Online retail is exciting, but it can be tricky.
Fortunately, technology has evolved so much over the years that online sellers can now make use of artificial intelligence (AI) to help them grow their online sales.
AI is a technology that enables a computer to think or act in a more ‘human’ way. It is able to perform numerous tasks for your online business, such as engaging with customers and employees, business processes automation, and gaining insight through data analysis. AI ultimately helps you accomplish tasks that you don’t have the manpower or resources to do so manually.
In this article, we’ll to take a look at 6 ways you can use AI to boost your online sales.
Expand Your Customer Service
84% of businesses who work hard on their customer service have said that they’ve subsequently seen an increase in revenue. Better customer service, then, equals more sales.
On the flip side, 42% of customers expect businesses to respond within 60 minutes. That doesn’t give businesses much time if their entire customer service operations are manual. Fortunately, AI is able to step in.
Customer service driven by AI, such as chatbots, is able to answer your customer’s queries round-the-clock. Not just that, they use machine learning to learn more about your customer each time they chat with them. This allows them to provide faster, more accurate and personalized responses.
This is important, as 84% of consumers say being treated like a person and not just a number is important to win them as customers.
Personalize Your Email Marketing
Personalized email marketing has been around for a few years. But, simply adding the recipient’s name to the subject line doesn’t cut it anymore. In 2020 and beyond, you need to go further. Your content strategy, specifically email marketing can benefit.
You can use AI to:
- Segment your email list according to individual preferences and past buying decisions
- Learn the best times to contact particular users
- Determine how often to contact particular users
- Figure out a tailored content strategy
With 74% of marketers admitting that targeted personalization boosts customer engagement, implementing AI to your email marketing campaigns is a smart idea.
Qualify Leads More Accurately
Leads are the bedrock of success for any online business, which is why it’s essential that you take advantage of AI when it comes to qualifying leads more accurately.
Naturally, qualifying leads takes time, and the process often involves deciding if the prospect will be funneled down the pipeline. Even then, your marketing department might have wrongly judged a lead, which causes you to spend more time nurturing unqualified ones. In fact, data has shown that 79% of marketing leads never close.
Worse still, research has shown that just 26% of SaaS companies use their product to qualify leads.
This is where AI comes in. AI is able to run through a large database of customer data and establish recognized patterns and trends and build a model from the data, in order to create a prediction model much faster, more efficiently and accurately than you and your marketing team could.
AI powered chatbots, for instance, capture leads, by identifying and qualifying your visitors in real-time. These AI-driven bots are able to chat with your leads just like a human would, asking qualifying questions. Depending on the answers the leads give, the bot can then direct the leads to your sales team.
They ultimately improve the way your sales team initiates conversations by providing context.
Localize The Customer Experience
There are several ways you can localize the customer experience. Doing so shows your customers that you care, and it also allows you to display your relevance to them. This helps the customers make quicker decisions, which in turn can boost conversions and sales.
For example, WayBlazer is an AI platform used by travel companies who want to personalize local recommendations for their customers.
You can also use AI to create localized content, as well as merge localization with personalization so that you’re able to deliver targeted, localized messages to different groups of customers.
Fine Tune Operations Management
Operations management is, of course, an important part of running your business. Via artificial intelligence-powered predictive analytics, you can gain crucial insights into key aspects of your operations management strategy, from supply chain efficiency and demand forecasting, to inventory management.
AI helps you to understand with greater accuracy what may happen in the future, thus allowing you to plan better. For instance, artificial intelligence can prevent you from putting in too many orders (or too little orders), and it can also ensure you don’t direct your stock to the wrong area.
Infinera is just one example of a company that has added artificial intelligence to its supply chain management in order to crunch logistics routes and production times so that it is able to more accurately forecast delivery dates. This, in turn, improves customer satisfaction because they will know exactly when to expect their items.
Combat Fake Reviews
Customers put a lot of faith in online reviews. In fact, 95% of customers say they read reviews before making a purchase.
The problem is with fake reviews. Fake reviews do exist, and they can damage your brand’s reputation irreparably. If you have fake reviews, customers will simply lose trust in you.
The good news is that you can use AI to identify fake reviews, and remove them. Amazon is already doing this with their in-house built AI machine-learning system that tackles fake reviews and inflated star ratings.
Does the system work?
A study conducted by Aalto University in collaboration with researchers from Waseda University in Japan found that AI is able to identify fake reviews better than humans. To do this, AI uses a language processing method to spot things like unusual formatting, writing style and patterns of text. Eradicating these fake reviews not only helps your customers but also builds public confidence and trust in your brand.
AI is very much here to stay. It’s one of the most efficient ways to improve your business operations and boost sales – and it’s not as difficult to leverage as it once seemed.
Now is the time to adapt to the new technology and use it to help you achieve your business goals.
About the Author: Ashley Kimler is a B2B SaaS Copywriter, Content Strategist, and Founder of CopyNoise. She’s been helping businesses of all sizes get in front of the right audience online for over a decade. To see what gems of wisdom she shares next, follow @ashleykimler on Twitter.