Did you know that a customer service chatbot can help you save hours of waiting in a call center? Indeed. Until recently, the telephone was the preferred way for customers to communicate with companies. However, more and more airlines prefer to implement chatbot services to enhance user experiences. But is a chatbot the best way to help a customer? Be Bolder tells you how to design a customer service chatbot for airlines.
What is a customer service chatbot?
Let’s start at the beginning! A chatbot is a software that simulates a human conversation through voice or text to solve a problem. Usually, they are used in customer service and are becoming more frequently popular in airlines. This is how The Washington Post reports it in an article dedicated to the entry of chatbots into customer service for airlines and hotels.
It is a fact: chatbots are here to stay. However, this transition to the new way of attending to your customers must be done carefully, as they will be accustomed to a warmer and customized service. Hence the importance to identify the particular needs of each airline to define the phases to be automated and, thus, choose the right technical solution to help customers.
How can a chatbot improve customer service?
Chatbots are all the rage, but beyond this, It’s essential to determine if your airline requires a chatbot to solve the customers’ needs. According to the Harvard Business Review, virtual agents are chatbots that could best meet business expectations. This is because they can combine the customer’s request with previous information: past purchases and geographic location, among others.
On the other hand, although it is true that a chatbot never sleeps and that virtual agents are faster, it is good to keep in mind that the learning process of the platform is not quick. In this context, the more calls and chats your airline handles, the faster learning of the platform will be. So, perhaps the best option is to seek advice from an expert and start with some pilot tests.
What are the differences between a chatbot and a virtual agent?
At this point in the article, I bet you have a question: what solution should I implement in my airline? Well, let’s have a look at the differences between a chatbot and a virtual agent that use artificial intelligence (AI).
|– A chatbot is simpler than a virtual agent and responds to specific tasks.||– A virtual agent can understand what the customer is saying instead of scanning for phrases.|
|– A chatbot is relatively easier to implement and has a lower cost.||– A virtual agent can grasp the client’s intention and give personalized answers.|
|– Chatbots are practical for answering basic questions, gathering information, and scheduling callbacks.||– Virtual agents are ideal for solving problems, managing accounts, and complex tasks.|
As you can see, it all depends on the particular needs of your airline, as well as the time and money you are willing to invest. Therefore, you should discuss this scenario with your IT staff before purchasing a solution to meet your expectations.
Are chatbots and virtual agents effective in the airline industry?
Chatbots and virtual agents should not replace live chat agents in the airline customer service center but rather attend them. For example, chatbots could be deployed to tackle routine questions, and virtual agents to respond to requests with a more human tone. Then, live chat agents could be dedicated to solving other problems that require special attention.
If you are still not sure about the type of solution you need to implement to improve your airline’s customer service, let’s see below the main advantages of implementing chatbots and virtual agents:
- Availability 7/24: Although chatbots and virtual agents are not going to solve all problems, it will be possible to provide the service permanently, and if necessary, calls may be returned for the direct care of a human being.
- Performance improvement: Human agents should not spend time on simple problems. Instead, they can raise the quality of the service, devoting more time and customized responses to those who need it.
- Data gathering: AI can process the information obtained during the customer service procedure. Thus, it is possible to identify the most successful products and services and implement improvement opportunities.
- Continuous learning of AI: Virtual agents will become more efficient as they analyze more problems and provide more answers. This occurs because AI algorithms are designed to learn from previous experiences.
- Customer satisfaction: Without a doubt, by reducing waiting time on hold for customers, giving them customized responses, and automating simple tasks, you will be improving the customer service experience.
What is the current situation of chatbots in the travel sector?
A survey published in 2022 by Statista Research Department, aimed at the travel sector users, indicated that approximately a quarter of those surveyed used chatbots. Likewise, 46% of the marketers and IT specialists interviewed stated that their companies are working on the development of chatbots.
This story is just beginning. Are you going to stay outside?
Chatbots and virtual agents are increasingly making inroads into the airline sector. However, not all technological solutions are adapted to your particular needs. In this context, the first thing you should do is meet with your customer service team and define opportunities for improvement. Then, the next step will be to meet with your IT department to discuss the solutions your company could implement.
Once this is done, you will have two options in the market: first, purchase a finished product and adapt to it, and second, develop a solution that fits your needs.
Be Bolder is a company that focuses on developing tailor-made solutions for airlines and the travel sector.
Contact us now. We will be happy to assist you and advise you to provide the best technological solution for your company.