E-Commerce, AI & The Game Of Customer Experience
Exceptional customer experience through personalization is the elixir of online shopping. 95% of companies increased their ROI by 3X with personalization efforts. There is always the debate about privacy and handling of data, but the younger next-generation of shoppers are open to it, and the future is set to see data-backed hyper-personalization across multiple touch points in E-Commerce platforms, in my opinion.
The challenge for E-Commerce businesses with personalization is multifold. Customers seek a device-agnostic experience in online shopping, so a uniform shopping experience is a basic need. On top of that, there is a plethora of data inflow, which makes for great potential but only if it is leveraged aptly by E-Commerce businesses. With the prowess of AI, the possibilities are many and colorful for E-Commerce businesses.
There is an immediate need for a centralized solution, considering the omnichannel nature of shopping amongst online customers. With data inflow from various sources, the alternative is just a large amount of unstructured pile of data that does not provide value for the business.
This is where AI will rewrite the rules and set the foundation for a new type of unparalleled customer experience in E-Commerce.
Data & AI-2 sides of the personalization coin for E-Commerce
Personal opinion -I’m willing to share data for a no-nonsense experience on the internet. Eventually, with connected tech and synced accounts becoming a norm by the day, online shoppers will opt for the same, considering the benefits. In my opinion, we’re too co-dependent on the internet for our day-to-day activities and sharing data for a better shopping experience is a valid tradeoff.
3d product previews & virtual try-on are the tips of the iceberg of what AI has in store to revolutionize the customer experience and write the future for E-Commerce companies.
AI in movies is mostly dystopian, about rogue software taking over the world, but in the real world, there is a drastic contrast to the applications and potentials of AI in day-to-day use cases. AI isn’t anymore a niche tech reserved for a few organizations.The infusion of technology in E-Commerce has made life easier for people, and the data shows. Just take a look at the worldwide sales, the growth is unprecedented and projected to spike through the roof in the coming years.
So, naturally, as someone working in close quarters with AI experts and E-Commerce veterans, I couldn’t help but speculate about the future of the marriage between the two.
Next level personalization for exceptional user experience
I remember the good old days of AOL messenger, Yahoo-Mail & My-Space. The internet at its cusp was pure, and people just hung out and wondered at the marvel of this infant tech and its dynamic capability.
With great power comes great responsibilities, and the internet opened the gateway to access various types of data; this, paired with the eventual shift towards online shopping, would work wonders for businesses. This was inevitable as the monetization of the internet was bound to happen. When anything is free, you’re the product.
I’m spoiled by the Apple ecosystem and can’t get enough of the seamless interaction and experience when I use any device, be it my laptop, mobile, or iPad. Imagine this for E-Commerce businesses on a gigantic scale.
For E-commerce companies, AI technologies can vastly improve product selection and overall user experience, which becomes a crucial part of the customer lifecycle.
Big data offers a plethora of opportunities for E-commerce personalization. Segmenting and customizing the experience is made possible by analyzing historical data. Even the messaging is personalized to the core, ensuring the relevancy factor is preserved.
Affine’s AI-powered Hyper Personalized Marketing Experience is one such solution that leverages customer behavior data, segmentation data, and cohort analysis at scale
What do customers gain from this?
As an avid online shopper, I appreciate the personalized shopping experience on an E-Commerce platform. Getting to see the products with utmost relevance is a positive shopping experience rather than being spammed with random recommendations; at least, that has been my experience so far.
When E-Commerce businesses leverage data properly, it creates an exceptional shopping and customer experience and results in return customers. We all have our favorite shopping websites, and personalization has played a crucial role in them.
What do E-Commerce businesses gain from this?
First things first: — a centralized workhorse robust personalization ecosystem,minimal data leak, and making sense of every customer move and converting it into a quality-of-life add-on with personalization, targeting, and segmentation.
Such a sophisticated solution makes it possible to identify the most feasible customers and target them with hyper-personalized efforts. The data is the only limitation to the possibilities here. Not only does this net the best possible customers for the business, but it optimizes the marketing efforts making the whole targeting process efficient. Ad budgets are kept in check while ensuring superior ad display and performance.
I’ve spent fat budgets on marketing only to receive lukewarm prospects. I’ve also spent conservatively with proper data-powered personalized marketing initiatives that have resulted in excellent conversions. Centralized AI solutions provide complete accountability for marketing spend, helping E-Commerce businesses measure every dollar spent per lead.
Automation is seamless with AI
Contrary to popular opinion, AI is not about taking over human jobs; it is more about making our lives easier. Customer support is one of the most tasking efforts in the E-Commerce business. I’ve had my fair share of endless calls with customer support with language and technical issues. I know you’ve all been a part of at least one such instance in your lifetime.
The potential for customer support automation via chatbots is a fast-tracking of the entire process and is already seen with giants like Amazon.
E-Commerce businesses, small or large, can leverage AI to automate mundane tasks and basically run your online store to an extent without human intervention and take care of the overall processes in their day-to-day activities.
Be it automating marketing efforts, support, customer engagement, or advertising, AI has the clout to not only handle but also excel in outperforming manual labor while casually being time and cost-efficient in the process. Automating the marketing process also brings up a 451% increase in qualified leads.
Combat fraud activities with AI’s security prowess
We’ve all known of someone who has fallen prey to online fraud and I know I do. With the convenience of seamless transactions, there is also the vulnerability of fraud in E-Commerce transactions. A research shows that online payment fraud could lead to a global merchant loss of up to $343 billion from 2023 to 2027.
Despite security measures, these instances call for drastic innovations in verification tools and authentication processes. AI and ML algorithms are the only effective option to combat online threats at such a higher scale in the count of millions of transactions, with predictive analytics to detect behavioral patterns and suspect behavior resulting in fraudulent transactions.
Brand loyalty, repeat business, and ROI
A gazillion data points are analyzed so that customers can get the best shopping experience and keep coming back for more. Sure, but E-Commerce businesses have the most to leverage from intelligent AI algorithms running through a plethora of data points. As I mentioned earlier, the possibilities are immense and lucrative.
I have my go-to sites for shopping, and I have valid reasons for that. So do customers, hence the need for AI in E-Commerce platforms. Personalization may make it sound like the customer is reaping all the benefits, but that’s the intention.
The spend more get more is outdated, and efficiency is the need of the hour. Inefficient business operations cause a major dent in business revenues
The era of big data is here. Digital dominance is set to take over the world, and E-Commerce sites are more or less the new convenience stores in the digital age. I see a lot of competition; I see a lot of potential.
75% of businesses already use AI and are on the right track in the long run. Having run a startup myself, I understand the qualms about the cost of implementing AI. But the big picture justifies it and how.
AI in E-Commerce is not even a novelty anymore; it is a must-have. An online E-Commerce is a global marketplace, and the standards are already set. It’s excel or be expelled. A proper flow to guide your customers through their buying experience is the basic requirement to sustain and perform in the long run.
What does Affine bring to the table?
Affine is a pioneer and a veteran in the data analytics industry and has worked with giants like Warner Bros Theatricals, Zee 5, Disney Studios, Sony, Epic, and many other marquee organizations. From game analytics and media and entertainment to travel & tourism, Affine has been instrumental in the success stories of many Fortune 500 global organizations; and is an expert in personalization science with its prowess in AI & ML.
Learn more about how Affine can revamp your E-Commerce business!