4 companies that are blazing AI trails in eCommerce
Artificial intelligence (AI), also called machine learning, is becoming more of an everyday norm. It describes the ability of computers to take on human characteristics, such as rationalizing and learning from mistakes.
AI is all around us. Do you talk to Siri on your iPhone? Are you impressed when her answers are eerily on-point? That is because Apple has leveraged AI to create an on-demand virtual assistant that handles requests, makes recommendations and answers questions.
Do you use Google Maps during your commute? Does it benefit you when you are notified of slow-downs and alternate route options? That is because the platform uses AI to analyze speed and movement through location data from smartphones.
These are only two examples of how AI touches our day-to-day lives. During the past several years, humans have grown accustomed to AI-powered systems that add an extra layer of convenience to their worlds.
AI in eCommerce
When it comes to eCommerce, AI provides powerful insights. It has the ability to collect, analyze and leverage data that store owners can take action on. One of the most beneficial aspects is AI’s ability to analyze customer behavior. The knowledge is used for advanced targeting strategies that help turn shoppers into customers.
If you have ever been enticed by “recommended products” as you are browsing an online shop, you have seen AI in action. Computers follow customer journeys and get to know them better, which is a major function of AI in eCommerce.
As advanced features continue to emerge, it is becoming more difficult to imagine an Internet without AI functionality. AI is the future of eCommerce, and the following four companies are using it in powerful ways.
The world caught a glimpse into conversational AI with Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa. As technology continues to advance, chatbots are reaping the benefits.
Chatbots on websites provide an instant way for customers to connect with businesses when they need something. They have come a long way since their early days. Advanced algorithms now allow for more complex conversations, which is something that is being leveraged by Pypestream.
The company’s messaging carrier solution is built for scale and is the only patented B2C platform of its kind to handle any volume. It is also able to seamlessly escalate conversations to live agents when necessary.
According to Drift, chatbots are most often used for getting quick answers in an emergency and resolving complaints and questions. SlingTV and Shell are among the companies that are using PypeStream to provide an enhanced customer experience.
During the MagentoLive Europe event in Oct. 2019, Adobe announced enhancements to its AI platform Adobe Sensei. Included were advanced features to the Adobe Creative Cloud, which hosts more than 20 SaaS programs such as PhotoShop, Illustrator, InDesign and Premiere Pro.
Some of the ways Adobe Sensei vowed to beef up the company’s creative software included improving the auto reframe feature in Premiere Pro, as well as the object selection and auto tone tools in PhotoShop.
Adobe’s eCommerce platform, Magento, is also reaping the benefits of Adobe Sensei. The company announced in 2019 that it would roll out an early access program for Magento commerce product recommendations in January 2020.
According to Adobe’s news release, participating Magento merchants would be able to embed the feature into their storefronts after the release. The key benefits include:
- Highly personalized product recommendations
- Increased sales by adding product recommendations to relevant store pages like the product details page
- Defined global exclusion categories that take into account important business contexts such as inventory or pricing level
- Custom product recommendations widgets across your site, built using flexible APIs
The company also said the product recommendations feature is just one of many Adobe Sensei capabilities it is working on for Magento as it works to deliver smoother, more personalized shopping experiences.
Blogging has become a staple in many eCommerce marketing strategies. The good news is that with an app like Grammarly, business owners don’t necessarily have to be great at writing to implement quality content.
AI has given machines the ability to comprehend and process human language. Grammarly is a writing tool that provides AI-powered grammar enhancement. The extension may be installed on desktops and Internet browsers to comb through text and find potential wording and grammar errors.
Like humans, machines are continually learning. Writers have the ability to acknowledge or ignore suggestions in Grammarly. When a correction is rejected, the system continues to learn what is correct or incorrect.
Salesforce, a leading name in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems, has been used in conjunction with eCommerce businesses for years. Because of its abundant features and proven effectiveness, many online merchants cite Salesforce for success with their customer retention efforts.
With a reputation for continually evolving, Salesforce is now implementing its Einstein AI technology into all of its endeavors. With Einstein, merchants have the ability to:
- Anticipate the next opportunities and exceed customer needs
- Proactively resolve issues before they happen
- Create predictive journeys and personalize experiences
- Create smarter apps for employees and customers
Since its inception in 2016, Einstein AI has branched off into several specialized areas.
- Einstein Discovery reveals relevant data patterns that allow business owners to take action.
- Einstein Prediction Builder predicts business outcomes, such as lifetime value and customer churn.
- Einstein Next Best Action provides individualized recommendations on how to move forward with a customer.
- Einstein Language, like Grammarly, is able to analyze text and detect mistakes.
- Einstein Bots enables businesses to build, train and deploy custom bots on their digital channels that are connected to their CRM data.
- Einstein Vision allows businesses to see a complete view of the conversation surrounding their brands on social media. It also features
- Einstein Voice is coming in spring 2020.
The key takeaway
Positive brand interactions are essential for customer acquisition and loyalty. With AI’s ability to mimic the way humans perform tasks, brands have a powerful resource at their disposal for delivering superior shopping experiences. As advancements continue, businesses that leverage AI tools will have the upper hand when it comes to improving customer experiences.
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