Interview News

Intelligence Infusion to Revamp Customer Service Experience


Zendesk AI serves as the intelligent core within the Zendesk platform, utilizing CX-specific data to integrate intelligence seamlessly into all aspects of the customer service journey

In order to deliver on these expectations, Indian businesses need conversational commerce at scale.

Vasudeva Rao Munnaluri, RVP India & SAARC, Zendesk

As businesses in India ramp up AI adoption, what should they look for while investing in them?

The benefits of AI are aplenty — from solving customer issues before they become bigger problems to upselling, cross selling and preventative planning. Businesses are under pressure to move quickly, ramp up productivity while also keeping costs low. As much as AI can solve many existing problems, the kind of AI solutions businesses need have been out of reach, largely because many in the market require heavy IT spend, long implementation times and specialised skills just to kickstart the AI adoption journey. Many other AI-driven platforms are also designed to work in silos, which can frustrate customers and employees who use them. 

While shopping for AI solutions, businesses need to look for solutions that work out of the box and seamlessly integrate with existing software.  It’s important to find AI tools that are accessible to everyone, be it enterprises or small businesses. The best solutions are easy to set up and use. Finding an AI solution that works off the shelf and comes pre-trained with CX-specific datasets like Zendesk AI means businesses can tap into powerful AI in minutes, not months, and be useful across your CX operations right from the start. Agents will then have customer-focused intelligence at their fingertips, making every customer conversation more meaningful. And if the AI solution is continuously learning from your CX organisation, it can only help you get better at serving your customers.

How can Zendesk’s AI solutions empower businesses in India to grow?

When we talk about AI in customer service, most people automatically think of chatbots. But that’s just a drop in a sea of what AI can do for CX. Zendesk AI is the intelligence layer in the Zendesk platform built on CX specific data that allows businesses to infuse intelligence into every part of the customer service experience — from smarter conversations and bots, with productivity tools for agents and insights and instant actions for admins.

One of the most important and powerful ways Zendesk AI helps businesses is that it makes customer service teams more agile, especially when dealing with high volumes of customer requests. Between high ticket volumes and repetitive tasks, agents end up spending a lot of time and energy categorising each one manually to ensure it gets routed to the right people. When it comes to the actual conversations, they may lack important insights that could result in a quicker resolution. The bottom line is that their time is better spent on performing high-value tasks. AI isn’t meant to replace humans. It should make their jobs easier. Zendesk AI does just that – and more.

Businesses can contain costs more effectively as agents are freed up to focus on more meaningful work, even during periods of high demand. And AI works automatically behind the scenes to improve business operations. Firstly, advanced, pre-trained bots can gauge customer intent, which translates to faster set up, more personalised and accurate responses and productive agents. Secondly, it can automatically categorise incoming customer conversations based on intent, sentiment, and language and also routes it to the right people. Thirdly, there’s context. Agents have the right insights about customers that helps them respond more effectively. And finally, it provides admins with macro suggestions so they can take the right measures to make their agents more productive. As all customer conversations are managed at scale in one flexible system, and it optimises operations quickly in response to customer feedback, trends, and insights, thereby helping businesses improve their bottom line.

Conversational commerce is among the biggest opportunities for D2C brands in India. How can Zendesk’s solutions help businesses create smooth buying journeys?

Shopping online has become central to customers’ buying patterns – from browsing fashion apps to banking or ordering groceries online. While many companies have embraced the omnichannel approach, there is still the need to ensure a smooth, simple, and convenient online shopping experience. Afterall, these are the experiences that keep customers coming back for more. Customers today have great expectations from brands they do business with. In India, half the customers expect retailers to increase personalisation, 47% want increased self-service options and 42% want increased interaction on social media.

In order to deliver on these expectations, Indian businesses need conversational commerce at scale. It’s probably why 74% of companies in India that have found a way to effectively use conversational commerce say it’s a key enabler of the company’s business and customer engagement strategy. But retailers and e-commerce players face many problems like abandoned carts and finding new ways to upsell and cross sell. Research shows that for every 10 customers who add items to their shopping cart, seven of them leave without completing the purchase. While it’s common for customers to window shop, another reason for abandoning carts is the lack of a frictionless experience.

These problems can be addressed with AI solutions that proactively pre-empt customer issues, offer deeper personalisation and deliver experiences that build loyalty. This is where Zendesk’s conversational commerce solution can help -connecting brands with shoppers throughout their digital journey ensuring direct support, marketing, and sales all from within a conversation.

As the solution offers service personalization, agents can identify abandoned carts and take action to convert them to sales. They can share personalised promotions with customers to create memorable experiences and also find new revenue opportunities. As the solution is built on CX-specific data sets, it helps agents understand a shopper’s purchase history, merchandise preferences and browsing journey to offer personalised product recommendations. This drives cross-selling and upselling, increasing overall order value.

Why do businesses need solutions that are built on CX-specific data sets to create immersive experiences?

AI is only as effective as the intelligence it is built on. Businesses intending to adopt AI into their CX operations must understand that AI is not always accurate and it learns overtime. ChatGPT, for instance, has great conversational capabilities but businesses intending to use it for customer interactions must ensure that the AI solution is trained for CX. If AI is not accurate, it can disrupt the experience and lead to frustrated customers. Building trust in the technology is so important because once customer trust is lost, it’s difficult to build it back up. That’s why such solutions should be built with the right safeguards and testing. Having solutions built on CX-specific datasets ensures that AI is properly enabled with the right emphasis on transparency and accuracy.

When solutions are built on intelligence from billions of customer conversations, it ensures that AI provides accurate responses and knows when issues require a human touch and escalates it to the right agent. For instance, AI-powered CX solutions reveal when a customer is frustrated with a chatbot and route the query to the agent who has experience tackling such problems. It can also provide agents with the necessary customer context to deliver tailored and personalised experiences. Such solutions help address customer issues faster and offer deeper personalisation while ensuring the conversations are industry-specific and accurate.

Why do businesses need a more cost-effective way to understand customer intent and sentiment?

Analysing customer intent and sentiment involves a lot of manual work — classifying customer requests, prioritising requests related to revenue drivers like billing issues or questions from unhappy VIP customers and routing them to the right people. Customers expect their issues to be resolved promptly, and manual triaging of customer issues is not only time-consuming but also cost-intensive. This is where CX solutions that can analyse customer sentiment and intent play a huge role in cost savings.

These solutions can automatically triage requests to the right people, eliminating the work and cost of manual triage. It can immediately detect and classify the customer’s intent in incoming customer requests, so businesses can free up team capacity and reduce operating expenses. By instantly routing and prioritising high-value requests, brands can ensure their agents are working on business-critical issues. Agents can use reporting and analytics from these solutions to better understand customers and CX operations, collaborate across departments, identify areas of opportunity, and continuously improve customer experience.

Related posts

DataStax and LlamaIndex Simplify RAG Application Development for GenAI Developers


Palo Alto Networks Empowers Customers with Cortex Platform for Endpoint Security


Tata Tele Business Services to offer Unified Solution on Toll-Free for WhatsApp Business