By Atman Rathod
Artificial intelligence (AI) is no longer just a buzzword; it demonstrates an era-defining reality. From being a futuristic technology just a few years before AI has become a key technology to large user-centric businesses ranging from Google to Starbucks to Amazon. But destroying the cliche that AI is for big businesses, for past several years AI has become a key technology to push growth in the landscape of small and medium businesses as well.
How is artificial intelligence changing the growth prospect of small businesses? Why it has become so important for small businesses to develop and utilize AI-powered tools and applications? Throughout the current blog post, we are going to explain all these aspects.
How AI is Changing the Face of Business?
AI basically mimics human reasoning and intelligence that perpetuates actions can provide businesses with a lot of user insights for decision making and delivering user-centric services. How AI is constantly changing the face of business can be exemplified through the examples of some big brands.
Starbucks is a prominent example of how AI is playing a key role in making the customer experience better. The leading coffee brand is now facilitating ordering through Alexa, the AI-powered voice assistant of Amazon equipped with a lot of enhanced capabilities and skills.
Inspired by the utilization of AI by such big brands, many small businesses can use AI to the benefit of their business operation. As IT infrastructure plays a crucial role in adopting AI into businesses, small firms instead of trying to put a large sum on IT infrastructure can opt for cloud-based resources instead of on-premise capital-intensive IT solutions.
Leveraging Technology That Uses AI
Small businesses cannot pump a lot of money into their on-premise IT infrastructure to adopt AI-based solutions. This is why incorporating ready-to-use and “off-the-shelf” cloud-based AI solutions can be more appropriate for them. Just as they use CRM solutions from Salesforce and an email client from MailChimp, they can use AI solutions of Alexa or Google Assistant. This seems to be the easiest and fastest way to utilize AI for their business.
Some social media platforms and tools are utilizing AI to help businesses target with more audience-centric ad campaigns. For instance, if you want to use Facebook for your next social ad campaign and provide it with few thousand email list, the platform with the use of AI will help you find all those users with precise audience-centric insights and information to unleash befitting campaign for the respective audience.
A small business can also utilize AI for improving their data security. For instance, a payment processing application called Stripe is available that uses machine learning to detect and prevent fraudulent activities. Off-the-shelf AI solutions can deliver massive advantages for a small business without really requiring them to invest a large sum on IT infrastructure.
AI For SMBs: Key Tips to Consider
In spite of such robust promises, there are not too many small businesses that are considering to implement AI solutions in the near future. Well, they may not have set their expectations from AI right or are still confused about utilizing AI to the best of their abilities. Let us have a look at some ground principles and tips for using AI for your small business:
- First of all, AI will not instantly solve all your business problems.
- Choose an AI tool that can create and deliver the value you need for your business solutions.
- If you are already using some widely popular business solutions that use AI, be informed and learn how to utilise to the fullest potential.
- Try to have a roadmap to utilise AI in steps and stages over a period of time. Don’t scrap your existing business solutions and go for a new AI solution all at once. Try, evaluate, measure and plan to implement AI into your business incrementally.
- Use AI solution in areas where you need most. If your business is vulnerable to data security, use AI-powered payment solution first before opting others.
Future of AI for Small Business
All signs are predictive of the increasing strength of AI as the backbone of future businesses just like the role played by the computers and software solutions now. Naturally, small businesses using AI-powered tools is just the beginning of an impressive future scenario where a vast majority of brands will actively use AI for customer service, sales, fraud control and security and a whole lot of applications and needs.
AI will play a big role in pushing automation into the marketing of products and services. As of now, only large businesses are utilizing AI to the fullest potential to use AI to push sales and business conversion by analyzing user behavior and user data. In the years to come, AI-based tools will play a bigger role as an increasing number of small and medium businesses will start using AI-based tools and applications for their day to day business processes.
Small businesses are increasingly getting smarter and more digitally equipped. The retailers are fast embracing ecommerce and mobile commerce platforms to push business growth and branding. While this digitization will continue to play a bigger role in transforming the customer experience, AI solutions will emerge as the element to help businesses beat the competition in the digital and web landscape.