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AI chatbots are set to disrupt customer service in these 4 industries

Posted by Neha De

October 18, 2021    |     3-minute read (619 words)

Customer service must always be a priority for any business. Keeping existing customers satisfied gives companies a much better return than having to constantly find new ones. Fortunately, constant advancements in technology have given businesses additional resources and tools to transform customer service interactions, providing increased quality of interaction and better response times. 

One such tool is artificial intelligence based chatbots that are helping organizations improve customer service, build brand reputation and customer loyalty, in addition to enabling staff members to focus on higher value projects that offer greater returns. 

AI-powered chatbots are rapidly gaining momentum across the corporate world. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in 2016, “Bots are the new apps… People-to-people conversations, people-to-digital assistants, people-to-bots and even digital assistants-to-bots. That’s the world you’re going to get to see in the years to come.” These AI-based computer programs simulate interactions with users by themselves, based on a series of predefined events or conditions. 

“The global chatbot market size was estimated at USD 430.9 million in 2020. It is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 24.9% from 2021 to 2028. The growth is expected to be driven by the increasing adoption of customer service activities among enterprises to reduce operating costs,” says Grand View Research.

Meanwhile, Juniper Research reported that chatbots would provide cost savings of over $8 billion a year by 2022, up from $20 million in 2017.

AI-powered chatbots are the future of customer service

Chatbots have been around since the 1960s — the first chatbot, Eliza, was developed by MIT professor Joseph Weizenbaum in the 1960s. Eliza could only copy humans. Now, we have personal assistants such as Google Assistant, Siri and Alexa that are capable of managing connected devices, searching databases for information, learning from past conversations and delivering extremely personalized services. 

In addition to being ideal assistants, chatbots appeal to customers as they can solve many problems quickly, without involving a human employee. They are also responsible for increased sales across industries, and the trend is expected to see an upward tick in the years to come. Insider Intelligence predicts that by 2024, consumer retail spend via chatbots worldwide will reach $142 billion — up from just $2.8 billion in 2019.

Here are four industries that are already leveraging this amazing technology to make their customers happy: 


1. Retail - AI-based chatbots are changing the way marketing and sales functions are carried out in retail. They can help customers find what they are looking for swiftly while promoting related products in a non-intrusively manner. Chatbots also smoothen the purchasing process for users, thereby lowering the risk of cart abandonment and enabling faster checkout.


2. Travel - In the travel industry, AI-powered chatbots are capable of handling some of the most tedious tasks of any journey; they help users search for the best fares, book flight tickets, find and book hotels, and make meal reservations swiftly and without any hassle.


3. Finance - Banking and fintech applications usually get a large volume of customer support requests, and AI chatbots can, to a great extent, help in answering typical but crucial questions about the banks’ documentation, operations and the like. 


AI-powered chatbots can also be proactive and offer additional information about personalized offers, and act as promotional agents for any organization.


4. Healthcare - An AI chatbot specializing in customer service in the healthcare domain can be actively involved in collecting patient information, executing symptoms analysis and helping users schedule appointments instantly. 


As per estimates from Insider Intelligence, “Up to 73% of healthcare admin tasks could be automated by AI, and the adoption of chatbots could save the healthcare, banking, and retail sectors $11 billion annually by 2023.” 

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