How Artificial Intelligence (AI) Improves the Customer Experience (CX): And the top three technologies you can use right now

As ChatGPT’s seemingly uncanny ability to analyze and articulate information transformed a chatbot into a global phenomenon, artificial intelligence (AI) has become a hot topic both in popular culture and for businesses.

While the capabilities and accessibility of ChatGPT may feel futuristic, the truth is that AI has been integrated into our lives for quite some time. From viewing recommendations on Netflix to programs that monitor your bank accounts for fraud, AI is working behind the scenes to make life better for both consumers and businesses. 

This has led many leaders to ask themselves how they can leverage AI to grow their own businesses, and there may be no better avenue than the customer experience (CX). It is a powerful customer retention and growth driver with widely available AI-driven CX tools.

How Does the Customer Experience (CX) Relate to Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

CX can be defined as a customer’s overall experience when interacting with a company, product, or service, but that would be incomplete.

In practice, CX creates an experience that increases customer loyalty, repeat sales, and even brings in new customers.

Artificial intelligence is an incredibly broad pursuit to create machines with true intelligence. In current practice, that intelligence is often used to make human interactions with technology more efficient, accurate, and personalized. And when something is easier to use, more reliable, and tailored to the user’s tastes, it’s a much better experience overall.    

In short, CX and AI work hand-in-glove together.

What Are the Top Three AI Technologies Currently Being Used to Improve CX?

Chatbots and Virtual Assistants: Enabling Self-Service and Increasing Customer Service Agent Efficiency

Chatbots and virtual assistants are both conversational AI tools but with key differences. Although ChatGPT and other AI chatbots are blurring the line of sophistication, chatbots generally are simple programs that employ decision trees and scripts to guide a user through straightforward tasks. 

Chatbots and virtual assistants can enable users to solve simple problems at their convenience immediately. Doing so allows customer service agents to focus on people with more complex, time-consuming issues. Conversely, virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa use a range of AI technologies in concert to process nuanced requests, perform complex actions, and improve their own performance over time.

~75% of consumers prefer to solve their own customer service problems, and 92% expect a company to offer self-service options1, which means chatbots and virtual assistants are key for meeting CX baselines.

Intelligent Routing: Shorter Wait Times and Faster First-Call Resolutions

With intelligent routing, AI software analyzes inbound calls to route customers to the best available representative. While this may sound simple, it’s actually very complex.

The AI software uses a number of processes (such as natural language processing [NLP] and predictive analytics) to contextualize the call and caller based on several factors, including the spoken language, the nature of the inquiry, and previous customer service interactions. The AI software then compares the customer to the skillsets and demographics of available call center agents to find the best representative for the job.

As customers are 240% more likely to stick with a company that solves their problems quickly, intelligent routing can significantly reduce customer churn.2

Speech and Sentiment Analysis: Understand Your Customers to Improve Their Experience

These AI-powered tools use NLP technology to understand and contextualize a customer’s choice of words, phrasing, and even vocal inflection. Speech analysis can come in handy for using keywords in real-time call routing or for operation-wide customer service monitoring and performance analytics. Sentiment analysis can apply to AI-interpreted vocal inflections during calls, but can also extend to analyzing customer feedback on social media platforms, which helps companies understand their customers’ brand perceptions on a deeper level and make the most favorable responses. 

Customers who are emotionally connected to a brand are 52% more valuable across a variety of metrics—including purchases and frequency of use—even when compared to highly satisfied customers.3

Why RingCentral Matters for AI and CX

While other omnichannel communications providers also leverage some of the AI-powered CX technologies above, it’s important to note that RingCentral is at the forefront of the effort. Not only does RingCentral’s Contact Center feature all the tools mentioned above and much more, but they also have a company-wide initiative called RingSense, which seeks to integrate AI technologies into all its products and services.

As RingCentral states, “With RingSense, our plan is to make all voice, meeting, and messaging interactions more intelligent [by leveraging AI] so customers can automatically uncover new, actionable insights to improve efficiencies and performance, gather insights, and take better-informed next steps.”4

How Can You Leverage Artificial Intelligence for a CX That Drives Results?

Many options are available, from adopting an entire customer communications platform like RingCentral Contact Center to choosing apps matching your specific goals. In either case, selecting and implementing new CX technologies can majorly impact your business. That’s why having an expert like IPC Tech on your side is critical.

1 https://www.walkme.com/blog/deep-dive-self-service/
2 https://www.forrester.com/blogs/whats-the-roi-of-cx-transformation/
3 https://hbr.org/2015/11/the-new-science-of-customer-emotions
4 https://www.ringcentral.com/us/en/blog/enterprise-connect-2023-announcements-from-ringcentral/

More Information

For more information on what we can do for your CX, check out our Customer Experience Solutions Page. If you’re ready to make CX and AI work for both you and your customers, reach out to us today.