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Omri Katz says a common problem when it comes to ecommerce is converting a user into a customer. When someone visits an online store, “98% of online users will leave the online store without completing a purchase,” Katz says.
“That means that all of the money that they invest in user acquisition, all of the money that they invest in retention, probably will go to waste,” Katz says.
To improve online shopping, Katz created Dialogue, a software service that personalizes customer experiences through AI-powered message creation. His technology also helps merchants understand their users so they can provide better recommendations and serve more impactful campaigns.
“You want to have a rich and meaningful experience for each individual user in real time, that can grow revenue, create a better engagement with the brand, and ultimately grow your business,” Katz says.
Katz spoke with Jessica Abo to discuss the problem he saw, how he solved it and how you can boost your ecommerce revenue by using artificial intelligence.
Omri Katz: What Dialogue is doing is trying to offer a software-as-service-based solution that personalizes customer experiences for ecommerce companies by automating the entire process. That means that we first create the content. Second, we predict what the user cares about. Then, we are able to personalize the experience and optimize it. We do it completely automated. This is a unique solution in the landscape, which makes the technology very cost-effective to the merchant. And they, for the very first time, see that they can actually create better experiences, uplift their results and they don’t need to maintain those complex solutions.
Jessica Abo: How have you seen COVID-19 change the landscape for ecommerce?
Katz: COVID-19 basically impacted ecommerce in two ways. The first one was merchants now understand that they need to invest in their online assets. If they didn’t have an ecommerce store, they’re probably going to open one right now. And if they had an online store and they didn’t put the right emphasis on advancing this store and putting the right budgets to grow their online business, they’re going to do it now. The second part is that we saw users who were afraid of buying online and that means that the demand went up and we saw merchants investing in their online presence. We saw that the demand goes up. And that means that ecommerce is exploding from both channels.
If someone’s trying to stand out in this saturated market, how does a brand do that?
Katz: Brands need to understand that they need to have a clear message about their brand. They need to understand the market and the trends. On the other hand, they also need to take advantage of that technology that exists in the market for their own personal use. Having an online business means that you have a lot of data and you want to harness this data. You want to understand your shoppers. You want to understand their actions. You want to understand their psychology.
Once you use all this data that you have to basically affect your website experience, such as the pricing, and the inventory that you have. This is crucial for online businesses moving forward. And, of course, for brands, they want to put an emphasis on their message. Having a clear message, having a lot of content, helps create very meaningful experiences for your users. You need to understand that people buy subconsciously. They buy with their eyes. They buy based on if you have a rich content, if you have videos, if you have media. All of these really impact their probability of turning your shoppers into customers.
What advice do you have for the CEOs out there who are about to move their businesses online?
Katz: Moving from the traditional brick-and-mortar and into opening an ecommerce store, you need to realize first that this is a whole different competitive landscape. Online businesses are more agile and they need to be more dynamic. That means you have to listen to the trends in the market. You need to respond in real time. You need to understand your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses and respond to that. When you have a brick-and-mortar store, you have the salesperson who can lead customers throughout their shopping spree and deliver the message of the brand and understand the intent, and need, of the customer, and then respond. You don’t have that in your ecommerce website. So, that’s something you need to understand how you’re going to do. You can do it using technology. You can do it using the right customer support but creating this connection with your audience is crucial when moving online.
What do you think the ecommerce market will look like in several years?
Katz: We’ve seen that a COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the shift to ecommerce by five years, looking into the future we see high growth, we see a lot of brands and retailers move online and building their online assets. And in order for businesses to grow and really compete with this saturated market, and with the giants, with the Amazons and eBays first, they need to have a clear, clear message about their brand. And second, they really need to have technology. They need to understand how to harness technology, and artificial intelligence in order to utilize their data, to impact the experiences for their users and grow their results.