We all know the word “email” can’t be written without the letters “A” and “I”. This is factual from a grammatical standpoint, but also true from a customer-centric perspective. Without AI, email support lacks the quick, nuanced responses that make customers happy.
Not only should email always be offered as a customer service channel option but delivering exceptional email support should be a priority. With email being the primary digital support channel and a whopping 70% of customer service emails going unanswered, there is a clear disconnect between the support customers want and what they get. The result? Unhappy customers, an overwhelmed support team and lost sales. Email without “AI” is just eml” - which is simply too close to FML for our comfort.
Let’s break it down. Without AI, your email service has your customers feeling like our friend on the left. With AI, your email service has your customers like our friend on the right. Look at that smile!
But it doesn’t stop there…
Providing multichannel customer support enables you to be where your customers are. Of course, you can’t be everywhere your customers are, like that neighborhood block party where Amy is complaining about how she hasn’t received her order yet. But you can be there when she inevitably emails your support team. And seeing as email is the most desired support channel for 62% of consumers, you can be there for the majority of your customers as they make their contribution to your inbox.
We know customer retention is key to business success and that in order to retain customers we need to keep them satisfied by meeting their expectations. Today’s customers want a helpful, personalized email response from your business and they want it fast.
The average response time for customer support emails is over 12 hours and, well, that just isn’t going to cut it. If your business isn’t responding to emails within 60 minutes, you’re failing to meet the expectations of 88% of consumers. Not to mention, you’re really disappointing the 30% of consumers who are expecting an email response within 15 minutes. Sure, 12% of customers may be indifferent to your delayed response time, but it’s certainly not going to make their day. Just look at Amy; if she received an email with her order tracking information, she probably wouldn’t be roasting you to her neighbors right now, she’d be telling them about the amazing, fast experience that she had and how she can’t wait for that new blue dress to arrive the next day!
So why hasn’t Amy received a response yet? All she needed to do was email your business and your CS team would quickly send her the tracking number. Easy right? If only it were just Amy… In this case, you have, say, 100 people just like Amy with the same issue. Your team is working hard to resolve each issue and provide quick, empathetic, and consistent support to each and every customer. This is where AI enters the chat - or in this case, the email!
So an AI Agent Walks Into An Email
Customer service folk have come to regard AI as the cooler older cousin of the chat widget. While AI is cool and is often used for chat support, it isn’t just a one-trick pony. AI brings A LOT to the party. It’s versatile and can live anywhere your customer service agents are. AI is email's best friend, it helps resolve tickets like Amy’s, and due to its intelligence, it senses Amy’s frustration as if it were conversing with her at the neighborhood BBQ.
Email Without AI
Without “AI” email would just be “eml”, which once again is just one letter off of FML - and let’s be honest, FML is what your customers are saying too often. We have a feeling your human agents often feel the same as their ticket queue increases. Once they discover the ways in which implementing AI for email support reduces repetitive tasks and alleviates the pressure they’re under, those FML moments change to LFG moments. With AI’s response time and adaptability, CS teams will have a greater ability to focus on more nuanced customer service situations and give your customers the service they demand.
- Forrester - 2018 Customer Service Trends: How Operations Become Faster, Cheaper, and More Human
- Netomi - Customer Service Benchmark Report 2020
- HubSpot - Live Chat Go To Market Flaw
- Super Office - 5 Ways To Reduce Customer Service Response Times