AI Top Priority For More Than Half Of Retailers

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Over half of Australian retailers believe AI is a top priority for their business in the next 12 months, with 68 per cent already experimenting with AI in some capacity.

The study, conducted by Sapio Research and commissioned by online shopping platform Shopify, found that 74 per cent of Australian retailers are planning a big BFCM in 2023, anticipating a rise in consumer spending as shoppers seek to take advantage of deals and discounts for their holiday shopping. With businesses earning a quarter of their annual sales, on average, during the holiday season, retailers are turning to technology to help them optimise business performance during this period, with 72 per cent of retailers investing in some form of technology to drive sales.

Attracting new customers and retaining customers ranked equal first (39 per cent) among Australian retailers as the top benefit of adopting new technology in their business, followed closely by improving operational efficiencies (37 per cent). Close a one-third of businesses think technology will help businesses most with smart decision making, tying with the US as the largest proportion of businesses per country that believe this.

When it comes to implementing AI specifically, 42 per cent of Australian retailers said they are using AI to improve customer engagement and build brand loyalty, while 37 per cent cited that AI helps them improve personalised and targeted marketing.

“Our research found that the consumers that plan to spend the most during this sales period are more likely to regularly make use of technology as part of their shopping journey. And with two-thirds of consumers planning to take advantage of BFCM in 2023, there is a huge opportunity for local retailers to meet consumer demand and capture wallet-share with technology-driven experiences,” said Shaun Broughton, APAC managing director at Shopify.

These insights align with the attitudes of Australian customers, with the study finding close to a quarter of consumers are more likely to buy from brands with technology-enabled shopping experiences and 24 per cent expect brands to embed technology into the shopping experience. Some 23 per cent are more likely to spend money with brands that offer tech-enabled shopping experiences.

“We don’t go on sale very often and our goal for our BFCM sale is to provide the best experience for our community and inspire them to be 1% better every day,” said Jason Daniel, CEO of LSKD.

“At LSKD, we’re trialling cutting-edge technologies, including VR/AR and virtual assistants, to understand the value they can provide our community. Additionally, we’re venturing into AI-powered productivity tools to further empower our internal teams, always with an eye towards strengthening our authentic relationship with each customer.”

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