From physical robots to digital chatbots, service bots are revolutionizing the workplace. To understand how consumers perceive firms that employ service bots, researchers conducted six experiments in which customers interacted with either a bot or a human service provider. Their field and laboratory experiments found that consumers believe the use of bots is motivated by cost-cutting and profit maximization at the expense of the customer experience. This belief, in turn, leads customers to be less satisfied with the service provided by bots than by humans. The authors identified four strategies for companies to use service bots in a way that consumers embrace.
Service bots are revolutionizing the marketplace, from traditional retail and food-and-beverage to health care. These autonomous systems, from physical robots to digital chatbots, are designed to interact with and serve customers. But many customers are dissatisfied with service bots: A recent field study based on 35,000 customer service chatbot interactions at a telecommunications company found that 66% received a 1 out of 5 satisfaction rating.