Information can be a game changer if used wisely. The amount of data retail companies capture these days across various trade channels, have left the retail executives overwhelmed. All successful retailers are investing hugely in big data analysis and AI to dig deep into consumer psyche in order to create personalisation.
Leading retailers are increasingly turning to AI to increase what they know about consumers, products, and competitors to improve every aspect of the business—from product design and development through shopping, buying, and fulfillment. AI and big data are few tech trends that took centre stage at the 8th edition of Indian retail and e-retail congress (IReC) 2019. This time IReC hosted a panel on the topic “How AI led Automation & Big Data is proving a powerful advantage in Retail”, which was attended by key retailers from the Indian retail industry.
Following are the key highlights of the session…
- Looking beyond Chatbots
Answering the question about the best way to capture consumer behavior by session moderator,RituMarya, Editor-in-Chief - Entrepreneur Media India & APAC, VikramIdnani, Sr. Vice President and Head-IT, Reliance Retail, said, “Since Reliance Retail operates different formats including online and offline,every channel we operate in offers a lot of explicit data that help us in understanding the shopping behavior of consumers to me make personalized recommendations.”
Going further,Adani adds that organisation’s focus is on staying relevant to consumers and Data has the big role to play in that journey. AI is helping us in our journey of accomplishing personalization and frictionless experience. He also stressed that AI should be looked at beyond chatbots. Going further he adds, “People has this myth that chatbot is AI, so I just want to make clear that chatbot is not AI and there is lot more to AI just playing chatbots. In my opinion, AI is not rocket science instead it is a method of transacting basic human practices into systems to increase efficiency.”
AI helps Large Formats to be more Vigilant
Countering the question thrown by Ms Marya on how large format chains such as Big Bazaar, which is explored by lakhs of customers can create personalised shopping experience for each of its customer, Vineet Jain, CEO (North), Future Group apprises, “Since we operate in thousands of categories the amount of data we receive is humungous. In entire shopping journey of consumers the most crucial information we look at is, what customer is not buying from us that could generate the incremental revenue for us. And what trigger we can do so they buy those things from us. The focus is how we use apply AI on big data and use the end result to improve the customer experience and convert that into extra revenue.”
AI the new Electricity Empowering Retail
No, doubt, AI is generating a lot of hype and has become one of the most important parts of retail. Today, retailers want to understand consumers instantly to offer recommendations to is its digitally connected consumers. This kind of capability is very difficult to impart without AI solutions.
Speaking further on same, Yashwanth Kumar, Head of Analytics & Insight, Titan Company Limited said, “Now, AI is called the new electricity of the world. AI can do whatever you are doing in the slightly better way. In Titan, we do forecasting using AI as we know algorithms do better than the analytics. When you want more efficiency AI can do a better job. Also, AI has opened many new possibilities and capabilities in terms of making personalized recommendations.”
Sharing a personal account, UdayKiranKonathala, CEO &co-founder, Bizgaze Limited,added that he has been using AI for last few years now mainly to generate demand forecast. As per Konathala, Xenon mobile is one of the biggest beneficiaries of AI. The mobile handset maker has drastically improved its efficiency using the help of secondary and tertiary data. Bizgaze is a leading solution provider in the AI space, which has helped more than 10,000 retailers.
Clearly, AI and big data integration are among few tech trends, which are showing no signs of slowing down. They help retailers in gaining a competitive edge in order to win today’s savvy, discerning consumers.