For a few years, the retail industry has been touting live shopping as “the next big thing” in ecommerce. And they’re not wrong. The live shopping market reached over $20 billion in 2022 and is predicted to grow to $68 billion by 2026.
But now, with the increase in accessible AI solutions, the retail industry is finding new ways to use AI to improve their live commerce strategies. The intersection of AI and live commerce brings new opportunities to amplify your brand’s message and your shopper’s experience.
What is live shopping?
Live shopping, or livestream shopping, is a way for brands to promote and sell their products through a live video stream. The aim is to give shoppers an immersive, interactive experience that allows them to ask questions, get answers, and ultimately buy products.
What is AI (artificial intelligence)?
AI, or artificial intelligence, is a machine’s ability to perform the cognitive functions we typically associate with human minds, like learning, reasoning, and perceiving. AI can be very complex, but to put it simply, it combines computer science and data to enable problem-solving by machines.
In recent years, we’ve seen more and more examples of AI come into the mainstream consciousness. From ChatGPT to Siri, many of us use AI daily.
The power of virtual try-ons
The conversation of AI and live shopping was recently reignited when Google announced its latest Google Shopping update. Shoppers in the US using Google Shopping can now virtually try on women’s tops from select brands, including Anthropologie, Everland, LOFT, and H&M.
Forty-two percent of online shoppers say they don’t feel represented by images when they shop online, and another 59% say shoppers were dissatisfied with an item they bought online because it looked different on them than they were expecting.
Google hopes that its generative AI model will make virtual try-ons more realistic. They want shoppers to experience how a garment drapes, folds, clings, stretches, and forms wrinkles and shadows on a range of bodies. Google’s aim to make everyone feel comfortable while shopping online means they feature people in a range of sizes, from XXS to 4XL, skin tones, body shapes, ethnicities, and hair types.
Live shopping is its own form of virtual try-ons. Whether it’s clothing or makeup, shoppers see what the products look like on real people in real-time. If you want to make the experience as enriching as possible for your shoppers, consider using more than one model to showcase the same products so people can see what an item looks like on multiple body sizes, shapes, and ethnicities.
Beyond that, shoppers can simultaneously use AI search features to virtually try on items before they buy. While shoppers watch a live shopping stream, they can search the items they’re seeing on their screen to get a better idea of what they’ll look like on them.
Virtual try-ons have exponential power when paired with live shopping.
Use AI to inform your product choices
When you have AI and machine learning working in the background of your business, you’re collecting valuable data. That data can inform a lot of decisions in your business, including what products you feature in your live shopping events.
Mining that data can help you put the products your customers are looking for right in front of them. If your AI and machine learning data shows that there is an uptick in people searching for “red lipstick”, your makeup brand can create a live shopping event that focuses on your top shades or red lipstick.
You can also use this same technology to collect this same information on your shopping events. You can analyze data on your most view shows, product purchases, and customer engagement to help you plan and create your next shopping experience.
Live shopping and personalized recommendations
AI technology and machine learning programs collect loads and loads of data. That data is often used for marketing, but savvy brands are now using it to funnel personalized product recommendations to their website visitors.
Someone would come to your website and, based on their searches and internet history, receive product recommendations tailored to them to help them find the perfect items. Think of it like the retail worker who can help in-store shoppers find what they’re looking for—but the AI has much more information to work with.
Live shopping is another fantastic way to offer your shoppers personalized recommendations in a virtual setting. You can explore one-on-one live shopping, a virtual personal shopping experience—this gives a brand ambassador and a single shopper a chance to work together online to find the right pieces for the shopper.
Live shopping events can also incorporate personalized recommendations. Have your audience members write in with questions about your products; you can answer them live while providing a personalized recommendation.
When AI and live shopping come together, shoppers can make purchases confidently.
With Stage TEN, you can create a live stream, add audience interactions, and monetize it all in one place. And now with our latest partnership with Shopify’s Shop App, you can easily set up a live commerce channel in Shop that notifies your followers when you go live, allowing you to reach shoppers directly. Simply download the Stage TEN Live Shopping app to get started!
Let's partner if you're ready to go live with your brand today!