Voice and image recognition and, more recently, the generation of creative graphics and texts show us in an increasingly surprising way the capabilities of artificial intelligence, a technology that is finding applications in business environments, including the world of retail. Algorithms and intelligent systems promise to revolutionize the customer experience and store management, changing the way sales initiatives and procurement are made. AI is not only used to generate promotional messages and personalized invitations with tools such as ChatGPT.
Data and AI
The specialty of AI is, above all, enhancing data analysis capabilities, encompassing any information regarding, for example, customer purchases as well as expressions of interest. With this data, AI algorithms can now identify (through clustering capabilities) homogeneous groups in terms of needs and purchasing behavior, allowing the creation of effective initiatives, reducing invasiveness and costs with the same results. Thanks to the internet and digital relationship methods, it is possible to take advantage of an ever-increasing amount of data to understand, for example, if a single customer has married or started a family—conditions that change their needs and create new sales opportunities.
Predictive Analysis for Retail
AI can analyze a lot of information to do predictive analysis, or to understand how the demand for a product will change in the future, considering elements such as socio-economic trends, weather, and other variables that would escape human analysis. AI functions supported by machine learning, make it possible to identify, for example in clothing, the stores in which sales are representative of the entire chain and, from the tests of the first days, understand whether a new collection will be successful, estimating how much it will sell.
In Store AI as virtual assistant and more
Another revolution brought about by AI is that of virtual assistants who are used in recommendation systems to suggest products to the customer both based on previous purchases and other information provided directly or indirectly. Modern “in-store” digital signage systems equipped with a camera and AI can adapt communications based on age, gender, and the number of people in front of them, including, for example, if they are a family. Another field of use of virtual assistants is that of first-level assistance which reduces the commitment by bringing to the attention of the staff only the important requests, already selected by topic. Thanks to AI, answering systems can understand the caller’s mood and learn from the information collected.
Integrating AI in the store’s IT infrastructure
Although AI is based on sophisticated technologies and systems, the capabilities we have described are easily accessible to retail businesses of all sizes thanks to cloud services, which can be integrated with existing archives and applications. BinHexS supports retail customers in all stages of IT and network modernization, both within data centers and store systems. In addition to the provisioning and implementation of hardware and software infrastructures in Italy and internationally, BinHexS offers specific IT service desk supports for the retail world (Retail Service Desk) provided on a 24×7 basis which includes connectivity, till equipment, POS, sales/warehouse and personnel training.