Amazon buyers will soon have a new way to shop in app with Rufus, an AI-powered conversational shopping assistant.
Rufus is an expert shopping assistant trained on Amazon’s product catalog and information from across the web to answer customer questions on shopping needs, products, and comparisons, make recommendations based on this context, and facilitate product discovery in the same Amazon shopping experience customers use regularly.
Launching today in beta to a small subset of customers in Amazon’s mobile app, Rufus will progressively roll out to additional U.S. customers in the coming weeks...
...Rufus is a generative AI-powered expert shopping assistant trained on Amazon’s extensive product catalog, customer reviews, community Q&As, and information from across the web to answer customer questions on a variety of shopping needs and products, provide comparisons, and make recommendations based on conversational context.
From broad research at the start of a shopping journey such as “what to consider when buying running shoes?” to comparisons such as “what are the differences between trail and road running shoes?” to more specific questions such as “are these durable?”, Rufus meaningfully improves how easy it is for customers to find and discover the best products to meet their needs, integrated seamlessly into the same Amazon shopping experience they use regularly.
With Rufus, customers can:
- Learn what to look for while shopping product categories: Customers can conduct more general product research on Amazon, asking questions such as “what to consider when buying headphones?”, “what to consider when detailing my car at home?”, or “what are clean beauty products?” and receive helpful information to guide their shopping mission.
- Shop by occasion or purpose: Customers can search for and discover products based on activity, event, purpose, and other specific use cases by asking a range of questions such as “what do I need for cold weather golf?” or “I want to start an indoor garden.” Rufus suggests shoppable product categories—from golf base layers, jackets, and gloves to seed starters, potting mix, and grow lights—and related questions that customers can click on to conduct more specific searches.
- Get help comparing product categories: Customers can now ask “what’s the difference between lip gloss and lip oil?” or “compare drip to pour-over coffee makers” so they can find the type of product that best suits their needs and make even more confident purchase decisions.
- Find the best recommendations: Customers can ask for recommendations for exactly what they need, such as “what are good gifts for Valentine’s Day?” or “best dinosaur toys for a 5-year-old.” Rufus generates results tailored to the specific question and makes it quick and easy for customers to browse more refined results.
- Ask questions about a specific product while on a product detail page: Customers can use Rufus to quickly get answers to specific questions about individual products when they are viewing the product’s detail page, such as “is this pickleball paddle good for beginners?”, or “is this jacket machine washable?”, or “is this cordless drill easy to hold?”. Rufus will generate answers based on listing details, customer reviews, and community Q&As.
Amazon of course isn't the only ecommerce company leveraging AI to enhance both the buying and selling experiences on their platforms.
Shopify added a conversational AI-powered shopping assistant to the Shop app and web experiences in early 2023.
Mercari also jumped on the bandwagon with their own chatgpt assistant in April 2023.
And Etsy just launched Gift Mode recommendation tool to help buyers find the perfect presents for all the people and events in their lives last month.
AI is also being increasingly added on the seller side to help create and enhance product listings.
eBay has been teasing a "Magic Listing" tool to help sellers create a full listing using only an image - supposedly "coming soon."
Poshmark is also working on image-based AI-powered listing functionality.
And Mercari has already launched the beta version of their similar tool.