The future lies in asynchronous solutions!
How often are users on hold in a telephone hotline or are they put off by email autoresponders? Every day, countless times – but you still accept this waiting because there is often no equivalent alternative.
Or does it exist?
New possibilities of communication are increasingly pushing onto the market, which not only offer better comfort to the user, but also relieve the burden on operators – be they companies or authorities.
This development is largely based on chat (bots), which can simplify communication and improve the complete user experience. This chat communication sets new standards in terms of permanent availability, a mobile first approach and a user experience that is as pleasant as possible. It should be the users who decide when and how providers or service providers are contacted. Any opening times or availability bottlenecks should no longer pose any obstacles.
In the following, different solutions in the area of chat communication are shown and briefly discussed.
Level 1 – communication via live chat
Live chats are already common in everyday life. Many companies offer this service on their website. Mostly via a small button at the bottom right of the page that starts 1: 1 communication with an employee of this company. It does not matter, general questions, support or information about delivery – everything can be requested by the customer without great technical effort. With this solution, a web or messenger chat is connected to a ticketing system in the backend.
Level 2 – communication via chatbot
People are bound by working hours, need breaks and cannot be available 24/7. Especially in times of high demand, a customer center with human employees is difficult to scale at short notice. Automated systems are therefore ideal for relieving employees in first-level support and at the same time realizing 24/7 availability for customers.
2.1. Conversational Landingpages
Conversational landing pages are another way to provide users with a very simple but precise way of obtaining information. They are usually entered into the contact page of a company and can depict various subject areas and the corresponding further information using a fictional storyline. Here the user can choose independently and decide in which direction the dialogue should go. However, the conversation here is based on buttons that the user clicks on. There is no provision for users to write questions freely. In the most common cases, individual programming is required.
The Easter campaign 2020 of the customer Coop Bau & Hobby in cooperation with yes!devs GmbH should serve as an example of a conversational landing page. The user clicks through various subject areas independently and thus creates a particularly deep exchange of information:
Guided dialogues for gathering information can take place not only on websites, but above all on messenger systems such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger or similar. The click chatbot offers a very good way of doing this. The user is initially greeted by the chatbot and then receives extensive options to obtain information independently. In principle, there are no restrictions with regard to subject areas or areas of application. Answering frequently asked questions is particularly popular and also very useful. These are easy to program and help many users quickly and easily. In addition, there is always the option of a “human takeover”: If the user asks a question that the chatbot cannot answer or exceeds the first level support, an employee joins the conversation and a live chat begins.
Classic solutions for this are, for example, the software provider MessengerPeople GmbH from Munich, with whom we developed the WhatsCorona Chatbot to relieve the health system during the COVID19 pandemic 2020. A pure Facebook messenger software would be, for example, ManyChat, with which we successfully look after our customers Volvo Switzerland. Of course there are also other solutions on the market. We would be happy to advise you in more detail on the right choice of the right software – depending on your needs.
Level 3 – Partly / fully automated customer communication
The most complex but also the highest quality solution for automated customer communication is the use of artificial intelligence. The self-learning dialog systems can be implemented on websites, in apps or in messengers such as WhatsApp and Co. and started by users entering a question
These systems are based on complex algorithms and are thus able to quickly understand the problem of the user and to help them appropriately. Thanks to the learning function, the system can quickly build up a huge vocabulary and understand and answer more and more questions automatically. In addition, this AI can be granted access to company databases, which enables them to make these changes themselves. A change of address of a customer can not only be accepted and forwarded to an employee, but the AI can carry out the entire process independently and thus relieves the staff massively.
As with the click chatbot, there is always the option of a human takeover as a fallback.
When it comes to highly complex AI solutions, we work together with knowhere GmbH from Hamburg.
Your self-learning AI chatbot solution is used by over 100 companies such as ARD, Xing and Geberit to automate digital customer communication. The solution learns independently with each user dialog, is based on natural language processing and even understands complex and multilingual requests.
The result: satisfied customers, qualified leads and lower support costs.
Level Future – cCommerce
In Asia, cCommerce has been established for years and is an integral part of everyday life. WeChat is the Chinese equivalent of WhatsApp and is a very extensive platform app with many functions in different areas of life. In addition to the chat function, which, like WhatsApp, enables the sending of files, voice messages, etc., there is also a payment function. This is used on a large scale, for example when visiting restaurants, paying rent or even donating money to the needy. A QR code is all that is required for this. This is scanned with the smartphone and all payment information is already transmitted. This service is so widespread and popular that credit cards are not accepted in much of the country. Concert tickets, table reservations, the cleaning staff, a dog hairdresser – everything available online can be ordered through WeChat.
In addition, sub-apps can be accessed within the app and various online shops such as Amazon, Alibbaba and much more. can be controlled directly without leaving the WeChat app.
Unfortunately, there is currently no direct cCommerce alternative on the European market. Only chatbots that e.g. Communicate via WhatsApp and at some point have a payment checkout link built in, can be found sporadically. In these cases, however, the user must be directed from the familiar WhatsApp environment to a browser and then switch back to WhatsApp independently. WeChat thus offers a lot more convenience and user friendliness.
However, WhatsApp is working flat out on a format that, like WeChat, will include an extensive payment function. Other platforms such as Facebook Messenger or Telegram are also implementing this option as quickly as possible.