The Ultimate Personal Shopper is a Machine

This year at SAP TechEd I discovered first-hand how machine learning is the ultimate answer in convenience and customer care for overwhelmed shoppers and struggling retailers alike.

It’s one thing to hear the news from IDC predicting cognitive/AI capabilities will figure in to some 40 percent of digital transformation initiatives by 2019. Standing in front of a dynamic shopping window that turned data from my image into a full-color display of fabulous wardrobe and accessory essentials was truly amazing. The experience is kind of like “Because you’re wearing this dress and scarf, we thought you might like these tops and watches.”

Starring You on the Runway

For the full story on how machine learning can help the $2.4 trillion fashion industry with a more personalized consumer experience, watch my onsite video interview with Margaret Laffan, director of Business Development for Machine Learning at SAP.


“Static window displays of the past won’t work in today’s world of fast fashion and consumer demands for an increasingly more personalized experience,” said Laffan. “Machine learning gives retailers the speed and intelligence to quickly match the hottest looks with every customer’s fashion style.”

Trending Now: Fashion Forward

Machine learning can detect not only what someone’s wearing (including glasses), but their gender, mood and approximate age, offering clothing, shoes, scarves, watches, factoring in the latest trends, ideal colors and personal style. For customers who opt-in, retail stores of the future could provide even smarter recommendations based on someone’s activities across locations and channels.

I agreed with Laffan that the pressure has never been higher to bring the right products to the right customers at the right time. With machine learning, searching for new styles is so yesterday. Fashions will come immediately to consumers, wherever they might be shopping.

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