With the rise of e-commerce titans like Amazon, eBay, Walmart, the retail industry has witnessed a...
Surging Requests in Customer Service? Conversational AI to the Rescue!
Altrove at 9?’
Nina saw her phone’s screen light up with the notification. And for a split second, her eyes lit up unlike from the icy blue glare of her computer screen.
But she knew she couldn’t afford the luxury of clicking it open.
There were still 50 tickets blinking red on her system, and she was already doing two hours over her usual clock.
Customer request volumes had snowballed in the past few weeks, from a few thousand a days to thousands by the hour. And she could not have acknowledged the unexpected flood with a sharper urgency.
The 6 in her 6 o’clock had started looking viciously inverted to her. She couldn’t imagine leaving her desk before 9 off late.
*I need my trip cancelled. Could you please help me with that?’*
‘Pack up, Nina. Just in time before another ticket bobs its tiny annoying head out of this pixelated window to unload its urgency upon whatever life you still have remaining.’
‘Sure! Please wait while I look up your details.’
Her eyes scanned the chat boxes for history, quickly flitting from one to the next, as her fingers typed away at the keys in a great hurry. She felt like the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland. Only she didn’t know what Duchess awaited her at the other end of this rabbit hole.
*Please cancel my flights and let me know when I am getting my refund.*
*Please reschedule my trip for the next month.*
*Hey, can you tell me is it safe to travel to Germany right now?*
Blinking red. Indefinitely.
She felt like sending out an SOS.
When Your ‘Helpdesk’ Needs help
Unforeseen tremors sending disruptions around the world could happen to shake your business just as well abruptly.
It begins at your business’s first point of contact with the customer – ‘customer support’.
A sudden, unprecedented spike in request numbers could catch your team off-guard if they are not geared with the right tools and resources to keep up with the business.
IBM’s conversational AI platform, Watson Assistant, witnessed a sudden 40% surge in traffic post the outbreak of pandemic between Feb-April.
Without technology to aid or empower, teams cannot scale fast enough to deal with uncertainty. Queries will swell up in your ‘live chat’ boxes in alarming numbers, and your support agents won’t know how to offer help to the customer speedily enough that it matters.
Finding themselves startlingly underprepared to tackle such overwhelming challenges, they’ll stress out, only to falter at their own ability to hear the customer out, empathize with their worry, diagnose their pain points, and resolve their problems.
What’s worse, the agents could end up passing on their frustration to the customers themselves.
AI chatbots can help your teams manage surging request numbers with automation.
AI-powered chatbots interact with the customer naturally. They are capable of engaging in a human-to-human-like conversation with the customer, instantly, across platforms, and 24/7, to provide seamless support.
These chatbots leverage advanced Natural Language Processing that makes them (inherently cool! and) proficient at understanding the users’ requests in their preferred language.
They are quick to integrate with your CRM and extract all the data about the customer lifecycle stage, purchase history, past requests, and more to reference it in real-time and provide personalized chat responses.
How such an AI can help with apocalyptic chat traffic
AI chatbots can empower your support team by shouldering their burden of carrying out mechanical, mundane tasks like sending repetitive responses all day. This allows them time and headspace to realign themselves with their real goals of actually resolving critical customer issues, ensuring customer happiness, and preventing the threat of misinformation. Chatbots can reduce the manual effort for support representatives by around 60-80% so that they can instead polish their core competencies with a sharper focus and drive the best-in-breed customer experience.
However, a common fear among businesses is if using bots will take away the human touch from their customer interaction.
AI chatbots assist support agents and not eliminate them. Leveraging an AI chatbot means increasingly more volumes of queries getting resolved in the first contact.
An AI chatbot leverages Sentiment Analysis to gauge if the customer is satisfied with its response. If a chatbot does not understand a query or sees that a customer is unhappy, it immediately escalates the conversation to a support agent. Its activity is continuously supervised by the agent so that it can continue to learn from every interaction, increasingly honing its accuracy and ability to solve customer problems.
How your business can adopt the technology in a few, short, easy steps
AI chatbots are quick and simple to blend into existing contact centre operations through an easy-to-use and intuitive UI.
Your support agents just need to select from thousands of pre-built skills and configure responses in tune with your communication guidelines and customer expectations to ensure clear and consistent answers. The bots with omnichannel support integrate with much ease with any customer support software you’re using.
You may want to customize the look and feel of the chatbot to make it truly and uniquely yours. A friendly UI lets you structure that information in minutes – carousels, product images, weblinks, and everything. And before you even know it, the bot is live on your website, messaging platforms, and mobile and portal applications, across use cases and channels, to deliver the right information at the right time!
Automating a massive 80% of customer queries with personalized responses for each one of them, amid a burgeoning volume of incoming requests, couldn’t get easier. And for all that extra time on her hands to work and live more rewardingly, Nina wouldn’t mind learning the ropes around the transition.