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09/13/2021

J.C. Penney transforms e-commerce with AI

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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J.C. Penney
J.C. Penney is using predictive AI to enhance its online experience.

J.C. Penney Co. is deploying smart predictive technology to better understand what assists shoppers in making purchase decisions.

The department store retailer is leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) technology from Metrical in an effort to drive e-commerce transformation and improve its online customer experience. Since deploying the Metrical predictive AI platform, Penney has experienced a 40% increase in new cart creation, an 18% reduction in cart abandonment, and a 10% improvement in revenue on targeted visits.

Feeding billions of data points into a series of unique behavioral models, J.C. Penney utilizes the Metrical solution to determine and create targeted value-adds for e-commerce customers, such as special opportunities, substitute products or additional services, depending on individual consumer preference.

"Helping customers in their online shopping journey is a major advantage in today's online retail market," said Richard Adams, VP of digital experience, JC Penney, which operates more than 650 stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rice.  "We partnered with Metrical's predictive AI to give us the ability to better understand our shopper's online journey in real time, enabling us to deliver an improved customer experience."

[Read More: J.C. Penney exits Chapter 11]

"Every retailer is looking for an 'edge' to boost their profitability while providing a memorable shopping experience," said retail analyst Steve Dennis. "The beauty of Metrical's predictive AI is that it sits quietly in the background, observing customers' behavior and at the precise moment in time– when it predicts someone is going to leave the site, it makes a recommendation that moves the shopper along the ideal customer journey toward purchasing."

[Read More: Exclusive Q&A: Steve Dennis says you can win customers amid disruption]

"With all the disruption taking place in digital, we see retailers getting lost in the technological choices facing them." said Zabe Agha, founder and CEO of Metrical. "Our focus is squarely on helping retailers cut through the noise so they can apply leading-edge capabilities, such as AI, not only to improve their business results and enhance customer lifetime value, but also drive attributable incremental revenue."

Kashif Rahamatullah, national Google Cloud practice and alliance leader, Deloitte, recently discussed with Chain Store Age how retailers of all sizes can leverage the capabilities of the cloud to develop highly individualized customer profiles that are consistent across all channels.

“Retailers have the chance to connect with consumers at...various touchpoints throughout their retail journey, but too often, they’re missing out on opportunities to engage at the right time due to siloed processes,” advised Rahamatullah. “To avoid these missed opportunities and enhance the customer experience, it’s vital to create a single view. By synthesizing customer data into a unified profile, this empowers retailers to further segment and retarget their resources, ultimately improving the consumer experience by using a hyper-tailored approach.

“Gone are the days where demographics, geographics, etc. alone are enough to accurately segment customers,” Rahamatullah said. “However, through cloud offerings such as artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML), and by leveraging first and third-party data, retailers can get a detailed look into their customer’s behavior to create individual personalized customer experiences.”