Chatbots: Your Secret Weapon To Better Customer Service and Sales

Published By Digital Marketing Team 19 May, 2023



The idea of chatbots was first contemplated by Alan Turing, an English computer scientist in his paper, “Computer Machinery and Intelligence”, in 1950.
Outlining the Turing Artificial Intelligence test, he challenged his students and colleagues by putting forth the question – Can machines think? The Turning test subsequently inspired many computer scientists; one among them was Joseph Weizenbaum who created ELIZA in 1966 which laid the foundation for the structure of chatbots.
Soon other bots followed like the Parry chatbot in 1972, created at the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, and then later A.L.I.C.E, a language-processing bot in 1995

The scenario changed dramatically in the 21st century with the rise of the Internet. It all began with Smarterchild, the AIM chatbot, considered as the precursor of SIRI and S Voice, in 2001: people then would often have hilarious full-length conversations with it. Then in 2007, the birth of the iPhone ushered in the Smartphone era and APPLE’s own chatbot, SIRI which was integrated into iPhones in 2011. Later, Google, Amazon, and Microsoft, all came up with their own chatbots; Google with Google Now in 2012; Microsoft with Cortona in 2014; and Amazon with Alexa in the same year

Today, chatbots are all over the Internet, from the bots in social media messaging to company sites, pop-up chats, and more.

What exactly is a CHATBOT?

It’s an artificial intelligence (AI) program that performs tasks normally carried out by humans. In other words, it is a computer program that automates certain tasks performed by humans, typically by mimicking a human voice with a user in natural language through a conversational interface, like messaging applications or mobile applications or websites.

ITXITPRO, a leading Digital Marketing Agency in India, explains in this blog post as to what makes Chatbots so beneficial and how they can work as a secret weapon to better customer service and sales.


What makes chatbots a secret weapon to better customer service and sales is they

Can provide convenient 24/7 customer-support

Customers today want instant support, and expect them on channels convenient for them. Chatbots can work round-the-clock to answer questions and provide solutions to problems from the simple to the complex on any channel.

By deploying chatbots, businesses can greatly ensure customers get instant seamless, always-on support.

Can increase customer-conversions with deft service

Customers expect instant information and help to be available on demand. This is where chatbots act as a useful ally by providing instant information for immediate action. For instance, providing messaging utilities like forms or pick-lists that allows customers to book a hotel reservation / movie ticket or purchase sneakers or slacks, all within the chat. In 2017, a chatbot created by the organizers of the Australian Tennis Open effortlessly outpaced Ticketek in selling tickets to customers. It garnered 170% more conversions than Ticketek and ensured 25 x returns on investment

When visitors browse a website or a landing page looking for something that meets a need, they generally use a search bar to find what they’re looking for or just scroll through web pages, looking for it. A chatbot eliminates all of these by simply providing instant answers to the customer’s queries. This saves time which in turn ensures conversions happen more swiftly.

Chatbots by greeting visitors personally just like a salesperson does to a customer coming into a store further makes them feel welcome. When customers feel welcome and wanted, they are far more likely to buy.

Can work faster than humans

In a fast-paced world, time is precious for customers which means they want instant everything.

Today’s robust chatbots are smarter, respond fast and drastically cut customer wait times. This way they help build strong relationships with customers and cultivate their loyalty.

Can help businesses scale more quickly in line with customer needs

Humans can help businesses to scale only to the extent their abilities allow them to. Once they reach their maximum capacity, human efforts taper off resulting in the prospects drifting to rival firms.

On the other hand, chatbots can seamlessly assist prospects through the sales funnel till the final sales process. This way, chatbots can help businesses to scale-up more quickly by cutting down time-wasting and answering repetitive questions / issues while at the same time, letting human efforts to focus on more relevant tasks.

Can drastically reduce operational costs

A staggering 265 plus billion customer support requests are made every year, costing businesses a whopping US$ 1.3 trillion to service. These costs can be drastically brought down by deploying and implementing AI chatbots, resulting in up to 30% savings

Further, as the first point of contact for complex queries, chatbots can greatly improve customer service and reduce costs, leaving human agents to focus on more relevant tasks.

Can collect and collate data and help engage customers better
It is vital for businesses to understand customer’s expectations and even more so to exceed them. This is where chatbots can be a useful ally, by collecting and collating customer information like name, profession, and contact details to create valuable customer profiles. Chatbots can also create data on customer’s needs, product preferences, and more, which will be useful for keeping existing customers engaged through push notifications with their brands and products.

Noted cosmetic brand, Sephora in partnership with Kik messaging application has put in place a chatbot that customers can get in touch with for advice on makeup or request for product reviews catering to their needs. In return, the chatbot suggests selected products and also sends videos to them.

Can meet customers where they live

In today’s customer-driven world, if businesses want to do business, they need to be where the customers are. This is where chatbots can play a key role by facilitating conversations and interacting with customers predominantly vide texting. Nearly 71% of customers prefer to text with businesses than talk by phone as texting is instantaneous with a fast response

Can personalize their business

Thanks to the growing relevance of Big Data; Marketing Automation; and Artificial Intelligence, personalization has evolved to a whole new level, meaning one business to one consumer. Chatbots by engaging customers for a quick chat, create hyper-personalized experiences (remembering important customer facts and acting as the customer’s personal assistant) thus enabling customers to get what they want, and get them faster too.

Easy to access, chatbots have also helped several businesses in recent times to reduce their workload and focus on creating new business ideas which were previously spent on attending to clients’ issues. The popularity of chatbots has soared to such an extent that according to Salesforce, twice as many high-performing organizations today are using AI chatbots for its ability to handle a host of resource-draining problems

Cheap and easy to set-up, maintain, and customize, chatbots can not only streamline the sales process and speed-up customer interaction but also give support teams the ability to scale without having to hire extra staff.

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