Hey everyone. Welcome to the E-Commerce Insiders Podcast. I’m your host, Mark Hebblewhite. Today we’re going to be diving into the topic that’s near to and dear to all our hearts, the impact of AI customer services. Hopefully, you’ll get something out of this that will help your business flourish. We’re going to be talking about the history of AI and customer services, the benefits, the challenges, and what you need to know to stay ahead of the game.


Customer Support in the Past

So, let’s start with taking a trip down memory lane, shall we?

The evolution of AI and customer service has been quite the journey, you know, do you remember those, those old sort of days where automated phone trees were utilised?

Uh, oh man, that was the worst. Being stuck on hold for hours, just waiting to speak to a real person. That was a complete nightmare.

I know some companies are still utilising it today, especially through the government thing, but thankfully those days have pretty much gone. That’s thanks to AI making things faster and more efficient.

Can you imagine still trying to resolve a customer service issue without AI?


Customer Support Today

Today, AI has completely transformed the way we receive customer support. And you know what’s really cool? The advancement of AI technology just keeps on getting better and better.

Today’s chatbots are more sophisticated and can handle a wider range of customer service issues, making the experience considerably smoother and more, I can say enjoyable for us.

You know, that’s, that’s AI evolution. That’s one of the, the key elements of AI.

So, let’s, dive into the perks of AI and customer services.


Artificial Intelligence in Customer Service

It’s not just about speed.

AI has brought a whole new level of personalisation to the table. You know, the feeling when you have to repeat your issue multiple times to different representatives. It’s like, starting from square one every time.

Well, what you can do with AI is that it actually knows the previous interactions and making the experience considerably smoother and more tailored to, your needs.

Imagine having a virtual assistant that knows your preferences, your past interactions, and even the context of your current issues.

That’s the kind of customer service we’re talking about here. And what’s even better is that no one’s repeating themselves over and over again.


So, let’s get into the nitty gritty of AI in customer service.

We get a lot of different players on the field from the chatbots, virtual assistance to automated customer services.

Each of these AI applications have their own strengths and weaknesses. But you know what they say – there is strength in numbers.

So, if we say, you know, chatbots are like the workhorse of the customer services – they’re quick, efficient, and can handle a wide range of customers issues.

Virtual assistance, on the other hand, are more like your personal customer service concierge – they’re a little more human-like and can provide a more personalised experience.

And last but not least, we’ve got the automated customer service, which can handle high volumes of customer inquiries with absolute ease. But then if you think, if you put all three of these to work together, it’s pretty much a customer services dream team.

They complement each other and provide a seamless, efficient, and personalised experience for all customers.

So, whether you’re a fan of chatbots, virtual assistance, or automated customer services, there’s something for everyone in the world of AI powered customer services.

But we, we have to address the elephant in the room.


Challenges and Risks with AI

As with anything new and exciting, there’s also gonna be challenges and risks, especially with AI customer services – and one of the biggest concerns is accuracy.

We wanna make sure that AI we use is giving the right answers every time and consistently there’s a must have. Nobody likes talking to an AI that changes its mind every five minutes, but also we have to, you know, think about the future of work and job losses.

It’s a topic that’s on everybody’s mind these days, especially with the likes of ChatGPT gonna be taking everybody’s jobs.

Well, it’s, it actually, you know, it can enhance our specific capabilities.

It’s menial tasks that people are doing and if we took the menial task, they could actually concentrate and think on the greater tasks, which helps the person’s job make it better and faster.

One more thing, we want to make sure that AI we use is free of bias, that’s important because we want to ensure that every customer gets the same level of service regardless of who they are and where they’re from.

So, I think we should embrace AI in customer service and open our arms to it. Knowing that there are challenges and risks, but also realising the benefits far outweigh them, and who knows, maybe one day AI will even surpass us humans in customer service.

The future I think, is absolutely exciting.

I think it’s time to get down to sort of the business.


Are you ready to stay ahead of the game when it comes to AI and customer service?

First thing, you need an AI strategy.

This is like your roadmap to success in the world of ai customer service. You wanna make sure you are using AI in an ethical and responsible way, and an AI strategy will help you do just that.

And the next step, building an AI powered customer service team.

Think of it as a superhero team with each member having their own unique set of skills and abilities, but instead of fighting crime, they’re fighting customer service issues.

Um, and lemme tell you, that’s a pretty damn- they’re pretty damn good at it.


AI Strategy for Customer Service

So, whether you are starting out with AI and customer services, or you’re a seasoned pro, having an AI strategy and building an AI powered customer service team is key to staying ahead of the game.

If you’re ready to take this into your, say, e-commerce game and get started with an AI strategy, first things first, let’s think about your customers and their specific needs.

Comes down to a few questions, really, you know, what are the pain points when it comes to shopping online?

Are they struggling to find the right products?

Do they have the questions about sizing delivery?

Or are they just having trouble navigating your website?

Once you have a good understanding of your customer’s needs, it’s time to bring the big guns – AI.

Think about the different types of AI applications you could use to make the shopping experience so much better.

Chatbots to answer the questions in real time, virtual assistance to help them find what they’re looking for and personalised products, recommendations to make the shopping journey so much easier.

And now we have the implementation part.


How will you integrate AI into your e-commerce business?

It could be any business, but we’re using e-commerce as an example.

Will you start with a chap up and gradually add AI applications over time or are you gonna go all in, build a fully automated e-commerce experience from the ground up? That’s really down to your choice.

And last button at least.


Let’s think about the future

How will AI continue to evolve in e-commerce?

What new technologies will emerge and how will you stay ahead of the curve?

It’s important to keep an eye on the future and make sure your AI strategy always is evolving with the specific times, and that’s pretty much it.

This is a, a recipe from an AI strategy that will take your e-commerce business to new heights.

So best things to get out there and have a go.

We hope you enjoyed this e-Commerce Insiders podcast and have gained valuable insights and ideas for using AI as part of your customer service team. And if you want to learn more about the topic, be sure to subscribe.


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