9 AI Tools That Companies Use to Support Sales

9 AI Tools That Companies Use to Support Sales

It might seem that the automation process will cause jobs to be replaced by new technologies. For the past two to three years, we have been noticing a trend of digitization of shopping, which has seen tremendous growth over the past 12 months, mainly as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many observers point out that this trend is affecting the shopping habits of consumers in many industries.

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed consumer behavior. What’s more, customers themselves have changed. They compare offers, prices, and the value of a given product or service more often than before. It is almost certain that pandemic customer behavior will change permanently. As an example, the average age of people who shop online is increasing. Such changes promote the use of AI in sales. According to a study by McKinsey Group, as many as 75% of customers have changed their shopping habits, such as the way they shop, their favorite store or brand. As a result, customer loyalty to brands will be compromised.

new consumer buying behavior from starting COVID19 report McKinsey&Company

Source: Report McKinsey&Company: The great consumer shift: Ten charts that show how US shopping behavior is changing

This is a fundamental change on a global scale. Analysts agree that the ongoing changes in shopping habits are among the biggest in years. It is estimated that in the last year e-commerce grew globally by 28%; Poland, in turn, is the 3rd fastest growing country in this sector. Retail, on the other hand, recorded a decline of a few percent. It turns out that consumers change even their strongest buying habits when it comes to such products as fresh food, household chemicals, or personal hygiene products. These changes are evident in every product group.

Consumer use of channels online before and expected use after COVID19

Source: Report McKinsey&Company: The great consumer shift: Ten charts that show how US shopping behavior is changing

Most often, shoppers who spend a lot and frequently move into the world of online shopping, their shopping carts are much richer compared to other groups.

New AI technologies for sales will respond to customers’ changing shopping habits

Such rapid and drastic changes in customer behavior mean that companies also need to change their habits. More and more of them will turn to AI technologies to support sales processes. Sales support by AI can be considered in two ways. This first is from the point of view of the usefulness of tools for the seller and the second is the convenience of the seller’s work and in the context of commerce. While separate ideas, it is helpful to keep in mind that both areas are intertwined.

main AI technologies used in sales

Source: InteliWISE’s own materials

Tools supporting sales process work in two ways. On the one hand, they make the salesperson’s work easier, and on the other, they make their actions much more effective. These tools accomplish this by: 

  • Supporting personalization of offers and pricing,
  • Facilitating forecasting,
  • Allowing you to focus on priorities,
  • Saving valuable time.

A key issue is the choice of technologies. That which is used should help compete on issues that are relevant to the category. However, it is worth remembering that in certain product groups values, e.g. availability, choice, value or price, carry different meaning. So, it is important to pay attention to which of these characteristics the category is particularly susceptible to in utilizing the right tools.

AI tools supporting sales most often used by companies

AI technologies are increasingly assisting companies in their sales processes. This is because companies desire for and strive to provide a better experience for their customers. In turn, salespeople are more likely to use AI tools because they systematize and simplify their work. Brands are using AI in sales by: 

  1. Identification and generation of leads – a particularly important issue from the point of view of a b2b salesperson. The tools help to identify the potential customer and their characteristics and allow to personalize the offer in a unique and helpful way.
  2. Self-organizing CRMs – this is the answer to salespeople’s reluctance to complete CRMs or reporting. This type of system runs in the background and is synchronized with the phone, email, LinkedIn or calendar. As a result, sales people gain time in their core activities. self-organizing crm using AI
  3. Intelligent Dictation – Voice interface is being used more and more due to its usefulness and time saving.
  4. Video Presentations – There has been a significant increase in the use of video for the retailer at the shelf level. The tool allows you to connect via chat and present your product to the customer so they can make an informed choice. live product use of video calling from inteliwise in stores
  5. Video authentication – a tool that supports onboarding in the form of customer verification (account creation, registration, secure shopping). 
  6. Dynamic pricing – in other words, price personalization, tools that “work” with stationary store shelves.
  7. AI Voicebots and AI Chatbots – voice technologies helpful in surveying, completing an order or making an appointment.  This includes virtual advisors who automatically serve customers, not only answering questions, but also accepting complaints or checking shipment status. 
  8. Personalization, recommendations – allows for precise targeting and collection of leads at the level of AI analytics.
  9. Autonomous vehicles, robots – currently not a significant AI-supported tool, but perhaps in the future they will replace salespeople.

Currently, technologies are supporting salespeople but are projected to replace them in the future. At this point, the most reasonable statement is that AI tools are expanding salespeople’s capabilities. Modern technology is driving salespeople to new levels of productivity. The implementation of AI tools is inevitable, especially since a salesperson supported by a robot is the most optimal form of a “team.” Some kind of experimentation is advisable, especially since AI solutions are relatively young, but their role will grow steadily. Therefore, it is necessary to test solutions in order to be able to work out the most suitable sales processes for a given organization in the future.

Voicebot that makes appointments, collects orders

One of the most common ways that customers choose to recieve information or report a problem are call centers. However, from the point of view of a company this solution generates significant costs, leading many of them decide to implement voicebot. In addition to standardization and improvement of customer service, voicebots relieves consultants and reduces waiting time on the hotline, at the same time reduces costs associated with the recruitment, training, and salaries of employees.

reduce service cost in call-center after using voicebot from inteliwise

Voicebots are available to serve customers as an employee of the company, available 24/7. With the continuous development of AI technology, voicebots gain new functionality, and thus are delegated to support many areas of the company. They can deal with:

  • confirming appointments or reservations, 
  • making appointments,
  • checking the status of shipments,
  • accepting complaints, 
  • surveying,
  • technical support, 
  • debt collection.

Voicebots can also be used in post-sales processes. One of such solutions is voicebot Piotr, who joined the ranks of Wolters-Kluwer. In addition to providing product information, Piotr is able to guide customers through the payment process or assist in the return procedure. In the case of complex issues, Piotr, based on an analysis of the problem, will redirect the customer to a consultant from the relevant department. His implementation has contributed to productivity improvements at Wolters Kluwer. The customers themselves have also noticed the changes, especially in terms of the speed of their service.