Category: Retail / FMCG
How conversational AI is revolutionizing the retail industry?
The world has entered the period of retail 3.0, where companies are using technology to improve customer experience, and also with artificial intelligence (AI), retailers are able to get comprehensive insights, make an informed decision, and target the right audience. This technique has helped retailers in enhancing their strengths beyond their traditional methods. But that is not it, with rising competition and decreasing attention span of consumers, organizations an outstanding strategy to differentiate from the competition and increase customer experience.
If we dig deeper, we come to know that speed, convenience, engagement, and automation are the four most important parts of this tech-driven world. All of these possible due to conversation AI that comes in as virtual brand personalities. In challenging times where a pandemic has forced companies to revolutionize their business strategies, conversation AI has proved its worth. A report published by Juniper states that by 2023, retail sales from chatbot communication will double every year.
Today, there is approximately 2.6 billion retail chatbots communications happening yearly. By 2023, this number is estimated to grow significantly to 22 billion, and 85% of user interactions online will take place without a middle man by the end of 2020. In addition, the forecast also shows that both enterprises and customers will save up to 2.5 billion hours of internet exploring due to chatbots. In this document, we will understand 5 ways conversational AI is revolutionizing the retail industry.
1. Round the clock availability:
People are bound by working for a pre-defined number of hours in a day. But digital humans i.e., chatbots are active and available 24/7. They are capable of answering customer questions across any time zones and language and also vernacular language support they can reach remote customers. An AI-enabled chatbot is a 24/7 self-service tool, enabling consumers to connect with retailers to solve their product or service-related issues anytime anywhere, without having to wait for the customer care representative to respond, or be confined by the 9-5 office hours of a contact center. A study conducted by Aspect Software has shown that 73% of customers choose self-service features – a fact which does offer a powerful motivation to retailers to implement conversational AI solutions.
2. Enhanced sales experience:
Chatbots acts as a brand representative by promoting the product, answering customer queries, and suggest products that meet customers’ requirements. These digital assistants provide a customized experience and are also mechanized with live chat support to allow smooth human and bot experience to customers. AI-powered chatbot continuously learns by rendering its service. The more it operates, the more it can understand the best ways to handle consumers. Once well-programmed, it can recommend products or services that you provide. Specifically, those that fit the clients’ behaviors and interest patterns.
3. Enhanced engagement backed with interactive content:
Almost every person owns a smartphone with a stable internet connection and retail store owners can take advantage of this to the fullest. Connecting with an app like Facebook Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp can do wonders and make these chatbots easily available for all. Creating content interactive by sending gifs, emoji have made these digital assistants become more popular among all generation. Advanced chat options that use emoji for comprehensive interaction. For instance, consumers can just send cake emoji to receive a complete recipe for baking a cake. This type of feature can make communication more interactive and fun.
Conversational AI has taken the next leap by creating the ability to interact within vernacular language signs and symbols which has proved to be a game-changer for vernacularly diverse people. According to a KPMH-Google report, the number of Indian languages internet users in India will be 536 million by 2021, far exceeding 199 million English language internet users in India. In order to fulfill the increasing and most-importantly next-gen target audience, retailers are required to have vernacularly-powered, mass customization engagement solutions in place, which is most accurately provided by chatbots.
4. Omni channel experience:
For the last few years, we have observed a lot of store closure, according to a study, there was around a 200% increase in-store closure announcement between years 2019-2018. Approximately, 20-30% of Indian shopping has shifted online and retail stores are encountering difficulties to cope up. But the silver lining is that in India, some people still choose to touch and feel the product and require personal assistance when buying. This is the perfect time for retailers to gear up for competing with the online platforms as the current pandemic has taught people that being tech-savvy is the only thing that can help enterprises survive.
Today the thin line between the online and the offline channel is foggy and brick and motor retail have to build their online presence to survive. Here, chatbots can play an integral part in bridging the gap between them. Conversational AI can guarantee a uniform online and offline experience for a company’s customers. By communicating with digital assistance customers can look at inventory, promotional deals, be familiar with store offerings before even physically entering the store. This chatbot provides a more fulfilling experience to the customers’ right from informing them about the product and offering to motivate repeat a transaction. Hence, driving customer loyalty and decreasing churn.
In order to survive and excel in what you do, retailers have to come up with a way to provide customers the best of both the world i.e. both touch and feel and convenience. Chatbots are a solution to all your problems, retailers can provide 24/7 customer support, analyze customer data for actionable insights, and attract customers with interactive content, hence, rendering a bespoke experience to the customer. If you are a retail store owner and planning to install conversational AI in your business, KCS is the best place to get one. They have a team of highly qualified geeks who are experts in developing a personalized chatbot for your retail business.
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