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Every sector is impacted by advancements in technology, and artificial intelligence or AI is making waves right across the world. In the last few years, it has come on in leaps and bounds and goes well beyond just making improvements. This robust development has enabled many industries to completely overhaul and change the way they do business, giving them access to a more extensive customer base, with the ability to impress potential buyers with AI enabled websites that, particularly in the beauty industry, offer remarkable ways for customers to decide what they are purchasing. It is fair to say that there is not just one improvement that AI has been able to assist with, but in fact, there are several, so let’s take a closer look.
Getting to Know You
Artificial intelligence is really good at being able to create data on trends that they observe in each customer and their shopping habits. So, with online accounts and other ways of tracking individual customers, companies in the beauty industry are able to offer personalised recommendations as customers browse their website. This also means that they can send out tailor-made offers that are more likely to see the customer spending money. People enjoy a personal shopping experience, and one of the reasons why the High Street is still dying despite the fact it can provide this is that online services with artificial intelligence enhancements are actually able to rival everything offered and enable the customer to stay at home and shop from the comfort of their sofa which has been particularly important in a year of global lockdown and restriction. This can go further than just proffering suggestions about which products you might like; it can also help tailor skincare, for example, to a specific problem. Curology is a business that targets acne sufferers and offers not only products but an app that has created a subscription service working with medical professionals that is able to provide them with personalised advice. By collecting information via the app, they are able to match both professional and customer, enabling the creation of personalised remedies.
Virtual Makeovers and Mirrors
Of course, the one thing that is missing from a High Street experience when you transfer it online is the ability to try products before you buy them. If you wander into a shop that offers makeup, you are able to have a demonstration of many products. The makeup counter in many large chain stores was always popular and is often reinvented in films and television. AI has enabled this last stumbling block to become a reality with virtual mirrors and makeovers able to show customers what a specific colour, style, or product would look like on them. By utilising the camera, the website is able to take a picture of the prospective customer, which then takes into account things like hair and eye colour and skin tone giving them a chance to see what specific colours look like against their skin. It is more convenient for the prospective client as it means that again they do not have the effort of sitting and waiting while someone applies the makeup, or in the case of clothing, they do not have to get changed and stand in front of a mirror. It can all be done by the click of the mouse, and in this instant gratification generation, it is proving popular and likely to replace the High Street once more.
Of course, these are AI tools that the customer can see, but there are also many uses of AI behind the scenes. Data sets can be collected, and machine learning can be utilised to ensure that companies are offered the most up to date information about shopping habits and their customer profiles. Learning about your customers and who they are is critical to any form of marketing and success. As AI continues to be developed, we are only limited by the bounds of the imagination. So, it is likely that the beauty industry will be able to enjoy even more advancements in the coming years. PROVEN is a company started a few years ago by some Harvard Business School graduates aiming to create the largest beauty database in the world. They have called it the skin genome project, and it has won awards in AI. It is an analytical database that catalogues the clinical effectiveness of various skincare ingredients.
Making the World Smaller
So, what does this mean for the beauty industry and its evolution? Well, it has allowed the world to get smaller and given SME companies as much access to the global marketplace as the large corporations. While some of the AI technology may be financially restrictive to smaller companies, there is certainly plenty to be had for affordable prices. Many developers are keen to just work with small companies to help them level the playing field. This means that any company, no matter how small, can have a global reach and find a much broader customer base. Everyone likes personalisation and going to a website where they seem to know your name as it were is something often rated by customers as really important. While they may not realise that this is the advantage of AI running in the background, the results mean that they are happy to spend more time shopping with a specific company and naturally spending more money.