One of the biggest keys to online sales lies in establishing new channels of contact with our customers that encourage what is known as conversational sales.Essentially, customers are increasingly demanding greater interaction and immediacy when it comes to communication, so we must establish the ideal channels to improve the customer journey.
Conversational selling has been a consequence of the explosion of the Internet and ecommerce. Messaging systems such as WhatsApp, Telegram or a virtual chat agent allow a very rich interaction with the customer. On the one hand, it brings the immediacy of other channels such as a virtual voice agent. On the other hand, it offers the rigour and the channel to provide documentation and photographs. From insurance companies to any service company, this new channel is almost essential if we want to improve the customer’s customer journey.
But how does this impact on the way our company works? Greater interaction with our customers, an increase in commercial activity through conversational sales necessarily demands a greater deployment of resources and personnel to deal with it, or does it?
Artificial intelligence applied to customer service
The emergence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the defining event of the 21st century. It is impossible to list the applications of AI because, in a way, almost all the technology we enjoy today has its -larger or smaller- dose of Artificial Intelligence.
Of course, in conversational selling and in optimising the customer journey, too. Artificial intelligence applied to customer service not only compensates for the increase in interactions generated by conversational selling and these new, higher-impact channels, but also offers more versatile, complete and optimised solutions.
In other words, getting many of the queries and interactions that our customers ask us can be solved by Artificial Intelligence, means that we have much more with less.
Advantages of conversational AI
Focusing on specific aspects, let’s look at some of the main advantages of conversational AI.
- In purely customer service domains, there are many, many queries that are very frequent and have very similar characteristics. Having a person answering – literally – the same thing to a query that is repeated a lot, generates zero added value. We are not talking about a simple Chatbot, but about an AI that can adapt its response to the way our customer interacts, although the substance of the question is always the same.
- In this sense, we can offer customer service in any language. This is a devastating advantage. It allows us to break the barrier of access to certain markets in a simple way and without the need to hire the team, train them, educate them…
- In the same way, we can offer a 24/7 service. We would need 3 shifts to achieve the same. And no weekends.
- Another of the main characteristics of AI is that it learns. As it receives continuous inputs and figures out how to categorise them, it can offer a much more personalised customer journey to our customer. We can find out what they like and offer it to them based on what they’ve bought in the past (if they’ve already been a customer) or based on other things they’ve been looking at on our website. It even allows, with a large volume of data, to determine behavioural parameters based on age, gender, access times, heat map within the website… These factors can be fine-tuned in such a way that the customer’s customer journey is completely personalised and generates loyalty.
- Artificial intelligence applied to customer service also allows us to optimise information queries with our systems. As there is integration with any CRM, ERP or Helpdesk, Artificial Intelligence can, in real time, indicate how an order is going, what is the status of a query or any other information that is registered.
Artificial Intelligence is here to stay and, as far as conversational sales are concerned, it allows degrees of optimisation that we could never imagine with traditional customer service.