Digital transformation can make many things easier for entrepreneurs and significantly simplify their processes. There are various practical examples of this in the form of new technologies that can help you make your customers' lives much less complicated and more pleasant.
Chatbots: meeting the customer digitally
Chatbots are an interesting example. Don't worry, these are not robots that chat willy-nilly, but rather a technology that allows customers to simplify communication with your company and in turn helps your company serve customers faster. Chatbots can, for example, make appointments or answer various customer questions. This relieves the burden on your own customer service and enables you to provide customers with answers to their questions more quickly.
Chatbots are used in various industries. They can ask customers about various requests, such as sizes and other details, and even advise them if they need help making a decision. Chatbots are a wonderful innovation, which in the end can be helpful for all businesses that operate online on a daily basis. Chatbots are particularly suitable for platforms that also make sales via their websites, as they are available to customers quickly, permanently and at any time of day, regardless of holidays or the like, when it comes to making decisions and finding products.
Depending on how well chatbots have been programmed, they no longer sound mechanical, so users usually have the feeling that they are communicating with a real person. In the meantime, chatbots can also act with the help of a voice function, which ultimately allows them to communicate in different ways.
Internet of Things: Online platform meets hardware
The Internet of Things (IoT) connects many devices to the Internet that are not necessarily associated with digitization at first glance.
There, users can then control the device or evaluate data by means of an online interface. For example, Duravit, a manufacturer of sanitary ceramics, offers smart toilets that allow customers to test their physical waste products for various values. Another example is fitness equipment that customers can use to optimize their workouts. For example, their training data is analyzed on the computer to determine what opportunities for improvement exist - an excellent example of how online platforms can be used profitably.
By means of a powerful online platform, various data points can thus be brought together after collection and evaluation, creating a holistic picture that people can understand. This allows intelligent conclusions to be drawn that can be helpful in optimizing products, services and processes.
Integrated e-commerce platforms: Open up new business areas and intelligently optimize processes
E-commerce platforms can do more than just sell. With a small amount of planning, you can now digitize many of your processes and offer online not only physical products, but also digital goods, services and services.
Cloud platforms, which are synonymous with permanent connectivity and distributed networks, offer new opportunities for selling services and developing business areas. New, intelligent e-commerce solutions, especially in the B2B area, are now strongly influenced by the trends of digitalization and are already taken for granted by many customers and business partners.
E-commerce platforms are more than just simple online stores, because they connect the store with third-party systems that intelligently combine a wide variety of functions and thus generate new types of business models and digital products.
Machine Learning: Web Applications that Learn and Think
Machine learning is currently a driving force behind digital transformation. Thanks to this intelligent technology, programs can learn what they should do and how. Unlike the status quo, however, they can remember these preferences and thus offer people a better, or more accurate, service. Not only does this feel good, but it can save a lot of time. You can then use the time you save for other things.
Machine learning can also be used to learn a lot about users. For example, it helps Netflix recommend movies to its subscribers that they are likely to like. Machine learning thus enables predictions to a certain extent, since it learns what a user likes on the basis of data. In this context, the terms deep learning and neural networks are often used to describe the immense learning capacity of a machine learning platform. Computers can thus practically learn what to do and what not to do. An interesting example of this is an AI that plays the SNES version of Super Mario umpteen times to learn which behavior is desired and which is sanctioned.
API: The versatile interface for eBay, Google and many other platforms
APIs (Application Program Interfaces) offer completely new possibilities. Programmers can use them to develop add-ons for popular platforms such as eBay and PayPal and then integrate them into the respective platforms. eBay and PayPal do not have to disclose their entire source code for this, and users are offered new, helpful features that make them stay longer on the respective websites - a win-win situation for all parties involved. Furthermore, eBay has its own program, exclusively for developers, with buying and selling API.
APIs offer versatile applications in business. Among other things, it is possible to dock to Google Maps via API, for example, to develop an app that uses Google Maps or to create a web service that integrates Google Maps. But of course, it's not just Google services that have APIs. For example, if you want a large amount of computing power, the API of Wolfram Alpha might be of interest to you.
There are also a myriad of other interfaces that offer docking possibilities.
Online platforms offer almost unlimited possibilities, not only to place product ranges or brands, but also to interact with their users and meet the needs of visitors and customers. By now, digital transformation is undoubtedly even demanded and assumed by most customers. My health insurance company doesn't offer an online platform? Then I'll switch to one where I can submit my documents electronically, because it saves me time and effort.