Artificial intelligence has been forecasted as a potential key driver in providing customers with a whole, new experience whenever they visit a retail store as it could enhance operational efficiency and automation.
According to Forbes, a number of companies have already started leveraging on AI. Personalization and automation are just two of the major reasons why retailers are starting to transition to this form of technology.
Hardware retail stores are some of the most difficult spaces to navigate but Lowe's found a way to help customers find what they need. The North Carolina-based home improvement firm created LoweBots, robots that provide directions and share information that consumers may want to know about certain products.
American pharmaceutical chain Walgreens has also started integrating artificial intelligence within its system. The company has an online, interactive map that helps with inventory on flu-related products that could help infected regions and patients.
In the cosmetics industry, Sephora is among the latest providers that capitalized on AI through its Color IQ app that scans a customer's face and offers recommendations on concealer and foundation shades that best suit the consumer. Analysts noted that the technologically-aided app benefits consumers who are on-the-go.
North Face is another company that uses IBM Watson's cognitive computing technology that helps staff make personalized recommendations for consumers who are looking for a specific coat. The system will ask questions relevant to where the buyer is going and what activities will take place in the location. The system will then offer coat recommendations for customers who need help in finding the perfect coat.
Taco Bell, one of the world's most successful restaurant chains, is the first in the industry to use AI in helping customers order their food. The company has a Tacobot that partners with Slack so customers can either speak or text to make an order. Personalized orders can also be made through Tacobot.
Other companies that leverage on artificial intelligence are Neiman Marcus, Macy's, Walmart, Amazon, ThredUp, Uniqlo, West Elm, Olay, Sam's Club, H&M, Kroger, Zara, Starbucks, Rebecca Minkoff, and American Eagle.
The latest Gartner study suggested that AI systems help add value to businesses around the world. The report stated that artificial intelligence is a tool that many businessmen find beneficial when growing or expanding their domains.
AI is believed to reduce expenses and time as well as improve operations in various industries such as medical practices, retail, and many more. Voice assistants are also recommended by researchers as it could assist with tasks such as scheduling, recording, and reminders.