The Future of E-commerce: Embracing the Intelligent Edge

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According to Moore’s Law, technology is expected to advance at an increasingly frenetic pace alongside the processing power of computers. Not only will this translate into virtual games and mobile phone apps, but the entire e-commerce industry is now entering into what some have referred to as a “golden age”. What drastic changes may occur and what types of progress are likely to take place within the next few years? Let’s take a quick look at what industry professionals have to say.

 

The Increasing Role of Artificial Intelligence 

The concept of AI was fictional only a decade in the past. We are rapidly seeing this technology enter into our daily lives. Smart home security systems and automated chat bots are two well-known examples. However, artificial intelligence is set to make just as much of an impression within e-commerce platforms.

One of the major issues which has always defined this industry is the ability to offer user-friendly solutions that are insightful and up to date. Some have referred to this approach as a self-catering style. In other words, platforms are much more responsive to human requests. These can include issues such as:

  • Providing in-depth answers to common problems.
  • Automatically sorting queries based off of phrases and keywords.
  • Using algorithms to predict trends in sales and customer satisfaction.

If you feel that these possibilities are decades away, you might be shocked to learn that many software bundles already employ similar systems. The main question is when they will become fully integrated into day-to-day POS operations.

The Not-So-Distant Reality

All conjecture aside, what can we expect to become a reality within the world of e-commerce over the next 12 months? One of the most profound trends is the inclusion of social media sales campaigns in synergy with traditional levels of client engagement. Websites such as Facebook are becoming increasingly powerful tools to promote products and services, so it only stands to reason that they will represent a central sales hub in the near future.

Another major development can be seen in a more personalised sense of client engagement. Customers are becoming much more particular in regards to communications. No longer are generic emails and the rather bland “to whom it may concern” sufficient. Instead, companies will employ client-centred e-commerce solutions. Not only might this include providing them with relevant offers based off of their past interests, but solving any problems during the sales process will espouse a much more “human” appeal.

Trusted software providers such as Shopify have already realised these trends and they are now making use of highly flexible e-commerce packages. This will benefit the end user as well as any customers involved with the sales process. As these systems have been designed around the core concept of flexibility, you can rest assured that a solution is always available. The e-commerce sector is taking on a life of its own and it will be interesting to witness what else the future might have in store.

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