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Voicebots – Addressing customer demand for more autonomy

Today, customers do not wish to engage with a business to address straightforward concerns such as changing personal account details or getting an order cancelled. They prefer using automated self-service options in the form of a mobile application or a business chatbot setup. But now, they demand the expediency of somebody resolving their queries over voice commands and voicebots offer that convenience.

Voicebots are rapidly gaining popularity in the business world and as the provider of one of the most sophisticated voice bot solutions in the market, we wish to shed some light on it.

What are voicebots?

According to a Gartner report, AI bots are all set to take up about 40% of all customer service communications. While chatbots
are presently the most widespread artificial intelligence (AI) communication tool, voicebots are fast catching up. Voicebots are
AI-operated software. Voicebots operate in a manner similar to chatbots while responding to our queries or while redirecting us
to someone else, but they do so by responding to voice commands.

Voicebots are built on conversational artificial intelligence, which specifies the set of technologies that seek to educate robots to recognize human language and the meanings expressed by words.

IVR or Interactive Voice Response systems receive voice commands, which could be as easy as answering Yes or No to questions,
or it could be a little more complex involving Natural Language Processing (NLP) that direct users to an agreeable solution.

It may seem like a lot of work, but when done properly, voicebots offer a superior layer of customer service that growing businesses need. In this guide, we will be taking a deep dive into the realm of AI voicebots – a fairly new, yet transformational technology.

What is the purpose of using a voicebot?

A voicebot must address customer troubles instantly. Since voice is the fastest form of human interaction, faster than keying in queries and traversing drop-down menus using a mouse. Consequently, voicebots present enormous opportunities to elevate the customer service levels a business offers.
We are a group of multi-taskers and love to listen to podcasts while biking and make and receive calls while driving. That makes voicebots both a reliable and useful alternative as your customers will surely be carrying out many other tasks simultaneously.
You can converse with a voicebot at any time of the day. Using voicebots, customers can get in touch with the contact centre from anywhere and at any time. Therefore, you do not have to wait in line to speak with an agent or be compelled to make a call during business hours. Customer service can be enhanced markedly through the immediacy of these bot-driven chats.
Thanks to the power of AI, voicebots upgrade their responses constantly based on the behaviour and history of the customer. Even when they fail to offer a customer the right response, they learn and contextualize from these chats to give the right responses in the future.
However, creating a voicebot that genuinely echoes your brand’s tone of voice and that could recognize the context and content of a customer’s request poses a significant challenge that can only be conquered with the help of experts.

Learn more about the use cases of voice bots.

How does a voicebot function?

AI-powered voice recognition bots comprehend the speaker’s request through natural language and voice recognition in real-time without human intervention and use it to converse with the caller with a high success rate of up to 98%. To develop a strong,
AI-driven voicebot, you will need the following key elements:

  1. Automatic Speech Recognition that listens to the request made by the caller
  2. Natural Language Understanding that comprehends the speaker’s demand
  3. Conversations Module that establishes the correct response
  4. Text-to-Speech System that responds to the speaker’s query
Automatic Speech Recognition
When a caller speaks out, the system identifies his voice using Voice Activity Detection. The caller’s voice is transformed into text through speech recognition. These two elements make up the automatic speech recognition engine and let the voice get transcribed into text format.
Natural Language Understanding
With the introduction of Natural Language Understanding, the voice control bot can accomplish a greater level of understanding. Through Natural Language Understanding a voicebot manages to realize the purpose behind the caller’s speech and distinguish and obtain aspects that propel the conversation forward.
Conversation Module
Contextual chat allows users to interact effortlessly and does not push them to follow a particular course. The conversational style centres on the context of the user request, recognizing the intent, and collecting all the relevant information through entirely natural, unstructured discussions.
Text-to-Speech
Text-to-Speech converts text into genuine speech. It is a computer-generated reproduction of human speech created through deep learning techniques.

Benefits of having a voicebot

Voicebots benefit business operations in many ways. Read on to learn about the key advantages of investing in voice automation:

  • Connect with customers using innovative voicebot technology: With scientific innovations in NLP, smart voice control bots have developed the ability to simulate the nuances in speech. This is a progression of natural language and must be heard to be understood. AI today is a driving force in communication.The time when voice machines drove callers to the edge is certainly a thing of the past. There is no need to worry over enormous language menus, where we were expected to choose from certain keywords and then broadcast them forcefully. The conditions today are incredibly different.
  • Scale-up business processes: Humans are trained to cope with two to three chats at a time. On the other hand, voicebots can manage without any limit. Firms can easily scale up or down customer service depending on the inflow of calls.
  • Handing off: Voicebots understand when they must pass a customer on to a human. Despite being extremely smart and sophisticated, there will be times when voicebots cannot offer all the right answers. Though voicebots stand out at giving straightforward, FAQ-based responses, such as informing about business hours and return policies, but when the customer query becomes more complex, they are capable of handing the call over to a human agent to address the situation.
  • Customized relationships: Voice-based interactions present new possibilities to provide superior personalized relationships. For example, with voice recognition, voicebots can instantly authenticate the customer and use the customer’s history with a brand to provide tailored answers. Interactive voicebots enable a user-friendly element to the customer service experience, considering the conversational setting of the technology. In the end, as humans, we are more impulsive in verbal chats in contrast to thought-out text-based exchanges.
  • Reduced customer service contact rate and lower operational costs: This is possibly the major benefit for businesses in having voicebots. They boost resources and reduce contact rates by computerizing basic customer chats that do not mandate interventions from live agents. Besides, contact centre agents are released from handling tedious, tier-1 support queries and they get the freedom to focus on more intricate customer concerns.
  • Ease of integrations: Voicebots can flawlessly and easily integrate with the customer support technology stack and telephony structure. This makes self-service, autonomous alternatives quite sophisticated and offers voicebots superior capabilities.
  • Cut waiting times and enhance customer service quality: Several people continue to doubt the quality of customer service when it comes to voice automation. However, this apprehension is misplaced as there is no reason to question a voicebot used to answer queries that can be resolved automatically and swiftly regardless of the time of the day. When given the option of waiting longer to speak to a person, or presenting an answer right away from a voicebot, many go with AI. Eventually, the crucial factor for a constructive customer experience is not the condition of having talked to a real human being, but whether the concerns of the customer were expertly and promptly recorded and settled. In fact, today the technology has advanced to such an extent that the end-user often fails to tell that it is a bot answering them.

Watch this webinar to know more about the benefits of using voicebots for your business.

How do different industries benefit from using a voicebot?

As per a McKinsey report, as the Covid-19 pandemic began, there has been a spike in mobile banking worldwide. Predictably, the speedy move from brick-and-mortar sites to digital outlets has also prompted several banks to employ voicebots.
Banking Voicebots are helping banks handle customer service in the following ways:

Handling outbound calls
At times, banks feel the need to run a promotional outbound campaign. This is where voicebots help banks call hundreds or even thousands of prospective customers. If a customer is keen on getting to know the details, the voicebot can relay the call to an agent. Voicebots also help banks run customer service assessment surveys.
Authenticating customers
Before an agent can help out with a query involving a customer’s bank account, they must validate their identity. This can be difficult to scale up and frequently leads to long backlogs. With voicebots, banks can run the whole client verification process without engaging with a human. The voicebot can request the caller to share details about their data, swiftly run it by the system, and confirm their identity and the same procedure can be carried out for thousands of clients simultaneously.
Blocking stolen or lost credit and debit cards
When looking through a customer experience standpoint, this is perhaps the most useful power that banks can bestow on voicebots. Customers will not have to wait anymore to talk to an agent while worrying whether the burglar is withdrawing funds from your credit line or account.
Managing bank accounts
Once the client is verified, the voicebot doesn’t have to hand over the call to an agent immediately. There are several tasks it can do autonomously, such as examining the account balance, carrying out money transfers, verifying credit scores among other things.

Quick service restaurants (QSR)

The use of voicebots in QSRs is growing rapidly. Here are the key reasons for its increasing popularity:

  1. Unfailing brand experiences
  2. Enhanced sales through upselling
  3. Lower operational costs
  4. Accurate ordering
  5. Faster, more expedient customer service
  6. Superior hygiene
  7. Tailored voice experiences
  8. Conversational interfaces

If your business has not introduced voice technology yet, you may like to think about the benefits it offers before your customers leave you for a voice-enabled competitor. Customers today look for extraordinary experiences when they dine out, order in or drive-thru and voicebots can help bring quick results. In the Opus Research Study, 94% of QSR leaders deemed a delightful experience and customer satisfaction to be the leading end-user benefits of voice-enabled AI solutions.
Healthcare
In the healthcare sector, hospitals can employ voicebots to help patients in searching for a doctor within their neighbourhood and in accordance with their healthcare requirements. Voicebots ask patients questions about their pin code and medical speciality and then provide them with suggestions that meet their criteria.
From tailored experiences and natural interactions to fostering hygiene and faster service, in the end, the benefits of having voice-enabled customer chat amount to contented and devoted customers. Businesses must assess their voice strategies to stay a step ahead of their rivals and make their customers come back for more.

Features of AI-based voicebots

Here are the key features a voicebot must possess to ensure a smooth conversation:

  • The ability to wait & listen: The argument around intent understanding makes it obvious that the standard set for AI assistants such as voicebots is quite high. While the customer would like the bot to be a ‘good listener’ so it can ascertain the next moves or stop when the customer on the other end is speaking, you also would like the bot to have the ability to make the motive of its call clear.
  • Personalization: A customer wants fast responses when he calls a business. This involves the ability to relieve their trouble to somebody more accomplished as quickly as possible. So, it is annoying to raise the number of steps a caller has to go through. For instance, after taking the trouble of calling a business, a customer gets frustrated when he is asked to navigate an IVR to identify themselves, select the pertinent options to classify the reason for the call, before finally explaining the problem. Here, bringing the idea of personalization is key to enhancing customer experience through voicebots.
  • Access to agents: One of the objectives of a voicebot is to help agents in fulfilling customers’ demands. Bots are not there as an alternative to agents. During a call, a customer has the choice to talk to an agent. This need not happen under all circumstances but must be based on pre-defined user-oriented fallback guidelines.
  • Ability to learn continuously through AI: Comprehending human speech is an intricate endless pit and an apparently never-ending procedure. Often we humans misconstrue and misinterpret each other’s words. In this respect, voicebots have managed to achieve a lot. An AI-driven voicebot, for example, knows this truth and never stops learning. It constantly enhances its predictability and accuracy based on prior results.
  • Intent Analysis- The power to recognize meaning: This is possibly the most important feature. Subtext and understanding are critical during an interaction. Unfortunately, as humans, we are not always to the point when we talk. Given this fundamental human paradox, a voicebot must have the ability to use its ‘Intent Analysis’ or the power to obtain the meaning behind our statements.
  • Ability to offer a quick response: Like most other technologies, speed is of the essence for an enjoyable, effective experience. A decent voicebot must be able to understand and act at the same speed at which the customer talks. Delays and sluggish responses cause annoyance and build a bad impression of the business.

How voicebots help in customer service and enhance customer experience

Voicebots are the future of chatbots and enhance the customer experience in the following four ways:

Engage customers proactively
Voicebots save both time and money by reaching out to customers with appointment reminders, offers/discounts, due dates, renewals, and customer feedback assessments.
Deliver a coherent and broad customer experience
Voicebots guarantee that customers have inclusive conversations. A human agent is often not fluent in different languages to resolve customer inquiries globally. Voicebots triumph over this obstacle and ensure that all customers get the same degree of service, irrespective of their language.
Quick response times
Voicebots ensure that customers are not kept waiting to speak to an agent. Even if the voicebot fails to address a problem, responding to the call immediately, instead of making them wait, can stop a customer from getting annoyed.
Offer quick, straightforward, and autonomous customer service
Unlike humans, voicebots are available 24/7, ensuring customers get information and have their issues resolved at any time. Customers are getting answers to general questions as well as to the more pressing demands, such as revoking a lost/stolen credit card.

Yellow.ai combines the best of AI and Human intelligence to automate customer experience for large companies and enterprises. Our virtual customer assistants guide customers every step of the way through:

  • Onboarding/welcome calls
  • Reminder calls
  • Notification calls
  • Feedback/survey calls

Trusted by over a thousand global brands such as Sephora, MG Motors, Bajaj Finserv, BPCL, Waste Connections US, and Tata, Yellow.ai has clients from over 30 nations, with AI chatbots and voicebots in over a hundred languages, across over 35 channels.

Read this blog to know how you can automate contact centers with Voice AI.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is voicebot and voice chatbot the same?

No. A chatbot is used for online interactions using text, on the other hand, a voicebot interacts only through voice.

What is the difference between a chatbot and a voice assistant?

Chatbots are smart enough to recognize the context of a chat and perform the correct bot flow. However, they cannot find answers or perform certain activities on their own. In contrast, a voicebot can wriggle around existing resources and help resolve a broad set of requests.

Voicebot vs IVR, which one is better?

IVR is an automated telephone system that can offer useful information or carry out transactions for callers 24 hours a day. IVR is ideal when a business has a limited budget and does not have to offer a conversational experience. Voice Bots are best when a business wants to provide several communication channels and in multiple languages.

Is it safe to use a voicebot?

Yes. Using a voicebot is absolutely safe as proven by several businesses who have been successfully using it to address their customers’ queries.

What is the difference between a chatbot and a voice assistant?

Chatbots do not recognize human sentiments. They answer questions accurately, but do not grasp our feelings and do not know how to react accurately. Voice assistants, in contrast, can assess natural language intricacies through advanced NLP.