There’s no doubt about it that our future is one that involves artificial intelligence (AI) in a big way. While some companies are faster than others at adapting to the likes of AI technology, most will get there eventually as they begin to realize they form image can not continue to operate without it. One area that’s becoming more and more apparent is in regards to the online shopping industry.
Deep learning is an advancement of AI that’s come about in the past few years and focuses on creating software that can learn and replicate many tasks that a human can. These deep learning algorithms have been used in the autonomous driving industry for quite some time, and only now is it beginning to branch out into other industries, such as online shopping. One company that offers machine learning solutions for e-commerce businesses and others is Adobe Marketing Cloud as they recognize the need to make use of AI as early as possible.
Another service that’s making the headlines is Pinterest Lens, which is similar to Shazam, but instead of recognizing music, it will identify objects in the everyday world. For example, if you were to point your camera at some furniture or clothing it will help you find that same piece online. The program uses image detection to first identify the object and then conducts a visual search based on images found online. Andrew Zhai is an engineer working on the visual search side of things at Pinterest, and he said, “For shopping specifically, improvements to online discovery means new ways to find products you’re interested in but may not have the words for. The visual discovery gives people a new way to discover new brands and ways of styling that they never knew existed.”
Etsy is also keen to jump onboard with deep learning technology, and just last fall purchased Blackbird Technologies to integrate the firm image recognition and natural language processing into its search function. As is Amazon with the introduction of their new chain of Amazon Go grocery stores. Meanwhile, Adobe is keeping one step ahead of the game by developing a tool that can turn a rough sketch of an item into a beautiful picture.
Some of Adobe’s marketing tools also use deep learning techniques and are used to predict their customer’s shopping behaviors and patterns. In doing this, shoppers get helpful hints like suggesting a belt that goes with the jeans you placed in your online shopping basket or getting a subtle nudge to make that big purchase that you unsure about. This makes it a much more personalized shopping experience. We will begin to see a lot more of deep learning integrated with e-commerce sites, as there is a lot of focus in this area over in Silicon Valley at the moment. But there is still a lot of work to be done before all accept it, so for now, you will just have to get used to seeing the changes trickle in.
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