Beyond chatbots: Four surprising uses for ChatGPT in e-commerce – Times of India

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Senior Vice President – Digital Commerce, Apexon
Chatbots have long been used in e-commerce to drive sales and improve customer experience, but the advent of ChatGPT changes the game significantly. Developed by Open AI, its generative ML, large language model has taken the world by storm. Hardly an industry exists where AI cannot be harnessed to improve workflows, but e-commerce, with its reliance on seamless digital customer experiences and use of conversational chatbots, has more to gain than most sectors from the deployment of technologies like ChatGPT. 
In its first two months, ChatGPT was estimated to have accrued 100 million users, all deploying its vast knowledge base using the naturalistic, conversational flow of its dialogue format. Its ability to accurately and intelligently engage with consumers and fetch responses transcends anything the public has seen before. And of course, because chatbots can access and retain almost limitless information, they can create a highly personalized customer experience. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that ChatGPT can enhance existing chatbot functions for e-commerce businesses, such as order tracking, real-time updates, delivery information, returns, and so on, as well as helping to resolve more complicated customer queries. 
Here are four additional ways that ChatGPT can go beyond the traditional chatbot functionality to help e-commerce businesses run more efficiently, improve customer experience, and increase profitability. 
Running an e-commerce business is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, an online presence expands your potential customer base to anyone, anywhere with an internet connection. On the other hand, it also means competition is more fierce, with e-tailers constantly vying for consumers’ attention across numerous marketplaces and against all the other e-commerce businesses in that space. To stand out, companies must impress online visitors with their website’s design, ease of navigation and clear, concise content. 
One highly effective use of ChatGPT is in the creation of product descriptions. As online users, we all know that these can make or break a sale. A well-drafted product description strikes the right balance between enticing advertorial and pragmatic information provision (dimensions, materials, availability, shipping, etc). Multiply this task by hundreds or thousands of products, and it is easy to appreciate ChatGPT’s value in creating compelling content at scale. It helps e-commerce businesses save time and resources, launch campaigns faster, and build up their brand’s reputation as reliable, trustworthy, and engaged. 
E-commerce websites vary greatly both in their customer-facing design elements and their underlying infrastructure. Confusing or irrelevant product placements quickly lead to browser fatigue and cart abandonment, while well-judged recommendations can greatly enhance the customer experience. 
ChatGPT can help guide customers on a smooth journey through the website. It can be trained to help customers find the right products for them. Based on browsing and purchase history, e-commerce businesses can harness AI models to deliver powerful product recommendations that drive sales and customer satisfaction. By extension, ChatGPT can also be used to send promotions to different customer segments through personalized email marketing campaigns. 
Social media platforms enable e-commerce businesses to connect with large audiences and promote their products. The challenge for many, however, is efficiently targeting and actively engaging with customers. ChatGPT can help build brand loyalty, provide customer service, and increase sales through several different social media integrations. For instance, integrating ChatGPT chatbots into social media channels to provide automated customer service that can help resolve queries about orders, returns, shipping, and so on. 
ChatGPT can also be leveraged to create social media campaigns, such as posts, captions, or personalized messages that help businesses maintain a consistent cadence of compelling content. It is particularly suited for “social listening,” that is, monitoring social media conversations on topics relevant to your ecommerce business. Similarly, ChatGPT is a valuable addition to the arsenal of influencer marketing tools that e-commerce businesses can use to identify and engage with potential influencers.
Based on a customer’s interaction with an e-commerce site, ChatGPT can be trained to enhance cross-selling and upselling, especially during the checkout process. This could be through product bundles, special deals, or dynamic pricing to create a personalized purchasing experience. Similarly, integrating ChatGPT into the product selection process enables e-commerce businesses to offer personalized recommendations based on the customer’s needs and preferences. 
Harnessing ChatGPT in e-commerce
For e-commerce businesses seeking to enhance customer experience and boost sales, ChatGPT can be a powerful tool. By leveraging natural language processing, ChatGPT helps businesses automate routine tasks, personalize customer interactions, and expand their presence across social media. 
Chatbot integration will form a major part of ChatGPT’s appeal in e-commerce. Its ability to interact naturalistically with customers to resolve queries and provide personalized product recommendations makes it a clear candidate for chatbot integration. ChatGPT-powered bots are already facilitating easier product navigation and customer interaction in e-commerce. However, ChatGPT’s uses extend far beyond the chat function. Its ability to create content promises to significantly streamline previously resource-heavy tasks such as social media marketing and many different types of web content creation. Finally, ChatGPT can be trained to monitor and analyze relevant e-commerce segments, helping brands target customers more effectively and remain more competitive. 
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Views expressed above are the author’s own.
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