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Artificial Intelligence touches many facets of our daily lives. It is changing the way our world communicates as well as changing the way we shop. Many retailers are already adding AI into their e-commerce processes, from virtual assistants chatbots to customized shopping experiences.
The possibilities for combining AI and e-commerce are almost endless. As we advance AI to higher levels, there is no telling what the future holds.
Today, retailers are utilizing AI and helping to shape the future of e-commerce, and you know what? It is already a winning combination. Read on to see how AI is changing e-commerce shopping as we know it.
Let’s face it, searching for items online is becoming obsolete. To find exactly what they want, consumers have to finesse a set of keywords describing what they are looking for. If accurately described, they are rewarded with an abundance of results tending to their needs.
On the contrast, the wrong set of keywords can pull up irrelevant searches and have your customers guessing their way to the right set of search words to find exactly what they are looking for. More often than not, that does not go over well with potential customers.
Fortunately, there is an answer. Artificial Intelligence can change one of e-commerce’s biggest hurdles: the search glitch. Today’s search queries lack the ability to understand expressions of natural language, something humans possess and often take for granted. By combining AI with natural language processing capabilities, it will put back the missing human element of contextual understanding. This process will shift the large numbers of failed transactions from not being able to find the right products, to successful transactions.
Online consumers will soon have the ability to be accompanied by their own AI personal shopping assistant. Currently, this is an area that falls short compared to the large online shopping community and the salespeople of brick-and-mortar shops.
What used to be a physical salesperson geared towards retail shoppers are now AI personal virtual shopping assistants. AI virtual shopping assistants can proactively assist shoppers instead of being vacant search queries that act as passive information retrievers.
For example, currently, consumers get a notification when an airfare price drops. These notifications are usually unpredictable and ever changing. AI virtual assistants will soon be able to take this process to the next step by receiving alerts of price drops, then checking to see if they fit into your scheduled dates. If it’s a fit, then the AI virtual assistant will be able to purchase the ticket on your behalf.
What initially started as getting a notification of a simple price drop, will soon be replaced by a confirmation of your booked flight. This process will eliminate the need for human interaction during an e-commerce transaction, making it entirely optional to talk to an agent during the process.
The personal virtual assistant shopping model can also be tailored to various other online purchasing circumstances, making it a viable vision for e-commerce in the not too distant future.
Technology is becoming so advanced in the arena of e-commerce that it can anticipate the needs of a consumer by analyzing what a customer has already done. This advancement is resulting in machine learning systems and cognitive computing. With this kind of self-learning algorithms, AI can easily deconstruct big data and create highly targeted consumer experiences, more than what has been offered in previous years. Consumers will get their own personal shopping experience catering exactly to their preferences.
Another huge breakthrough of AI is website and content optimization, further personalizing the shopping experience. Originally retailers did this with A/B content testing, but now by utilizing AI, retailers will be able to generate a population of candidate solutions, such as configurations for online content.
By using Evolutionary Algorithms (EAs), retailers will be able to adjust content as users click and plow through their websites, essentially evolving the content live to find the best configuration for success. This process will eliminate costly testing for retailers. Furthermore, it will help marketers to find the best layout for their website, and to optimize messaging to accommodate the ever-changing needs of consumers. In turn, EAs can create the best experience for shoppers and aid in closing more sales.
The emergence of AI is continually changing the ways of e-commerce. It is creating a better buying experience for not only consumers but retailers, as well. Shopping is now becoming a more personal experience, mimicking somewhat the experience of traditional brick-and-mortar shops. Any marketer can now create a Facebook Messenger chatbot without coding. As AI grows, the world of e-commerce is sure to grow along with it.
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