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Thursday, July 28, 2022

Increasing Retail Sales via Product Discovery

 Seems obvious, what are the most useful details?   Google has been on this for some time. 

Increasing Sales via AI Product Discovery

July 28, 2022, Supply ChainBrain

Roland Goassage, SCB Contributor

The pandemic has had long-lasting effects on the supply chain. Product demand is up, e-commerce shopping has increased, and more consumers are returning items purchased online. To cope with these trends, many retailers are over-ordering and accelerating their order and re-order lead times. 

In 2021, PBS found that a pair of shoes took 80 days to get from Asia to retailers in North America — double the time it took pre-pandemic. Around the same time, a Utah-based retailer reporte inventory levels of just 55% compared to normal, all due to freight delays.

One key to helping retailers mitigate supply chain issues today is a product-discovery platform driven by artificial intelligence. Through the use of features made possible by AI and machine learning, retailers can maintain a high-quality user experience by delivering quick, personalized and relevant search and recommendations results. In the process, customers can still purchase products that meet their needs and are in stock.

In Deloitte’s 2022 Retail Industry Outlook, 80% of executives surveyed said consumers will prioritize stock availability over brand loyalty, driving home the role that product discovery can play in reaching sales goals. If the exact product isn’t available, appropriate items must be provided as alternatives to maintain the sale.

The search bar is where the customer journey begins. Whether they complete the purchase online, or use an e-commerce site to research a product before purchasing in-store, nearly half (40%) of consumers start their search online.

A search experience that isn’t up to a customer’s expectations is the quickest and easiest way to lose a sale. A recent report from Google found that approximately $300 billion in sales are lost in the U.S. each year as a result of bad online search experiences.

The impact on the relationship with the customer can extend well beyond one bad visit. The Google report found that 85% of online shoppers view a brand differently after experiencing difficulties with product search.

The revenue lost from poor search experiences, and the potential revenue available from good ones, makes investing in a product discovery application a priority for retailers. The right search technology can help retailers provide up-to-date search results to consumers looking to purchase a product online or research their in-store purchasing options.

Also in the Google report, 90% of consumers said that an easy-to-use search function is essential when shopping on a retail site. AI-powered product discovery platforms can understand customer intent, making search and recommendation results that are hyper-personalized to each individual shopper. ..... ' 

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