Here's How Customer Experience And AI Are Driving The Next Gen Of E-commerce Industry
Entrepreneur's New Year’s Guide
You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.
The digitization of commerce has been changing consumer expectations and inspiring new and unprecedented shopping patterns and experiences for the past few years. The recent uncertain times have further created a binding need for online commerce more than ever.
People in the near future will refrain from stepping out of their homes to fulfill their impulsive cravings, which poses a significant threat to various industries such as retail, grocery and food delivery, apparel and fashion. Several industries have come to a halt in the wake of the spread of viral disease, facing one of the significant blows ever suffered by it.
Brands are shifting their marketing strategies and resources from brick-and-mortar to e-commerce format, striving to create personalized shopping experiences for their customers.
Harley Manning, vice-president, and research director at Forrester, who specializes in customer service, says brands savvy to this shift are reframing their take on customer service from a cost center to a profit driver.
Customer support metrics have expanded to include customer satisfaction, lifetime value, and repeat buying, says Shawna Wolverton, senior vice-president of products at customer service software provider. The e-commerce shift has proven itself fruitful for the luxury market to traditional retail alike.
Brands are meticulously working towards enhancing the retail world for the tech-savvy new generation who enjoy effortless shopping experiences from the comfort of their homes. This new wave of e-commerce stands to change the way of brand-customer engagement for the better as brands continue to refine and innovate their digital strategies.
Let's have a glance at the AI-driven trends that are ruling the various brand strategies nowadays.
Social Media Marketing
Social media has grown exponentially into a business-driven platform heavily utilized by brands, with Facebook leading among its competitors. After all, there is no better way to reach your audience, since literally everyone is out there.
The social handles and brands alike work towards bringing superior customer experiences. Researchers suggest that vertical engagement features such as stories and IGTV videos, live streams are proving to be a more interactive mode to keep your audience glued. Click to buy to feature gives a new meaning to your content, increasing website landings by people.
Small homegrown businesses are making the most of this feature to drive more people towards their website. Various kinds of flexible ad formats, especially on YouTube, help brands strike a chord with the audience and make them reach out.
Also, social media is all about collaborations, with paid promotions taking a deep-rooted space in the social media marketing package, highly utilized by the brand. Social media influencers and content creators belonging to a vast genre have created an exciting and high engagement-driven space for themselves on social media.
AI-Driven Automation Experiences
Some of the world's most successful companies have already incorporated AI and reaping the rewards in terms of brand reputation, profits and visibility.
For instance, Amazon was one of the first companies that pioneered shopping recommendations and has witnessed changes in its algorithms over the years. Amazon's shopping recommendations have become increasingly sophisticated over time.
- Amazon uses AI to drive prices dynamically; that is it reduces the costs to elicit more sales when required and simultaneously increase prices when the demands are high. The algorithm enables optimal sales and revenue automatically.
- Still moving ahead as a leader in the use of technology, Amazon has now opened checkout-free physical stores in Seattle, Chicago, and San Francisco, which have AI-powered sensors and cameras. This technology can tell exactly which items a customer has picked up and will automatically charge them as they walk out of the store using the Amazon Go app.
Talking about new ventures, Lenskart introduced a virtual 3D try-on feature in its website in order to provide store like experience to its shy online customers. Thus, brands in every domain are experimenting with bringing better and superior customer engagement experiences with the aid of artificial intelligence. And we all can agree that the sky's not the limit.
Selling online mobile phones has been the top-of-mind ecommerce trends for the past few years now. Progressive web apps are the next evolution of mobile e-commerce and are said to become a standard in 2020. Customers can interact with the brands of their choice and in a manner that is convenient to them, using PWA's.
How Is It A New Era For Customer Engagement?
The future of the e-commerce industry will be driven by stellar customer experiences. Also, it will see a rise in more significant shopping recommendations and personalization options.
Surviving the new era of e-commerce for the businesses means that they should aim to deliver unmatched customer service and use technological advances at the same time.
According to a Gartner Survey, organizations are becoming aware of utilizing AI for delivering customer experience. Around 59 per cent of those surveyed said they are looking into ways to build their AI strategies. In contrast, the other 41 per cent have already adopted automated solutions.
The e-commerce industry is said to reap the benefits of chatbots, automation and conversational AI, and social commerce and wearable technology.
Some of the important questions that businesses need to answer are how can they put customer experience at the forefront with the increasing impact of commerce digitization? How can organizations use customer insights and create more than amazing customer experience? How can businesses integrate omnichannel customer support and social media customer service?
Digital advances and capabilities have smoothly paved the way for virtual shopping. Customers are ditching the old and traditional methods of going for shopping and instead opting for personalized online experiences. The new wave of e-commerce