Pros and Cons of AI for your eCommerce Business
Previously we wrote an article about the areas in which an online store can use AI, and how it could improve some crucial processes within a business. But are there just benefits to this technology? Or are there some negative aspects to Artificial Intelligence?
Well, keep on reading and let’s explore the main pros and cons in using AI in your business.
Pros of AI for ecommerce
So let’s start with the positive stuff first.
One of the major benefits of AI is that it improves the efficiency of an online store.
Firstly, as it happens with other softwares, since certain tasks are completed by a computer and not a human, the chance of errors reduces, which saves time by not having to redo certain processes.
Secondly, since AI is constantly learning, this technology learns from previous circumstances, so it becomes better at assessing situations and faster in solving them. And in some cases it even learns to avoid the situation altogether, which saves times in the future.
One of the main advantages about technology is that it doesn’t need to take breaks and rest. It can work indefinitely, at any day, any time. And that is particularly handy when it comes to customer support.
If a potential client has a question about a certain product or functionality, they won’t need to wait until the next business day. If you choose to have an AI chatbot, they can just pose the question directly on this chat and have it answered in a few minutes.
Finally, one of the main benefits of AI in an online store is the personalization.
According to an Econsultancy study, personalization of content can increase an online store’s conversion, and about 30% of consumers wish that their shopping experience could be more personalized to their taste – and with AI, it can!
There are several processes in an online store that can be customized to the preferences of a consumer, such as the recommendation of products within the website, email marketing campaigns and even pricing strategies.
Cons of AI for eCommerce
And now the not-so-nice stuff.
One of the main reasons why AI is frowned up in the business world is due to the price tag that it frequently comes with it. And this price tag differs depending on several factors.
For example, generally, when an eCommerce that has just started is planning on incorporating AI into its processes, it usually goes to a specialist on the subject. So, the price of this technology will depend on the manufacturer of it.
Another very important factor related to pricing is the technology itself.
If the technology is ready to go, with minimal adaptations to be made, it will have a certain price tag. However, if you ask a company to create a more sophisticated technology to solve a complex issue, it will certainly be more expensive than an off-the-shelf solution.
For example, if you wish to implement an AI chatbot, a solution that many companies already offer, the cost of that will be significantly lower than a security system built around your needs.
So, even if you wish to implement a simpler AI solution for your store, you’re still required to make a substantial initial investment – not to mention the cost of maintaining and repairing the software. This can be a big deterrent from adopting the technology, at least in the first stages of your business.
Lack of Scope
And finally, one other major flaw that we see with AI solutions is the lack of scope, and this can be in several aspects of an online store.
For example, this can be translated into the difficulty in coming up with empathic solutions for customer support problems.
Of course this will depend on the sophistication of the software in use, but often Artificial Intelligence is built in a way that only considers ‘logical’ aspects behind a problem and fails to grasp the more emotional parts of it – parts that sometimes are even more important for a customer.
Another way in which Artificial Intelligence is still lagging is in the creative aspect.
When it comes to an Email Marketing campaign, to give another example, AI can bring a lot of valuable insights on the customer’s preferences, and help a marketer target the eCommerce’s communication better. But it can’t create a campaign on its own. Artificial Intelligence doesn’t have the creativity to build something from scratch on that level. You will still need an actual person to create all the marketing campaigns and your brands’ voice, and much more.
Conclusion: Do the Pros outweigh the Cons of AI?
It depends on your business and on its needs.
There are several benefits that AI can bring to an eCommerce that would be incredibly useful for a business’ overall sales, like the personalization aspect. But usually, as with almost everything in life, there is a catch.
And if you’re just starting to build a business, the AI catches might not trump the pros. But, if you have a stablished store with enough resources to invest in AI in a way that it will take your business to the next level, then it’s easy to see how the pros can take the lead here.