Artificial Intelligence to Boost Shopping

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“Artificial intelligence now permeates every aspect of ecommerce platforms, especially where customer interactions are involved. Smart product suggestions, AI-powered search, cognitive customer service agents are innovations that have helped make online shopping more personalized and enjoyable for the customer,” – TheNextWeb

The constant evolution of technology and technological applications has expanded the possibilities and potential of commerce worldwide. Brands and businesses in every continent have harnessed the power of technology in a bid to achieve critical business objectives, while investing in future platforms such as artificial intelligence. The widespread use of technology by commercial organizations has opened new vistas of human endeavour and enabled the envisioning of new concepts in commerce and enterprise. These developments are on-going phenomenon and observers have noted that the long-term impacts of the marriage between technology and commerce may cast wide-ranging changes on human civilization.

Modern online businesses have deployed techniques of artificial intelligence to enable customers to discover new products and services on the Internet. This is a critical function because online discovery remains one of the key engines that widen the concept of consumer choice and drive business bottom lines. Engineers and concept designers are working to use AI concepts such as ‘deep learning’ to help shoppers find exact sizes of clothing in online portals. We must note that artificial intelligence is mated to mechanisms that map consumer behaviour in an attempt to cater to discerning and demanding customers. In addition, technology is used to scan consumer preferences in online portals. The information is then used to create suggestions for consumers in terms of products and services that might pique a consumer’s interests.

Chat bots have emerged as a current and durable flavour in business interactions that involve modern consumers. We must note that chat bots are essentially powered by artificial intelligence, and represent the next frontier in terms of defining customer convenience in a world driven by knowledge. Major business enterprises have already invested in and deployed chat bots as part of their overall corporate strategies. For instance, the online travel industry is a major user of chat bot technology primarily because such technologies enable faster and more efficient customer interactions. A prospective traveller can key in some words on his travel destination and the online chat bot can respond with a host of travel suggestions, airline choices, food and clothing options, etc. We note that the sheer convenience of using artificial intelligence is encouraging more and more industries to adopt such technologies.

Many technology start-ups are employing artificial intelligence technologies to automate certain repetitive business processes. Significant scope exists for the enterprising entrepreneur in terms of exploring the possibilities of using said technologies in the e-commerce sector. For instance, massive catalogues of e-commerce products need to be tagged with relevant information in order to facilitate online discovery. Some businesses have started the process of leveraging the powers of artificial intelligence to map and tag the massive product catalogues. The outcome of such efforts is manifest in more efficient product discovery, which automatically boosts customer choice, product sales, and business outcomes. We must note that artificial intelligence-powered strategies can be incrementally applied to vexing business problems.

Data intelligence comprises a significant part of artificial intelligence technologies. Brands and businesses can leverage data intelligence frameworks in an attempt to optimise existing business processes and to create new avenues of revenue generation. For instance, an e-commerce business operator may encounter significant issues in payment gateways. These issues arise from extraneous factors and must be contained in order to elevate customer service. Data intelligence can help the said business to map the most efficient payment gateway at a certain point in time, thereby automatically directing customer payment traffic to the most appropriate gateway. We must note that such actions, are powered by the tenets of artificial intelligence, and tend to reduce disturbances in customer experience, thereby helping brands and businesses to consolidate their business reputation.

Traditional businesses such as brick-and-mortar retailers are experimenting with new apps powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms. Industry research indicates that these technologies will continue to offer definitive value propositions to business enterprises. Artificial intelligence-powered systems are helping customers to navigate more effectively inside stores. These technologies are also enabling customers to find the exact product they seek within the vast arrays of modern convenience stores. In the near future, such technologies can be adapted to ensure efficient and fail-safe delivery of customer goods to designated customer addresses. In light of these facts and projections, we may state that artificial intelligence is emerging as a significant enabler in the modern world.

Modern grocery and home supply stores can be re-invented using artificial intelligence technologies with a view to boost customer convenience. This project should attract original research and thinking because the said establishments are decidedly ‘low-tech’ and customers do not expect any radical improvements in service from these businesses. That may soon change because a major e-commerce business operator is merging various aspects of artificial intelligence (such as machine vision, sensor fusion, and deep learning) to overhaul the shopping experience in grocery stores. The project enables a seamless customer shopping and checkout experience by linking multiple platforms, such as a shopping app, the customer’s credit cards, and in-store mechanisms. We must note that such on-going projects serve to demonstrate the very powerful applications that can be fashioned using artificial intelligence systems.

Artificial intelligence researchers and businesses are collaborating to deepen the levels of human engagement in the world of commerce. The intent behind such actions is creating more customer choice and to leverage the boundless capacities of the human imagination. For instance, a software company that primarily engages in the design and manufacture of graphics and animation packages has devised a software program that encourages customers to sketch their desired (or imagined) products in an online platform. Subsequently, the software algorithms flesh out the customer’s product design and offer a view of the finished product. We may note that ideas, such as these, may gain significant momentum in the future and may represent one of the primary means of customer engagement.

Evolutionary algorithms are being used to fine tune and tweak websites in a bid to deepen business interactions with individual customers. Page layouts, font sizes, messaging options, and the colours deployed on a website can be adjusted and re-adjusted to achieve the intended effects. Evolutionary algorithms help businesses to decide on the best possible combinations that promote business activity. In addition, these algorithms also help businesses to test theories in real time and to view the outcomes. These versatile uses of artificial intelligence can be said to signal a new Industrial Revolution that may create profound consequences.

In the preceding paragraphs, we have examined some of the aspects of using artificial intelligence in promoting the cause of commerce in the modern world. We must note that every brand or business must actively seek to contribute to such initiatives because the outcomes may create significant impact on the world we live in. In addition, the world of commerce should embrace artificial intelligence technologies with open arms because they represent a vision of the future that is increasingly attracting attention. Therefore, brands and businesses should be advised to invest in these technologies, if only in a bid to stay relevant well into the future.

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