You go into a big box hardware store. You’re looking for a light dimmer. First you need to find the electrical department. After two wrong turns and a near employee sighting, you manage to get there. Now you need to closely examine the racks for dimmers. You realize it’s not this row. Go around to the next row. You’re getting warm. Aha! Dimmers! Now to decide which one. Why is one of them triple the price of the other? Is it safer? The box is referring to 2-pole and 3-pole, what is that? Long sigh of despair.
You go into a big box hardware store. A clerk greets you and asks how she can help you today. You say you’re looking for a light dimmer. She walks you directly to the row and racks with dimmers. You notice the big difference in prices. The clerk explains the better made ones have more precise dimming and tend to last longer, but there’s no safety issue either way. What’s 2-pole and 3-pole? She explains if there’s only one light on the switch 2-pole is fine. You make your choice and head for the cash.
It’s very obvious which experience is better. Now think about your website. If you have more than a few pages, visitors (read: your prospects and customers) are getting experience #1. Self-service. Now you may think you’ve done a masterful job of organizing your website. And maybe you have. So people should be able to find what they need quickly. They’re not. This is a universal truth. And IF they take the time to explore and get to the right area, did they get the specific information they need to see how your product or service will work in their particular case?
Well, the hardware store would probably lose money if they had enough people on the floor to personally welcome and assist every customer. In the digital world however, this level of service is not only possible, it can be delivered cost-effectively. You can welcome and assist every customer on your site. This is what chatbots do, but are generally limited to very specific tasks rather than general help.
The right application of interactive questions, dynamic responses and personalized, real-time video make a real Digital Assistant possible. Is it as good as a human? Apples to oranges. You need both. A human will always be more flexible, more versatile. But the Digital Assistant was patterned after your best salesperson, on their best day. It delivers consistency in message and is available 24/7. And it’s incredibly cost-effective for what it does.
Ideally the Digital Assistant can handle the bulk of traffic flow and questions with a high degree of personalization, then hand off only those customers who still need live help to humans.