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What is a Customer Service Chatbot (and why do you need one)?

What is a Customer Service Chatbot (and why do you need one)?

Discover how automating elements of your customer service using a customer service chatbot can deliver measurable impact for your business.

Businesses use AI chatbots and keyword chatbots to automate elements of their customer service, driving efficiencies and boosting customer satisfaction. Here we look at how to the benefits of a customer service chatbot, with examples and tips on getting started.

The benefits of chatbots in customer service

We took a quick look at some of the key chatbot business benefits in another post. Let’s now look specifically at the business benefits of using chatbots to automate aspects of your customer service.

Customer support around the clock

Chatbots work around the clock so that whenever a customer needs you, you can be there for them. In some cases, your customer’s specific issue may be so complex that it requires the attention of a human agent. There are ways a chatbot can help in this sort of situation, too.  

The Brazilian remittance company CambioReal set up a chatbot that helps customers contacting them outside office hours to schedule a text or call with an agent.

Instant resolution

Sometimes all your customer wants is a bit of simple information. When they can get this information quickly, it instantly resolves whatever issue they may have had. This leaves you with a satisfied customer

Chatbots can be programmed to provide this simple information that keeps your customers informed and satisfied.

Contextual customer service

Chatbots collect valuable information from interactions with your customers, and when this is paired with a contact center solution that can present this information to your agents, it gives your business the ability to provide contextual customer service

Several benefits are tied to this – from faster resolution and improved agent productivity, to higher agent job satisfaction and increased revenue from cross and upsell opportunities that come from having a full contextual view.

Customer service chatbot example

Both AI chatbots and simple keyword chatbots have a range of use cases in automated customer service to help you achieve the business benefits we just explored.

The main difference between rule-based and intent-based chatbots is in how customers interact with them. 

A rule-based, keyword chatbot provides a list of options that a user can choose from to progress their enquiry. Intent-based AI chatbots, on the other hand, create a conversational interaction with users by interpreting user intents and sentiment.

Using keyword chatbots for customer service

Chatbots that interact with customers using pre-defined rules can assist with simpler customer service queries.  

Users are presented with a list of options the rule-based keyword chatbots are programmed to assist with, after which they choose the right option for them by entering the corresponding keyword. 

Rule-based, keyword chatbots aren’t limited to only providing information, but can help customers to find and send precisely what customers are looking for.

Using AI chatbots for customer service

Customers can have perfectly natural conversations with an intent-based AI chatbot. The artificial intelligence that powers this experience recognizes customer intent and provides customer service in a way that seamlessly mimics the experience of conversing with a human agent. 

How to train an AI chatbot is best started by mapping the simplest and most frequent customer service enquiries.  

It is recommended to train intent-based AI chatbots with at least fifty variable phrases for every possible customer query. Because this is a large task, companies who provide chatbots will often offer either templates or professionals to help provide phrasing covering most common customer questions. 

The benefits far outweigh the challenges of development, however. Training an AI chatbot that speaks your branded tone of voice creates a consistent brand experience with a positive impact on CX.

Chatbots for contact center optimization

Pairing chatbots with human contact center agents optimizes contact centers by offloading more repetitive tasks on to chatbots, which they excel at. This frees up human agents to deal with more challenging tasks, which they revel in.

Doing this improves contact center quality by offering immediate first contact resolution for more common enquiries, and more helpful assistance for complex customer service needs.

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