April 10, 2017
Birla Online Fashion (abof), leading online fashion retailer has
launched new shopping experience to deliver a personalized and
convenient shopping experience powered by IBM Watson and Cloud.
Abof is an Indian online fashion retailer from the Aditya Birla Group.
The company sells apparel, footwear and accessories for men and women
targeting the millennial consumers. Abof’s goal is to provide a highly
convenient and distinctive customer experience, driven by a strong
technology backbone and 100% curated merchandise.
In a first for India’s retail market, abof customers can use natural
language questions within abof’s enhanced eCommerce platform to receive
greater personalization and product recommendations.
With this new discovery tool, shoppers can now interact and ask natural
language questions about abof’s unique product assortment, and then
receive custom responses to their inquiries. For example, a customer
could type, “where can I find a red floral dress?” or type a combination
of price and product inquiry such as, “show me black shoes below INR
2000.” These inquiries are recognized and understood by the system on
abof’s website to recommend top matches to the shopper.
The customer engagement is conducted through a simple question and
answer interface leveraging Watson’s Natural Language Classifier, as
well as Retrieve and Rank delivered on the IBM Cloud. IBM Global
Business Services and IBM Research worked with abof to introduce the
service and help create a more engaging and intuitive shopping
experience for customers.
“The business of fashion has experienced extreme change in recent
years,” said Prashant Gupta, President and Chief Executive Officer,
abof.com. “Our aim is to create seamless and convenient shopping
experiences for our customers in the digital world. This is a start of
our cognitive journey and we plan to implement more Watson-enabled
solutions in the future to continue our momentum.”
is the fastest growing e-commerce market and expected to reach $64
billion by 2021. With this exponential growth, India’s retailers need to
drive deeper understanding, better engagement, and leverage data more
efficiently to enhance the customers’ shopping experience,” said Steve
Laughlin, General Manager, IBM Global Consumer Industries. “With IBM
Watson, abof can make the customer shopping experience more
personalized, informed and enjoyable, similar to the engaging service
shoppers could get in a physical store.”
Today’s news builds on the strong collaboration between abof and IBM to
provide an enhanced personalized shopping experience to abof customers.
In 2016, IBM provided abof with a scalable e-commerce platform, seamless
order fulfillment options, and innovative customer engagement features
such as a 3D virtual trial room. Powered by IBM and integrated
technology from business partner Metail, the feature enables customers
to input their body measurements and virtually try on any apparel before
placing an order. Today, these combined capabilities, and the new
cognitive fashion assistant can help abof create end-to-end personalized
shopping experiences that cultivate truly unique buying moments and
ensures prompt delivery of each item, which over time results in
increased brand loyalty and conversions.