How Chatbot will transform traditional retail?

Chatbot is a cutting edge technology which has the power to uplift the entire shopping experience which ultimately may result in improving the margins of any retailer across the categories.
How Chatbot will transform traditional retail?

Globally Chatbots are becoming phenomena in the technology space. Many international brands such as H&M, ebay are leveraging from this technology. Even in India there are many retailers who are looking to migrate from normal chat softwares to Chatbots. Titan and TataCliQ are few Indian examples who have started their transformation journey. Though this technology is at very nascent stage in India but has promising future ahead for sure. Speaking on same, Gaurav Jain, Head- Strategy and Business Development, Reliance Retail said, “At Reliance, we always look at how we can enhance the consumer experience with technology. So we can improve the in-store journey as well as product mix. All of this is achieved via various technologies. There are various things in pipe line now and Chatbot is one such thing which is under pipeline.”

How Chatbot help..  

A study done by leading research agency Regalix highlighted one out of three shoppers in India do shopping using mobile phone. People especially the young adults tend to read reviews compare features, pricing before making the final purchase decision. Usually such information is not available with the store.  Here the role of Chatbot comes-in; it equips the user with information, and respond to their queries quickly and efficiently. Chatbot are as good as human interaction.

With growing share of Smartphone penetration, it is certainly a next gen technology which retailers to look forward. Striking the views on Chatbot technology, Rajesh Jain, MD & CEO at Lacoste India - Sports and Lesiure Apparel Limited, said, “We are open to Chatbot technology, but we need to understand how it can help us and how it has helped other brands in the country.”

Initial Bottlenecks to overcome..

No doubt it is a promising technology but globally it is still work in progress. Chatbots will become more and more sophisticated in the time going forward. And, In India we would definitely see more and more retailers switch to Chatbot. However, physics of Indian customers is bit different from other countries. Striking a similar view, Sauvik Banerjjee, Vice President- Tata Industries- Digital Initiatives, Advisory to Group Co's and CTO of TataCLiQ said “There is also a propensity among the Indian customers that they want to have a human interaction whether physical person chatting or it is over the call. But the emerging role of chatbots can’t be denied retailer whether online or offline and app retail” .

Going further he adds,” Off late, there has been a lot of innovations have happened in bot technology.  From normal chats to bots on the phone, this technology is becoming extremely popular as far as day to day technology for retail is going forward. People and software with machine learning and algorithm are able to fundamentally execute automation.”

TataCLiQ is moving from normal chats to Chatbots. As of now, the company has done pilot POC and initial responses are very encouraging.

Clearly, Chabot is the upcoming technology which has all power to transform the Indian retail and give an edge to complete with e-commerce.





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