In the United States, more than 50 percent of millennials and Gen Xers have interacted with chatbots, making these conversational programs one of today’s hottest eCommerce trends. But in reality, Siri’s and Alexa’s “parents,” Eliza and Parry, actually date back to the mid-60s and early 70s.
Simulated human conversation may not be new, but thanks to modern advancements in technology, these programs can now be integral parts of your marketing and branding strategies. Our fulfillment warehouse experts share what you need to know to successfully incorporate website chatbots in 2019.
Chatbots: Personalizing the Online Experience
Real-time interaction is a major advantage brick-and-mortar stores still have over virtual storefronts. Nearly one-third of online shoppers cite difficulty in getting answers to simple questions as their biggest frustration with eCommerce.
Chatbots are uniquely equipped to handle common customer service inquiries. Once you import your company’s FAQs, chat history and other relevant information, a chatbot uses the data to “train” itself. As the chatbot interacts with visitors to your website, the experiences serve to further refine its performance.
Need more reasons why you should be using chatbots?
• More than 50 percent of the participants in a Facebook survey said they’re more likely to shop with a business that provides chat services.
• Global research and advisory firm Gartner predicts that by 2020, 85 percent of engagement with eCommerce sites will be conducted via self-service options and chatbots.
• Surveys by Oracle, one of the leading multinational computer technology companies, indicate 80 percent of businesses currently use chatbots or are making plans to by 2020.
Value Add-On for Improving Productivity
Customer service is a natural application for chatbots, but their usefulness doesn’t end there. In addition to providing information, chatbots have the ability to gather data more fluidly than human agents.
• Chatbots can be programmed to ask targeted questions in order to qualify potential leads.
• Hard-to-navigate websites are another top source of frustration for online customers. Chatbots direct shoppers to the proper area of your website simply by asking what they’re looking for and posing other leading questions.
• Use of chatbots frees your staff to work on more urgent tasks, reducing operational costs while maximizing effectiveness. Chatbots are also available 24/7 without being subject to down time or attrition.
1. No matter how sophisticated a chatbot program may be it’s meant to supplement human interaction, not replace it. Proper use of chatbots includes programming them to “know” when a customer should be directed to a human customer service agent.
2. While consistency is one of the advantages of chatbots, the programs are not one-size-fits-all. Chatbots are designed to be fit the needs of a specific industry, so a chatbot used by a healthcare organization will not be the same one you would want for your eCommerce business.
3. Start simple. Create a chatbot to handle basic customer requests that form the bulk of your customers’ interactions. Once the chatbot has been operational for a while, review the chat logs to detect patterns and trends, and then decide if you want to add further refinements or develop new chatbots to handle other tasks.
4. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Think of chatbots as a way to streamline basic business interactions, not add complicated and unnecessary bells and whistles.
Personalized Fulfillment Warehouse Services for a High-Tech World
Are you tired of fulfillment warehouse companies that treat you like nothing more than a number? At Medallion Fulfillment & Logistics, we consider ourselves a partner in your success, so your specific needs are our first priority.
Contact us to learn more about our cost-effective, flexible and scalable fulfillment warehouse services.