Tech Trends Redefining eCommerce: The Rise Of AI And Automation

Whether your customers prefer making purchases in person or online, you can deliver value to them in every interaction with your brand through tech in customer support, digital communication, and intelligent automation. From digital transformation and software-as-a-service to virtual reality and artificial intelligence, technology keeps pushing the limits of eCommerce. Let us understand this from the perspective of the eCommerce industry.

eCommerce: The digital marketplace

Buying and selling goods online is eCommerce. It offers buyers a hassle-free shopping experience, which is essential in today’s competitive marketplace. eCommerce allows brands to perform and deliver even when physical stores are closed, helping them earn more revenue and grow successfully. 

Companies doing business in the online space adopt various business models, and the most popular models are:

  • B2C stands for Business to Consumer. For example, buying a mobile phone from an online retailer is a B2C transaction. 
  • B2B stands for Business–to–Business. It refers to Sales between businesses, such as a manufacturer, wholesaler, or retailer.  
  • D2C stands for Direct-to-Consumer. It refers to manufacturers selling products directly to the consumer. In this case, the producer or manufacturer sells their product directly to the end customer instead of going through a retailer, distributor, or wholesaler—for example, subscription to SaaS products, periodicals, magazines,  OTT platforms, etc.

Understanding the eCommerce business model

Irrespective of the model, most eCommerce firms have a similar functioning pattern. Setting up a successful eCommerce business begins with selecting the right platform to host the business. The eCommerce platform must seamlessly manage extensive product collections, high visitor traffic, and complex functionalities while being cloud-based for scalability and integration.

The platform must deliver an intuitive user experience to improve the customer journey, simplifying product searches, item additions or replacements, and restocked item alerts. Customers should also be provided with secure payment options, including credit cards, digital wallets, and cash on delivery, as this builds customer trust in the eCommerce brand and allows them to shop as they like. 

Moreover, outstanding customer experiences thrive on dedicated support across numerous communication channels facilitated by omnichannel tools that integrate interactions for effortless communication. This includes social media channels as well. Creating a robust customer support network on social media is necessary, especially after social media evolved into a dynamic arena where consumers and businesses engage in conversations vital for resolving issues, building trust, and creating unforgettable brand experiences. 

To find out how to better cater to your customers’ evolving expectations and leverage hyperautomation for personalization, visit this informative and engaging blog: Hyperautomation: The New Way To Streamline And Automate Customer Service Workflows.

Role of AI and automation in eCommerce

Many customer service tasks are repetitive and time-consuming. These include answering frequently asked questions (FAQs), resetting passwords, processing refunds, etc. Automating these tasks can free your agents to focus more on complex issues requiring expertise, leading to faster resolution times and happier customers. From enhanced productivity in day-to-day operations to optimizing customer interactions, automation is a strategic ally for eCommerce businesses, streamlining business processes and improving efficiency.

AI and automation technology make your eCommerce business more manageable and intuitive and help maintain the highest level of accuracy in all transactions and customer interactions. Artificial Intelligence can support three primary business needs: 

  • Engaging with customers automatically.
  • Automating business processes.
  • Gaining insight through data analysis.

Acing customer satisfaction surveys and truly delighting clients requires business owners to visualize the customer journey, evaluate their needs, anticipate challenges, and have a clear picture of how they can ensure customer success. This eBook, Deliver Human-Centered CX in a Tech-Powered World, reveals the secrets to delivering truly world-class CX. Download now!

AI-powered service desk software gives the eCommerce industry the tools and resources to improve processes like service and support deliveries, facilitate customer support across multiple communication channels, process orders without errors, pay attention to the customer’s voice (VOC), and improve overall organizational efficiency. 

Let’s look at some of them.

Customer Case Management:  Customer case management, also known as support ticket management, describes the entirety of your eCommerce brand’s customer service process. Ticket management is a meticulous process designed to handle customer service requests from start to finish efficiently. For example, a customer may want to inquire about a delayed refund. Perfect case management will ensure quick and accurate response by support agents informing the customer of the reason for the delay and ensuring the refund is credited as soon as possible.  

The case management process includes registering customer requests, categorizing cases, prioritizing issues, assigning requests to support agents, tracking progress, following up with customers, and ensuring every case reaches a satisfying resolution. 

Software Integration:  Commerce businesses have many components, each different from the other, and rely on various software tools to function. From CRM systems to inventory management, ERP, and billing systems, software integration connects various tools to allow your business applications to “talk” to one another, share data, and manage various operational processes.

eCommerce brands' customer support helplines are always buzzing with customer queries regarding issues like item non-delivery, late deliveries, returns, and refunds. Integration democratizes data in eCommerce enterprises, giving easy access to information and empowering brand representatives to gain a holistic view of client data across all company systems. This improves their situational awareness of customers and their issues, which means support teams always have the right answers to customer queries.  

AI-powered Intelligent suggestions: Intelligent suggestions are AI recommendations that help support agents solve customer problems swiftly. The AI within the helpdesk software observes your support agents to understand how cases are resolved in your customer service department. Intelligent suggestions anticipate customer needs, provide real-time guidance to agents, and automate routine tasks, transforming your support center. 

Self-Service: Self-service tools are popular among customers looking for ways to solve problems or gain more information about something. Most eCommerce establishments have conversation bots and digital customer assistants, which guide customers online through the purchasing process and stay with them until checkout. These AI-powered tools help minimize cart abandonment, resulting in increased revenue for the brand. 

When customers are offered self-service systems, customer support representatives are not burdened with answering simple queries and solving minor issues, and they can concentrate on more complicated tasks or responsibilities. 

Conversational AI: Conversational AI is artificial intelligence (AI) that can simulate human conversation and ensures the chatbot interacts with users in a human-like manner. It gives users a refreshing support experience and improves CX by leveraging AI, machine learning (ML), and natural language processing (NLP). 

Conversational AI can be your eCommerce enterprise’s intelligent companion, elevating the quality of service and support interactions and transforming customer service into more than mere transactional interactions. 

Automatic translations: eCommerce firms have a global footprint in managing their business operations. For example, an eCommerce firm may be based in the UAE but have its customer support center in Southeast Asia, in the Philippines. Due to the intercontinental nature of the business, people from various geographical locations and ethnicities are involved in seamless interactions. 

AI translation, also known as machine translation, uses AI algorithms to translate text from one language into another automatically. The translation function uses machine learning (ML) algorithms to analyze large amounts of text data in multiple languages and learn the relationships between words and phrases to provide accurate, fluent translations and improve communication between speakers of different languages. 

Advanced Analytics: Analytics and reports provide necessary insights into customer behavior, enabling eCommerce enterprises to anticipate and fulfill customer requirements effectively. By analyzing data, performance metrics, customer satisfaction scores, etc., eCommerce firms can identify areas for improvement in their customer service processes and make informed decisions.

These technologies help eCommerce enterprises focus on providing clients with a wholesome experience. Here are the top 9 benefits of using AI and  automation in your eCommerce business:

  • 24/7 support & customer service
  • Efficient inventory management
  • Better security through fraud detection and prevention
  • Automated customer segmentation
  • Data-driven decision making
  • Personalized product recommendations
  • Increased automation of internal business processes
  • Improved customer and agent experiences
  • Better revenue growth

A brand's customer service quality is a key differentiator in today's competitive market. As consumers become more discerning, how will you ensure their helpline and support experiences transform from frustration to fantastic? Analyzing customer sentiments can help. You can see the full picture and the magic of customer sentiment analysis in this informative article: The Importance Of Customer Sentiment Analysis

Revolutionize your eCommerce business with AI-powered solutions

AI-powered software is an indispensable asset for modern eCommerce businesses committed to enhancing customer experiences and building lasting relationships. It allows you to manage your customer support functions without hassle. ThinkOwl’s software suite, comprising OwlDesk and OwlForce, has innovative tools and advanced functionalities that benefit users. On the one hand, customers are guaranteed accurate resolutions to their issues and memorable brand experiences. On the other hand, AI, automation, and cost certainty ensure peace of mind.

ThinkOwl helps you outpace your competition in customer responsiveness, secure more business, and impress customers with fantastic experiences. Whether it is eCommerce or any other industry, if you wish to foster a customer-centric culture and deliver the best service and support, try ThinkOwl’s AI-powered solutions, OwlDesk and OwlForce. Sign up now for a 30-day free trial.

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