Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning Advance Modern Commerce Speed and Focus

February 4, 2018 Sebastian Mamro

Timing and precision are everything when it comes to selling in today’s on-demand economy. While myriad factors contribute to overall customer satisfaction, the ability to provide instant gratification can have a lasting impact on both the customer and the bottom line.

This month’s long-awaited debut of Amazon Go is yet another testament to the importance customers place on speed and efficiency in the era of modern commerce. The new-concept store offers shoppers a technologically advanced buying experience that eliminates the need to wait in line, allowing customers to instantly check out. While the B2B shopping experience for custom products on a global scale is more complex than walking into a neighborhood grocery store, the expectations for an enhanced buying experience are the same.

Many manufacturers have implemented CRM systems to adapt to evolving customer expectations and to help their sales teams sell more effectively – but these systems aren’t delivering the speed that’s required to meet today’s modern commerce requirements.

At the same time, these same companies are implementing eCommerce channels to help their customers find the right products that best fit their requirements so they can quickly select what they need. But many of the eCommerce solutions are lacking: They don’t enable customers to quickly find the right product that dynamically provides them with pricing.

Companies need to rely on sales tools that use artificial intelligence and machine learning to accelerate both the sales process and also power-up their eCommerce platform. It’s with artificial intelligence that companies can understand their buyers and personalize the experience, while applying machine learning helps organizations refine the offers for each buyer as their preferences evolve over time. That’s the true competitive edge that enables companies to provide their customers what they need and to complete the sale.

According to Forrester Research, by 2018 organizations that have fully invested in all types of online personalization will outsell companies that have not by more than 30 percent. The increasing demand for fast, transparent and consistent buying experiences is difficult, if not impossible, to accommodate through traditional methods. At PROS, we’re often asked, “What’s the secret are for doing it right?”

The answer is Dynamic Pricing Science™ that delivers what modern commerce requires: speedy, precision-guided deals that are grounded in real-time data and are consistent across channels.

One company successfully putting this into practice is Groupe DEYA, a global French manufacturer that recently implemented PROS Smart CPQ solution. The company provides its sales teams with new guided selling capabilities that enable them to respond more quickly to customers with configuration, pricing and quoting. When asked about the impact of speed on its selling process, Didier Glaine, CIO at Groupe DEYA, recently commented:

“We manufacture a broad range of products offered through a highly technical catalog that spans a number of channels. Our customers come to us with complex specifications, and our goal is to simplify the configuration and ordering process with guided selling. Now we’re able to harmonize offers and provide immediate responses for every request, with automated quote approvals that accelerate the sales cycle.

“With PROS Smart CPQ, we’ve also automated production times for every configuration, fully integrated with our Salesforce CRM and Microsoft Dynamics ERP platform,” Glaine continued. “Our catalogs are now immediately updated, which also lessens the burden on our IT teams. In 2018, we will extend the use of Smart CPQ to additional subsidiaries around the world. We appreciate the collaborative partnership we have with PROS, which enables us to better serve our customers and our sales teams.”

The baseline requirements for speed, precision and transparency have never been more acute, especially in complex environments such as manufacturing that require dynamic pricing, powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning. Groupe DEYA is an international innovator that is leveraging PROS advanced machine learning and AI technology to create personalized and frictionless buying experiences. As the digital economy continues to evolve, sales teams that can offer the right product at the right price at the right time will be among those that survive.

About the Author

Sebastian Mamro

Sebastian Mamro service as Vice President of Professional Services for the PROS EMEA team.

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