E-commerce has emerged as the most popular online activity around the globe. Revenues have been hiked almost twice in the past five years with expectations of the total retail e-commerce sales worldwide of 2.3 trillion in 2017 to go up to 4.88 trillion US dollars in 2021. Due to this, there has been a rapid downfall of revenues for the traditional brick-and-mortar stores.
To keep pace with global consumer demands, e-commerce sites are incorporating new emerging technologies into their portals every day, including artificial intelligence (AI). The use of user personalization registered shopping habits, tailored advertisements and customer engagement is just the tip of the iceberg to boost sales.
AI is the hottest topic in the world right now and is the ultimate option to upgrade and boost industries with innovative and smart business solutions. With AI technology changing the traditional and tedious working patterns, brand performances are boosting sales.
AI applications have a plethora of abilities which include analyzing data sets, identifying patterns as well as creating a personal experience. This creates a unique opportunity for the brands to maintain a performance equilibrium as the AI applications are far more efficient than human resources. As a result, incorporating AI into the e-commerce portals has raised the brands’ marketing standards by multiple folds.
Retailers are selling and servicing the customer’s requirements hassle-free. Listed below are a few by-products of AI technology that are popular among e-commerce brands.
- Advance Visual Search Engine: Nowadays most e-commerce portals have included this amazing feature into their websites. This enables the users to find what they need with the help of a list of visual images or with the input of an image. Now, if someone likes something that someone else is wearing or possessing, they can simply click a picture of the product and upload it into the search bar. The search engine then, with the help of Artificial Intelligence technology will present with the exact same products or extremely similar products. According to the CEO Pinterest, Ben Silbermann, “the future of search will be about pictures rather than keywords.” Around 2016, Nemanja Darijevic, Pixel Road Designs’ Creative and Development Director, joined a discussion in the SEJ ThinkTank. In the forum, he spoke about the importance of visuals in the age of SEO and Ecommerce. He also stated facts such as,
- Our brains process visual information up to 60,000 times faster than textual information.
- Customers retain almost 65% of visual stimuli versus just 10% of auditory stimuli, even after three days.
- Consumers are 80% more likely to engage with content that includes relevant images.
- Personalized and Customized Recommendations: Personalized product recommendations are found to boost sales for various e-commerce portals massively, so much so that almost 70% of Amazon’s homepage is dedicated to personalized recommendations. Artificial Intelligence technology here works simply by collecting and analyzing shopping behaviors from all customers and the store’s sales history. It then uses its power of machine learning to study what the customers are interested in and most likely want to buy from the website and their current searches. Finally, with the help of its advanced recommendation algorithms, automatically suggests the perfect products that match what the user had in mind.
- Auditory or Voice Assistance: With every passing minute, along with Artificial Intelligence one of its by-products, i.e., Voice Assistance technology is gaining rapid popularity. The millennial age is very familiar to voice assistants such as Google’s assistant, Apple’s assistant Siri as well as Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa. Capgemini has noted that dozens of large e-commerce retailers have now collaborated with Google to incorporate voice assistants into their portals. This is mostly done via Google Express which includes Google Home users who can place voice-activated orders across selected stores. Capgemini through its surveys has also come to the conclusion that customers are more willing to place voice-activated orders or take the help of voice-assistance while shopping online, rather than visiting brick and mortar stores.
The use of AI and smart solutions in e-commerce not only empower the customer but also makes them feel valued. This, in turn, not only boosts revenue through a hike in sales but also works as an extended sales marketing team who happily relay their online shopping experience to their friends and family. The importance of the customers, the human element in this equation is therefore huge.
The use of the analytical tools which are backed by AI technology work in a very smart way by creating a user profile for the customers as per their gender, age and preferences. These then store and reveal various valuable information on the customers who visit the e-commerce portal. This information can not only be used to influence various sectors of the portal, such as online store design and special offers but also can be used to offer a smooth user experience.