Back in 2017, Forbes cited Cowen’s research that included eCommerce into the list of industries that are ripe for AI adoption. Fast forward to 2020, and one can easily see how the urge to adapt and re-organize operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic has only strengthened eCommerce position on the market. According to Statista research, 64% of retail businesses chose adaptation to eCommerce as a coping strategy.
In many ways, it happened thanks to the fact that this industry primarily resides in the online space and is an early adopter of the novelty IT solutions, namely AI-powered features. In this article, SOLVVE is going to take a look at some of them to highlight how businesses can benefit from using AI for their eCommerce departments.
Leading applications of AI in eCommerce
Personalized recommendations and marketing
Product recommendations are indispensable for upsales and can increase the overall conversions rate by 915% and overall order value by 3%. By knowing the history of previous purchases and searches companies are able to propose items relevant for individual buyers and pave the road to higher rates of user retention, sales, and better overall user experience while cutting the return rates.
Moreover, they can accumulate enough big data to predict future trends and overall brand development and repurpose this data for marketing needs. For example, AI makes it possible to draft customized email campaigns and carry out its further analysis to fine-tune these campings in the future based on the opening rates, custom button click rates, and so on.
Chatbots for support and search
In the previous articles, we have seen how chatbots can add value to healthcare services and social platforms. However, they are also becoming more widespread among eCommerce providers thanks to their growing functionality boosted by AI. Gartner reports that 19% of businesses have already implemented a chatbot this year and 25% of businesses plan to deploy a chatbox within the next year.
Nowadays, chatbots are not only handy as a part of automated customer support to answer frequently asked questions, but also as a search engine and an insight collecting tool. For example, natural language processing (NLP) makes it possible to work with voice inquiries from customers the way Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa do.
Moreover, visual search is also joining the game. Not only giants like Pinterest, but also smaller players, especially in the fashion and apparel domains of eCommerce, heavily rely on this technology for competition in search rankings. Unlike text search where you get tens of suggestions, in the current voice and image rankings only one result will make it to the customer. Thus, supercharging personalized search results for your services with AI is a way to reach your audience in this highly-competitive environment.
So far we have discussed customer-facing solutions. Nevertheless, AI in eCommerce has also provider-facing solutions to offer. One of the biggest such solutions is inventory management that relies on the sales history, data forecast about possible trends, and analysis of issues that could disrupt the supply chain.
Business Insider predicts it will take nearly two years for businesses to get back on track after the COVID-19 recession, mainly because a lot of stores have been closed and supply chains have collapsed. However, disruptions in exports have also contributed significantly to this mayhem and will probably continue to impact logistics for a long time.
That is why it is important to understand fluctuations in logistics to manage your inventories effectively. AI can help businesses make informed decisions about vendors, demand and supply, and delivery schedules.
The number of interactions between businesses and customers that include artificial intelligence in any of its multiple forms will only grow over time. Deploying AI-powered features today grants a competitive advantage tomorrow. Thus, if you have any questions or ideas related to AI in eCommerce, do not hesitate to contact us. Let us make this happen!