The transition from email to chatbots for customer support creates a gap in the customer experience. We believe the ideal experience for any customer is a fine balance between a trained chatbot and an intelligent human.
Today, chatbots may be the first experience a customer has with your business, so making a good impression is imperative. When properly trained, chatbots are great at welcoming visitors, quickly providing basic information, and answering simple questions. But once complicated issues arise and customers require more information or support, chatbots usually fall short.
You might have experienced this firsthand when interacting with a chatbot. You're looking for an answer to a specific question, but instead you’re given an unhelpful answer about something only slightly related. Or maybe you’ve had a lengthy conversation with a bot only to find a dead end and you receive a message like “For help with this topic, please email firstname.lastname@example.org”. What a waste of time!
No wonder 46% of a recent survey’s respondents believed that chatbots are used to keep them away from live agents. Bots are only trained for so many scenarios, and sometimes instead of giving you the correct answer or sending you to someone who could help, they can leave you frustrated and annoyed.
That’s why chatbots are best utilized when working alongside and complimenting your human team. Chatbots are great tools, but don’t let their limited capabilities be the reason your customers have a bad experience. Instead, let them enhance interactions and empower your live agents to provide an amazing customer experience.
My Friends Are Human
For the more complex requests where a human should be involved, chatbots can be set up to connect customers with the most relevant team member. Businesses that understand the benefit of a chatbot and human combination, may think of their bot as a smart receptionist that receives requests, then directs customers to the right place. And if your chatbot can ask questions while directing these requests, your team will have context and be able to assist customers more easily for a better experience.
For example, imagine you have a furniture company and a customer contacts you to change when their patio set is being delivered. You wouldn’t then pass them over to your website’s tech support team, would you? Of course not! So instead of having them connect with the wrong team, use your bot to determine their need and send them over to the delivery team.
Your bot could also collect their order number and confirm their address so the live agent can efficiently and quickly provide them with the information and solution they need for an improved experience.
Around the Clock Service
As well as directing customers to the right person, chatbots can also help improve the experience by being there when humans are not. One thing we humans love about chatbots is that they don’t need to eat or sleep. In fact, 64% of internet users say that 24-hour service is the best chatbot feature.
Outside of your live team’s office hours, chatbots will still be there to answer incoming requests on your website. They can provide visitors with information, answer simple questions, and even help customers schedule meetings so your sales team can come back the next day to a full calendar.
Using TABLE, businesses can engage customers 24/7 using automated Appointments that will connect them to the right team or team member.
Even during working hours, your team might be particularly busy or you might be short staffed. Chatbots can help lighten the load by fielding the simple questions with pre-programmed answers in order to free up your human agents to assist with more complex questions and situations. Chatbots can also simultaneously handle far more requests than a human agent, making them an efficient and scalable way for customers to interact with your company online.
In addition to handling requests from website visitors, bots are also great for automating some of your processes. Your bot should be dynamic and do more than just recite pre-programmed answers. When they can, bots should be utilized to carry out tasks in a conversational way. Processes can be human-driven, but bringing a chatbot into the conversation to facilitate tasks like agreement acceptances and payment flows can help create a simple and seamless experience.
Let’s return to our furniture store example. Your chatbot answers some basic questions from a website visitor about purchasing a dining table, then passes the conversation on to one of your furniture experts who closes the deal. The customer wants the table delivered, so your expert pulls the bot into the conversation again to guide the customer through a scheduling flow.
The customer then says she’d like to upgrade to white glove delivery which incurs an extra fee. The expert has the bot enter a credit card field into the conversation for the customer to complete. The combination of the human agent’s expertise and the convenience that the bot provides by automating processes like scheduling delivery and collecting payments results in a better customer experience.
TABLE Customers can simply connect their Stripe account and seamlessly integrate a payments Experience directly into Conversations.
It’s All About Teamwork
Don’t rely on your chatbot to be your customers’ primary resource; let them be the tool that enables your live team to provide a wonderful experience. Your chatbots and your humans are most powerful when working together.
Are you looking for a better way to engage and collaborate with your customers? Click the button below to start a conversation with a CX Advisor at TABLE.
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