Remember the days when artificial intelligence seemed like a futuristic enterprise in which machines would take over the world? Well, here we are today, in this predictable future. However, in this scenario, these machines do not “capture” in a frightening way. Instead, they give us an edge, especially in the world of e-commerce.
What is artificial intelligence?
Artificial intelligence (AI) is an advanced and broad branch of computer science concerned with the design of intelligent machines capable of performing tasks that require human intelligence. The two main branches of AI that have played a key role in its development are machine learning and natural language processing (NLP).
Artificial intelligence technology has also been adopted by the e-commerce industry with the goal of offering website buyers a more personalized and targeted experience. According to Statista, by 2021, 3.8 billion people worldwide will have smartphones, and this number will only grow.
This means that mobile shopping is expected to grow, as well as the need to provide a smooth and interactive experience for your customers.
In this article, we have listed several ways to use artificial intelligence in e-commerce and optimize the sales process.
1. Provide users with powerful search experiences.
Customer focus is all about providing a positive experience for your customers by making them the backbone of your business.
It’s exhausting to search for something on a website and not find what you’re looking for, right? Your customers will hate it too.
That’s why it’s your job to provide users with options that can easily direct them to the products they’re looking for. Two ways that AI can help you with this is through the implementation of a voice or visual search feature.
Visual search can increase the engagement of your online store and improve the chances of visitors converting. It allows users to upload images and search for similar products in your store. Through machine learning algorithms, the system can process and classify the image and display similar results.
Voice search, already a popular option to browse on Google, is a verbal query type that uses voice recognition to display results. A good example of voice search AI is Alexa, Amazon’s digital assistant, which can recognize language and perform multiple actions based on commands.
2. Implement the function of selling recommendations.
The recommendation engine is a system that analyzes user data such as their browsing history and previous purchases in order to suggest information, products and/or services.
Two popular recommender systems include:
- Content Based Filtering – This method uses the actions and choices of a single user and filters the metadata. It works by taking into account the user’s behavior and activity pattern and integrating them into an algorithm that makes recommendations to website visitors based on previous data.
- Collaborative filtering – in this case, recommendations are made based on information received from several users, and not just from one. This method has higher precision than content-based filtering.
Amazon uses this method and recorded a 29% increase in sales when this algorithm was enabled.
The referral selling feature gives potential buyers a personalized experience and increases your website’s CTR. The average order value may also rise as shoppers are offered other additional options that they accompany with the purchase. By driving potential online shoppers to other options that are beneficial to them, they tend to stay on your site longer and are more likely to convert.
3. Set up a chatbot or virtual assistant.
A chatbot is a great way to start a conversation with a user across different platforms. It can also work as an assistant for your customers and help them navigate the right choice.
Users often ask multiple questions about products or services. But you cannot be online 24/7 to answer these requests. So how about integrating an automated chatbot that can recognize user intent from keywords or pre-programmed scripts?
About 64% of users expect to interact with online businesses in real time. With a chatbot, you can offer an immediate response instead of forcing them to fill out contact forms or send mail.
A virtual or digital assistant is an application that understands natural language and can help users with their questions and thus increase the likelihood of a conversion.
4. Optimize Product Descriptions
Product descriptions provide customers with information about your products or services, but they work for your SEO and help rank your online store. This is why descriptions need to be well optimized as they can drive organic traffic to your site. What’s more, well-presented product information can convince potential customers to make a purchase.
Although it can be done manually, with the help of artificial intelligence you can automate the whole process and save a lot of time.
An example of a website that uses AI to describe its products is Alibaba. The company’s artificial intelligence tool can generate over 20,000 lines of content per second. This way, sellers on their website don’t have to spend time creating product descriptions.
5. Get Rid of Fake Reviews
False reviews are like moles in business. They are often dropped by competitors, haters, and sometimes bots.
But you know that reviews are very important in the world of e-commerce. About 90% of consumers make purchasing decisions based on reading reviews, and 86% of buyers are hesitant to buy products from a company that has negative reviews.
Thanks to AI, you can detect and remove fake ones and prevent spam.
GLTR is a visual forensic tool that uses a natural language generation model to detect automatically generated texts. This way you will have one less thing to worry about.
6. Take advantage of price optimization
Price is one of the most decisive criteria for online shoppers. Therefore, it is important to make sure that your prices are competitive and reflect the market.
Price optimization is the process of finding the best price that customers are willing to pay for a particular product or service.
As simple as it sounds, sometimes it can be tricky, especially if you’re dealing with people all over the world. This means assessing the value of items in other countries and in other currencies. This is where AI comes to the rescue again with a feature called dynamic pricing that can be automated and set the best price for your product to sell. This can improve your conversions and sales as customers usually search for a product from different vendors before making a purchase.
Amazon uses this feature and captures over 250 million price changes daily.
7. Automate your supply chain
If your offer doesn’t match the demand in your online store, you may quickly run out of items to sell. This can frustrate your customers and lead them to your competitors website.
With automated supply chain management, you can have an e-store that is always well stocked so you can find those ready to buy.
Machine learning algorithms improve supply chain management by automating demand forecasting and improve order management, production planning and production planning capabilities.
Artificial intelligence improves the creation and maintenance of online businesses and bridges the gap between merchants and consumers. Today’s online shoppers are becoming more demanding and you need to find new and smart ways to attract them. Buying expectations are also evolving and you need to stay on top of trends in order to grow. This makes AI a good friend to both e-commerce retailers and customers.