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Executive Insights

Bringing Innovation to Life Through AI

By Anirban Bardalaye

01/08/2024


At Bloomreach, we talk a lot about innovation. 

We’re responsible for millions of interactions between companies and their customers each day. That’s a huge undertaking — and a responsibility we take very seriously. In order to make those interactions as incredible, magical, and seamless as possible, we can never grow complacent in our product capabilities. We need to constantly evaluate what our customers need, what their customers need, what more we can do. 

And in doing so, we always come back to the word innovation. 

But really what does that mean? Or, tangibly, what does an innovative company look like?

Our Innovation Tenets

Because innovation is so core to our company strategy, we felt it was important to clearly outline the way we think about that word, in practice, here at Bloomreach. 

Bloomreachers base innovation on three pillars: seek, push, and do. These three pillars have been the foundation of our progress and will continue to guide how we navigate commerce.

Seek

At the core of innovation is curiosity. Asking questions, learning from others, and embracing new ideas fuels our transformation whether it be with customers, our product, or ourselves. Take our work with Jenson USA for example. As one of the leading online bicycle retailers, the company wanted all of its customers to be able to find the latest gear in one place — while moving away from manual data analyses and unscalable personalization.

Keeping this in mind, our team explored the nuances of integrating customer buying preferences into the product discovery experience. And since Bloomreach is the only company in the market combining customer and product data to drive personalization across marketing channels, we thought, can’t we use the same approach for search?

From this exploration we were able to introduce real-time segments for e-commerce search, which allowed Jenson to personalize for different customer segments — ranging from mountain bikers to road bikers. Using historical and in-session behavior to group customers into segments, shoppers saw a more relevant experience from the second they arrived on the site. A mountain biker searching for “tires” would see mountain bike tires, for example, while a road biker searching for “tires” would see road bike tires.

Overall, Jenson saw an 8.5% and 26% improvement in revenue per visitor on the site and mobile devices, respectively. The results exceeded our expectations and because we remained curious and thought through these important questions about who Jenson customers were and the experience they preferred, we were able to reimagine the Jenson search experience.

Jenson USA Personalized the Search Experience With Bloomreach

Push

Ever since Bloomreach’s inception, we’ve always asked ourselves “what’s next?”. Our recent launch of Bloomreach Clarity specifically comes to mind when I think of the “push” pillar.

AI isn’t a new concept to Bloomreach. It’s been at the heart of our products since the beginning, particularly when you consider our search product. In the past year, however, new developments in generative AI and LLMs changed what technology was capable of achieving. That led us to look at AI in relation to e-commerce and dared to ask “what else is possible?”. 

Our teams came together and after months of brainstorming, testing, failing, and successes, we were able to officially announce Bloomreach Clarity, a conversational shopping product built for today’s world of e-commerce. Powered by the latest advancements in generative AI, Clarity engages with shoppers to deliver personalized, human-like product expertise from their favorite brands throughout every touchpoint in their journey. We knew that e-commerce was changing and that the status quo no longer aligned with how consumers and customers were evolving.

Conversational shopping is that next step, it is the future of commerce. As we lead that charge with Clarity, we’re accustomed to how fast our industry changes and are focused on being proactive. Most importantly, we’re comfortable with the idea that we have only scratched the surface with what’s possible when it comes to AI, and we welcome that challenge.

Do

What I’ve found during my time at Bloomreach is that, no matter how big an idea is, or how out of reach a goal may appear, we take action. Every team I’ve worked with, from marketing to engineering to product, allows for time to ideate and brainstorm, but moves quickly into action items and execution. This innovation pillar has been critical in allowing us to develop some of the newest Loomi functionalities we’re working on, such as our smart analytics assistant

This is a feature built upon the latest in generative AI and LLMs — technology that simply did not exist at this magnitude a year ago. Yet, even though this is incredibly new technology, our teams recognize the need to take action and move quickly to get this feature in our customers’ hands — because we know how powerful this will be for them.

The smart analytics assistant is intended to improve marketers’ ability to understand what’s working, what’s not, and how to improve campaigns, all through a conversational interface. We want them to feel limitless in their understanding of critical business and campaign metrics — to gather these insights without having to create conditions and filters, or run queries.

To just ask, “for this campaign, tell me what the lowest performing segment is,” and get an immediate answer. With those answers readily available to them, the data-driven creators that use our product can observe their own kind of “do” pillar — quickly taking action on the limitless new strategies they’ve been dreaming up, now armed with the data and insights they need to act with confidence.

Where Our Innovation Tenets Come to Life

While our innovation tenets guide our product team, this is not the only place we see them come to life. Every employee, from our product to people to revenue teams, takes this commitment to innovation seriously. We embrace the unknown, ask the tough questions, and are open to failure as we push Bloomreach to the next level. 

Commerce is at a pivotal turning point with the onset of generative AI, and every single Bloomreacher is considering how we can innovate and create beyond just this moment.  We use these tenets to guide us through those unchartered territories, — and look forward to embracing the possibilities ahead. 

Thanks to our innovation and generative AI, shopping will never be the same again. Learn more about the impact that conversational commerce is set to have on e-commerce.

 

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Anirban Bardalaye

Chief Product Officer, Bloomreach

Anirban Bardalaye leads the development and execution of strategy to accelerate the growth of Bloomreach's product pillars — Discovery, Engagement, and Content. Prior to joining Bloomreach, Anirban served as Vice President of Product Management, Commerce Cloud, at Salesforce. He holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, a dual MS in Systems Science and Mechanical Engineering from Louisiana State University, and a BE in Mechanical Engineering from National Institute of Technology, Rourkela.

 

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