We live in a time where you can click purchase on an online shopping order one day, and expect to receive the item in the mail the next. Speed, quality, and service are expected at every stage of the customer journey, regardless of the responsible party. To meet this expectation, in the past few years transportation and logistics (T&L) providers have had to change the way they do business.
There was a time when T&L companies were focused on simply getting the item delivered. The speed of the delivery was a secondary priority. But today, companies have the added pressure to create a seamless customer experience and increase the speed of delivery under any circumstance.
Meeting these expanding demands while not driving up operating costs has become a challenge for T&L providers and has driven the adoption of new technologies, like Conversational AI.
Why Conversational AI?
Conversational AI enables easier communication between businesses and their customers. The implementation of a Conversational AI application, like an Intelligent Virtual Assistant (IVA), can enable automated self-service such as real-time tracking, outbound notifications, and offer a personalized omnichannel experience to every customer. In addition to improving customer experience and meeting high consumer expectations, Conversational AI applications can also help T&L companies increase efficiency and reduce costs.
Improve Customer Experience
One of the major disruptions, and challenges, to the T&L industry, is the pressure put on by the industries top providers who can promise consistent 1-2 day shipping. Now customers expect all providers to meet this timeframe. Delivering high quality and fast shipping can seem daunting for T&L companies, but Conversational AI can help. An IVA powered by Conversational AI can provide busy consumers a way to self-serve across all channels with a consistent, high-quality experience. Customers can access real-time, accurate delivery status updates and end-to-end transparent tracking on the channel of their choice. They can also receive outbound notifications to keep them up-to-date and ensure customer satisfaction. Drivers can also seamlessly update customers on changes to their delivery, ensuring transparency and avoiding the inevitable frustration when there are delays or unexpected shifts in delivery schedules.
Customer’s expectations do not waiver with bad weather or external circumstances. In order to continue delivering high-quality customer service despite these interruptions, T&L companies need the ability to quickly ramp-up to handle volume surges due to seasonal shopping spikes, weather-related shipping delays, or unpredictable events, like the pandemic. An IVA scales quickly to accommodate unpredicted volume without the need to train or hire additional agents. This can be particularly useful under circumstances where employees may not be able to physically go to the workplace, like we saw earlier this year.
Providing fast shipping time frames and an efficient customer experience is costly for T&L companies. When done improperly, there are inefficiencies in both the process and customer experience, and also from a financial perspective. An IVA holds up customer expectations for access to accurate information when waiting for packages without the costs of having to train and retain additional human agents.
Logistics providers have a huge opportunity to use Conversational AI to improve customer experience and efficiency while reducing costs. When done right, Conversational AI applications can improve your customer experience and provide T&L companies with a competitive advantage, helping them to keep and win future business.
Today, the most successful logistics businesses are the ones that have been able to become leaders in positive last-mile CX, resulting from a focus on digital transformation strategy. To learn more about how to drive customer loyalty in last-mile delivery through a better CX, download this eBook.