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Chatbots vs. live support debate, which is the best solution?
According to Statista, the global chatbot market’s value will grow to $454.8 million by 2027. That’s more than ten times the $40.9 million value in 2018. Chatbots are becoming more firmly entrenched in society, and it’s easy to understand why.
They allow businesses to engage with clients 24/7, deliver a consistent experience, and are a once-off expense.
Why then haven’t chatbots taken overall customer service functions?
According to Forbes, 86% of clients prefer to deal with a live consultant. 71% of consumers will not do business with a company that doesn’t provide human support agents. Only 30% of users believe that virtual assistants and chatbots make life simpler. The chatbots vs. live support debate, it’s always live support is more preferable to chatbots
Clearly, despite the popularity of chatbots in business circles, the consumer hasn’t fully embraced them. That’s why, in this post, we’ll consider whether a hybrid solution of chatbots and live support might be the future of the call center.
Why is Human Support Important?
75% of clients wish to contact customer support via voice, live chat, or email. By contrast, only 12% prefer to use self-help options such as those provided by chatbots.
And the chatbots vs. live support debate, it’s always live support is more preferable to chatbots.
The reason is simple – the human touch. While bots are getting better at understanding natural language programming, they don’t understand human emotions. They use a combination of pre-programmed responses and their experience.
A chatbot at this stage is best compared to a young child. It understands the words that you say, but not much of the context. It doesn’t understand the different inflections and cannot pick up on cues that something is amiss.
When a client has a complex query, they require someone who can provide empathetic support. The bots cannot do that.
Why Use Chatbots at All?
Chatbots are handy tools. They relieve the pressure on human support teams by handling simple queries. Say, for example, that a client wishes to know what time a store opens. The bot can provide the answer almost instantaneously, even outside of regular business hours.
But the chatbots vs. live support debate, it’s always live support is more preferable to chatbots.
It’s the speed and consistency of the bots that make them valuable for businesses. Your chatbot can answer hundreds of questions at once, instantaneously. They will always provide the correct answer similarly.
To the casual observer, it will seem as though your company has a highly adept customer support team.
A further advantage is that the bot is a once-off expense. While they may be costly to create, there are no ongoing charges related to them. They’re available all day, every day, forever.
Why a Hybrid Solution Ends the Chatbots vs. Live Support Debate
The chatbots vs. live support debate? Consumers require access to live support when they choose it. They also want prompt service at a time convenient to them. Let’s see how chatbots and live support can work together to improve the service experience.
Clients expect a speedy response across a range of channels. Businesses have two ways to ensure that the first response time is under a few seconds:
- Hire a large service team: An expensive and far from ideal solution during low peak periods.
- Incorporate chatbots to screen calls: A simple chatbot provides instant answers, even if it’s merely to say that they’ve referred the call to a consultant. Bots assist in reducing the dropped call rate and improve the client’s perception of service efficiency.
Improved Consultant Satisfaction and Efficiency
Service agents may hear the same question hundreds of times a day. It soon becomes tedious to answer and takes time away from complex queries that require more attention. What’s more, if the agent is having an “off” day or is distracted, they may provide an incorrect answer.
The chatbots vs. live support debate? Bots and humans can work together to improve the outlook for their clients.
Bots will handle tedious questions instantly, in the same way, each time. If the program runs into a problem it cannot answer, it can refer the client to an agent.
Bots may also pre-qualify potential leads, allowing consultants to focus on high-value business instead.
By using a hybrid solution, service to your clients improves. The satisfaction of your consultants also improves as they deal with more interesting issues.
Many companies turn to automation as a way of saving money. It’s an understandable response, considering the expense of managing an in-company customer support team. Human consultants require training, space, time off, and benefits. The exercise becomes costly quickly.
By contrast, chatbots require one large capital outlay. Once the bot is operational, it may be necessary to make tweaks here and there, but these don’t cost much.
At the same time, however, it doesn’t need to be either chatbots or an in-house team. Outsourcing the support team allows companies to provide live support at a significant reduction in cost.
And if it is about chatbots vs. live support debate, bots and humans can work together.
The combination of outsourcing and using chatbots allow companies to provide optimal support without breaking the bank. And if it is about chatbots vs. live support debate, bots and humans can work together to improve the outlook for their clients.