Written with input from Laura Broadhead, Yellow.ai.
Exceptional customer experience, commonly referred to as CX, is not just important in the Age of the Consumer – it’s necessary to compete and win. 74% of consumers are, at least somewhat, likely to buy based on experiences alone and will pay a 16% price premium for a great customer experience. On the flip side, $35.3B is lost every year by US businesses in customer churn due to avoidable customer experience issues. CX automation solutions that provide automated text and voice conversations are quickly opening new possibilities; innovative solutions such as Yellow.ai, a conversational AI platform, are becoming more important for differentiation in the customer experience space.
Additionally, companies are being challenged to deliver where, when, and how their customers prefer. With the arrival of social media platforms and new preferences for communicating, people are choosing to do business with companies that can meet them where they are. Meanwhile, companies still need to be efficient and control costs. CX automation is allowing businesses to meet this goal and drive engagement in an era of expanding expectations.
Here are some key considerations and steps you can take to start the process of deploying conversational AI to increase sales, improve service, and save money:
1. Start with the Business Need in Mind
To drive the most impact in the most rapid amount of time, businesses should look for high-win automation opportunities. For example, what are your customers’ most common questions, problems, or requests? Frequently, a few certain use cases account for a significant amount of inquiry volume. The ability to automate those FAQs, routine tasks, and redundant questions means improved customer satisfaction (CSAT) scores, a greater return on investment, and happier employees. It can be valuable to assess these areas before moving forward with implementing conversational AI to make sure that your use cases will deliver the greatest impact.
“It’s a common misconception customers want that ‘human touch,’ but in reality, consumers are just looking for the easy button. They really just want to have their question, order, payment, or update taken care of, and conversational AI can help you deliver that.” – Laura Broadhead
2. Look for Opportunities to Increase Operational Efficiency Through CX Automation
In the past, if you wanted to improve customer experience, it would usually require an increase in cost. Alternatively, if you tried to save money by moving your call center offshore, it would typically result in reduced customer satisfaction. One of the reasons digital automation is gaining momentum is that the data shows that it can deliver both increased operational efficiency and customer experience when deployed correctly. To maximize the use of this technology, look for opportunities where there is a desire to create operational efficiency and to improve your ROI and CSAT scores.
3. Align the Use Case with the Technology
Previous generations of chatbots often frustrated people because the solutions were very basic and lacked any real intelligence or conversational capabilities. It’s important to find the technology that can give your customers the experience they expect and enhance it by offering that technology on platforms on which they want to engage. Make sure you are choosing use cases that are going to give people a positive experience, match well with the technology’s capabilities, and support your long-term goals.
4. Leverage Omnichannel Communication and Context Awareness
In today’s environment, people are talking to companies in many ways. Omnichannel communication involves integrating different methods of communication so that a customer’s experience is seamless, timely, and centralized across all channels. The use of omnichannel communications leads to heightened data insights, operational efficiency, and customer satisfaction. On top of that, 80% of consumers are more likely to purchase more when brands offer personalized support. An omnichannel experience is needed to increase company value. Make sure your strategy and investment is going to work seamlessly for you and your customers across the important channels.
Additionally, make sure you are maximizing opportunities to leverage contextual awareness and deliver proactive prompts to customers. You can increase speed and support by understanding why your customer may be interacting. A few common examples include the following:
- A pharmacy asking if you’re calling for a prescription that is able to be refilled
- An airline asking if you’re calling regarding your upcoming flight to Boston
- A restaurant asking if you’re calling regarding your take-out order