Chatbots with GenAI are available, but are they useful?

17th April, 2024
Chatbots with GenAI are available, but are they useful?

In the realm of customer service, the rise of AI chatbots couldn’t have come at a better time for brands navigating the demands of the digital world post-Covid. These advanced chatbots, powered by Generative AI, are revolutionizing customer interactions by swiftly addressing inquiries and reducing response times. But amidst this technological marvel, one question looms large: Are customers truly benefitting? Let’s delve deeper into the matter.

The quest for answers has always been intrinsic to human nature. With the emergence of Generative AI-driven chatbots, this pursuit has gained momentum. Since December 2022, these chatbots have been akin to a modern-day genie, capable of handling tasks ranging from checking flight schedules to booking hotel rooms, all with just a few taps on a screen.

According to Gaurav Kachhawa, Chief Product Officer at Gupshup, a leading software company, a well-trained AI chatbot can handle a significant portion of customer queries independently, typically around 60-80%. However, the efficacy of these chatbots varies based on technological maturity.

For instance, Indigo’s WhatsApp bot, Dottie, initially managed 86% of chats, with the rest transferred to human experts. Subsequently, an upgraded version named 6Eskai took over, handling 91% of chats and further reducing the need for human intervention. This advancement not only streamlines operations but also underscores the evolving capabilities of AI chatbots.

Unlike their predecessors, today’s chatbots are not confined to mundane tasks. They exhibit intelligence, adaptability, and even simulate human shopping behavior to offer personalized product recommendations. This evolution reflects a broader trend among brands to enhance customer experiences through technological innovation.

Myntra, for example, is integrating features like ‘Review Summarisation’ to provide users with concise product feedback, facilitating informed decision-making. Similarly, Indigo plans to enhance its chatbot with multimedia capabilities and additional functionalities like the Plan-B feature for addressing operational issues.

However, the adoption of AI chatbots comes with its own set of challenges. Organizations must navigate concerns related to data privacy, accuracy of responses, and the potential for AI-induced errors. Pareekh Jain, CEO of EIIRTrend, emphasizes the importance of mitigating risks through human oversight and leveraging multiple AI models.

Moreover, while AI chatbots excel in handling structured data, they struggle with real-time information and emotional intelligence. This limitation underscores the irreplaceable role of human interaction, particularly in sensitive scenarios such as customer complaints.

In the grand scheme of customer engagement, AI chatbots serve as invaluable tools, but they are not substitutes for human judgment and empathy. As Sangeeta Bavi, Executive Director at Digital Natives, Microsoft, aptly puts it, they are intelligent companions guided by human direction. Thus, achieving a harmonious balance between AI and human agents is paramount for delivering personalized and efficient customer experiences.