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Do customers like AI-based chatbots?

AI machine learning
Consumers have concerns over AI.

A new survey of U.S. consumers reveals their views on artificial intelligence, especially when it comes to customer service chatbots.

According to data from a recent Ipsos poll, close to seven in 10 (68%) surveyed U.S. consumers have utilized customer service chatbots. However, of those respondents, close to eight in 10 (77%) prefer interacting with a human for customer service needs.

In addition, 77% of respondents who have used chatbots report that customer service chatbots are frustrating, and 88% would rather speak to a person. A little more than one in three (35%) say that chatbots can solve their problem effectively most of the time.

Looking more broadly at respondent views on AI, 73% of consumers say they are at least somewhat familiar with AI, however, most of those (55%) are somewhat familiar, with only 18% saying they are very familiar (18%). Nearly two in three (64%) respondents think the government should stop job loss due to the increased use of AI, with widespread agreement on this across all demographics and partisan affiliations.  

The survey also asked respondents questions on a range of other topics. Interesting data points for retailers include:

  • Two-thirds of respondents plan on watching the Super Bowl (66%), with 33% saying they are more excited for the advertisements than the game itself.
  • About half of respondents say that buying American is more important now than before the COVID-19 pandemic. Only 5% say it’s less important. Two in three say that whether a product is made in America or by an American company plays into their purchase decision.
  • Six in 10 (61%) respondents take part in some sort of credit card rewards program. About one in three say that they prefer cash back over rewards. 
  • One in three respondents say they are comfortable with their economic situation. They’re outnumbered by the 44% who say they are uncomfortable.

Ipsos surveyed a sample of 1,118 adults ages 18 and older from the continental U.S., Alaska and Hawaii was online in English, between Jan. 31- Feb. 1, 2023. 

Simplr: Live chat beats AI

According to “2023 State of E-commerce Customer Service,” a new study from contact center technology provider Simplr, of AI-based chatbot interactions with human intervention that occurred during the course of the study, 40% were rated as “very good” or “exceptional.”

In addition, 72% were rated as “likely” or “very likely” to cause a repurchase from that brand, and 46% of chatbot interactions were rated “easy” or “very easy” for effort. For live chat, human intervention resulted in higher satisfaction, effort, and repurchase rates across the board.

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