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Can you tell me if a chat bot can improve customer service?

As with most technology, there are pros and cons to chatbots but there is no denying that customers are more demanding than ever and expect answers quickly and service 24/7. When it comes to customer service, the advantages of chatbots far outweigh the drawbacks. Ryan Baggott is the founder of Tap The Table, a Lowcountry business that designs chatbots and tech solutions for small businesses and celebrities across the country. “One of the most common concerns we hear is that business owners are afraid that a bot can’t replace human interaction, and I agree. However, a bot, or chatbot, can take care of some of the repetitive and mundane tasks and let employees focus on higher-value functions,” Baggott said.

In basic terms, a chatbot is designed with an “If-Then” structure. For example, If someone asks about “your business hours,” then the bot is set to respond “Monday to Friday, 9 a.m.– 5 p.m.” Understanding this architecture may help you see the capabilities because many tasks are, in fact, if-then.

  • If someone orders a hamburger, then ask them if they’d like fries with that. 
  • If someone asks if you offer a guarantee, then respond that you do. 
  • If someone asks if you serve vegetarian options, then send them a link to your vegetarian choices. 

Baggot adds, “When we set clients up with a Messenger chatbot, they find the bot is able to handle 80 percent of the common questions. For some clients, we also set up a sales process that takes orders, up-sells and adds the customer information into a spreadsheet to import to their database so the bot not only helps with service, it actually increases sales.” 

Time and employees are scarce resources for most businesses, but you can use technology to minimize the time spent on repetitive tasks and maximize the time employees can dedicate to functions that truly require a real human.

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