Over the next few years, you will see chatbots becoming an ever-present component of the customer service experience. From sales teams to marketing strategies, artificial intelligence will be involved.
As business comes to embrace messaging applications to complement or reduce human engagement, rudimentary human-to-human chatbot conversations will soon be a thing of the past, according to experts in the field. In the next three to five years alone, chatbots will become nearly universal, and work seamlessly with human customer service agents to provide customers with efficient, personalised responses.
Though chatbots have been around since the release of ELIZA in 1966, vast amounts of data and enhanced artificial intelligence capabilities have pushed the technology into the mainstream commercial space in the last few years, creating a hybrid experience between human customer service agents and bots.
New technology such as natural language prcessing and cognitive processing are improving these bots through a rapid curve, while engineers are still looking for solutions to help Artificial Intelligence learn faster on less data.
Salesforce first launched an SMS chatbot product in 2014, and has since expanded it to include Facebook Messenger. The company also offers a product called Live Agent Chat, which facilitates human-to-human interactions.
“Salesforce believes fundamentally that bots are going to be complementing your live staff,” said Meredith Flynn-Ripley, vice president of mobile messaging at Salesforce.
“We really see bots as changing the job description and turning agents into intelligent problem solvers.”
The Tech Team at Ignite Alliance are certified Saleforce Engineers and as a certified Salesforce Partner Agency, build Sales Funnel, Process and CRM solutions for customers daily. And with the development of their new AI powered Chatbot, are able to integrate this into these very systems to enhance the benefits even further.
Flynn-Ripley described a future in which bots take over in “micro-moment exchanges” to relieve agents from doing tasks that “they don’t even like doing.” This could be as simple as information gathering, like asking a customer for their name and account number. But it could also look more like a conversational assistant, who gets smarter over time and can provide suggestions based off of data.
While the majority of customer service interactions are still over the phone, Flynn-Ripley said that call centres could soon undergo big changes as more companies embrace chat as the most natural way to interact.
Call centres will become even less popular as customer service converts into digital interactions. Chatbots will enhance the experience by carrying out micro-tasks and automatic replies, greatly assisting their human drivers, while very unlikely replacing them entirely.
“We often see the voice calls go down in a matter of weeks, and customer satisfaction go up,” Flynn-Ripley said of new customers.
“There’s now an expectation that there should be automated bots.”
Messaging applications have become the top destination for brands to reach consumers; it's no surprise why chatbots have become so popular. By implementing a chatbot into your marketing strategies, you'll be able to learn more about your audience, tailor your marketing efforts and customer service, reach new consumers and monetise your website.
Since adding Artificial Intelligence to our client's website to support their sales team, we have already converted 10-12 leads within a 2-week period. All in which converted after business hours!