How Virtual Assistants Beat AI In Dealing With Customers
Thinking of Hiring a Virtual Assistant?
Creating the perfect customer experience is a key focus of any business. Leaving customers feeling like they’ve had a positive and memorable experience will keep them coming back, get them to recommend your products or services, and improve your business reputation.
In recent years, the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) has seen many businesses use automation and machine learning to manage at least some aspects of the customer experience.
Tools like Siri are often referred to as Virtual Assistant technology – which certainly causes confusion amongst some of our web visitors! – But, as you can imagine, we don’t feel that AI technologies can ever beat a “real human” in the form of a virtual assistant like those in our team.
While AI has made customer service easier to handle, the importance of connecting with a real person should never be underestimated. There’s no doubt an over-reliance on AI could have an effect on the overall quality of your customer service.
The Importance Of Customer Service
Good customer service is vital for your business – 42% of people are put off by rude or unhelpful customer service staff. Speed of response, speed of resolution, and friendliness of the representative are seen as the most important factors in the customer service experience.
Customers who have a good experience will even spend 140% more than others, according to Harvard Business Review. Customer service is a cornerstone of your brand and your business reputation. You need to give customers a good experience if you want them to think positively of your brand.
The Rise of AI
Artificial intelligence has become an essential tool for businesses that want to improve their customer service. AI has changed the game by providing powerful tools that help with delivering exceptional customer service. Businesses can now use tools like chatbots, automation, and self-service helpdesks to save time, serve more customers, and improve the consistency of their customer service.
These tools are available to businesses of all sizes and are easy to integrate into your website. They can even allow your business to be available 24/7.
The Power of Real People
When it comes to providing exceptional customer service, however, people are still necessary despite the fact that AI technology has provided organizations with some excellent tools. Real people are still an essential component of providing a positive experience for customers, particularly when it comes to resolving more complex issues that cannot be quickly addressed with pre-packaged solutions. There are occasions when people are curious to find out whether or not there is an actual person on the other end of the phone.
It is essential to keep in mind that this is not a case of having to choose one option over the other. Technology certainly has its applications, but it should only be utilized thoughtfully and in concert with actual humans. The owners of businesses need to give some thought to the experience that their customers have and determine whether artificial intelligence or a real person would be more beneficial in various scenarios.
Why Do Customers Prefer Real Humans?
There are a number of advantages that come with employing actual people to handle customer service, all of which contribute to an improved overall experience for the consumer. In comparison to depending only on technology, relying on a real person to communicate with a customer allows for more customer engagement and retention as well as an overall improvement in the quality of the customer experience.
When people have questions, problems, comments, or complaints that require a more nuanced response, they still need that human connection, even though they may appreciate an AI chatbot or a self-service helpdesk when they want an immediate answer. People may also appreciate having the option to do so.
Employing a Virtual Assistant is one approach to guarantee that you continue to maintain that personal touch in your business. A virtual assistant (VA) may provide customer support in a variety of different ways, working in tandem with the technology that you choose to employ. It is possible for artificial intelligence technologies and virtual assistants to collaborate in an effective manner to fulfill the requirements of all of your clients.
Unlike AI technologies, a virtual assistant may assist in providing answers to questions posed by customers. Technology may often be utilized to deliver straightforward answers to straightforward inquiries or to direct them to the appropriate resources. On the other hand, there are occasions when consumers genuinely require a response from a person who can take into consideration the specifics of their situation and give a more individualized level of service.
In fact, a virtual assistant may really bring a higher degree of personalization to the whole dialogue. When it seems like they are interacting with a robot at all times, customers may not necessarily have a positive attitude. When they are dealing with a more difficult or sensitive topic, it is not ideal for them to use this method, but it may be OK when they are simply seeking a fast response. It may be a great deal more reassuring for the individual if they are aware that there is a person on the other end who is listening to their inquiries and worries and answering them in real time.
Returns and refunds are a necessary part of doing business for the vast majority of companies. You need a procedure to handle a variety of customer service issues, from unhappy consumers to folks who have just changed their minds about something. If a customer’s requests are handled by a computer without their ever speaking to a real person, the experience may come off as cold and impersonal, despite the fact that it is possible to make the process fairly automated.
If you have a virtual assistant handle it for you, each client will be handled as an individual, and you will be able to ensure that they understand the procedure of returning an item and getting their money back.
When you have a real person handling your returns and refunds, you have the chance to talk to the consumer about any issues they may be experiencing. You may boost your chances of maintaining them as a client by having a conversation with them about the choices they have available.
One of the most important aspects of providing better customer service is soliciting feedback from existing customers. When you get their feedback, you can use it to make more informed, data-driven choices about how you can improve and what it is that you’re already doing well. Both the collection of feedback and the interpretation of the data that is collected may be assisted with by a virtual assistant.
Technology can be utilized to achieve some of these things as well, but it cannot have a human understanding of the information provided by consumers. It’s helpful for a number of things, like searching for trends, but there are times when you need a human touch to fully understand meaningful input in the manner that it should be interpreted.
Your brand may also be sold with the assistance of virtual assistants. AI technologies may be able to assist with sales, but they won’t be able to do it in the same way that a virtual assistant (VA) does. If you engage a virtual assistant, they will be able to adapt their communication style to best suit the individual with whom they are conversing. They are able to take into consideration the specifics of the customer’s situation and demonstrate why your brand is the best option to fulfill the customer’s requirements.
In addition to this, they may promote the image of your company by offering helpful and courteous customer service. Your virtual assistant may also be able to assist you in developing the voice of your business and can do so across a variety of platforms, including those on which you may be offering customer care. This might be done over e-mail, over the phone, via online chat, or even over social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter.
While the use of automation may assist to reduce the risk of making errors, faults can still be made using AI. A procedure that is supposed to move smoothly might have interruptions caused by bugs or wrong configurations. A Virtual Assistant might be of assistance in resolving this issue by supervising automations in order to cut down on the margin of error. The use of automated processes may result in significant time savings and the completion of a wide range of activities directly connected to the quality of the experience provided to customers.
However, there is always a chance that something may go wrong, which is why these automations need to be examined every once in a while to make sure they are performing as expected. Your Virtual Assistant has the ability to spot any problems in the automations you’ve put up and ensure that everything is configured appropriately. Even while automating some processes might save time, if you put up a procedure and then never revisit it again, you are sure to run into issues.
Combine Humans And Tech For The Best Results
Your company’s ability to provide a positive experience for its clients may benefit from the contributions of both actual people and artificial intelligence. Instead of putting all of your attention on just one of them alone, you should see how much more powerful they can be when they cooperate with one another.
Automation via the use of AI may help your company save a significant amount of time, free you and your employees to focus on other tasks, and even provide clients a point of contact that is available around the clock. On the other hand, engaging with clients may be done in a manner that is more personalized and individualized when dealing with actual human agents. They are able to provide answers to more complicated questions and treat people on an individual basis, both of which are abilities that AI systems are unable to replicate just now.
You may ensure that your company benefits from the most favorable aspects of both worlds with the assistance of a Virtual Assistant. They are able to supply your consumers with the personal connection that they need while also assisting in the management of automations and AI solutions.
A chatbot is one kind of software that exemplifies how humans and technology can work together to solve problems. Chatbots are able to answer first queries from customers, therefore gathering vital facts from them. In the event that the client requires more assistance, they may be sent to a Virtual Assistant or another customer support agent who may provide them with extra assistance.
Make sure that actual people, not AI or what some people call “virtual assistant technologies,” are a part of the customer experience that your company provides, rather than depending on AI or “virtual assistant technologies.” The emotional and personal connection with a real person that your clients are searching for may be provided by real human Virtual Assistants, which can help your company better satisfy the demands of its customers.