As time-pinched Millennials and Generation Z grow spending power, the need for efficient shopping platforms continues to rise. According to research conducted by SAP Hybris, 64 percent of consumers trust in-home assistants to purchase electronics due to the convenience the devices offer.
“As retailers look to meet shoppers’ expectations for convenience and personalization, artificial intelligence is playing a crucial role in the customer journey,” said Johann Wrede, global vice president of strategic marketing for SAP Hybris solutions at SAP. “Chatbots and voice-enabled assistants deliver a convenient, hands-free experience, removing even more barriers to customer engagement. These technologies will not be successful on their own, however — they will need a rich set of customer data in order to make relevant recommendations and be truly helpful.”
To collect the findings SAP surveyed 1,000 U.S. consumers in order to comprehend the usage patterns of artificial intelligence-powered smart devices, specifically for holiday shopping. The findings are relevant for more than holiday spending habits. The survey findings signal a large shift by consumers to rely on AI — from chatbots to voice-activated assistants — to complete shopping tasks. This inherently requires that individuals trust the technology.
This is anticipated to flourish in the next couple of years. In SAP’s report detailing the research, it cited Juno research’s forecast that by 2020, 55 percent of U.S. homes are predicted have an in-home assistant installed.
Convenience is king. “The top reason for using an in-home assistant to purchase gifts is convenience, with more than 18 percent of respondents citing this as a key benefit,” a SAP spokesman said.
And though efficiency is heralding as a necessary feature, bolstering the relevance of the tools, there’s still plenty of room for growth. This is perhaps most true in the accuracy of product recommendations. According to the research, only 28 percent of survey participants said they felt the device understood them well enough to recommend gift ideas.
There is perhaps, room for virtual reality and augmented reality to integrate with the tools. According to the research, 20 percent of consumers couldn’t determine the visual quality of a product when using an in-home assistant, but want to be confident in their purchases and know what they look and feel like. By intermingling VR, AR and in-home assistants, consumers will be able to engage with an encompassing shopping journey.
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