Today’s connected universe has seen its fair share of innovative technologies to help make consumers’ lives easier. From on-demand car rides with Uber to controlling the air conditioning and heating system in a home via Nest or streaming any movie or TV show from the web, consumers have a myriad of services at their fingertips.
Behind the scenes, however, businesses have been slow on the uptake to adopt and integrate new technologies into their businesses. With all the new pieces of technology coming in and out of the development sphere over the past few years, it can be hard to decipher which are worthy of a money-and-time investment.
From mobile-first strategies to revamping companies’ overall digital side of their practice to have more of an eCommerce focus, retailers have been steadily observing consumers’ shopping patterns for years to determine which is the best route to dive into. Technology has certainly had a major impact in the way in which retailers approach practically every facet of business.
As we’ve seen chatbots become an integral part of the eCommerce arena, it’s safe to say organizations from various backgrounds have taken note and are starting to figure out the best approach for integration. Recently, we reported on Domino’s Pizza and ABT Financial partnering up with Facebook’s Messenger chatbot to enhance its customer service offerings.
The latest company to join the chatbot game from a retail standpoint is Samsung. At Mobile World Congress (MWC), the device manufacturer unveiled its new offering for the retail industry, which sees its employees as the latest beneficiary to artificial intelligence via chatbots. The smart device manufacturer released its AI retail chatbot, Nexshop Training, which, as the name would suggest, aims to help retailers train their staff.
Using cloud-based technology, this new retail training system acts as a virtual assistant and is meant to share corporate data and advice via text or voice to participating retailers’ employees. It enables those retail staffers to find out about the most up-to-date company information regarding new products and promotions at any given time. Acting in a similar manner to Alexa or Siri, employees will be able to ask various questions like, “What are the new features for the upcoming tablet PC?” or “What promotions will be available next week?”
In addition to helping train retail employees, Nexshop was released with two additional offerings via a marketing system and a sales assistance system. This is all part of how Samsung is seeking to truly optimize the in-store retail experience. While consumers are increasingly shopping more online, the Nexshop system’s extra offerings allow each retail location to gather information through observing customers. In a sense, this could be the product offering that helps brick-and-mortar retail locations stay afloat.
What does this mean for the retail industry?
After this type of AI chatbot is implemented, this means those participating will have the ability to better serve not only the consumer but also employees. In the past, there have been situations where the company’s newest promotions or latest products either have yet to be shared with employees or are only partially available. This causes a domino effect in which employees lack the best knowledge about their company, which then often leads to an unhappy consumer.
Employees will now be able to definitively say, “Yes, I know the answer to that. Here, let me get that for you” or “No, I don’t believe we have that information yet, but it looks as though we should know more by this date.” This new Samsung offering will also enable employees to work more independently and efficiently by providing a certain level of autonomy. The bonus benefit to this is also that employees who start at different dates will be able to train themselves at their own pace and the retailer can get them out on the floor faster.
If this type of retail training system is put in place using chatbots, retailers will have the ability to provide a more consistent line of training across locations. With chatbots slowly integrating their way into our everyday lives, we’re likely to see more companies integrate them into their own digital systems, partner up with larger organizations or find a new way to optimize this AI technology.