In recent months SEO professionals have been trying to understand the impacts of the mass arrival of AI tools, such as many AI-writer assistants (e.g.Lex and ChatGPT), and how their lives will be impacted by this. They need to rethink strategies, considering all these AI tools’ advantages but making sure to maintain humanized experiences.
And if that wasn’t enough to worry, well… that’s more to come: Google Cloud has just launched new features also based on AI and machine learning as enablers of retail websites.
This bundle of features is called “Discovery AI for retail”, and is intended to enable e-commerce sites to offer a more personalized experience in search results and Google recommendations inside their properties. These solutions have the primary purposes of reducing search abandonment, improving the shopping experience, and increasing conversion.
Note that I mentioned “inside its properties” above. That’s right! I’m not referring to the SERP results, but literally to the browsing experience that may be offered within the e-commerce sites themselves.
How’s that going to work? Well, allow me to explain everything you need to know.
Improved shopping experience
Google Cloud, which announced the launch of these features on January 13, highlights that this set of solutions provides a significant improvement in the shopping experience using features such as:
- Image attributes that will help find products
- Understanding user behavior through previous browsing experiences.
A highly likely potential scenario is that consumers may find more personalized product lists that are closely identified with their real expectations rather than what we usually see nowadays: lists of products classified in ways that are much more focused on business needs, with highlights such as “best sellers” or collections of products according to seasonality, season changes, etc., which does not always represent what the user wants to buy.
Product recommendations will also have a more dynamic presentation, which can be much more efficient and, consequently, increase the chances of sales. See Macy’s case, which already uses the solution, offering more individualized experiences for its customers in the online store.
In addition, I also believe we can expect better results for “long tail” searches because AI can better understand them. Until then when we used to look for a specific product, these sites generated poor returns.
AI-based inventory control
Another huge feature that Google Cloud includes in their AI offerings, is “shelf check”.
Last Friday, Google CEO Sundar Pichai posted on his Twitter account that one of these new AI features would also “use machine learning models to identify billions of products based on visual and text features, helping retailers check their in-store shelf stock”.
On the same day, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Google Cloud said that this feature should be available in the coming months. Reinforcing Pichai’s post, they also claim that the algorithm will be able to detect and verify the availability of packaged products still on the shelves through the images captured by the cameras installed in the physical storage locations.
This would solve a current problem for retailers who currently need to do this control manually with little security in availability updates, which are not always carried out in real-time.
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