1. Voice assistants go big!

In 2020, there will be 4.2 billion digital voice assistants used in devices around the world. Statista says that by 2024, that number will reach 8.4 billion units

That number’s higher than the world’s population- that a lot of Christmas presents.

We’re at the stage where voice-enabled chatbots that have proved relatively effective for trivial situations are moving to phase 2, going mainstream and, dare I say, threatening to become, well – very helpful!

Moreover, voice is gaining popularity and will be introduced into consumers’ home on Christmas Day when millions of us open up our latest Alexa….

Number of digital voice assistants in use worldwide from 2019 to 2024 (in billions)*

2. AI-powered chatbots are becoming more intelligent

‘Hey chatbot, what’s the secret of life?’

OK, so we’re not quite at the ‘secrets of life stage yet!  But we are at the stage where bots are considerably more intelligent and getting smarter by the day.  This aligns nicely with organisations who are looking for gains on their customer service and lead generation activity in 2023.  Advancements in AI will play a crucial role new ways for data analysis to derive valuable insights from collected data for any business moving forward.

Furthermore, AI algorithms in chatbots can detect patterns and learn strategies to achieve customer-centric goals. AI-powered chatbots will have access to vast knowledge and will be able ability to understand customers’ requirements based on their interactions with the brands. Incorporating an AI-enabled chatbot into your business processes is the right decision for any organization.

3. Chatbots are facilitating business processes

Here’s a phrase to note:  If it can be automated, it will be automated.  

Businesses are always under pressure to reduce costs and make things more efficient.  But it’s fair to say that the microscope is a little stronger as of late and there’s unlikely to be a place at the table for businesses carrying too much extra baggage.

So what does that extra baggage look like? 

People busy with processes makes no sense.  I don’t think were at the stage right now of predicting that chatbots will take over the world,  but what chatbots are great at are all those manual processes within your business or organisation. 

So where to start looking?

Sales, HR, customer service, in fact anywhere a customer completes a process, is a good starting point.

Here’s a challenge: I’ve never spoken to a business where I’ve not been able to identify a cost saving, in fact an improvement in their process through automation.

No, that’s not a sales pitch.

I’m serious: businesses carry too much inefficiency.  Before we open up another big topic here and discuss the causes of inefficacy in commerce, it’s probably fair to say that a key cause of this is lack of investment.  

This is as much an investment in time, identifying those cost drains, as it is an investment in costs!

4. Chatbots Start Working for Your Business

We know bots like speaking with your customers and clients and they’re great at helping with lead generation.  But why are so few of those bots employed in helping are our own business makes sense of how we organise ourselves and structure our information?

Businesses are complex structures, and finding the data and information that’s contained within is no easy fight.

Have you ever asked whose responsible for filling the coffee machine, or where’s the latest marketing plan? 

These questions can often leave employees frustrated.  ‘Why can’t I ever find anything in this place?’  In fact, businesses often have great data, information, reports and so on that’s completely under-utilised because nobody can find them!

And intranets aren’t great either.  Of course they’re better than just relying on the most experienced member of staff to know everything, but Intranets are often clunky, they don’t learn like bots do and they don’t operate over a ‘chat’ channel! 

The Takeaway

‘Chat’ is now the primary channel of communication worldwide!  Every business needs to be asking themselves one big question entering into 2023

What’s my chat strategy?

Chatbots haven’t quite taken over the world just yet, but they’re playing a major role in helping businesses with lead generation, improving customer service and reducing costs. 

The trends outlined in this article are real. It’s happening right now. 

Don’t get left behind!