Asia Pacific

Omnichannel retail in 2022: AI and hyper-personalisation will become table stakes (The Business Times)

With the acceleration of digitalisation over the last 2 years, our entire world is now connected by uninterrupted, hyper-personalised experiences. For most, the digital tapestry of our lives is taken for granted: hopping onto public transport while scrolling through the latest music streaming service for commuter tunes, checking out the latest lunch deals on food delivery apps, and winding-down in the evening while browsing binge-worthy favourites on video streaming platforms.

Our lives are peppered with frictionless, customised moments and experiences. This has led to changing expectations and communication processes between customers and retailers. It has also jump-started the fast-growing demand for personalised engagement. In a way, as retail continues with cautious recovery into 2022, the state of digitalisation today necessitates a leapfrog of technology adoption for many.

Here are 3 main to-dos that can help retailers better navigate these new expectations.

Digitalise user engagement

The global transformational shift is not limited to business operations or consumer demands. In fact, everything is now connected – from the platforms used, to the brand experience, and how data is analysed. Customers currently use whatever platform is convenient for them. That means it is up to retail leaders to establish how the business can integrate that non-linear footprint into a seamless, omnichannel experience. The primary outcome must be to enable customer data and records to be mapped across all communication channels. Otherwise, retailers not only lose out on harnessing potentially powerful data, but also risk revenue loss and reduction of customer lifetime value.

Personalised empathy

Previously, retailers could perhaps get by with decision-making based on corporate bias and instinct. Today, knowledge about what customers want, how they choose to interact, and what pain points they experience are essential in this era of economic uncertainty, heightened emotions, and unpredictable inquiry volumes. Customer-facing communications must now be relevant and constantly in tune with their needs while incorporating context and suitability.

By integrating empathy into their marketing efforts, retailers can connect better with their customers across different platforms, on a large scale and in a fully automated and data-driven manner.

With artificial intelligence (AI) and automation, businesses can make better informed decisions based on data collection, analysis, and other factors like audience or economic trends that impact marketing efforts. Insights harnessed from AI, automation and data will help businesses meet customer preferences – directly addressing the growing need for a more personalised experience.

To read the rest of the article, please use this link: https://www.businesstimes.com.sg/opinion/omnichannel-retail-in-2022-ai-and-hyper-personalisation-will-become-table-stakes

The Business Times

15 December 2021