Retail to Lead Global AI Spending in 2019
Retail is expected to come out on top in the way of global artificial intelligence (AI) spending this year with a $5.9 billion investment in customer service agents, shopping advisers, and product recommendation platforms. In total, the AI market will reach a whopping $35.8 billion in 2019, marking a 44 percent increase over 2018 according to the latest forecast from International Data Corporation (IDC).
Consumers expect top-quality customer service, including assistance from automated agents like chatbots and business messengers. In fact, automated customer service will receive the largest investment this year at $4.5 billion followed by sales process recommendation/automation and automated threat intelligence/prevention both coming in at $2.7 billion each.
Marketers see AI as a way to boost campaign effectiveness, targeting, and revenue by offering more detailed analyses that, in turn, help them better identify prospective customers.
Several case studies have proven the effectiveness of AI in supporting business goals. One particular example came from men’s apparel brand DXL who used AI-powered interactive content from InHabit for a campaign that produced an engagement rate of 6.5 percent and a dwell time of 21.6 seconds. Six percent of users who engaged with an InHabit unit clicked through to the DXL website, and more than 90 percent of those engagements were among DXL’s target audience of men in the U.S. aged 18 to 50.
Despite seeing the benefits of AI, it seems to be on the backburner for 91 percent of marketers who admit that they don’t have a hyper-personalized strategy just yet (according to a recent study by Ascend2). Most are only throwing around ideas about hyper-personalization without setting anything in motion. For those concerned with realizing hyper-personalization though, improving customer experience and applying data insights to decision-making were at the top of their list.