Estimated to save USD 8 billion per annum by 2022, chatbots are completely transforming the way businesses connect with existing and prospective customers.
The last few years have seen a rapid surge in on-demand messaging that has shifted consumers’ way of communicating with brands. To provide superior customer service, more and more businesses today are integrating chatbots into their processes.
In specific industries where high-volume customer interaction is at the center of the business, such as banking, insurance, and healthcare, chatbots have been complete game-changers. They help save over 4 minutes on average per customer inquiry, compared to the executives answering the calls, with a high success rate per interaction.
In this article, we will explore the key benefits of chatbots for both businesses and customers, along with the factors to take into consideration while building powerful chatbots.
Benefits Of Chatbot For Businesses
There are numerous benefits to using chatbots, and it largely depends on how businesses and stakeholders can leverage them to enhance the customer’s experience.
Here are some of the top benefits of using a chatbot to improve your business efficiency:
1. Cost Savings
With a fiercely competitive business landscape today, businesses’ need for a robust customer service department is consistently rising. Implementing powerful chatbots allows companies to manage a massive amount of customer queries in relatively short periods.
Although chatbot implementation requires a certain amount of investment, this is significantly lower than the traditional customer service model that includes infrastructure, salaries, training, and multiple other resources.
Research also suggests that businesses every year spend nearly $1.3 trillion to service almost 265 billion customer requests, and chatbots can help businesses save up to 30%! Chatbots help businesses optimize their costs without compromising their customer service quality. Chatbots can –
- Automate day to day business processes and allow the customer support team to concentrate on more complex queries
- Systematically scale their chat support during peak hours to deliver quality support and enhance customer satisfaction
- Enable multiple new customer service models to help increase brand face value and credibility
2. Offer Website Visitors Contextual, AI-Driven Support
Contrary to the popular belief that a chatbot’s main benefit is just answering queries and offering customer support, chatbots can provide value-driven, contextual support that can assist businesses significantly.
An AI chatbot uses the data to provide a personalized experience to the users. These chatbots go much beyond just answering pre-programmed questions that every customer will experience in a precisely similar way.
3. Better Analysis of Customer Data
With the help of chatbot analytics, businesses can analyze how well the bot performs in terms of successful business outcomes and sales generated and detailed insights on how people engage with the business and what they are asking for.
Apart from this, chatbots are flexible in their approach and allow businesses to serve their clients on almost every platform. It’s quite simple and easy to adopt a chatbot to various platforms and integrate them into your existing IT infrastructure.
4. Enhances Customer Engagement And Sales
Customer engagement is the critical requirement to boost your sales and keep your customers engaged, and chatbots are an excellent tool for this. Research suggests that businesses that successfully engage with their customers can increase the customer spend by almost 20% to 40%!
These chatbots’ flexible structure makes them super easy to integrate with other systems, increasing customer engagement in return. An excellent example of this would be getting reservations online. As soon as the customer starts communicating with the chatbot and shows interest in booking, the chatbot immediately leads them to the booking page in an attempt to close the sale.
This kind of quick and hassle-free experience leaves the customer happy and satisfied. Further, due to chatbots’ programmed nature, they sound more natural and human-like, making the customer’s experience more positive and pleasant.
5. Better Lead Generation, Qualification & Nurturing
A chatbot is equipped to ask necessary and relevant questions, persuading the customers, and generating leads quickly. It ensures that the conversation flow is in the right direction to get higher conversion rates.
Apart from generating leads, another benefit of chatbot is that chatbots can help you qualify leads through identified KPIs, including timeline, budget, relevancy, resources, and more, to prevent you from dealing with time-consuming leads.
6. Bots Save A Great Deal Of Time
One of the benefits of chatbots is that chatbots empower businesses and save time by solving basic queries. Only the complex queries that need human input are directed to the executives on the support team.
Chatbots do this by quickly resolving customers’ questions and automating information-based queries so that support staff can spend more time on crucial issues that need human support, reducing operational costs, time and manpower significantly.
7. Massive Range Of Possible Applications
One of the distinct advantages of chatbots for businesses is that they offer a wide range of applications and are not limited to the single-use case of answering customer questions.
Some of these everyday use cases of chatbots include –
- Marketing: Chatbots can be used for multiple marketing activities, including lead generation, data collection, increased custom interaction, and product consulting.
- Sales: Helps in the qualification of leads and supports throughout the sales funnel.
- Customer Service: Assists in answering FAQs and offers dedicated support in case of problems.
- IT Service Helpdesk: Offers support for internal or external service desk applications.
8. Applicable To Multiple Industries
Regardless of the industry, chatbots today are beneficial to every type of business and industry out there. In specific, there are a few industries that are more likely to be revolutionized from AI-based chatbots. Some of these are –
There are multiple benefits of chatbots in the healthcare industry, including booking appointments, refilling prescriptions, and sending medical details. Additionally, these chatbots can also provide medical assistance to patients to monitor their health periodically and remind patients to take medicines.
- Banking & Financial Sector
Chatbots offer an excellent way to revolutionize the heavily transactional activities of banks and financial institutions. One of the benefits of chatbots in banking is answering customer questions about online banking and giving them information about account opening, card loss, and branches in various locations.
There are several benefits of chatbots in education, such as intelligent tutoring systems and a personalized learning environment for students. Additionally, chatbots can also analyze a student’s response and how well they learn new material or assist in teaching students by sending them lecture material in the form of messages in a chat.
Implementing chatbots in HR and recruiting can help in multiple ways by automating each recruiting process stage. Right from searching for candidates, evaluating their skills, and informing them if they are qualified for a particular job posting, the uses of chatbots are many.
Another important industry for chatbot application is retail and e-commerce. For instance, businesses can use retail chatbots to answer customer questions while they shop online, offering more personalized product recommendations, streamlining the sales process or helping customers search for a product, place an order, make payment for it, and track the delivery.
- Travel & Tourism
Chatbots are quite popular in the travel and tourism industry. Chatbots in the travel industry can answer questions about bookings by offering their visitors information on how to get there or the current weather conditions.
What Are The Benefits Of Chatbots For Your Customers?
Among the vital chatbot benefits to customers include –
Chatbots are available round the clock to solve customers’ queries. Chatbots allow maintaining a continuous stream of communication between the seller and the customer without having the customers wait for the next available operator for minutes.
Unlike an operator who can focus on only a single customer at a time for query resolution, a chatbot can simultaneously and instantly manage and answer queries of thousands of customers.
One significant benefit of chatbots is that they can be programmed to answer customer queries in their language. Multilingual bots enable your business to tap into new markets while, at the same time, personalizing the experience for your audience.
Today, most businesses operate with an omnichannel model by selling across platforms, including their website, Facebook, etc. AI chatbots offer an effortless and straightforward way for customers to communicate with their business through various platforms such as Facebook Messenger and other social media channels.
Consistency in Answers
For a perfect chatbot, consistency in answers is vital. It allows the bot to keep the flow, input, and output formats consistent throughout the customer conversation.
Chatbots offer an interactive one-on-one experience to the customers. Chatbots converse with customers casually and naturally, which imparts a personal feel to your brand.
Chatbots offer a seamless and streamlined customer experience as changing or querying records is almost instant for bots, improving customer satisfaction.
Key Factors To Determine The Effectiveness Of Chatbots
When it comes to successful chatbot architecture, below are some of the quantitative KPIs (key performance indicators) which allow you to evaluate the effectiveness of your chatbot and the way its target audience uses it –
1. Choosing The Right Channel
The importance of choosing the right channel in determining the effectiveness of your chatbot is immense. Picking the wrong channel puts you at the risk of alienating customers who expect a fixed set of functions from their virtual assistant based on the website or social media account they are using. You can have the chatbot on different channels like your website, app, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp Business API, SMS, and more.
2. User Adoption & Retention Rate
Retention and adoption are two of the most important metrics in determining the effectiveness of chatbots. They help you know how many users in the target population interact with chatbots for the first time, how many of them come back after the initial visit, and more.
3. Building An Internal Knowledge Base
It is essential to build a knowledge base or a knowledge graph to ensure that your customer service chatbot answers customer queries as comprehensively and independently as possible. It puts the information into context and gives it a certain meaning. It enables your bot to provide concrete answers and solve all your customers’ problems.
4. Bounce Rate
The bounce rate largely corresponds to the volume of user sessions that fail to result in your chatbot’s intended or specialized use. A higher bounce rate indicates that your chatbot isn’t being consulted on subjects that are more relevant to its area of competence. It also means that you should update its content or restrategize its placement in the customer experience.
5. Developing A Chatbot Strategy
It is important to consider the purpose of your chatbot beforehand. For example, whether you want your chatbot to offer product recommendations or provide users with information about nearby tourist attractions. It is best to prepare a list of possible use cases that answer the following questions –
- What are the specific situations where your chatbot should be used?
- Where can your chatbot add real value for customers and employees?
- Which is the target group that the chatbot is aimed at?
- What channels should the chatbot be used in?
Technology today is evolving at break-neck speeds, offering businesses multiple opportunities to market their brands and enhance the customer experience. A chatbot is one of the most prominent technologies among these advancements.
Chatbots are industry-agnostic and can be implemented across different verticals. Chatbots not only help you save costs but, at the same time, ensure a superior customer experience that helps set your business apart.
At Maruti Techlabs, we have worked with companies worldwide to implement custom chatbot solutions that have scaled their operations and brought an unmatched ROI. Our chatbot solutions automate your customer support and lead generation processes and integrate seamlessly with your existing systems.