Digital self-service channels can make customer service communication faster and more efficient. But these self-service channels can also create difficulties. For example, if a customer is trying to fill out a complex form and they encounter a problem, only being able to speak to a chatbot will make them frustrated.
Instead, financial providers must also offer customers the option to transfer to an agent via live chat, keeping the service personal. This is especially important given that nearly 50% of UK respondents and around 40% of US respondents said they'd prefer speaking to a person rather than a chatbot.
The human touch
Having the opportunity to transfer from interacting with a bot to speaking to a human is especially important in the context of complex customer service inquiries that require a level of sensitivity and understanding that chatbots currently lack.
Chatbots are increasingly capable of refined conversations and serve as an ideal first port of call. But they still don’t have the capacity for nuanced understanding and connection-building that humans have. Yet in 2019, Forrester estimated that 60% of chatbot deployments wouldn’t have effective live-agent safety nets attached to web chat sessions. Allowing customers to transfer to an agent whenever they want ensures no risks are taken and no customer is left without the help they need.
Chatbots can offer generic advice that is limited to what they have been programmed to say. Hence why, in one study, 59% of respondents said that chatbots often misunderstood the nuances of human communication. And so at those times when customers require personalized advice and reassurance - something that only humans currently have the capacity to give - they need an omnichannel experience and the option to transfer between human and digital channels seamlessly and whenever they want.
Different customers have different needs. Younger customers, for example, will often be happy with self-service tools as they are more familiar with digital technology. Others might have more complex needs and require a more traditional hands-on approach. Given this diversity of customer needs, banks need to offer an experience with multiple channels of communication.
A productive omnichannel experience is one that combines different digital tools - such as live chat, messenger, co-browsing, and video call - into a single smooth and streamlined customer journey. By integrating different channels of communication, the service is more flexible and agile, and can be adapted to evolving customer demands. It can be personalized to each individual, leaving customers satisfied that their needs are really being heard. If a private banking customer is happy with their advisor, the share of wallet may also increase.
Digital self-service tools can transform customer service, reducing resolution time, and saving on support costs. However, unless these tools are integrated with those that allow for human-to-human conversation, they risk leaving customers alienated and frustrated. Instead, providers should merge self-service tools like chatbots with other conversational and collaborative solutions like live chat and co-browsing, offering an omnichannel experience that adapts to customer needs from moment to moment.
Chatbots & Unblu
Unblu empowers financial providers to build an omnichannel customer journey, creating a hybrid experience that combines the best of human and high-tech. Discover how digital tools can multiply the opportunities for meaningful conversations with customers by booking a demo and an Unblu team member will be in touch.