Artificial intelligence is already here. This technology is being actively used in the field of internet search, helping to generate output for the Google search engine and process requests to a voice assistant, such as Siri. And it is getting better every day. Therefore, it is not surprising that online retailers are increasingly paying attention to this technology. The most innovative retail companies are already experimenting with the use of artificial intelligence.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning are rapidly changing the retail industry. Modern solutions help find the right products on the shelves, provide better service, and offer personal loyalty programs. In this article, we will talk about a number of successful cases of using artificial intelligence in retail, which makes shopping more comfortable and processes more efficient. But at this stage, the main question is how the new technology is exactly changing retail online.
Artificial intelligence gives maximum results in areas where huge amounts of information are available for analysis. And retail just has an incredible amount of data. Every day, every customer and every product leaves their digital footprint, a deep analysis of accumulated data on deliveries and sales allows you to make trading more efficient and service better.
Smart Display Boards in Trading Halls
In a large store or shopping center, digital signage catches your eye. They include advertising, special offers, and promotions. Today, artificial intelligence is increasingly behind the work of such displays. For example, in Eastern Europe, “smart information boards” can be found in a variety of places–from large trading halls to branded islands in retail chains. Digital signage is equipped with a camera for real-time audience recognition and a platform for displaying personalized content on the screen. As a result, visitors see the information that may be of exact interest to them.
Chatbots with AI
Another popular solution among brands is chatbots. It usually assists answering client questions. Virtual interlocutors with AI serve faster and better through personalized search, mailing alerts about new releases, or offering similar products. For example, Tommy Hilfiger and Burberry have implemented similar instruments to assist their clients. There will be more such cases–according to open statistics, about 80% of world brands are already using AI in retail and implementing chatbots.
Smart Shelves and Digital Price Tags
Filling shelves and adjusting costs is a very important process for retail. But if it is relatively easy to display goods on the virtual showcase of the marketplace and update costs with them, then it is not so easy to monitor prices in real retail outlets. Nevertheless, today some technologies allow you to get rid of paper price labels and regulate the cost of goods.
Thus, the system can test not only electronic price tags, but also the concept of “smart shelves.” As a result, the store’s management system monitors the filling of shelves with goods, based on AI technologies such as computer vision.
Automatic Price Adjustment
Even if there is a paper price tag on the product, do not underestimate the retailer. Perhaps the amount in dollars was determined by artificial intelligence after all. The fact is that finding the best price is an extremely important task for retail. Very often even a minimal deviation from the average market offer can lead to a significant increase in sales. Thus, even a 5% difference in price sometimes gives a 75% increase in demand for the category, compared with its closest competitors. But how can you determine these prices? Leading players use artificial intelligence for this–it analyzes hundreds of factors, including both their sales and general market data.
Customer Experience Personalization Systems
Another trend is forecasting the behavior of buyers. By analyzing emotions and comparing patterns of people’s behavior, AI predicts the intentions of buyers and offers an interaction strategy for each visitor. Analysis of behavior and emotions allows you to find a personal approach to the buyer and increase the average amount of the check. In the future, data on the behavior of the buyers will help to retain the client, increase loyalty, and guess their desires and aspirations.
Artificial Intelligence in Loyalty Programs
Loyalty programs are the next element of the retail ecosystem, and machine learning comes to the rescue here. Personalization is the most important aspect of a successful loyalty program, but only deep automation allows you to fully implement it for a large number of customers. Thus, the Rive Gauche network uses AI to increase sales and reduce the cost of marketing campaigns. Algorithms determine which loyalty card holders can make a purchase in the next couple of weeks and also predict what exactly they can buy. Personal recommendations and individual discounts give the maximum result.
Analysis of Clients’ Emotions and Moods
The degree of customer satisfaction is an important factor in retail. At the checkout counters in stores, you can often find buttons with emoticons to find out if customers are satisfied with the service. But how do you know the reactions of people who do not want to push buttons? How can you find out what influenced their mood–was it the employees or the assortment? This issue is also solved with the help of artificial intelligence.
Emotion detection systems are actively used, for example, at Walmart, where a customer’s facial expression is recognized at each checkout. The retailer installed cameras and connected a video analytics system with AI. If the system determines that the client is dissatisfied with something, the hall administrator receives an appropriate signal. Then the employee finds out what bothered the clients and offers a solution to the problem in order to maintain their loyalty.
But this is by no means a complete list of AI applications for improving the efficiency of e-commerce platforms. This technology also allows you to simplify logistics, helping to make sure that certain products will be in the right warehouses on time, as well as predict the demand for goods. Thus, it will soon be part of all stages of online shopping: from choosing a product and discussing it with a consultant to payment and delivery. This technology already offers tangible and important advantages to both online retailers and their customers, allowing the former to reduce costs, and the latter to personalize the shopping process. The process of e-commerce transition to AI has already begun. Try to keep up with all of the progress.
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