The key internal capabilities needed to ensure a successful digital shopping experience are personalization, automation and the unique identification of the customer across shopping channels. In this report, we discuss how AI and IoT are impacting the retail industry. Retailers that aim to remain competitive cannot afford to ignore the potential benefits of these technologies. AI, a technology that enables computers to make autonomous decisions, is a step forward in automation that is changing the retail industry. Retailers are using AI to analyze customer data, adapt how they interact with shoppers and predict demand in order to better manage inventory. Because consumers are bombarded with an unprecedented amount of information, being able to deliver highly personalized content for each individual customer is crucial to staying ahead of the competition. Meanwhile, the use of AI to anticipate demand and estimate when items will be returned should translate into more efficient business operations. Digitalization is the key that will unlock the future of brick-and-mortar retail, and the IoT is a crucial part of it.
With a record 7,000 store closings and 662 bankruptcy filings last year, and 3,800 closings (and counting) so far in 2018, the fate of retail continues to look uncertain. Take a look at Amazon to see how ecommerce has changed the retail landscape as we know it, leaving no industry undisrupted. With just a click of a mouse, customers can purchase whatever they want, whenever they want it -- and have it shipped directly to their door. Related: Here Are 6 Weird Ways You're Being Tracked in the Real World While ecommerce offers unprecedented convenience, this is not the end of the road for brick-and-mortar. Customers still value in-store experiences.
When you go to Fashion Week, the talk is all about what's trending in colors, cuts, hemlines and finishes. When you go to retail seminars, it's about data and how artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and even augmented reality (AR) are moving the needle in transforming the customer experience and the future of the commerce.
Digital transformation is affecting all aspects of our lives, but the retail sector is experiencing particularly severe turbulence at the moment. On both sides of the Atlantic, there are regular news stories about store closures and job losses on the high street, and the underlying dynamic isn't hard to identify: an accelerating shift away from in-store shopping towards e-commerce, particularly via mobile devices (a.k.a. This ebook, based on the latest ZDNet/TechRepublic special feature, looks at the rise of e-commerce and the digital transformation of retail companies. This trend doesn't necessarily mean that the high street is heading the way of the dinosaurs. However, the selection pressure on retail businesses is changing, and those that fail to adapt certainly face decline and even extinction.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is noticeably making a difference in how we live and work. Search engines predict words and translate text, social media connects people, smart appliances respond to ambient conditions, and public transportation is becoming autonomous. Similarly, the retail industry is set to unleash fascinating possibilities by embracing AI.