To not be leveraging the currently popping technological marvel like Artificial Intelligence is akin to committing a crime. Is this an exaggeration? Hardly. More so amplification of the outcome – or the lack thereof – that could cause your business practices to grow and evolve in a geometrical progression had you decided to give AI a fair shot.
Lucky for you, all is not lost yet. As AI cloud computing expands and becomes more powerful, so do the areas where it can be employed. Customer experience just so happens to be that overhauled territory with the most research and potential.
We can already witness how the 2011 study by Gartner predicting that by 2020, 85% of customer relationships will be handled without humans is coming to life. AI-powered email suggestions that show up while you’re crafting that email and chatbots programmed to execute complex transactions in a matter of seconds are just the tips of the iceberg.
With over 50% of businesses are now turning to deep learning AI technology to improve their customer experience, it’s no wonder companies are investing millions – and some, billions – into data analysis in hopes to find the best ways to use the new tech phenomenon to their advantage.
Leading areas where AI is causing major CX-oriented transformations
To incorporate AI solutions into the customer experience your business provides, you have to ensure that these three variables – data unification, live insights, and prompt interactions – are a part of your company’s common practice.
Researchers at IDC discovered that 30% of customers will never return to the company that didn’t prioritize customer service. The number is high enough to prompt you to reevaluate the customer relationships your business stands by and consider taking a closer look at how they can be refined with the help of the magic tool that AI is.
To get started, check out how disruptive AI already is:
1. It uses data algorithms to personalize recommendations
Data is king, and so using it to attract customers who are genuinely interested in your offering is a smart thing to do. Let’s face it – poorly positioned targeting is not only a waste of money but also a deteriorated reputation. And this is a no-go in the competitive business landscape.
Being the forecasted trend for 2021, personalization isn’t going anywhere. If anything, it’s only starting to gain momentum in the CX realms where marketing is one of the most-funded practices.
To make use of the analytics, AI takes customer behavior like the time spent browsing a web page, the number of clicks and the searches made on it, and the abandoned cart instances to predict what the shopper might enjoy viewing and purchasing in the future.
Sounds simple, but as we know by now, all genius is simple. It takes assessing the needs of potential customers and tailoring the offer to them to improve your brand’s CX and sales KPIs, too.
2. It makes contactless transactions possible
On the topic of customers’ needs, it seems like the area where some of the most significant AI-based changes can be made is finances. From resolving client complaints to enabling contactless transactions, the possibilities of payment automation are endless.
Is there a way to simplify – or, rather, make it effortless for customers to shop till they drop while simultaneously minimizing the risk of encountering payments fraud? Absolutely. Digital payments with encryption, mobile wallets with two-factor authentification, wireless transfers enabled via the provision of personal information details, you name it – AI can add (and already is adding) a layer of security that isn’t otherwise applicable.
This is great news – in the fast-paced world of today, the quicker customers act on their impulse, the higher are the chances of them actually going through with the purchase. Thanks to Apple Pay, Transferwise, and Coinbase, they can do so while remaining satisfied with the company experience. It’s a win-win.
3. It takes away some of the pressure from customer service reps
Our overly digital era is both a blessing and a curse. It allows us to receive prompt answers to our queries but it also puts businesses in a position where they have to always be ‘on’. Customer service representatives are the ones who carry most of the burden.
With AI, this pressure is lifted. Real-time interactions can take place without the need for a human – most likely someone from the customer support team – to be quickly typing the response in the middle of the night. Chatbots are swiftly taking over.
You can program, say, your company’s Facebook Messenger to send customers personalized responses and refer them to your FAQ page that would answer their inquiry. The same can be done with a pop-up Live Chat window on the company’s website where customers can receive the required help in a matter of minutes.
If you’re thinking that this automation possible thanks to AI application is going to dehumanize your business, this isn’t nearly the case. Invesp confirmed that 40% of customers simply don’t care if there’s a real human behind the screen or the chatbot that’s helping them as long as they get what they came for.
4. It gives way to visual, auditory, and over-the-text engagements
Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, and Google Assistant are just the beginning of what the AI-rich future holds. Continuously evolving – and acquiring features like human-sounding voice and quickly-responsive facial identification – they are already setting the bar for the business world that would benefit from highly-interactive CX.
In the context of customer experience, Artificial Intelligence can use visual cues, the tone of the voice, and sentiments expressed via text to give companies an in-depth look into the customers’ behaviour.
Whether it is chords recorded in the customer’s voice or his facial expressions, AI neural network will then analyze the data to suggest the most favourable communication style that should be used based on each individual. No third party needed.
The result? Increased customer satisfaction rates and lifetime value that could otherwise require a lot more effort from the business.
AI is the go-to business companion for automating your CX
Data-backed growth is the strongest suit of Artificial Intelligence. If we’re talking about big data, the odds of successfully incorporating it into customer support with the help of AI increase exponentially.
And this is where the machine learning power lies – in the automation of the decision-making that occurs in every industry. Take the financial sector, educational institutions, service industry, e-commerce – the list goes on – the need for efficient customer service that would lead to an exceptional customer experience is universal.
But beyond that, AI-powered solutions are the backbone of healthy competition. When all else is equal, businesses turn to technology to differentiate themselves from others. Here’s where companies that employ AI learning can shine and, as a result, improve their customer experience and gain a loyal customer base, too.
About the Author:
Mikkel Andreassen, Customer Experience Manager at Dixa. Mikkel is passionate about customer experience in every color of the beautiful customer engagement spectrum. He loves building great connections with his customers, which often lead to meaningful friendships that last a lifetime and inspire his work. Driven by the genuine belief that CX is the pivotal force that drives a successful business, he is currently at the helm of Dixa’s customer experience strategy.