The customer is always right. This saying has been around for quite some time, and for a good reason. It’s synonymous with the delivery of impeccable customer service, which has been proven to make loyal customers and increase revenue. But if customers are always right, why are we making them conform to our ways of doing things, instead of putting the control in their hands?
Many of today’s automated systems are doing just this–making customers conform to the technology, whether with menu trees or having to speak in a certain way to get things done. Instead, customer service should be put back into the control of the customers by leading with the simple question, “How can I help you?”
Without giving control to the customers, these interactions will feel time-consuming, confusing, and frustrating. I myself have spent too much time listening to all of the menu options only to find out that what I am calling about is actually not an option. Or, as I’m driving in my car and saying billing, and the system cannot seem to quite understand what I have said. Then I’m asked to repeat myself, and after numerous failed attempts, the system routes me to a long queue to wait for the next available agent.
There is a better way.
Today, businesses can leverage Conversational AI applications, such as virtual assistants, to automate tasks so that customers can get things done with increased efficiency and convenience. The difference with Conversational AI solutions versus traditional automated systems is that customers can communicate naturally, just like they would with a person, and be understood. This results in effortless interactions and stellar customer experiences.
So how can Conversational AI support the notion that the customer is always right?
1. Let the customer control the conversation
Conversational AI applications can communicate like a human by recognizing speech and text, understanding intent, deciphering different languages, and responding in a way that mimics human conversation. Because of this, the customer, not the technology, controls the conversation. The customer is not constrained to using certain words or speaking in a certain way. Instead, the technology conforms to what the human is saying, unlike automated systems that force customers to use certain words or phrases. This allows the customers to ask unprompted questions, pause the conversation, or completely change the focus of the conversation without the application coming to a complete halt.
2. Don’t complicate things
Perhaps the most frustrating part about customer service is wasted effort. For example, if you have to repeat yourself again and again (and again) because the automated system can’t access or correctly contextualize existing customer information. Don’t make your customers work for something that should be simple. Conversational AI applications allow for the context of the conversation to be carried from one channel to another, and for a conversation to be paused, then picked up and continued where it was left off. If a live agent is needed for a more complex issue, the context of the conversation can be passed to that agent who can continue to efficiently resolve the issue based on the information that has already been provided.
3. Let customers hear what they want
When I walk into my local coffee shop and the server asks me if I want the usual, I feel like I am getting white-glove treatment. Creating experiences like this make customers feel valued, which results in customer retention and increased loyalty. And while it’s relatively easy for a local coffee shop to create a personalized experience for their customers, it can be more difficult for large enterprises that get thousands of calls per day.
But scaling personalization is possible with a Conversational AI technology that can seamlessly integrate into backend systems and pull existing data to make every interaction a white-glove treatment. And the best part? Customers don’t mind if you know their data as long as it improves their customer experience. There is no need to ask customers for information that can be garnered from previous interactions and data. Successful Conversational AI applications incorporate context, personalization, and relevance that can create a better experience for your customers.
If the motto the customer is always right is in line with your business’ values, it’s important to have technology that can support that mission.The best Conversational AI applications offers customer control, effortless interactions, and personalized conversations which result in automated experiences that are indistinguishable from what could have been delivered by your best agent. This type of customer care at scale promotes loyalty and keeps people coming back.