Automated customer service refers to any type of user assistance that uses tools to automate workflows or tasks.
Virtual assistants, such as chatbots, are a popular form of customer service automation and use pre-defined rules or Artificial Intelligence (AI) to help customers quickly solve problems, whether it’s locating store opening hours, change an order, or locate the customer’s file.
These tools take advantage of people’s growing preference for voice and text systems, and the ease with which users now speak with “digital voices” through voice-activated devices.
Fundamentally, they can be implemented in the communication channels preferred by customers, serving users where they are already making their inquiries.
The State of Customer Service Automation
Automating customer service is helping companies achieve results such as a 30% reduction in costs, a 39% increase in customer satisfaction, and 14x higher sales.
With these kinds of results, it’s no wonder automated tools like chatbots are set to account for 70% of customer interactions in 2022.
What Are the Advantages of Automated Customer Service?
1) Always-on Support
A key benefit of automation is that 24/7/365 customer service can be offered, regardless of users’ location, circumstances, or time zones.
Unlike live agents, automation tools are not limited by call center opening hours and allow customers to quickly self-service simple issues, often without the need to involve contact center agents.
This is why automation is particularly useful for managing, for example, frequently asked questions (FAQs), freeing up agents to tackle more complex aspects of customer service.
2) Lower Operating Costs
Automation dramatically improves operational efficiency and reduces customer service costs.
3) Time and Efficiency
Automation allows you to handle more queries and quickly execute tasks that would be difficult and time-consuming to do manually. This allows agents to handle more strategic tasks and complex user questions.
At the same time, automation enables customers to quickly get the answers they need, with less effort on their part.
This is important when you consider that respect for people’s time is considered one of the most important factors in delivering a positive customer experience (CX).
4) Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty
Faster response times, shorter resolution times, consistent support at multiple touch points – these automation results are key to delivering a positive customer service experience and keeping users satisfied.
5) Agent Satisfaction
Tools like chatbots take pressure off agents by automating customer interactions through their preferred channels.
They can handle high-volume, lower-value queries, leaving tasks more satisfying and meaningful for agents.
And when integrated with a cloud call center, they give agents a unified view of customer data and conversation history, so your customer service staff has all the information they need to quickly resolve inquiries.
Automated customer service tools, such as bots, make it possible to deliver personalized, omnichannel customer service on a large scale. AI automation makes testing, measurement and learning easier, so the customer service experience can be continually optimized.
How to Start Automating Customer Service?
Where is the best place to start automating your customer service workflow and tasks?
Like any digital investment, you need to start with a clearly defined customer service strategy, based on measurable business goals.
Depending on your goals, a useful place to start could be by using a chatbot deployed on customer favorite channels, to help provide faster customer service at a lower cost.
It is important to remember that automated tools cannot help with everything. Automated systems must be able to seamlessly deliver complex tasks to live agents, automatically serving them with relevant customer data and conversation history for faster resolution and hassle-free customer service.
For this reason, it is very beneficial to integrate a chatbot with an automated cloud-based contact center solution that allows agile resolution of customer inquiries.