How AI Technology is changing online retail

The AI revolution

From Google searching to social networks to, Siri, Artificial Intelligence (AI) isn’t just a futurist trend. It’s a reality that plays part in our lives. That’s the reason why 2016 will be remembered as the AI revolution year. So it should not surprise us that the fashion industry had laid its eyes on AI solutions and the most innovating brands like Inditex Group have already joined to the wave experiencing with the AI applying it both in its ecommerce and physical stores.

The big question is how exactly is the AI technology shaping the future of fashion industry. Ecommerce is a space with high potential. In fact, many AI techniques which are successful now are being used on eCommerces in order to facilitate the purchase process and improve customer experience.

Most of the Artificial Intelligence success, especially in fashion industry, is due to the usage of deep learning to image recognition. This is the way companies like Wide Eyes Technologies have specialized. This company has one of the most cutting edge AI technology platforms, accessible through API for B2B customers.

AI solutions for fashion industry

Fashion eCommerce search is broken (80% of text searches fail). It is very difficult to match perception with words, and fashion is visual. There is a high abandon rate from customers of the shopping process due to the difficulties to find the products they want. By giving the possibility to the final customer to search by images, we are increasing customer engagement rates while we increase sales and conversion rates.In this way, AI technology gives brands the ultimate tools to give their customers instant and easy access to what they want.

These are the most evoking AI solutions for the fashion industry:

AI solutions for fashion industry

1. Pic to purchase (or make the items in those pictures shoppable)

Inspiration is everywhere –streets, magazines, social networks like Instagram, stores… – and thousands of customers catch them with their smartphones. Thus one of the major obsessions of fashion brands is the power of connecting these images automatically with their online catalogs. Thanks to AI solutions like the advanced algorithm of Wide Eyes Technologies based on deep learning and image recognition, it’s possible to make images shoppable; allowing the automatic access to every fashion article (clothes and accessories) that is show in the picture without human interaction. That can easily serve as the start of a shopping experience: see now, buy now.

But taking photos isn’t the only way to buy. there are other areas in the shopping experience where AI plays a significant role. In fact, the user experience in eCommerce hasn’t suffered significant changes in the last 15 years. And that means certain metrics, like the conversion rate, have stalled.

[The See now, Buy now retail model, a real revolution]

2. Find Similar

Personalization and time optimization is another principal objective of fashion retailers. An online shopper that usually knows what are looking for; have to face the task of finding the right search terms or move among many inventory pages to find the item. The attempts of improving the search experience by text through the usage of natural language have failed. Partly because there are as many descriptions as perceptions, besides purchases for most users, are mainly a visual experience. We want what we see. One more time artificial intelligence can be very helpful, especially to offer users a personalized discovery by showing visually similar products.

The customization of recommendations based on products visually similar, is very effective to provide content to areas like “you may also like” or solve the out-of-stock automatically offering users available products as alternatives. This AI solution is one of the most demanded strategies by eCommerces, which rely on technology innovation to improve the conversion rates and customer experience.

3. Style Advisor (or automatic outfit generation)

Lookbooks have proven being an excellent tool to enhance the cross-selling. These are popular among users as an inspiring source or style guide for a perfect combination. Hence along with the widget “you may be interested in” have win a space in “complete the look”.

Only the most innovation trademarks have taken a further step applying artificial intelligence for the automatization of look suggestions. On the basis of an item automatically suggest the relations of articles which complement the look in the best way. With this solution the area “complete your look” not only become automatized but also can be extended to every category and product in the catalog. And not exclusively to those used in campaigns or lookbooks, always suggesting items which are in stock.

Although, not all AI solutions are visible to customers’ eyes. For example, the Wide Eyes Technologies API is being used for some fashion brands as a tool to improve internal processes like:

  • Auto-tagging of fashion pictures: to extract automatically characteristics of items from an image.
  • Feed management: to automatic categorization of millions of images based on the picture and not on the tagged content, reducing and detecting errors.

Artificial Intelligence can adapt a website to specific requirements of customers and fashion brands, offering real and relevant advantages like the customization and optimization of catalog management. This is why AI is the new electricity.

Do you want to learn more about what artificial intelligence can do for your business? Learn more here

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