Thought Leadership

3 Ways Businesses are Using AI to Transform Customer Service

Businesses today have reached a point where they either outperform their customers’ expectations or watch their constantly innovating, tech-savvy competitors make a dent in their customer base. To meet these ever-increasing customer expectations, it has become necessary to harness the power of AI by incorporating it in their business processes. This is why nearly a quarter of businesses polled in a Gartner survey reported that they had increased their spending on AI.

With forward-thinking companies ready to become the trailblazers of AI-powered customer service, it is imperative to take the first step to adopt AI powered technologies before your company loses out on valuable business opportunities. If you are still looking for ways to incorporate AI into your customer service processes,  here is a carefully  curated list of the top three ways brands are leveraging AI to enhance their customer service processes, and so can you.   

  1.     Resolve Customers Queries Faster

Waiting for a support agent to address or resolve a customer service question can be a frustrating ordeal for customers. A survey conducted by Hubspot confirmed this where 90% of respondents reported similar sentiments. For the customers of today, time is indispensable. So as a brand in the 21st century looking to thrive, offering quick and satisfactory customer service is no longer an option, it is a necessity.

It is why forward thinking companies are increasingly adopting the use of AI-enabled chatbots. Some companies have even gone ahead and leveraged the power of Natural Language Understanding (NLU) to provide highly personalized and satisfactory customer experiences. 

Uber is a great example of this. It has always relied on an army of customer service agents to better cater to its customers’ queries and needs. But at present, it uses COTA, an automatic support ticket assistant built using AI and NLU. This assistant reads, sorts, and adds potential solutions on each of its several thousands of incoming support tickets. Agents merely select the appropriate solution suggested by COTA, and personalize it for their customers. This has resulted in increased customer satisfaction and decreased resolution time.    

  1.               Predictive Suggestions To Help Customers

When the pandemic resulted in lockdowns across the world, the buying patterns of consumers changed drastically. Most customers found it more convenient to buy food and grocery items online. While the rapid surge in food and grocery orders was a boon for online retailers, it also brought about a significant challenge. More customers ordering products from the same category meant popular items went off the shelf much faster.

To ensure their customers don’t run to other online retailers, retail giants like Walmart, Amazon, Target and others started using AI solutions to suggest the next best substitute of items that customers might be interested in buying. Walmart, for instance, developed solutions that rely on deep AI to suggest smarter product substitutes to their customers. And the deployment of this deep AI tech resulted in customer acceptance of substitutes rising to over 95%.

The AI solutions deployed by Walmart used over 100 variables, like brand, aggregate shopper data, size, type, current inventory and  individual customer preference to come up with product suggestions that increased the likelihood of people accepting the suggestion and being satisfied with the alternative they had chosen.  

  1.               Create Customized Experiences

Outperforming customers’ expectations by offering them what they expect from a brand has always been a foolproof solution to attract and retain customers, but the way to execute it has often been difficult. However, AI-enabled solutions have simplified this daunting task. Companies can now analyze data such as the customers’ travel history, retail spending habits, purchasing cycle on a credit card, and other data points to learn more about their customers, and then use predictive analysis to forecast their behavior. All the gathered data helps companies offer highly personalized service options.    

For instance, Starbucks uses AI to process this data and serve customers with personalized marketing messages on their app. These messages include recommendations when a user approaches a local store and special offers to increase the customer’s average order value.


Conclusively, as said by Vince Lombardi, American football coach, “It takes months to find a customer…seconds to lose one.”


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