Aiming to take the stress out of holiday shopping, brands are delivering custom product recommendations both in-store and online

While holiday shopping is a joy for some, it can strike fear in the heart of many, and for good reason. Retailers are reducing the time and “content-fatigue” online and in-store browsers can experience, leveraging data analysis tools and AI to quickly produce relevant product suggestions based on users’ personal preferences, previous purchases and similar products.

Through guided gift lists, chatbots and more, brands are putting emphasis on content catered for consumers needs rather than maximizing options. Here's how top retailers are marshaling AI tools to improve customers' search experience as well as offer tailored support:

American department store Macy's created personalized gift guides in the form of Instagram carousels targeting specific recipients, such as a user’s friends or family members. To join, customers have to answer questions about their interests and price range in order for the Instant Gift Guide to generate a list they can swipe through, with the final frame being shoppable.

Monetate x Bazaarvoice
Personalization platform Monetate and consumer-generated content firm Bazaarvoice partnered to increase personalization during this holiday season. Monetate will use Bazaarvoice’s shopper profiles to help brands create product recommendations aimed to turn first-time holiday shoppers into loyal customers after the holidays are over. The companies aim to use shoppers' experiences and online behavior beyond one-time gift-buying to boost post-holiday consumer engagement strategies that improve brand loyalty.

Saks Fifth Avenue
Luxury department store Saks Fifth Avenue partnered with chatbot company Headliner Labs to launch a Holiday Gift Guide chatbot on Facebook Messenger. Users can take a quiz to see recommended gifts “For Him,” “For Her” or “For Kids.” The chatbot will ask users questions about the person they’re shopping for and, based on their answers, it will suggest gifts that can be purchased on the Saks Fifth Avenue website. Over time, the chatbot learns to adjust the gift suggestions it presents to users based on the items users have purchased or browsed.

These are just a few retailers who are providing guided recommendations for their customers for the holiday season. For more examples visit PSFK's The Holiday 2018 Retail & Brand Experience Strategies report.