Monthly Archives: April 2023

ChatGPT in Retail

ChatGPT is a powerful tool that has been developed by OpenAI, a leader in artificial intelligence and machine learning. This tool has many potential benefits for retailers who are looking to improve their customer service, increase sales, and streamline their operations. In this article, we will explore the ways in which ChatGPT can benefit retailers and how it works.

What is ChatGPT?

ChatGPT is a type of language model that has been trained on a massive dataset of text. It uses deep learning algorithms to understand the meaning of the text and generate responses that are natural and human-like. The model has been trained on a variety of topics, including news articles, books, and online forums. This means that it has a broad knowledge base and can provide accurate and relevant information on many different subjects.

How can ChatGPT benefit retailers?

Improve Customer Service

One of the main benefits of ChatGPT is that it can improve customer service. By using ChatGPT as a chatbot, retailers can provide customers with quick and accurate answers to their questions. This can help to reduce the time that customers spend waiting for assistance and improve their overall experience. ChatGPT can also provide personalized recommendations based on a customer’s previous purchases or browsing history, which can help to increase sales.

Increase sales

Another benefit of ChatGPT is that it can help to increase sales. By providing personalized recommendations to customers, retailers can help to guide them towards products that they are likely to be interested in. ChatGPT can also be used to offer discounts or promotions to customers who are considering a purchase, which can help to encourage them to complete the transaction.

Streamline Operations

ChatGPT can also help retailers to streamline their operations. By automating the customer service process, retailers can reduce the need for staff to answer basic questions and focus on more complex issues. This can help to reduce labour costs and free up staff to focus on other tasks, such as merchandising or inventory management.

Improve Marketing

Finally, ChatGPT can help retailers to improve their marketing efforts. By analyzing customer interactions with the chatbot, retailers can gain valuable insights into customer preferences and behaviour. This information can be used to develop targeted marketing campaigns that are more likely to resonate with customers and drive sales.

How does ChatGPT work?

ChatGPT analyses text inputs and generates responses based on its knowledge base. When a customer types a question into the chatbot, ChatGPT uses natural language processing to understand the meaning of the question and generate a response that is relevant and accurate. The model is also capable of recognizing context and using previous interactions to personalize its responses.

ChatGPT can be integrated into a variety of platforms, including websites, social media platforms, and messaging apps. It can be customized to match a retailer’s branding and style and can be trained on specific product information or customer data to improve its accuracy and relevance.


ChatGPT is a powerful tool that can provide many benefits for retailers. By improving customer service, increasing sales, streamlining operations, and improving marketing, ChatGPT can help retailers to stay competitive in a rapidly changing retail landscape. As more retailers adopt chatbots and other AI-powered tools, ChatGPT is likely to become an increasingly important tool for retailers of all sizes.

Narrating the Customer Journey to your Door

One positive outcome that happened in our communities post-pandemic is that local communities have rallied around their small independent businesses, in particular retailers. Whilst multiples close unprofitable locations on the high street decreasing their retail doors, independents are swooping in to do what the big names have failed so spectacularly to do, namely talk to their immediate audience.

The vast majority of multiple retailers, including retail banking, are clueless to what the local community and their consumer actually needs and wants. They continue to cite financial woes as a reason to close more doors, abandoning towns and in the process, they fail to realise that being part of the community can actually create growth for them and increase brand advocacy.

Retail used to be amongst the most innovative of industries, where a progressive approach to understanding the consumer and creating experiences that made your store a destination. But this seems to have dissipated and all that’s left is a lot of whining retailers wondering why people no longer want to shop with them.

Offer boring and consumers will literally walk on by. A recent study by Shopify found that 35% of consumers prefer experiential shopping. Seasonality can create these experiences, boost marketing and sales efforts but most retailers fail to even engage at the most basic of levels.

At the other end of the spectrum is the pathetic attempts by local authorities to support their communities, understandably failed by this government which has overseen local authority budgets being squeezed almost to bankruptcy. The government offers idiotic solutions to regenerate local communities and fail to even protect local jobs let alone increase the local economy and create thriving, energetic towns.

It’s about time retailers, local authorities and the government sorted their acts out and focussed on delivering for people and not merely themselves. The result will be that all will suffer.

But what can a local independent retailer do with their local marketing to succeed where the behemoths have failed and do it better and uniquely in your own style to speak in a voice and tone that your local community understand and find appealing?

Footfall across UK retail destinations increased in January, despite the impact of the many rail and other strikes. The annual increase in footfall was largely unaffected, with the gap from the 2019 level even narrowing slightly. Retail footfall remains 14.2% below the 2019 level but showed progress from the 20.8% recorded in January 2022.

It’s said that 96% of small businesses say they use social media in their marketing strategy of which 41% depend on it solely to drive revenue. In reverse, 74% of consumers state that they rely on social media to guide purchasing decisions and 81% of shoppers research online before purchasing.

With so many researching before they shop, bearing this in mind, what’s more important to your business? It would seem that a recommendation in the form of reviews is essential as it’s claimed by Forbes that 90% or purchasing decisions are based on these positive reviews. Therefore those comments and likes really do matter when people search for products that potentially lead them to your landing page and  e-commerce site.

This is particularly important for any business and their marketing mix as more than 50% of consumers won’t use a business if it has less than a four-star rating and 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations (Birkett, 2020).

Interesting to know that over 50% of all “near me” searches will result in an offline store visit and 62% of consumers will disregard a business if they can’t find them online. More significantly 88% of potential customers look for online reviews before choosing local services and 24.4% of all clicks go to the first result of local business searches. So having a top Google search result is proven to have an average click-through rate of 31.7%. (Backlinko) and increases the need for your reviews to be exemplary if you’re to get those 81% that research online, through your doors.

That professional approach you take in-store to deliver a positive customer experience and so encourage purchasing, needs to translate equally through reviews and online presence. This should be evident to the consumer through your marketing either on socials or search, to ensure a seamless and frictionless customer journey. A journey that is likely to start online from search to your marketing, either on third party platforms or your own, that enhances your proposition to convert that search into a customer you engage with in person.

Use local marketing to talk about what makes you different, your approach, offers and more. Make sure your staff know what you are marketing to ensure a joined up approach, from what the customer sees and reads and how that translates into the experience they receive on your shop floor. Train your staff to mirror your local marketing in their approach with customers and set targets with staff to identify those who were attracted into the store through your advertising. Use this intelligence to understand what is and isn’t working effectively to fine-tune and ensure your tone resonates with your customers.

So when considering your local marketing approach it’s imperative that you understand the importance of SEO for local businesses and how utilising it effectively and professionally, can result in new customers through the door.  Once there, the seamless journey kicks-in where you’ve curated the narrative and the shopper will receive the service reviewed or promised and hopefully become repeat customers and spread the word online and in person on your behalf.

To read the full article by Dan Todaro, Managing Director please visit ERT

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