Five reasons why chatbots should be part of your frontline strategy

Teams are constantly being asked to do more with less. For many smaller companies, the same people often cover sales, customer service, and billing.

Chat was supposed to relieve some of this pressure since, as a channel, chat is more efficient than phone calls and emails. However, staffing live chat full-time can be challenging.

Many companies invested in a chat solution in order to better support clients and capture more leads. But how they manage chat can spell the difference between exceptional and terrible customer experiences. Why? Customers expect immediacy and expertise when it comes to chat. They will wait less than 1 minute too hear back after sending a chat and their threshold for dead end loops is low.

Even companies with dedicated, full-time chat teams are hard-pressed to support every single request. Unifying human resources with chatbots in the right way is a match made in Client Experience (CX) heaven.  

An intelligent mix of chatbots and humans is the key

Achieving a perfect record of zero missed conversations is a sizable goal. While most teams either try to staff chat with sales and support teams, others rely too heavily on costly AI solutions. Keep in mind that customers want to use live chat. Quality, live conversations are the goal for clients and businesses alike.

SnapEngage found that 11% of all conversations are missed or do not happen in real-time. This is the equivalent to a customer calling and emailing, but never hearing back. Missing over 10% of conversations means loss of sales, decreased customer satisfaction and negative brand recognition.

That’s where chatbots come in. As a first line of defense, chatbots guarantee responses. Unlike human agents who need coffee breaks, bots work tirelessly and can answer unlimited site visitor requests. The best companies are setting up chatbots for the most repetitive tasks, while routing to human agents when needed.

A healthy combination of chatbots and humans provide a seamless and valuable customer experience. If set up properly, bots can be trusted to handle interactions, even when human availability is limited. All interactions deserve a response. Here are five reasons why chatbots should be part of your frontline strategy.

1. Chatbots as automated assistants

  • Bots can ask predefined questions to uncover customer needs. Bots can then route conversations to the appropriate team member, department, or offline option (like an email address, CRM, or Help Desk)

2. More valuable conversations, more often

  • Breaks for humans is a good thing. Breaks for bots are unnecessary. Not only do bots provide unlimited support, but they are not limited to 1-2 conversations at a time. While humans can focus on only a few conversations at a time, bots can manage unlimited chats. They can then send the higher value conversations to a live human agent.

3. Answers to frequently asked questions

  • As many as 80% of customer questions are repetitive, quick and frequently asked questions. 
  • 64% of consumers and 80% of business buyers said they expect companies to respond to and interact with them in real time.
  • Consider how invaluable instant interactions are. Is the best solution a radical increase in headcount in customer-facing departments, or the deployment of uchatbots and other AI-powered technology?

4. Guides to the best next step

  • Having multiple communication channels doesn’t have to mean scattered conversations. Just as humans track client journeys, so can skilled chatbots. The best chatbots can track conversations across channels (like Twitter and Facebook)
  • Well-configured chatbots are always prepared for the next step, whether the visitor needs routing to a live human with a specific skill set, a prospect is ready for a product demonstration, or a technical action needs to trigger (like a password reset). 
  • Integrations are key. The best chatbots can send additional questions (along with the chat transcript) to a Help Desk or CRM for follow-up.
  • Chatbots that learn from conversations will always have an edge. Where are clients getting stuck? Perhaps some documentation is unclear or missing. The top chatbots uncover these insights.

5. No downtime

  • Customer expectations have changed. Customers already expect to have products or services available at all times. That same expectation is now manifesting in client engagement. Instant interactions mixed with exceptional customer service is the new way to win at client success.
  • Real-time responses are the new normal. As business leaders try to understand their customers and provide instant answers, they must have a strategy for staffing chat.
  • Chatbots provide a constant, valuable and inexpensive way to automate certain tasks so that your human talent can focus on more complex issues and opportunities.

Use chatbots to retain and grow

If done right, chatbots build powerful experiences that help customers stay connected to brands. Supercharge retention and expansion efforts by providing flexible, customizable chatbot solutions.

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