Research Hub > 3 Ways AI Can Improve Your Retail Customer Experience

February 29, 2024

3 min

3 Ways AI Can Improve Your Retail Customer Experience

To optimize your organization’s customer experience — which should always be a top priority — consider investing in artificial intelligence technologies that can make your customers and employees happier and cut costs in the long run.

When it comes to optimizing your organization’s customer experience, you can’t begin to consider it seriously until you factor in the impact of artificial intelligence. Increasingly, customers — especially a younger demographic — are willing to interact with bots, which means they are less likely to wait for any length of time in a queue to meet their needs.

Today’s consumers expect automation 24/7 and are willing to jump brands after just one bad customer experience, so organizations must ensure they’re doing everything they can to meet their customers’ needs efficiently and effectively — whether upon first contact or the fifth.

Here are three advantageous ways you can implement AI in your business to enhance customer experience.

1. Virtual Agents

Your employees are human and are always subject to stress at work and outside of work. With contact centers constantly facing high attrition rates due to employee burnout, why not do everything in your power to keep your people more engaged and happier? By investing in AI in the form of virtual agents to take on automated tasks, you will free up your workforce to spend more time and care on handling tasks that require a human touch.

Having virtual agents also means having a self-service option for customers, especially for contact made outside of traditional business hours. The more convenient for them, the better.

With virtual agents equipped with natural language capabilities as well as the ability to authenticate your customers via voice biometrics, you can elevate your customer experience to the next level.

2. Agent Assist

Life for customer experience agents can be hectic, especially if they are taking calls to resolve technical, time-consuming questions. Now, with AI software available that listens to calls and simultaneously scours databases for answers, also suggesting actions for agents to take via a dashboard, you can empower your people to be more effective than ever.

Known as “agent assist” or “agent answers,” this AI-led functionality is a revolutionary step forward in improving the customer experience for everyone involved. When your live agents are optimized to meet customer needs quickly, you can reduce their handle times significantly and save time and money for your organization.

Even shortening a successful interaction by as little as 30 seconds pays dividends in the long run.

3. Intelligent Kiosks

Imagine walking into a retail store and near each entrance is a speech-enabled AI kiosk with a human-like avatar waiting to take questions. A shopper asks, “Where is the shoe department?” The AI avatar responds, “The shoe department is on the third floor. Take a right when you get off the escalator. Here is a map on the screen to show you where it’s located.”

Whether you help operate a retail store or a restaurant, AI-infused intelligent kiosks offer services ranging from providing directions to letting customers order food without human contact. This level of customer experience redefines how organizations can automate certain tasks, freeing employees to work on other worthwhile activities.  

Want to Make Your Customer Experience Amazing? CDW Can Help

At CDW, we do not simply sell products — we help companies find solutions to create more impactful experiences for customers and employees. Our partnerships with industry leaders in addition to our trusted experts help you achieve your goals, on any timeline.

A popular chain of convenience stores based in the Midwest came to us wanting to modernize their contact center operations by infusing AI with natural language capabilities. We worked with them every step of the way to move their contact center to the cloud. Now, tasks such as checking balances on customer loyalty cards are completely automated, allowing live agents to work on more pressing projects.

Keep your organization connected with seamless collaboration across distributed teams. Connect, communicate, and collaborate securely and reliably.

Matt Marsh

Principal Solution Architect
Matt Marsh is a principal solutions architect with more than 33 years in the voice and data communications industry. In the last eight years, he has been dedicated to helping customers choose, implement, upgrade and migrate contact center solutions. He is based in Chicago.

Doug Teal

Principal Solutions Architect
Doug Teal is a principal solutions architect with more than 20 years of experience in the collaboration technology space. He works on CDW’s Customer Experience team, where he focuses on improving customer interactions by leveraging artificial intelligence, machine learning, data analytics, automation and other cutting-edge technologies.