New Delhi, India, April 10, 2017: Aditya Birla Online Fashion (Abof), leading online fashion retailer and IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced a new shopping experience to deliver a personalized and convenient shopping experience powered by IBM Cloud and Watson. .
abof is an Indian online fashion retailer from the Aditya Birla Group. The company sells apparel, footwear and accessories for men and women targeting the millennial consumers. ABOF’s goal is to provide highly convenient and distinctive customer experience, driven by a strong technology backbone and 100% curated merchandise.
In a first for India’s retail market, ABOF customers can use natural language questions within ABOF’s enhanced eCommerce platform and receive greater personalization and product recommendations.
With this new feature, shoppers can now interact and ask natural language questions about abof’s unique product assortment, receiving custom responses to their inquiries. For example, a customer could type, “where can I find a red floral dress?” or type a combination of price and product inquiry such as, “show me black shoes below INR 2000.” These inquiries are recognized and understood by the system on abof’s website to recommend top matches to the shopper.
The customer engagement is conducted through a simple question and answer interface leveraging Watson’s Natural Language Classifier, as well as Retrieve and Rank delivered on the IBM Cloud. IBM Global Business Services and IBM Research worked with abof to introduce the service and help create a more engaging and intuitive shopping experience for customers.
“The business of fashion has experienced extreme change in recent years,” said Prashant Gupta, President and Chief Executive Officer, abof.com. “Our aim is to create seamless and convenient shopping experiences for our customers in the digital world. This is a start of our cognitive journey and we plan to implement more Watson-enabled solutions in the future to continue our momentum.”
“There is an exponential growth in online sales in the India fashion industry and companies need to drive deeper understanding, better engagement and leverage data more efficiently to enhance the customers’ shopping experiences. It is estimated that the sales conversion will be more as the customer doesn’t have to spend more time in looking for the product they desire. IBM solutions will help abof.com stand out and carve a niche by tapping into the power of Watson. abof can make the customer shopping experience more personalized, informed and enjoyable, similar to what users could get in a physical store if not better.” said Prativa Mohapatra, Vice President, Watson Platform, IBM India/SA
Today’s news builds on the strong collaboration between abof and IBM to provide an enhanced personalized shopping experience to abof customers. In 2016, IBM provided abof with a scalable e-commerce platform, seamless order fulfillment options, and innovative customer engagement features such as a 3D virtual trial room. Powered by IBM and integrated technology from business partner Metail, the feature enables customers to input their body measurements and virtually try on any apparel before placing an order. Today, these combined capabilities, and the new cognitive fashion assistant can help abof create end-to-end personalized shopping experiences that cultivate truly unique buying moments and ensures prompt delivery of each item, which over time results in increased brand loyalty and conversions.