The Gist

  • AI technology is interwoven with the customer experience. As tech continues to evolve, AI implementation continues to improve CX ventures.
  • Chatbots are a contact center's friend. Chatbots and other intuitive AI can help relieve the workload of contact center and CX employees.
  • New AI breakthroughs don't come without risk. Data privacy and depersonalization are two main pitfalls with AI in the CX space.

In our rapidly-evolving world, AI tools continue to be leveraged in customer service departments. Now, it's more important than ever to understand how these tools are creating successful business-customer relationships and accelerating customer service processes while being aware of the risks to customer relations if not used properly.

    AI Customer Service: What Is It and What Is Its Impact?

    AI, or artificial intelligence, is dominating customer service these days; we see conversational AI (CAI) integrating into daily customer interactions at unprecedented levels. As a result, customer service methods, technologies and processes are changing in ways not thought possible only a few years ago.

    Discourse around ChatGPT continues to grow as the software evolves. This type of AI is revolutionary in its ability to transform communication in all forms and can be a powerful tool in altering the ways businesses build that vital customer relationship. Call center teams are using specific AI tools like chatbots to secure measurable improvement in customer service levels of satisfaction. In fact, a recent report states that market revenue from call center AI will grow from $800 million in 2019 to around $2.8 billion by 2024.

    It may be helpful to view customer service centers as valuable focus hubs that retain customers and improve relationships. AI chatbots and complementary technology can undoubtedly help in these areas — 71% of customers answering a customer service survey said they are willing to use self-service solutions, provided they're easy to use. There’s no doubt that customers become frustrated if they can’t resolve questions, queries or issues quickly and easily, which is why AI can lend a helping hand in more than one way.

    Related Article: Kinder AI in the Contact Center: Best Ways to Improve Your AI Customer Support

    The Pros of AI in Customer Service

    Customer service interactions powered by AI deliver quick, accurate resolutions to customer service queries, thus achieving a greater improvement in customer service satisfaction levels. Conversational AI tools or AI chatbots can perform a multitude of tasks simultaneously, enabling employees to concentrate on the delivery of more complex workflows or strategic operations. For example, chatbots utilized in customer service can imitate natural language conversations while collating data and building knowledge through continued user interaction.

    AI technology can also support marketing departments to enhance their delivery of key information to stakeholders and customers alike. AI application tools can help to improve performance in the following areas:

    • Tracking and analyzing social media conversations and campaign efficacy.
    • Creating targeted content to serve customers across multiple contact sites.
    • Summarizing and distilling reports, data clusters and feedback chains.

    Most industry experts agree that there are proven positives for customer service teams and businesses as a whole when they include AI in customer methodology. It can also impact profit margins and future target setting, as a result of its efficiencies with data collation and analysis.

    Here are some ways that AI can help customer support improve and enhance customer service operations.

    Answer FAQs

    Your customers have questions. The faster these are answered, the better for your customers and business revenues. There are a wide variety of studies proving speed is the name of the game when it comes to maintaining customer satisfaction. And if AI chatbots are answering FAQs, your employees are empowered to solve any strategic issues or complexities that arise so that the communication and commercial processes are free-flowing.

    Personalized Support

    Any opportunity to make customers feel they are receiving a bespoke service should be taken without a beat. This is a golden ticket to brand loyalty and AI chatbots plus additional technologies can really help in this regard.

    Gathering and prioritizing personal data that delivers a more complete picture of your customer’s needs will enable you to create excellent customer service.

    Customer Service 24/7

    No matter what time your customers want help or wherever they are in the world, AI chatbots can respond and resolve foundational inquiries or create holding communication for more complex issues until an employee can take over.

    Learning Opportunities

    High Volume? No Problem

    Sometimes there are too many calls for employees to answer in a timely manner, but it's important your customers aren't on hold for too long. AI chatbots can step in straight away and deal with common questions or issues to relieve pressure on call center workers and deliver improved customer service as a result.

    Related Article: Connect Customer Service Reps With AI Automation for Contact Center Efficiency

    The Cons of AI Customer Service

    The risks with AI and its integration within customer service are widely accepted. Wise companies tread carefully, only instigating new technologies that can be proved to deliver confirmed results without endangering the customer-company relationship.

    Nevertheless, it’s always a good idea to be consistently aware of the pitfalls using new AI tools may create for your company. Knowing how your customers are impacted and respond to these tools is vital to your ongoing goal to challenge targets.

    Missing the Human Touch

    Customers generally prefer speaking to a real person in real-time over any other form of customer service contact. This means that when they do interact with AI-generated technology, customers may not feel heard or think that their issue has been resolved. Having customer service teams who can pick up these situations is vital for the promotion of good customer service.

    24/7 Human Monitoring

    With the constant availability of AI chatbots, companies risk human overtime work. Chatbots won’t always know how to resolve every issue and when to pass on more complex questions, so human employees will also have to work around the clock to ensure customer queries are dealt with appropriately.

    Security and Privacy Issues

    AI technologies are great at collecting and collating information, but customers have concerns about how safe their data is with your company. So how can you ensure this data stays safe and is not vulnerable to hackers? Using encryption and well-established security measures are two ways to reassure customers — and your company at large — that data is being stored effectively and safely.

    Customer Needs Come First

    Customer-focused businesses must prioritize responding to customer needs. If customers aren’t happy with your business's services, they can simply walk away and take their interests elsewhere. This has a major impact on the profitability, online reputation and viability of commercial companies today.

    At the end of the day, businesses need to leverage systems that refine and streamline their customer service processes to maintain and improve customer satisfaction levels. AI technologies can help with this, but it’s important to note that being listened to and having human contact when required are essential to overall customer happiness.

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