In UK the first vaccines are being given today. People will start planning their travels any time soon. Make sure you are ready.
If one were to ask to hospitality industry owners what is the biggest problem they have ever faced, many will point at the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. And while that is true for 2020, we want to see what lessons we can learn from it.
The absolute biggest issue that holds hospitality back is the reluctance towards innovation. And that mindset goes far back before the corona outbreak. In fact, our industry is at the tail when it comes to implementing new technologies or business strategies. Health care, education, retail, finance, banking are some of the industries that are way ahead the curve when embracing the new.
In this article, we have looked at how other industries are benefiting from chatbot technology and we will present what lessons we can learn from them.
1. E-Commerce and retail. More sales, less costs.
Digitalization is a sigh of relief for workers in the retail and e-commerce industry. They take care of recurring product inquiries, thus, cutting down operational expenses. In fact, some predictions still forecast that chatbots will save billions of dollars by 2023.
They can also help with shopping cart reminders, order tracking, feedback collection and even complaints. And all of these without the need of a human agent.
2. Healthcare. How chatbots make us safer.
At this point, nobody questions the importance of technology during the ongoing health crisis.
In Canada, chatbots helped to mitigate the impact of the pandemic by tracking symptoms and delivering treatment recommendations. Bots proved to be indispensable, as they worked automatically 24/7 and in several languages.
On the other hand, in U.S. administrative work consumes one-sixth of physicians’ working hours. A healthcare chatbot allows doctors to put paperwork in autopilot so they can focus on treating the patient. And in this case is not about customer satisfaction but saving lives.
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3. Education. How chatbots make a better learning.
Chatbots allow to provide a tailor made education. With automatized AI tech, academic study paths adapt to the student and not the other way around.
Academic chatbots, enhance student interaction and engagement. And more importantly, they provide immediate feedback to pupils so they absorb the new teachings easier.
This does not mean that chatbots replace educators. On the contrary, they help them teach better!
4. Finance and banking. Peace of mind.
Having instant support when it comes to our personal finance, is priceless. If a bank wants its customers to sleep with a complete peace of mind, a chatbot is the way.
Since the internet came around, clients can open accounts, make transaction, payments, investments, loan acquisitions and more. The sweet part now is that chatbots offer guide, help and instructions in every step of the way. No more everlasting general FAQ’s and documentation. Now, consumers get what replies to their personal questions. 24/7/365.
Finance is a leading industry where AI has been around since early days. Other industries must look at it with a critical eye and see how they can benefit from its experience with AI.
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5. Travel industry. Peace of mind for travelers.
Travelers benefit from AI, not only at the time of booking a seat, but after it too.
Chatbots help with intelligent and efficient direct reservation. And most importantly, they help to up-sell airline’s ancillary services that, otherwise, would have gone unnoticed.
Nonetheless, the most relevant aspect of AI in the travel industry is related to COVID. Chatbots convey safety instructions and guidelines for safe travel on the go. And what is most important, if customers need to make cancellations or modifications due COVID illness, they can do it around the clock through the AI tool.
Remember what happened in March 2020 when all the customer service lines collapsed? He have technology that makes that an issue from the past.
Why does hospitality still resist innovation?
There are several factors that prompt a conservative mentality in the lodging business. We broke them down into the three major problems, and tell you how we solve them.
Hoteliers are not necessarily IT enthusiast, and why should they be? After all, they work with people, for people and in face-to-face interactions, by which they can convey hospitality in a more authentic way. That itself would not be an inconvenience if were not because guests want a digital customer care 24/7, fast, reliable and simple. They are used to it already!
Similarly, the distrust towards new technologies runs deeper in our professional field. We look with disregard what we don’t know or understand, and that is normal. For example, before internet payment forms came into our daily routines, many users would opt for cash. Nowadays, we know that online e-commerce is safe, reliable and has become the preferred form of payment. Hence, the resistance towards AI or chatbot technology is nothing new or unexpected. The difference is that now we know better.
Perhaps the factor that delays innovation the most is financial fear. Adopting new technologies can get costly if one is not careful. And even though consumers want digital friendly hotels, they don’t want it at the expense of a higher ADR. When deciding whether to implement new digital services, it is important to make a due digilence research. Is the company that provides the service transparent? Does it generate revenue? Is it cost-efficient? Does it have other customers? What are they saying? What makes it different? Contact the company itself and ask how they can help your hotel. After all, your business financial health links directly with that of the service provider.
How to overcome this innovation adversity?
Digital innovation takes courage. So it is important to take it one step at at time. Most importantly, understand that you don’t have to invest in costly assets or make physical transformations that will threat the solvency of your hotel. What about Hotelway’s chatbot that helps your sales team 24/7 in autopilot?
As we saw, many industries are profiting from chatbot technology, and we truly believe that it is time that hospitality, travel and tourism industries pick-up the pace. Understand what a chatbot can do for you! Learn how to benefit from automation and the numbers behind.
Digitalization is happening whether we like it or not. And the covid pandemic has done nothing but accelerate this trend. Bearing this in mind, it is crucial to adopt innovation as a mindset.
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People behind digital solutions
We are Hotelway, an agile team of industry professionals with years of experience in hospitality, technology, and customer care. Our company specializes in AI based chatbots, making hotel guest communication simple, meaningful, and profitable.
Contact us by the channel that suits you most. We are always willing to help.