Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the leading cloud technologies being adopted by businesses – and for good reason. It’s a tool that has valuable applications in many sectors, taking raw data and using it to automate processes, personalise experiences and make real-time decisions and predictions. Here, we’ll look at six ways businesses are benefitting from AI.
1. Personalised shopping experiences
Offering personalised shopping can help attract and retain customers. So much so, that many of them are willing to provide data in order to receive shopping experiences which are more tailored to their preferences.
AI is a key tool for companies wishing to offer personalisation because it can quickly identify patterns in customer browsing and purchase behaviour. Able to analyse the activities of millions of customer behaviours and transactions every day, it can ensure that individual customers are given targeted offers that are highly relevant to their present searches.
More than this, by integrating AI with CRM, it helps to ensure that marketing leads are followed up by tailoring individualised sales communications through the most appropriate media and at the best times.
2. Real-time customer assistance
Interacting, in real-time, with large numbers of customers every day can be challenging. AI can be used to interact with them or send them communications so that they receive the information and updates they need. This form of assistance is frequently used by logistics companies that deliver to customers’ homes and by transport companies, such as bus companies and airlines, who send information about departure times or changes to schedules.
3. Enabling automation
One of the biggest benefits of AI is that it enables automated processes to be implemented. Perhaps the most futuristic aspect of this is its ability to control robots in factories; however, it also has uses in less hi-tech industries.
AI can help automate everything from the sending of emails and other communications to automating hotel booking, patient diagnosis and customer service. Indeed, many websites now use AI chatbots instead of real people to help customers with issues. It is estimated that by the end of the decade over 80% of customer interactions will be taken care of by AI, including telephone calls, live chat, e-mails and social media messaging.
Through automation, AI can streamline many business processes, reduce the amount of human involvement required and get rid of many of the mundane tasks that employees currently have to undertake.
4. Deep insights
Combining the technology of cloud with AI gives companies the potential to analyse huge quantities of data at very deep levels. One way it does this is through its ability to analyse unstructured data. On average, only 20 per cent of data held by companies is structured and without AI, this is the only data that can be analysed. AI enables much more of this valuable data to be leveraged for business intelligence.
AI’s ability to mine this data for previously unseen patterns means it has the potential to discover unimagined insights that can have significant benefits for business development. The other advantage is that it can do this swiftly, helping the company bring its idea to market quicker.
5. Making decisions
Going one step further, not only does AI help mine data for new patterns, it can also use the data to make predictions and informed and accurate decisions. For example, AI is frequently used for tracking system health, helping companies predict when machines are going to fail so that preventative measures can be put in place before disaster strikes. In finance, AI is used to predict rises and falls in stock and currency values and can create models which demonstrate the impact of fiscal decisions.
Even in marketing, AI can make decisions about the best customers to target and the most lucrative offers to give them. When you then add machine learning to the mix, where AI systems learn from their previous processes, the potential is enormous.
6. Anticipating customer behaviour
AI can be used to discover signals in customer behaviour and correlate these with other data for the benefit of the company. For example, it can use data to predict whether a customer has a positive or negative perception of the company or its products. When this is supplied to the company, it can take preventative measures to re-engage the customer and strengthen its relationship before the customer goes elsewhere.
As can clearly be seen, the use of AI can benefit businesses in many ways, providing intelligence, decision-making capabilities, automating processes and much more. In doing so, it makes companies more competitive, reduces costs and streamlines workflow while helping them communicate more effectively with their customers.
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