How Much Should You Be Spending on the AI-Powered Customer Experience?

By Deon Nicholas

Companies are making considerable investments in the customer experience. Much of that is in technology, but not all solutions deliver the same results. Stakeholders realize that leveraging tools to improve customer interaction is worthwhile to keep them happy, satisfied, and loyal. But how much should you allot to these efforts? And why should that investment be in AI-powered customer experience?

Here’s the case for investing in AI-powered customer experience.

According to a study, customer experience is now more important than the product or price in buying decisions. Thus, businesses must prioritize it to improve retention, increase cross-selling and upselling, and enhance overall customer satisfaction. As a result, 88 percent of companies now put customer experience top of mind in contact centers. To make it an investment that delivers ROI, your company needs to rethink the channels and communication options provided. 

Customers seek fast, accurate answers. They also don’t want to wait in long queues to resolve their queries. You have several avenues you can take to meet these customer needs. You could add more agents or deploy AI-powered customer service technology. It enables self-service beyond traditional chatbots and empowers agents to find the best responses to customer concerns. 

Cost vs. Value: You get what you pay for.

Experts say AI’s potential business value for customer support will reach $1.07 trillion by 2025. So, how do you realize this?

When making any type of technology investment, you want to make sure it’s going to deliver ROI. In looking at the difference between a standard chatbot and AI-powered customer support, beyond just comparing the costs, calculate the value. 

You can see immediate results from deploying conversational AI. That’s because it uses natural language processing and natural language understanding to discern sentiment and intent. It doesn’t just look for keywords to formulate a response—it’s more refined and specific, which leads to more customers getting what they need from self-service. The AI uses existing macros, knowledge articles, and historical cases to serve up the most complete responses. 

The value back to you is you don’t have to significantly increase agent headcount. Having such great self-service could also contribute to customer loyalty and more business.

On average, companies can achieve up to 90 percent accuracy in ticket resolution and deflect up to 60 percent of queries. 

AI-powered customer support can reduce overall department costs.

When you implement new technology, you have expectations of what it will improve. In any analysis, you’ll look for when you break even on the investment. After that point, you realize ROI in the manner of a lower volume of inquiries that need direct agent intervention and higher productivity of agents. 

With AI-powered tools, your agents continue to benefit from the assistance of categorizing and tagging tickets and offering suggested responses based on the nature of the query. 

By using an AI-powered customer support platform, you can see overall costs for customer service decrease. For example, when our customer Abra deployed the technology, they reached a 40% deflection rate. This value was realized as a 6.3x ROI.

The right investment depends on your goals and what the technology can deliver.

Strategically investing in AI-powered customer experiences can provide many benefits that improve your bottom line. 

Customers are happier and more loyal, which can increase their customer lifetime value. In addition, your agents have support and don’t burn out, reducing turnover. Overall, your customer support department runs more efficiently. So, when you think about the price you should pay, you have to weigh it against the value it can bring.

Dive in.

Interested in generative AI for customer support? Check out this guide to learn about the 3 key pillars you need to get started.

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