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Good customer journeys are efficient, friendly and personalized. Great customer journeys are ‘frictionless’ (meaning they greatly reduce customer effort) and delight customers with the brand experience along the way, increasing a customer’s lifetime value. And it’s entirely possible to create great customer experiences with automation.

Automation can help you create great customer experiences that offer better customer service, build relationships, and keep customers coming back.

Gartner reports that 70% of business leaders surveyed in 2021 plan to invest heavily in technology to support fully self-service customer experiences because of the benefits they bring for customers and the business.

When DBS Bank was picked as Best Bank in the World for the second time in three years in 2020, Global Finance emphasized that DBS’s investment in automated self-service digital banking had ‘paid off’ in terms of increasing its resilience and serving its ‘customers in their time of need’ throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

By investing in automation, businesses can deliver better customer experiences which, in turn, result in better business outcomes.

Let’s examine some of the key reasons why businesses are looking to create better customer experiences with automation:

Delivering better personalized customer experiences at lower cost

No one has much patience for spending their valuable time sifting through endless menus and multiple customer service operators just get to the service they need. Long waiting times and multiple waypoints lead to more friction with the customer, which leads to higher customer attrition. Many processes can be automated for faster, easier to use, personalized self-service customer experiences.

Artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP) are now affordable and easy for businesses to implement, making it possible to serve customers with automated contact centers. NLP allows customers to interact with virtual agents naturally using their own language and AI allows for agents to handle increasingly complex customer transactions independently. There’s no more need for painful, inefficient telephone menu systems anymore.

A good virtual voicebot service, for example, helps customers get quick access to the service they need and offers fully automated, painless, self-service transactions. Your contact center human agents, on the other hand, are freed up to deal with more complex customer issues that perhaps require advanced problem solving or empathy.

This leads to not only happier customers but also focused, leaner customer-centric specialist service teams who are less at risk of the high levels of employee churn typically associated with the traditional BPO industry – and both are good for your business.

Here are just some examples of service processes easily automated with voicebot virtual agents by linking CRM, helpdesk and sales software:

  • recalling customer billing records
  • taking or cancelling bookings or appointments
  • updating customer details
  • raising help tickets for the customer
  • sending customized marketing messages
  • tracking a customer’s deliveries

Processes like these are straightforward to automate with voicebot virtual agents. They are also efficient, accurate and require fewer human operators to run.

Building reputation and trust with automated customer services

Just about everyone nurses a story about a ticket service that was hard work to get help from. It’s difficult to predict when a customer is going to need to get in touch. If it’s after hours, it’s often because there’s an urgent problem. This is something that can really make people irate when it doesn’t go well and therefore make them more prone to venting that frustration on social media, damaging the reputation of the business and undermining people’s trust in the brand.

Automated customer services can easily handle frequent transactional tasks around the clock. Assisting a customer when they really need help goes a long way to reducing customer frustrationbuilding trust, and retaining that customer’s business.

Automated services can also help reduce the time it takes for your agents to get back to that customer when they need human assistance because there is a record of the interaction and notifications that a customer needs help. Voicebot agents, for example, can often resolve issues with a first contact and when that is not possible, they can quickly connect customers with a human agent.

Automated services are by no means a magic bullet, but they can make a big difference in terms of improving customer satisfaction by delivering a better customer experience.

Having automated brand-aligned conversations

It’s often overlooked but you can also bake brand-aligned messaging into automation. Having consistent brand-aligned communications across all touch points is incredibly powerful for building relationships.

Automation helps you keep contact with customers at significant points in their customer journeys, whether it’s their hour of greatest need or a friendly ‘just dropping you a message to see how you are’-style relationship refresher.

A voicebot virtual assistant for example, can contact customers when a regular appointment is due, make the booking and confirm the appointment by SMS with the customer, without the need for a human agent to intervene. And because the bot is voice based, customers can interact with the service as they would with a human agent to book their appointment over the phone.With automated services, communication plans are easy to set up as part of your customer experience, easy to revise, and they keep the brand conversation going with customers even when you’re not working. And automatic speech-to-text conversion helps your business keep a record of every conversation for later analysis.

Building business and brand with automation

So aside from the benefits to bottom- and top-line revenue, automating customer experience processes benefits businesses and customers in other important ways. Automating your customer experience also helps you create a stronger brand experience that grows your customer base faster and retains customers longer.

Automated self-service contact centers staffed by virtual and specialist human agents are becoming increasingly common for a whole range of industries: logistics and travel, security services, concierge services and hospitality industries, marketing, healthcare. In fact, any business that offers customer service stands to benefit from automation technology.

You can see why so many businesses are interested in investing more in automating their customer experiences. Automated customer experiences offer the potential for frictionless customer journeys that are fast, reliable, accurate, highly personalized and available around the clock for customers. Brands that offer fully automated self-service contact center services like these will have a significant competitive edge moving forward not just in terms of cost efficiency for their contact centers but in delivering superior brand experiences.

Find out how to deliver great automated customer experiences