The backbone of most successful businesses—regardless of size or industry—is achieving a high level of customer satisfaction. In today’s technologically advanced marketplace, that means interacting quickly and efficiently with customers to answer their questions and solve their problems via the communication channels they prefer.

To accomplish seamless, valuable communication that boosts customer satisfaction and retention while saving time and money, entrepreneurs and business owners are turning toward automated AI technology to help with high-quality engagement.

What customer expectations are met by AI?

In this day and age, customers expect near-24/7 access to support from the brands and companies they use. Whether it is getting a question answered or solving a technical problem, clients want quick, efficient responses. This is a demand that cannot easily be met by staff members, particularly for small businesses. They simply don’t have the resources to devote time and effort to manually respond to every customer query they receive via Twitter, Instagram, SMS text, Facebook Messenger, and the other channels increasingly used by customers. That’s where chatbots and additional automated AI tools can help.

According to the 2018 State of Chatbots Report, the most common benefit of chatbots, according to consumers, is the ability to receive 24-hour service and access to basic information.

Global research and advisory firm Gartner also has explored the proliferation of virtual customer assistants (VCA) and chatbot technology being incorporated across engagement channels. During a 2018 summit in Tokyo, Gartner’s managing vice president Gene Alvarez said with more customers engaging on digital channels, “VCAs are being implemented for handling customer requests on websites, mobile apps, consumer messaging apps and social networks.” Subsequently, organizations reported a reduction of up to 70 percent in call, chat and/or email inquiries, in addition to increased customer satisfaction.

Capitalizing on your resources

While you may be apprehensive about handing over customer interaction to an automated system, many users actually prefer that method when it comes to simple questions or technical issues. As long as the information is accurate, customers will be satisfied with getting instantaneous, all-day interaction and support.

Additionally, it’s not an either/or situation. Chatbots and other AI technology have the ability to transfer communication to a human when a complex issue requires that level of interaction to solve properly.

By having AI technology handle a majority of your communication, which generally needs only simple, quick interactions, you are freed to up to devote your time to the remaining interactions that may be more demanding but yield more valuable results. If you are busy answering basic questions that could have been given brief, automated answers, you miss out on important conversations and opportunities to upsell and deepen brand loyalty.

Incorporating AI for business growth

If you want to be regarded as a highly responsive and caring brand, it is important to ensure customers felt heard at all times and through their preferred digital platforms. By transferring a portion of your customer engagement to automated AI technology, you save time and money to distribute to more demanding areas of operation and critical customer interactions.