AI and Retail Industry: How Machine Learning Affects SMBs
Artificial intelligence, as well as its subset machine learning, aren’t accurately brand new concepts — they have been around longer than one would imagine. Nonetheless, the fact remains that their emergence on the scene is relatively recent. And yet, more and more companies are already using both of these highly advanced technologies for their benefit in myriad ways. Take the retail industry for example; thanks to their innate proficiency with data analysis, artificial intelligence, and machine learning have become virtually indispensable for businesses operating in this space, especially SMBs.
1. A better understanding of customers: Nothing helps a company improve sales and grow its business quite like an in-depth understanding of the customers it serves. While that may have been hard to do in the past, AI and ML have made it a cakewalk. Among other things, these technologies can make use of all the retailers’ data, including that related to customers’ location, spending behavior as well as the business’ inventory, to serve their customers better via things like developing tailored offers, creating novel experiences, and pace optimization.
2. Enhanced efficiency: For a business to run smoothly and at optimal productivity, it is vital to master backend operations. So, here, AI and ML help by allowing retailers to factor in popular products, demand, inventory, and more to ensure they can maintain just the ideal list that will enable them to serve not only their in-store customers but also the ones they serve via online stores, if at all.
3. Personalized customer experiences: If there’s one thing retailers know about customers today, it’s that they have a dominant preference for customized experiences. Research has shown that 80 percent concede that a personalized experience is something that would make them come back to an establishment. And with all the insight, AI and ML can glean from the retailer’s data, delivering experiences tailored to the customer’s tastes and preferences is quite simple.
The retail industry is evolving at a dizzying pace and will continue to do so — at least for the foreseeable future. While that is a challenging thing, one can’t ignore the abundance of opportunities such change is bound to bring with it. And if retailers, SMBs in particular, wish to keep pace with their large scale contemporaries in the market, the use of modern technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning is an absolute must.