ServiceNow has released the results of a March 2023 study on chatbot services, which it commissioned from Opinium, the market research and insight agency. The study included 2,000 adults in the UK and a total of 13,000 across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
According to the findings, 92 percent of customers across EMEA believe that response times are one of the most important elements when dealing with a brand and 46 percent of customers think that a good chatbot service is unimportant when dealing with a brand.
Additionally, a good level of security for personal data is paramount when providing a customer experience for customers, with 94 percent of UK consumers ranking this factor as important.
“Despite wanting businesses to understand them better, consumers feel reluctant to give data insights,” said Simon Morris, area VP at ServiceNow. “Businesses need to prove the value, showing that the benefits outweigh the downsides by reiterating that the data is secure and will lead to more seamless service, quicker response times and better outcomes. It’s about gaining this trust and showing how it can lead to a better experience. But it’s a long process, and consistency and transparency from brands are key factors for them to prove themselves.”
The survey also found that chatbot services are more popular amongst younger generations in the UK, with 69 percent of those aged 18-34 deeming it an important element compared to just 34 percent of those aged 55 and over.
“Response times are incredibly important to today’s consumers and they still prefer human interaction,” said Morris. “Most feel that they have to jump through hoops when dealing with a chatbot, by selecting the right words and responses to get what they need. Generative AI advances are only as good as the models they’re trained on, and given the tech is developing rapidly, the view of chatbots will likely be completely different in a year’s time. Improving the employee experience will help train the AI models of tomorrow as well as improve the customer experience, ensuring that chatbot technology gives consumers the service they demand.”
From the ServiceNow study, it seems that customers want to be understood, but are reluctant to divulge data. Therefore, personalizing experience is a top priority for businesses. This is shown by 77 percent of UK customers and 85 percent of those in EMEA wanting informed recommendations from brands.
However, whilst 55 percent of UK consumers say they are more loyal to brands that invest in technology to offer a better customer experience, many are not willing to pay more for it. The UK is the least willing to spend more to guarantee a seamless service (23 percent) whilst the UAE is most willing at 78 percent.