"We sell 900 cars a month thanks to Smartsupp’s AI chatbot and live chat."
Customers’ needs change over time – and so does the preferred form of communication. Customer service management at AAA AUTO was fully aware that a growing number of clients today prefer instant digital communication over phone calls and emails.
Unlike many other companies, however, AAA AUTO did not seek a solution to reduce agents’ workload and filter out routine inquiries through automation. They believed that personal contact with an experienced agent was, in fact, absolutely key to their communication. So, the main goal of the new communication channel was to generate more inquiries.
The solution, in this case, could have been a live chat. It enabled communication with the customer while they were browsing the product and also might have improved the likelihood of reaching out via phone or arranging a meeting in the store.
However, this tool did not allow the company to interact successfully with many customers who were just browsing different cars.
AAA Auto needed a new solution to ensure conversations ran smoothly, and the first message mentioned the car’s brand, price, and mileage. And the solution turned out to be an AI chatbot.
But simply implementing the tool wasn’t enough. That is why AAA AUTO worked with Smartsupp for several months to maximize the effectiveness of the AI chatbot in contacting visitors. They tested the chatbot for many months on thousands of conversations before the complete launch.
The gradual implementation of a conversational AI chatbot, which could partially replace operators or improve their work, is a long-term goal in AAA Auto’s innovative strategy. The AI chatbot, which we are still working on, will be released in 2024.
The AAA AUTO is the largest car dealer in the Czech Republic and one of the top 10 car distributors in Europe. The company has served almost 3 million customers from the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Germany over the past 31 years. In 2022, the company sold 89,100 cars worth over €1 billion (CZK 25 billion).
Used car industry
Over €1 billion (25 billion CZK)
Conversational AI chatbot
AAA AUTO’s strategy and the key features they use
AI chatbot for contacting visitors
The main function of the AI chatbot is to constantly analyze which pages the customer is viewing and what products they are interested in. AI chatbots can then offer personalized deals at the right time.
For AAA AUTO, it was important not only that the AI chatbot could work correctly with the available data, but also that it could choose the right tone of communication. Every customer has different priorities and approaches the car’s parameters differently. So, the AI chatbot must be able to adjust communication style to both a customer planning to buy a luxury sports car and a customer looking for a family car with higher mileage.
AAA Auto also focuses on gathering customer feedback. During testing, they found that Polish customers disliked too many emojis in the text. So, they reduced the number of emojis, which led to higher customer satisfaction with the chatbot.
The AI chatbot was tested for several months. One group of customers received personalized messages from the chatbot, while another group got automatic messages. Initially, the AI-driven chatbot was shown to only about 5% of site visitors, but later it reached 50% of customers in standard A/B tests.
The main goal of implementing the AI chatbot on the AAA AUTO website was not to answer customer questions or generate leads but to motivate site visitors to contact the agents who would take over the conversation via live chat.
The company measured the conversion rate by how many site visitors showed enough interest in the message to ask to speak with an agent.
In the Czech Republic, the AI chatbot’s personalized messages resulted in a 10% rise in live chat conversations. In Slovakia, the increase was 20%, and in Poland, it went up by 30%
Live chat notably boosts AAA AUTO’s sales. This communication channel helps sell 900 cars, gain 7,200 new contacts, and increase the conversion rate by 10% upon contact (five times more effective than online forms) per month. The company believes that an e-shop without live chat is like a brick-and-mortar store without a salesperson.
A team of 23 agents is ready to help customers on live chat from 6:00 AM to midnight. They know a lot about selling online, and many of them have worked at car dealerships before. AAA AUTO really values having well-trained staff for their chat support for several reasons.
The company finds live chat more successful than phone calls. Agents can simultaneously handle 4 to 5 customers, taking time to understand and answer properly. Website visitors are more willing to wait a minute for a chat reply than for a phone call. The prospects appreciate that information is confirmed in writing, so there’s no need to remember details.
Quick response times are critical. AAA AUTO notes that customers who don’t get a reply within 30 seconds often leave the chat. Agents respond quickly – it takes them about 14 seconds for the first reply.
Another advantage of live chat, according to AAA AUTO, is its efficiency and cost savings. On average, an experienced agent can handle 10 to 12 conversations per hour on live chat. At the same time, they could manage 7-8 phone calls. This makes live chat 25% more affordable than phone service.
Automatic segmentation helps better categorize and organize customer inquiries. The feature provides the company with statistics about the different types of customers looking for products, as well as information about visitors’ interactions.
These statistics showed that one-third of live chat conversations are about customer service, another third are from customers ready to buy, and the last third are drivers still considering a purchase. The company can continuously monitor how well they are fulfilling the needs of customers from each segment and which strategy needs improvement.
AAA AUTO’s main goal was to get more inquiries and develop a high-conversion channel that would boost the revenue. And they succeeded. Smartsupp now helps sell 900 cars and generate 7,200 new leads each month. The conversion rate for contact acquisition through live chat is 10%, which is five times more than with a regular online form.
The partnership with Smartsupp resulted in the creation of a hybrid communication system. This includes an AI chatbot for initial, personalized visitor contact and live chat with a team of skilled agents for instant communication, quick responses to questions, and data collection.
After careful testing and regular upgrades, the AI chatbot made 30% more visitors want to talk with a live chat agent compared to standard messages.
In the future, AAA AUTO intends to combine Smartsupp with their own systems, so agents can work directly in the CRM.
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