The Application of AI in E-Commerce: 5 Ways to Use It to Your Advantage

by

If you own an e-commerce business, you know just how competitive the industry has become. Differentiation has become ever more critical for business success. That’s where the application of AI in e-commerce can provide the edge you need.

AI enables e-commerce businesses to scale up operations while providing more personal shopping experiences. In fact, it can radically transform every facet of e-commerce. 

Previously we looked at the following:

Whether you plan to take your e-commerce business up a notch or expand into the sector for the first time, you can look forward to getting the answers you need.

The Economic Impact of AI on E-Commerce

The e-commerce industry has experienced massive growth in recent years and now accounts for a fifth of all global sales. The future of e-commerce will become increasingly linked to AI. Here are a few stats to consider:

The Benefits of the Application of AI in E-commerce

Why is the application of AI in e-commerce so beneficial to businesses like yours?

In short, AI makes the shopping experience simpler and faster. It also improves personalization. That means shoppers can more easily find products they feel passionate about buying. 

AI can gather data on all your prospects and customers from every touchpoint of their journey. It’s capable of building complete customer profiles from your website, social media, and email campaigns. 

Plus, it will segment your audience much more finely than traditional methods. 

This way, you offer people what they really want, not just what would interest most people with a similar profile. 

5 Ways to Use the Application of AI in E-Commerce to Your Advantage

There’s no question the application of AI in e-commerce can serve your business and your customers well. The hard part is figuring out how to use it to your advantage. To help you out, we’ve highlighted 5 ways to do just that, along with specific examples of businesses that are ahead of the curve.

1) Improve Decision-Making with Smarter Analytics and Intelligence 

E-commerce data is essential for long-term strategy and short-term planning. Traditional marketing analysis based on gathering statistics is a blunt tool compared to AI. AI helps you collect and analyze data in real time to make smarter decisions about marketing, sales, production, and operations.

Sales 

Intelligent data analysis helps real-time forecasting of online sales. This helps guide decisions on pricing, production, offers, and inventory management. It also saves employees the mundane task of data entry.

Competitive Intelligence

E-commerce business intelligence is essential to stay ahead of your competition. It also serves to detect unseen competitive threats. Klue, for example, tracks competitors’ websites and social media on pricing and product changes.

Cybersecurity and Privacy

Customers have entrusted you with personal and financial data that cybercriminals could use to defraud them or sell on the dark web. As your personal detective, products like Balbix BreachControl can chase leads to identify and neutralize threats.

Reputation Management and Pirating

Trolls and unscrupulous competitors are the scourge of e-commerce. They pose as unsatisfied customers to hurt your reputation with scathing reviews.

AI technology such as Pasabi can identify reviews on social media and websites to help you get them removed. And DataWeave’s AI-driven counterfeit detection software protects your brand, products, and intellectual property by crawling the web to track down knock-off products. 

2) Provide Better Product Recommendations

To be successful in the e-commerce space, you need loyal customers who care about your brand. And that means you need to show that you understand their problems and preferences and can offer the perfect solutions. The good news is the application of AI in e-commerce can simplify this task.

AI for Sales

AI capabilities can help provide customers with a smooth and easy shopping experience by making ordering and delivery faster and more efficient. But that’s not all… 

Another application of AI in e-commerce is recommending products based on searches and purchase history. Amazon, for example, uses AI to help customers discover personalized products and then compare features, prices, and reviews for similar products. 

Personal Assistants and Chatbots in the Home

Chatbots in the home like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home can learn customers’ interests, needs, and preferences from everyday questions they ask. 

They can help customers by… 

As natural language processing evolves, conversations with virtual assistants will become more lifelike. Shopping will be more enjoyable, easier, and more intuitive. 

Personal Shoppers 

Sometimes customers need help choosing the size, design, and color of a new outfit. Virtual personal shoppers can help by asking customers questions to learn what they are looking for. Then, they can check stock levels for a perfect match. A personal shopper also is able to suggest alternatives if the first choice isn’t available. Finally, they can complete the experience by checking out purchases. 

Automated Recommendations for Managing the Home and Business

Your customers have busy lives, and automated replenishment platforms can help take care of ordering day-to-day supplies. 

Replenium uses machine learning to suggest products and schedule deliveries based on purchase history.

Improved Searches 

If your customers ever abandon your website because they can’t find what they are looking for quickly, machine learning can help. AI can learn from previous searches and purchase history to improve search results for every user. 

Voice and visual searches can also make online shopping more engaging. Instead of typing a search query into a window, customers can ask or show a similar item or image.

Immersive Online Shopping Experience with VR and AR

A big benefit of shopping at the mall is that customers can see and touch products before getting out their wallets. But virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) can give customers an immersive experience for trying out products virtually. 

For example, customers can try on clothes and makeup using an avatar that matches their hair color, skin tone, body shape, and size. This can help to reduce the number of unwanted products your customers return. 

3) Enhance the Customer Service Experience

Excellent customer service is a must for any e-commerce business. Since AI chatbots can answer multiple calls, customers have less time to wait to get their call answered. 

In fact, chatbots can handle 80% of routine tasks and customer questions, cutting customer support service fees by 30%, according to IBM. However, live agents are still essential to take over complicated calls and handle frustrated customers. 

4) Target Marketing More Effectively

Though we’ve talked about the impact of AI in digital marketing before, it’s worth touching on a few other specific ways it can be used to enhance your marketing efforts. 

Analytics

Some applications of AI in e-commerce are to better segment your audience, improve targeting, and analyze your marketing data. You can build more robust digital profiles across all platforms and points along the customer journey.

But it doesn’t stop there…

You can integrate many more indicators for more sophisticated analysis and do it in real time. AI can adjust tactics and allocate marketing resources autonomously. That will make you far more agile and responsive to changing trends and market conditions.

AI-Enabled Email Marketing 

AI-enabled email marketing helps you better target and manage your ad and marketing campaigns. You can automatically respond to each consumer’s action with an appropriately targeted message. 

Plus, AI can manage A/B testing, automatically changing subject lines or body copy, depending on opening or click-through rates. Using machine learning, it knows what email copy works best for future campaigns. 

Omnichannel Marketing 

Each social media channel has its own posting, advertising, and analytical requirements. As new platforms enter the market, your audience becomes more splintered between these platforms. Managing them and the other channels you use to interact with customers becomes increasingly complicated.

An application of AI in e-commerce is to coordinate your channels to improve your performance and select the best channel to match your target audience. 

Retargeting

AI can learn from a shopper’s data why they abandoned their shopping cart without completing a purchase. This can help you retarget your prospects with solutions that they will want to buy. 

5) Boost Sales and Distribution and Scale Operations

A smart retail robot checks inventory in a warehouse using barcodes and visual recognition.

Efficiently fulfilling and delivering orders is crucial for online retailers’ reputations. Any e-commerce business looking to scale up its sales needs to think about how it will fulfill orders quickly. It only hurts your reputation when orders don’t arrive on time or the customer receives the wrong item. 

Managing your stock can get complicated. That is especially true when you are selling products across websites, social media, and brick-and-mortar stores. 

That’s why forecasting is essential, and using an efficient distribution infrastructure is so important. AI will keep track of your inventory in different locations and advise you to move stock where it’s needed the most.

Takeaway

AI is helping to drive the massive growth of e-commerce. This will accelerate as AI takes over more and more functions of e-commerce. 

The application of AI in e-commerce drives sales by making the shopping experience simpler and faster. Not only that, but it also helps prospects and customers find products they feel passionate about buying. In fact, AI can radically transform every facet of e-commerce.

By incorporating AI in your e-commerce business, your customers will keep coming back and spreading the word about your great service. 

Want to take your e-commerce business to the next level? Sign up for a FREE 50-Point Marketing Audit to find out what is working and how to improve areas of your marketing that aren’t. 

 


At Viral Solutions we are committed to seeing YOU succeed. It is our goal to grow your business with proven digital marketing strategies that will help your business for the long haul.

Stay Up To Speed in the Ever Changing World of Marketing!

Sign-up today for FREE, monthly marketing tips, loopholes, and news to EXPLODE your Return on Investment!



Share your knowledge and gain exposure by becoming a guest author on our blog! Learn how to write for us.

Filed Under: Business Tips, Software & Technology

About Thomas von Ahn

With more than 30 years of experience in B2B sales across various industries, Thomas has unique insight into both the offline and online sales sphere. It was during his time in the trenches that Thomas noticed a recurring theme: Though business owners are knowledgeable about their craft or trade, they often struggle to market and sell to their prospects. This realization is what prompted Thomas and his now business partner, Christine, to bring Viral Solutions to life. Since starting the company, Thomas has been able to assist countless business owners in developing a solid marketing plan based upon sound marketing strategy, then assigning the marketing tactics to a team of talented employees, and, finally, watching those actions unfold—his true passion.

Though Viral Solutions is on Thomas’ mind 24/7, he does occasionally take a break to cheer on the Green Bay Packers and enjoy his adopted home of Wisconsin. Much of his family also works at Viral Solutions, and this closeness with family and employees is the cornerstone of the Viral Solutions culture.