We are surrounded by the world of eCommerce. From our daily food and apparel needs to gadgets, books, furniture, and more. There isn’t a thing that cannot be purchased or accessed online.
As eCommerce is an inseparable part of the IT industry, hence staying unaffected with all the latest technological advancements is next to impossible. Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence are two such innovations touching every aspect of online shopping.
IoT and AI have changed the way people shop online; chatbots, seamless payment solutions, GPS and RFID systems are the proof of that. But before we dive into the impact of IoT and AI on the world of eCommerce, let us get a basic understanding about these two.
What is IoT & AI?
Online shopping using a credit or debit card, asking Alexa to switch on the lights, or reading a book on laptop or smartphone. This all is possible only because of the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence.
IoT simply means connecting all things in the world with the Internet. For example, warehouses earlier used men to move products back and forth but now all sorting is done by machines that are connected and controlled by the internet.
And, AI is where sophisticated computer systems are designed to learn and perform functions like human beings. 24×7 chat and support offered by online platforms is possible due to artificial intelligence only.
Here’s how AI and IoT are shaping-up online shopping.
- Control over inventory: IoT has helped businesses adopt and maintain minimum levels of stock without losing sales, and give access to product information like product quantity and quality, shelf life, etc. On the other hand, it has helped customers see whether the product is available or not, expected delivery time, etc.
- Personalized experience: We cannot discuss eCommerce without mentioning chatbots, features like bundled pricing, predictive recommendations, and more. Artificial intelligence has empowered online stores to study the web pages you visited and give recommendations accordingly.
- Reassess pricing strategies: Artificial intelligence helps eCommerce entrepreneurs take pricing decisions by collecting and analysing competitors’ data. Most common example is the surge in cab fare and airline prices due to increase in the demand. Tweak in pricing, expanding product offerings are some ways business owners make use of these technologies to stay ahead in the competition.
- Tracking products: RFID and GPS technologies (a part of IoT) ensures smooth delivery execution for eCommerce companies. Right from product location in the warehouse to real-time delivery status, companies can keep a track of each product to reduce errors and the resulting revenue loss.
- Minimizing Human Intervention: Both AI and IoT have contributed to reducing human intervention as much as possible. The reason, human beings are prone to errors. Chances of one package getting misplaced, out of thousands in a day, are remarkably high. The error is eliminated when machines take over the entire backend management process including inventory, warehousing, shipping process, and more.
These technologies have also increased automation in the various segments of eCommerce business like, real-time updates, round the clock support services through chatbots, target-based advertising, etc.
How do you see the eCommerce industry changing due to advancements in technology? Share your views through the comment section given below.