Use of chatbot, AI, machine learning in ecommerce: real examples

19 Dec 2019
Oksana, copywriter
Implementing Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence may become your best solution to improve user experience.
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problems with traditional online experiences

The pace at which the e-commerce industry is growing and enlarging nowadays is immense, as well as the people’s expectations. By 2021, e-commerce sales are expected to reach 17.5 percent of all retail sales worldwide.

What else can be done to improve user experience and make online purchasing easier? Alongside with e-commerce, various technologies are evolving to meet the customers’ needs.

Such terms as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning or chatbots are heard almost everywhere now. While some people express their concerns that AI will run the world soon and leave the people unemployed, more and more eCommerce business owners choose to implement new technology and reap benefits of it.

Together with advantages, the eCommerce brings to customers, there are still some drawbacks and issues occurring while shopping online.

online conversation with sephora chatbot

The most common disappointments reported by consumers included hard to navigate websites (34%), inability to receive the answers to simple questions (31%), and hard to find basic details about a business, including address, hours of operations, and phone number (28%).

The customers want to get the information rapidly and easily, as they are used to. Unless you don’t provide them with such opportunities, clients may simply choose other places, as the competition in the eCommerce world is doubtlessly intense.

SapientPro eCommerce development team regards implementing machine learning and artificial intelligence as the best solution to improve user experience.

What AI and ML really mean

To start with, let’s have a closer look at what ML and AI actually mean and in what way they may be helpful.

Artificial Intelligence – is a machine capable of performing a task, imitating human intelligence.

Machine learning is defined as the study of computer algorithms that allow computer programs to automatically improve through experience. ML is the best way for you to understanding the behavior of the target customers, reduce cart abandonment rates and as a result increase sales.

Benefits of implementing ML, AI, and Chatbots into an Ecommerce business

The fields of implementing AI-driven technologies are numerous. However, there are some aspects we recommend you to pay more attention to. These include the following:

Automated Lead Generation and Qualification

E-commerce websites have a wide variety of offered products. And the problem that may occur is finding that very needed thing. There is a great solution – chatbots. They may lead the clients to the desired item they are searching for and make the purchase process more pleasant.

A Mine of Customer Data

People share a lot of information when having a conversation…even if the interlocutor is a chatbot. The AI-driven technologies help gather customers’ data, their habits, and preferences. Chatbots store a lot of consumer data over time, such as past buying history and buying habits. Then this information is used for developing further marketing strategies.

Closing the Deals

Although a lot of businesses still don’t trust the robots in the questions of completing the sale, the situation is gradually changing. Bots are able to sell directly and place orders for the user. Companies are introducing a specific type of bots called sales chatbots in order to improve their sales funnel.

Improved recommendations for customers

Have you ever wondered how online stores know what to put in the “Recommended for you” section? Recent research held in the USA showed that 63% of consumers are interested in personalized recommendations. Those are the vivid result of Machine Learning implementation.

Online shoppers are already tired of being presented with the products they are not interested in. Specific algorithms can figure out what the customer is really targeting to purchase, based on the analyzed data, and studying the buyer’s behavior.

Nowadays, there are two types of algorithms for creating personalized recommendations available:

The collaborative filtering technique is based on what other customers prefer to have. Content-based filtering takes into account the personal information about the client like gender, age, purchasing preferences; and the product’s characteristics.

Improved Customer Service

The customers are tired of long-time waiting for the support to answer their queries. There are cases when the employees are unable to help clients solve their problems due to their low competence or inability to find the relevant answer quickly.

Chatbots have found their most important use-case in assisting customers. In fact, a lot of companies incorporate bots in their business strategy just for this sole purpose.

Chatbots have evolved drastically and sometimes you don’t even pay attention to the fact that you are asking a robot for help. That’s ok, regarding how far the ML got so far. A chatbot is a specific computer program that is designed to simulate conversation with human users over the Internet.

Real 8 examples of using Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, chatbots in eCommerce

If you are still doubting that the technologies worth being invested in, here are the real examples of how chatbots can be implemented.

eBay

EBay began using chatbot technology first by piloting a simple Facebook Messenger platform that alerts bidders 15 minutes before the auction listing is about to end. Customers can remember getting a last-minute bid in that way.

Ebay has now grown to deliver ShopBot, a virtual personal shopping assistant that helps people find things they want at the price they want.

All you need to do is type in some information about what you’re looking for (e.g. black women’s swimming suit under $25). To find the perfect match, design and color for you, eBay will ask you all the relevant questions.

Sephora Chatbot

online conversation with flowers chatbot

Talking about your beauty needs in person is important for the girls, but the Sephora chatbot on Kik (a popular messaging app) is getting pretty close.

Once you open it, it asks users in the form of a quiz that doesn’t take long to complete to provide a few key details about themselves.

You can then go on shopping items, get customized advice on makeup, and more. The Sephora app, like a human sales representative, will even ask targeted questions about your preferences in order to provide the best product recommendations.

Aerie

One more popular chatbot for the Kik messaging app is clothing and lingerie store Aerie by America Eagle Outfitters. Given that they are a famous brand among younger Millennials and Gen Z, it makes sense to introduce innovative technologies quickly.

Like many other eCommerce applications, their app allows users to scan specific interest-based items. Yet their choice of THIS or THAT is the unique feature. Consumers are shown an image of two different styles and just need to select “This” or “That” to narrow down their choices in order to find the right thing. The bot will make personalized recommendations based on your design expectations after a few rounds of the game.

1-800-Flowers

online conversation with snaptravelchatbot

One of the first bots on Facebook Messenger was 1-800-Flowers. This serves as a great example of how the early adoption of new technology will help older brands.

Their bot helps users to send flowers and gifts just like their phone-in app. This asks you to select items based on the type of case (wedding, engagement, birthday, etc.) and gives recommendations for different presents.

Then you can buy the flowers from the app and receive updates from the delivery.

1-800-Flowers has more than the usual bouquet to sell shoppers. The app makes searching and finding the best gift ideas on the basis of the chance simpler. Shoppers have to search on a standard eCommerce platform for this themselves.

Spring Bot

Spring Bot was one of Facebook Messenger’s first to arrive. It is a live chat and personal shopping app that can be used by fashion brands to communicate with customers. The device is used by world-famous companies such as Balenciaga, Givenchy.

The bot begins by posing a couple of multiple-choice questions, like:  “What are you looking for today?” “What is the price range?”  You may make purchases directly from the bot and it will provide you with receipts, shipping information, and any other questions related to purchases.

Snaptravel

online conversation with trim chatbot

SnapTravel is a chatbot from Facebook that helps people find hotel deals. All you have to do is type in your travel city and dates to receive recommendations. And right there in Messenger, you can book hotels.

The platform provides special deals only available through the app, and if you ever need them, they have actual 24/7 standby agents to assist with your travel plans, but you probably won’t need any additional help in finding a hotel with this bot. Through answering the bot’s questions about your journey, you will find just about everything you need.

H&M

For the Kik messaging app, clothing brand H&M has created an immersive bot that recommends products based on your own tastes. This ends by telling you to pick your favorite clothing images. Then it asks you to pick your personal style: Casual, Boho, Classic, or Grunge.

The H&M bot uses photo tools to build a detailed profile of what you like (and what you think you want) and asks questions about your look. Once a style profile is created, you can use the bot to create your own styles, vote, and search other users’ outfits, and shop.

Trim

Trim is a fintech start-up that began its chatbot on SMS for the first time. They have been spreading to Facebook Messenger since then.
The bot is very simple. Trim searches the bills for recurring subscription fees and prompts users to cancel a subscription if they want to.

Messenger’s fast, free unsubscribe bot has become very popular, helping Trim introduce new customers to the company, grow its customer base and sell its paid services.

The value proposition of Trim is about making saving money on expenses fast. You don’t want to do this on the phone manually, or by using a website. Turning the device into a bot makes the idea interesting and attracts new people.

Technological progress never stops to impress Internet users. What we have now, just a couple of years ago was never thought of as possible to implement. If you want your eCommerce business to keep up with the times, SapientPro recommends you to consider implementing artificial intelligence and machine learning. If you feel like you need professional advice or you have an idea to bring into life, drop us a line.

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Oksana, copywriter
TIPS FOR BUILDING A SUCCESSFUL CUSTOM E-COMMERCE WEBSITE
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