the Uber support experience more enjoyable.”
The auto triage feature within Freshdesk automatically updates ticket properties, streamlines, and classifies incoming tickets. Auto-triage is a Freddy-AI-powered feature, so its recommendations are constantly improving.
– Prevents thank-you messages from reopening closed tickets
Most helpdesk solutions these days offer in-depth reporting and analytics. While these reports can be quite helpful, they might not offer an accurate picture of what really goes on in your helpdesk. For instance, when response and resolution times are calculated, thank-you messages are not excluded. When the ticket has been closed by an agent, the ‘thank-you’ message from the customer causes the closed ticket to reopen, and this affects the customer service metrics you measure.
With an AI-powered ‘thank you detector’, you can ensure that these messages do not cause the ticket to reopen.
#4 Customer service AI technology is vital to scaling businesses
Much of the hype around AI has been driven by big companies like banks crunching millions of requests every day, or even Uber’s example above. But the technology is becoming more accessible to every company as businesses of all sizes can see an advantage from AI too. If you’re a smaller company thinking about AI, look for something that’s very easy to set up (essentially plug-and-play) and integrate into your existing workflows.
3 reasons why AI is vital to your business
i) Improved customer engagement: Chatbots, as well as agent-facing AI, helps ensure that customers receive fast resolutions. The faster the resolutions, the happier your customers will be.
ii) Increase in agent productivity: Right from recommending the next best step or response to automating complex customer service processes – agent-facing chatbots offer everything agents need to resolve customer issues with minimal effort.
iii) Scale customer service while reducing costs: Businesses can rely on chatbots and AI in customer service to scale their customer service efforts without shelling out too much. For instance, PhonePe, a mobile payments app, records a 60% ticket deflection rate thanks to its customer service chatbot.
Coming across a single customer service solution that is beneficial to customers, agents, admins/managers, and the business is quite rare. By ensuring high customer satisfaction, increasing agent morale, and assisting management with scale, AI in customer service is proving to be a true game-changer for business.
If you’re on the lookout for AI solutions, then be sure to try Freddy AI for CX. This solution comes with a no-code bot builder that enables you to deploy smart customer-facing as well as agent-facing chatbots in no time, and takes your business to new heights!