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Older shoppers ‘less comfortable’ with e-commerce AI

Less than half of older shoppers are comfortable with the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the online fashion buying, according to a YouGov survey conducted for Swedish e-commerce company Apptus.

Just 24% of UK adults aged 55 and over, would like to see online fashion retailers adopt online systems to tailor their shopping experience.

In contrast, 56% of those aged between 18 and 24, known as ‘Generation Z’ and the first to have grown up with smartphones, social media and Google, report they would like to see more fashion retailers adopt AI.

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The survey went on to ask whether respondents thought online fashion retailers were focussed on high sales or the customer experience, and 62% said they believed the main focus was high sales, versus 10% who thought customer experience was the main focus.

The remainder didn’t know (15%) while 13% thought it was possibly something else.

Shoppers were also asked what characteristics are most important on their “perfect online fashion retail website”.

There was no generational split as 53% of shoppers said they only want to see products that are in stock and in their size, while 35% preferred a wide range of products (35%). The least popular characteristic of a website is editorial content, with only 8% citing it as important.

Andrew Fowler, UK country manager at Apptus, said: “AI solutions are not about to start taking over your company or summarily executing managers who don’t hit their target. But it can do the heavy lifting that is physically impossible for any sized team of merchandisers to do; to make sure that, in real time, only the right products are presented, only relevant promotions are shown and, crucially, we don’t waste customers’ time and lose opportunities.”

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