Trust: the cornerstone of great customer service

Trust is the cornerstone of great customer service which is critical for satisfaction and loyalty within the retail industry. This article addresses the importance of trust within customer service with regards to the trend of using chatbots to streamline customer contact.

We have discussed chatbots in previous blog posts. Chatbots put the customer in control, allowing them to self-serve 24/7 and are now seen as a viable channel for customer service.

That said, consumer trust in chatbots is a potential stumbling block for their further implementation. If consumers do not trust the technology, it could severely hinder the industry from growing in line with current predictions.

The main challenge identified in a series of interviews on the topic[1] was the misinterpretation that can be associated with chatbots, where the technology cannot identify exactly what the user wants, resulting in frustration.

Trust in chatbots for customer service was found to be affected by “the quality of its interpretation of requests and advice, its human-likeness, its self-presentation, its professional appearance, the brand of the chatbot host, the perceived security and privacy, as well as general risk perceptions concerning the topic of the request.”

Security and privacy are huge topics at the moment. In the age of GDPR, where individuals have the right to be forgotten, and consumers are much more wary of who they give their data to, the technology around chatbots must be slick.

What is being said is of equal importance. Just as you would not trust a human call handler who gives conflicting or irrelevant advice, the same goes for the bot. Getting this right hinges on the interpretation of the question. Great strides are being made with linguistic processing software which will lead to more and more complex queries being answered by chatbots.

The key is to closely monitor technology to ensure it is not damaging consumer trust inadvertently. By outsourcing your customer contact strategy, you will gain access to years of experience. We can help you to build a strategy for effectively using technology to handle customer enquiries. Getting this right will increase trust in your brand leaving you free to focus on your core business.