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Top 7 Ways in which Artificial Intelligence is Disrupting the Retail Industry
Oct07, 2021

Top 7 Ways in which Artificial Intelligence is Disrupting the Retail Industry

Despite the online buying boom, nothing can replace the hands-on retail store buying experience! This is the reason that most famous and top-of-the-line brands are not just maintaining existing retail stores but expanding their chains across the globe. The truth is that humans still want to see and feel products, try them physically before buying them.

Moreover, retail outlets are great for branding purposes especially when offering personalized services and discounts. The cherry on the topping comes when retails use the latest Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered technology to revolutionize customer experience like never before! AI is bringing about a disruptive impact on the retail industry that is visible across the value chain. As a powerful tool, it is giving brands and their retail stores strategic advantage over other forms of competitions.

Here are 7 crucial ways in which AI can influence your retail business, read on

Better in-shop experience with efficient product categorization and inventory management:

Better in-shop experience with efficient product categorization and inventory management

AI and it Machine Learning algorithms help in checking and regulating product categorization such that customers know where to head for specific products without any hassle. The experience can be further enhances by using image of products in store along with size availability to let customers go through the real-time inventory! It also works on the side of brands who know when to restock on the product so as not to miss out on any customer.

Personalized shopping experience:

Personalized shopping experience

Use of advanced AI technologies like facial recognition and biometric in retail stores can help identify customers when they revisit while remembering their likes and dislikes. The applications can then be used to recommend products and promote them to individual customers for better sales. In fact the use of advanced AI algorithms can identify digital footprints of these buyers on social media and other platforms and subsequently decode their interests to suggest products. All of these are long-term investment that can considerably increase branding and up sales.

Virtual try-on experience:

Virtual try-on experience

The new generation virtual trial rooms let customers shop with the retails stores from any place! This amazing AI-backed technology lets customers find outfits matching their requirements and also try them on virtually. Within the stores, customers can give their pictures that the brands can match with AI scanners showing which would best suit individuals. This has helped retail brands boost sales tremendously in recent times with names like Levis, Old Navy and Gap having used them extensively. Brands that are creating such amazing experiences have been able to increase sales by 6-10% at a faster rate compared to nearest competitors.

Chatbot customer assistance:

Chatbot customer assistance

Chatbots are among the most effective ways to communicate with customers and improve engagement. These bots are self learning instruments powered by Machine Learning and help cut out on answering repetitive customer queries, that are of course important to them. They also address other issues that customers may have along with recommending products. In case of addressing customer grievances, the bots can collect valuable customer data before diverting call to customer care cell. AI-powered technology can handle data with precision and accuracy that go beyond human capabilities. Think of H&M who have started using these bots way back in 2016 to help pick from recommendations, apply filters along with style preferences!

Price adjustment and regulation strategy making:

Price adjustment and regulation strategy making

The retail industry is a price-sensitive market and AI can help in formulating the right pricing strategy all along without much of human interference. Retailers can take the help of such applications that sift through multiple pricing model data and arrive at the optimal price for similar products. This will naturally help them adjust prices of various products in the competitive sphere as per reigning trends. Such dynamic pricing policy will certainly go a long way in generating higher revenues all year long.

Optimize retail store operation:

Optimize retail store operation

Using Artificial Intelligence can smoothen out all retail store operation from coordinating with the warehouse to managing inventory. When it comes to multichannel retails with complex backend operations, having the right product information, handling sales and offers, keeping track of merchandize need multiple human resources. AI can automate and handle all of these, using robotics while also maintaining an eye on quality check. Resources saved here can be utilized elsewhere in the retail chain for higher revenue generation.

Maintain smooth supply chain and logistics:

Optimize retail store operation

Retail stores across the globe lose revenue due to inefficient logistics. Using AI-enables logistic systems can help track buying trends, predict demands, scrutinize locations and demography, track historical sales and formulate needed recommendations. Advanced AI-powered drones can easily reach difficult areas of warehouse and automatically update database matching them with the supply chain. All points in the logistic system from supply to inventory, distribution to delivery, staffing to management can be optimized using AI applications.

Concluding thoughts

With Artificial Intelligence transforming all aspects of life, the retail industry cannot be left behind! From offering a customer-centric buying experience to better retail system management, AI is offering possibilities in the industry like never before. It is true that the capital investment that you make on AI-powered applications for your retail store may take some time to show its returns, but you can be sure of the fact that it is going to be a fruitful investment in the long run.

Traditional retailers with legacy systems moving on to standardize their systems stand to immensely benefit from the use of AI. As per current trends, retail businesses in the next 2 years are set to see the huge impact of AI on customers, inventory and chatbot use. Most retailers are set to invest in these areas to keep up to the ensuing competition!

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