Customer Experience eCommerce Best Practices Retail Innovation Blog Sink or Swim Predictions for 2024 Retail Tech Learn about six game changing pieces of retail tech that eCommerce brands should be using in 2024. Sirena Rubinoff December 21, 2023 6 Min Read Table of Contents ToggleMarketing Metamorphosis: The Power of Generative AISupercharge Sales: The Retail Media Network AdvantageLoyalty Amplified: Spark Emotion With Immersive Retail Smart Support: The Wizardry of AI-Powered Chatbots AI Tagging Unleashed: The Transformation of Online Merchandising & Forecasting Cash In, Trade Up: Resale Markets as Revenue BoostersBalancing Automation and the Human Touch The rapid pace of technological advancements and shifting customer expectations are reshaping the retail landscape before our very eyes. Staying ahead of the curve with retail technology in 2024 will be essential for eCommerce brands and retailers that want to thrive in the hyper-competitive online market. Organizations that can swiftly adapt and optimize their presence across new channels and markets will be propelled to new heights while those lagging behind will struggle to stay afloat. So, what are the key technologies your brand should be looking at? In this post, we’ll delve into six predictions on the most practical and game-changing technologies that retailers should invest in during the new year. Let’s jump in! Marketing Metamorphosis: The Power of Generative AI Among all the technologies we’ll discuss in this post, generative AI possesses the greatest potential to revolutionize the retail industry. By leveraging advanced algorithms, brands can use generative AI to automate the creation of compelling marketing content, such as product titles and descriptions, blogs, reports, and email campaigns, to name just a few. Each piece of content can be tailored to match your website’s tone, include primary keywords, and meet character limits. In addition, GenAI can create or optimize website images, summarize product reviews, write code, and respond to customer inquiries. This advanced new technology will enable retailers to efficiently generate diverse and high-quality content at scale, ensuring consistency across various channels and platforms. This will not only save time and resources but also foster a more engaging and tailored shopping experience for customers, ultimately contributing to increased brand loyalty and improved conversion rates. Supercharge Sales: The Retail Media Network Advantage The proliferation of retail media networks (RMN) is on the rise and forward-thinking brands will take advantage of them in the coming year. In simple terms, a retail media network is a platform or system that retailers can use to sell ad space within their stores, websites, apps, or other channels. RMNs leverage technologies like data analytics and machine learning algorithms to tailor advertisements to specific audiences and to optimize campaigns for better results. They also use mobile and location technologies to send targeted ads to customers when they are in or near a store, providing them with highly personalized and relevant product recommendations that align with their preferences and needs. When applied correctly, retail media networks can enhance the overall shopping experience, increase the likelihood of conversion, and diversify brands’ revenue streams. They also generate valuable data on customer behavior, allowing retailers and advertisers to gain insights into shopping patterns, preferences, and trends. Loyalty Amplified: Spark Emotion With Immersive Retail Immersive retail refers to a retail experience that goes beyond the traditional brick-and-mortar or online shopping models that no longer excite today’s consumers. More than just a transaction, the goal of immersive retail is to create an interactive, memorable, and enjoyable shopping experience. For example, brands can leverage cutting-edge technologies like virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR), and other sensory elements to craft highly engaging and personalized shopping environments. These innovative experiences boost shoppers’ confidence to purchase, reduce the number of future returns, and, ultimately, drive customer loyalty and satisfaction by fostering a stronger connection between consumers and the brands they love. As we move into 2024, the possibilities for immersive retail campaigns are likely to expand, offering brands and retailers even more exciting ways to connect with their customers and create transformative experiences. Smart Support: The Wizardry of AI-Powered Chatbots AI-powered chatbots are transforming customer support in the retail industry by delivering immediate and 24/7 assistance – and it’s only going to get better in 2024. Fueled by major advances in natural language processing, these chatbots exhibit a remarkable ability to comprehend and address customer inquiries accurately and swiftly. Retailers can seamlessly deploy AI-driven chatbots across various platforms, including websites, mobile apps, and social media, ensuring a consistent and streamlined support experience across multiple channels. By leveraging machine learning algorithms, these chatbots continuously learn from customer interactions and refine their responses over time to adapt to evolving customer preferences and needs. By automating routine tasks such as order tracking and product recommendations, AI-powered chatbots empower human agents to focus on more complex and personalized customer interactions, resulting in heightened customer satisfaction and loyalty. AI Tagging Unleashed: The Transformation of Online Merchandising & Forecasting AI product tagging is going to play a crucial role in online merchandising and demand forecasting in 2024. This technology automates the creation, categorization, and labeling of products based on their features, images, and descriptions. It is extremely powerful for streamlining the organization of product catalogues, ensuring that all items are accurately placed in the relevant sections. Effective AI product tags improve site search functionality, enhance overall site navigation, and enable more personalized recommendations. Brands and retailers can also use tag data from current and recent shopping sessions to identify and respond in real-time to changing market trends and customer preferences. Moreover, by highlighting patterns in consumer behavior, the insights garnered from AI tags can help retailers understand emerging trends and make more informed decisions regarding inventory management, demand forecasting, and product development. Cash In, Trade Up: Resale Markets as Revenue Boosters The concept of a “circular economy” has gained substantial traction in recent years and is poised for further growth in 2024. As consumers increasingly prioritize environmental concerns and sustainability, retailers will be under growing pressure to meet higher standards. In response, we predict that more and more brands will start building online resale marketplaces next year. Establishing a resale market has benefits for both the retailer and its consumers alike. On the customer-facing side, resale markets foster a sense of community among environmentally conscious shoppers looking for more affordable options. On the business side, resale markets help reduce your brand’s carbon footprint while attracting more traffic, minimizing return rates, and enhancing opportunities for upselling and cross-selling. Balancing Automation and the Human Touch In the sea of emerging retail technologies, our analysis leads us to believe the six examples discussed in this post are poised to dominate and significantly influence the financial outcomes for brands and retailers in 2024. As the industry increasingly adopts these robust AI models to streamline intricate tasks and enhance operational efficiency, it will become imperative for brands and retailers to strike the right balance between automation and the human touch. That will be the key to creating truly resonant brand experiences that will ultimately increase customer satisfaction, conversion rates, and brand loyalty.