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ET Retail, India: Cognizant’s Global Delivery Head, Retail and Consumer Goods Discusses how Chatbots are Redefining the Customer Experience

“As the AI technology advances, it is expected that chatbots will be an integral part of every brand almost indistinguishable from their human counterparts,” writes Singaravelu Ekambaram. “But that is not all. With the vast amount of data that chatbots can collect by interactions, it is an excellent platform to be used for hyper-personalization and behavioral marketing.” Excerpts:

“Chatbots over the decade have had a fascinating evolution from being merely system centric to more conversation oriented, gradually eliminating the need for human intervention. The plateauing customer service requests on the phone are only an indication that chatbots are moving center stage.

In the business context, chatbots are being used for simple 24x7 customer service to more complex tasks such as creating better customer engagement.

The next-generation chatbots must build a relationship with users based on an understanding of their needs rather than providing a generalized set of responses that they are trained to deliver. The focus should be on improving the competence of the chatbots that would have the ability to maintain systems and tasks in a human context.

While getting started, it’s a good idea to launch the chatbot on just one platform first and then gradually expand to other platforms. That done, it is necessary to analyze and monitor chatbot performance on a continual basis and make changes as needed to improve performance. Applying analytics to learn from user interactions and integrating with back-end applications to provide a consistent experience across channels, and continuity in customer interactions will eventually win the game.”

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