Chatbot statistics are more than obscure numbers and percentages from a standalone study, they are a tangible barometer for understanding the current status of consumer behavior. By learning key statistics about chatbots, leaders can make informed decisions on the best ways to invest time and money to benefit their business and contribute to lead generation. This article will highlight the most important chatbot statistics every customer service and support leader needs to know in 2021.
It’s the customers’ world, and companies are just living in it. Customers today expect more: Outcomes, not interactions. Personalization, not generalization. Immediate, not delayed. Omni-channel, not single channel.
Chatbots burst onto the scene in 2009, but had little fanfare. According to Google Trends search data, “chatbot statistics” have never been more searched at any other time in the last decade. Moreover, you can see that the curiosity is no longer a flash in the pan. Chatbots are here to stay as we explore some of the more interesting stats a little later on in this piece.
There are now palpable expectations for quick, convenient and effortless customer support and a company’s ability to provide this directly correlates to revenue and loyalty. To meet these expectations and compete on customer service, companies are turning to chatbots and conversational AI to offload work from human agents, decrease resolution time and provide omnichannel, real-time support.
Chatbots have been around for quite a few years now. Adoption of AI is now well beyond early adopter trial and error or limited pilot programs designed to test drive the technology. Conversational AI chatbots are being widely adopted to perform knowledge work, and become the new interface for consumer engagement. With all that being said, we wanted to understand the adoption of AI, trends in support automation, and the outlook of AI in customer service over the next few years.
We’ve pulled together the most telling statistics every customer experience leader needs to know in 2021.
Top 25 Chatbot Statistics and Facts (Editor’s Choice)
- 1.4 billion people are using chatbots (Chatbot.Net)
- 60% of people have engaged with a chatbot in the last 12 months (GetVoip)
- By 2022, we’ll be talking to bots more than our own spouses (Deloitte)
- 77% of executives have already implemented and 60% plan to implement conversational bots for after-sales and customer service (Accenture)
- 53% of service organizations expect to use chatbots within 18 months — a 136% growth rate that foreshadows a big role for the technology in the near future (Salesforce 2)
- 56% of businesses that claim chatbots are driving disruption in their industry (Accenture)
- Nearly 6 in 10 executives said bots can improve their organization’s ability to handle customer queries by networking with other bots, and that they can deliver personalized attention to website visitors by being more conversational (Accenture)
There are 7.8 billion people on the planet. That means 18% of the entire population use chatbots according to the first statistic on this list. As chatbot technology evolves, we expect more of the population to use bots for everyday communications with brands.
Chatbots and Customer Experience (CX)
- 265 billion customer support requests made every year, costing $1.3 trillion (Chatbots Journal)
- 30% of customers will leave a brand and never come back because of a bad experience (OpenText)
- Failing to meet customer expectations is two times more destructive than exceeding them (KPMG)
- 1 in 5 live chats were ignored and not answered (SuperOffice)
Customer service has never been more costly. Companies can no longer afford to tackle support in the same way they have done in the past. Will AI replace customer service agents altogether? That is highly unlikely. As you’ll see in the next section, there are elements of customer service that can only be handled by real people.
Chatbots and Human Agents
- 64% of agents with AI are able to spend most of their time solving complex problems (Salesforce 2)
- The ability to rationalize the company’s headcount was the least-often cited impact of bots (about one in 10) (Accenture)
AI is more of an enhancer than a replacer when it comes to real-time customer service teams. Think about other ways companies strengthen their customer service departments, like with BPOs. AI and virtual assistance are just more pillars that help stabilize an exceptional customer support operation and greatly reduce response time. Take the retail space for example – companies, like Pier 1, could greatly benefit from a retail chatbot to answer simple questions. Unfortunately for Pier 1, they were the latest case of a major brick and mortar store to file for bankruptcy and letting go of most of their staff. The good news is that Pier 1 is shifting their efforts to a more online presence in the hope of reviving its brand. All this to say, those that do not adopt AI may be more likely to risk job loss, as the biggest risk for job loss lies in a business’s ability to adapt.
Interested in learning about how to get started with a chatbot for your business?
Check out the list of “Best AI Chatbots” by solution providers.
- 54% of customers say companies need to transform how they engage with them (Salesforce)
- Only 38% of consumers actually want to talk with a human when engaging a brand (Drift)
- 77% of customers say chatbots will transform their expectations of companies in the next five years (Salesforce)
- 70% of millennials report positive chatbot experiences (Forbes)
- The number of consumers that use live chat over phone and email support have increased by 50% since 2012 (Forrester)
It turns out customers really do want chatbots in 2021. The above five chatbot stats paint a really telling story that shows AI chat is here to stay. Consumers are frequently looking for better, faster experiences and quick answers. Chatbots are emerging as the go-to technology to satisfy customers at scale.
Bots and Bottom-Line Business
- In 2020, organizations report a reduction of up to 70% in call, chat and/or email inquiries after implementing a chatbot or virtual customer assistant (Gartner 2)
- Implementing chatbots can help a business to save up to 30% of their customer service cost (Chatbots Journal)
- Bots will save businesses $8 billion per year by 2022 (Deloitte)
When it comes to the bottom line, businesses will save money by deploying bots. These statistics show that bots are a more efficient use of resources that can be allocated elsewhere. Businesses that choose to incorporate chatbots into their overall CX strategy will grow faster and hire more employees to handle complex tasks.
Projecting Future Chatbot Usage in Customer Service
- The chatbot market size is projected to grow from $2.6 billion in 2019 to $9.4 billion by 2024 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 29.7% (Business Insider)
- By 2023, 30% of customer service organizations will deliver proactive customer services by using AI-enabled process orchestration and continuous intelligence (Gartner)
- $13.9B was invested in CX-focused AI and $42.7B in CX-focused Big Data and analytics in 2019, with both expected to grow to $90B in 2022 (OpenText)
Chatbots seem to have built an unstoppable momentum, especially now that COVID-19 has forever changed our world. Imagine life before credit cards, the internet, and Uber. In the not so distant future, chatbots will be in that same vein. If you liked this article, check out our list of 42 customer service statistics that business leaders should not underestimate.
Are you ready to transform your CX with AI-powered chatbots? Get on board. The ship is sailing!
- Chatbots Journal: https://chatbotsjournal.com/why-your-business-needs-voice-bots-to-survive-a4679dbf444
- SuperOffice: https://www.superoffice.com/blog/live-chat-support-study/
- Forrester (http://blogs.forrester.com/kate_leggett/16-01-28-online_self_service_dominates_yet_again_why_its_an_effortless_way_to_get_to_your_answers)
- Salesforce (https://www.salesforce.com/form/pdf/state-of-the-connected-customer-3rd-edition/)
- Salesforce 2 (https://www.salesforce.com/form/service-cloud/3rd-state-of-service/)
- Drift (https://www.drift.com/blog/state-of-conversational-marketing/)
- Forbes (https://www.forbes.com/sites/andrewarnold/2018/01/27/how-chatbots-feed-into-millennials-need-for-instant-gratification/#70f3baf23675)
- OpenText (https://www.opentext.com/info/information-advantage/customer-experience-ai-voc)
- KPMG – How Much Is Customer Experience Worth? (https://assets.kpmg/content/dam/kpmg/xx/pdf/2016/11/How-much-is-custerom-experience-worth.pdf)
- Accenture (https://www.accenture.com/_acnmedia/pdf-77/accenture-research-conversational-ai-platforms.pdf)
- Business Insider (https://www.businessinsider.com/chatbot-market-stats-trends)
- TheChatbot.Net (https://thechatbot.net/statistics-chatbot-ai/)
- Deloitte (https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/nl/Documents/financial-services/deloitte-nl-fsi-chatbots-adopting-the-power-of-conversational-ux.pdf)
- GetVoip (https://getvoip.com/blog/2019/02/21/chatbot-adoption/)
- Gartner (https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/improve-customer-experience-with-artificial-intelligence/)
- Gartner 2: https://www.gartner.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/2018-02-19-gartner-says-25-percent-of-customer-service-operations-will-use-virtual-customer-assistants-by-2020