Research Identifies Growing Demand for Intelligent Bots in Customer Support
Solvvy, the next-gen chatbot and automation solution for customer support, today announces the results of its 2021 State of Chatbots Report. To get an accurate pulse on how consumers perceive and engage with business chatbots, Solvvy commissioned an anonymous research project that surveyed more than 1,000 respondents across the U.S., gearing survey questions toward the banking/financial services, retail/e-commerce, and consumer services industries. Among the many insights from this study: consumers are becoming more likely to seek out a chatbot to handle their support needs and now increasingly expect an intelligent and personalized chatbot versus the ineffective bots that many businesses still employ.
“At Solvvy, we’re laser-focused on delivering the very best conversational technology to empower Customer Support and CX leaders to deliver better, more personalized experiences to their customers,” said Mahesh Ram, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Solvvy. “This research is another way we are able to keep our finger on the pulse of what our clients need and what their customers expect. The research findings confirm that next-gen support chatbots like Solvvy have raised the bar in terms of what a chatbot and support automation platform can deliver to exceed customer expectations. If a business chatbot is unable to handle more complex, personalized issues, there’s great risk in upsetting a growing segment of customers and potentially losing business.”
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Compelling takeaways from the study include:
- Chatbots are increasingly accepted, and in many cases actually preferred – The study revealed that 55% of all respondents prefer to use a chatbot immediately instead of waiting for a live agent and that 69% of users would often or always use a chatbot if it resolves their issue faster.
- There’s a clear divide between “Standard Users” and “Power Users” – The research showed that most people fall neatly into one of these two usage categories. Smarter chatbots with intelligent personalized service are what the growing Power Users segment are expecting to see and they reward companies with better bots and automation with repeat visits and usage.
- Consumers expect – and enjoy – personalized chatbot support – Less intelligent bots may be less expensive, but they leave users wanting more functionality and personalization. As consumers try to resolve increasingly complex issues with intelligent chatbots, the more they’re apt to be frustrated by limitations they encounter with simple chatbots elsewhere. This underscores the need for companies to raise the bar of what their chatbot can deliver – or risk losing business.
- Chatbots’ optimal role is within customer support teams – While some are concerned that chatbots will become a substitute for human agents, this study confirmed once more that this fear isn’t rooted in reality. Instead, intelligent chatbots support agents and improve the customer experience end-to-end by freeing up agent time to deal with unique issues and by providing agents with chat context so customers don’t have to repeat themselves. The best chatbots actually deliver more information to agents to reduce handle time and speed successful resolutions.
- Consumers across different industries use chatbots differently – More than 70% of Banking and Consumer Services users have used the same chatbot multiple times, while only 58% of Retail users have. This highlights the way in which consumers approach customer support differently depending on the industry in question and their specific needs.
There have been many widely held misconceptions over the years about chatbots, but this research shows the tide has changed dramatically. Not only are intelligent, next-generation chatbots able to perform more advanced functions and deliver personalized customer support, but they’re also able to act as a partner to human agents and elevate the overall customer experience. The companies that embrace this technology now will remain ahead of the curve in profitability and customer perception, while the ones that continue to use outdated bot technology or no bots at all are expected to be left behind.
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