‘Future of e-commerce will be more personalised’

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The future of e-commerce will be more personalised, aiming to provide consumers with customised services, a senior director of China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba Group said on Wednesday.

Paul Fu, Senior Director of User Experience at Alibaba, made the remarks at the South by Southwest (SXSW) conference and festivals in Austin in the US state of Texas, where he delivered a speech on Alibaba’s Singles’ Day Global Shopping Festival.

Fu said that e-commerce in China has been leading the way in global markets, but the e-commerce industry, as a whole, is still at its early developing stage with many areas having room for improvement, Xinhua news reported.

In his speech, Fu said consumers spent over $25 billion during Alibaba’s shopping binge in November, and over 90 per cent of the transactions were made on mobile devices.

Fu also said that e-commerce is moving towards consumer-to-business model from the current business-to-consumer model, and that he envisioned a future in which “businesses provide customised services and experiences based on customers’ specific needs”.

On the application of artificial intelligence (AI) in e-commerce, Fu said AI has already been used during Alibaba’s online shopping festivals and the future application areas of AI will only be broader.

Although AI technology is predominately used in assisting consumers during online shopping, Fu said the technology has huge potential to be used in many other areas such as language interpreting and others.

SXSW, founded in 1987 in Austin, is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of interactive, film and music industries.

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