Leveraging the power of artificial intelligence (AI) and the surging popularity of messaging apps, conversational interfaces are enabling unprecedented banking engagement and re-establishing relationship banking. Chatbots are a simple, lightweight solution to a host of legacy banking problems, giving progressive banks and credit unions a competitive industry edge. The arrival of the digital age has disrupted the retail banking industry and altered the relationship between banks and their customers. Where banking once meant interacting with customers in brick-and-mortar branches, new digital banking channels like websites and mobile apps have opened an entirely new way to reach customers and do business. Online and mobile banking have allowed banks to reach customers more easily and frequently, and have given customers unprecedented access to their financial information.
More chatbots will begin to solve real-world problems. In many instances, early chatbots seemed more like technologies in search of problems than customer-centric solutions. As the chatbot hype subsides, technologies mature, and companies get feedback from customers, the problems that chatbots tackle will become more obvious, and, in turn, more valuable. An example is our own ReplyYes' The Edit, which endeavors to solve the problem of product discovery for music lovers. Through a use of progressive disclosure, short keyword interactions, and machine-based curation of vinyl albums, we give customers a personalized and serendipitous experience to help them find music they love.
Businesses can now use conversational AI to automate customer-facing touchpoints everywhere -- on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, on their website, their app or on voice assistant devices. Industry giants like Apple, Amazon, Baidu, Facebook, Google, IBM and Microsoft are investing large resources to drive AI progress. And though it's still relatively new among enterprises, by 2021 Gartner predicts 25% of enterprises across the globe will have a virtual assistant to handle support issues. If your organization is not yet familiar with conversational artificial intelligence, it is a set of technologies that enable computers to simulate real conversations. According to Georgia Partners, conversational AI refers to the use of messaging apps, speech-based assistants and chatbots to automate communication and create personalized customer experiences at scale.
This year, chatbots and virtual assistants have made their entrance into our lives. And many experts are convinced that they're here to stay. These technologies take ecommerce to a new, much more conversational level that is "conversational commerce". It's a term coined by Uber's Chris Messina (by the way, he's the inventor of the Twitter hashtag) and describes the step towards more personalized interactions between people and brands utilizing chat, messaging, or other natural language interfaces (i.e. Chatbots and Virtual Assistants are artificial intelligence systems that can communicate with users on a more personal level.