If we had to define artificial intelligence in just one sentence, we would say it is a set of technologies that can take on tasks related to gathering and analyzing data and making decisions based on it. In other words, AI solutions can automate activities that typically require human intelligence. But what does AI for business mean in practice?
Maintaining a solid online presence is no longer a competitive advantage, it’s a must. To stay ahead, businesses need to adapt to continuously evolving technologies, with AI being one of the most promising ones today.
Chatbots, predictive analytics tools, and content personalization are just a few AI-powered solutions that can help companies across various industries enhance their platforms and thus boost sales. No wonder that, according to a 2022 study by IBM, 35% of companies reported using AI in business, and an additional 42% reported exploring AI.
The increasing advancement and accessibility of AI tools mean businesses don’t have to spend tons of money on custom solutions. Instead, they can integrate ready-made ones into their software with a few adjustments. That’s exactly what the Mind Studios team helps explore in this article. So, let’s dive into the specifics of this option together.
Benefits of integrating artificial intelligence for business
Artificial intelligence has consistently been listed as one of the top tech trends for years. The difference between the 2010s and today is that AI-driven solutions are becoming more accessible and advanced, and therefore more attractive for businesses of all sizes. Here are some stats to show how widespread AI is becoming:
- The global AI market size was valued at $136.55 billion in 2022. From 2023 to 2030, it is projected to grow at a CAGR of 37.3%
- According to the NewVantage survey from 2022, 91% of leading businesses they surveyed have ongoing investments in AI
- A study by IBM showed that 54% of companies reported cost savings and efficiencies as a result of using AI
[Source: Grand View Research]
So, what drives all these investments in AI, and why has it been such an unwavering trend for the past decade? Let’s review the most compelling benefits of artificial intelligence adoption for businesses.
One advantage that pushes small and medium business owners to invest in artificial intelligence is the operational cost reduction that comes with this technology.
For starters, AI solutions save time and money by automating manual, repetitive tasks like data entry and processing, meaning the team can focus on more complex strategic tasks and speed up the implementation of business goals.
For instance, if you use Google Analytics or other data analytics services, certain AI solutions can help you analyze that data, get in-depth insights, and thus make more accurate predictions and effective business decisions.
Depending on your field, AI tools can also help with cost reduction through predictive maintenance of equipment, automating customer support, establishing fraud detection systems, and even using AI in medical billing systems.
Enhanced user experience
Engaging new users and retaining existing ones is inevitably connected to business success, and AI can help with this task.
One of the most common uses for artificial intelligence is chatbots created for customer support. Latest NLP models like GPT-4 not only provide the information needed, but are trained to use conversational AI for healthcare purposes. This means businesses can provide 24/7 customer support and thus increase retention while spending less money.
Another example of how AI improves customer satisfaction is its ability to personalize customer support messages, content, recommendations, and ads. To achieve this, AI-powered solutions analyze user behavior and history, which is especially useful for running an eCommerce platform.
Increased efficiency and improved decision-making
In addition to automating manual tasks, artificial intelligence solutions take over the strenuous job of analyzing data. AI can quickly process enormous amounts of various data while eliminating the risk of human error, and provide its users with invaluable insights.
As a result, teams that use AI in their business operations can expect to make more calculated, accurate decisions.
AI data processing solutions cover all kinds of tasks across various industries since they can detect sales patterns, predict future trends, point to promising investment opportunities, warn of financial risks, etc.
For instance, insurance companies feed data from claims to AI solutions to get an accurate forecast of the probability of certain events and adjust their policies accordingly. Another example is manufacturers that request customer behavior analysis and thus make smart decisions regarding which products to invest in.
Finally, if you’ve ever used subscription services like Spotify, you know they are particularly good at providing personalized recommendations based on user’s preferences — and that’s because AI technologies are an integral part of their business models. Now that we’ve gradually come to the point of examples, let’s dive in deeper.
Top AI solutions for business and their features
When implementing AI technologies, businesses are driven by different reasons: for example, B2C companies often want to enhance their customer experience, while B2B companies might pursue lead generation.
Naturally, there are tons of AI solutions to choose from depending on your needs. And while it would be a book instead of an article if we tried to list them all, here are some of the most common and versatile solutions to consider depending on the specifics of your business.
Chatbots, virtual assistants, and voice search
ChatGPT’s example proves that chatbots powered by NLP (natural language processing) models have entered a new era and can now engage in human-like conversations. This naturally opens new opportunities for any business dealing with its end customers directly.
Thanks to services like ChatGPT, companies can provide customer support 24/7 without actually investing in more workers. And eCommerce platforms aren’t the only ones doing it.
Amtrak, the US-based passenger railroad service, has its own NLP-driven chatbot called Julie available on the company’s website and mobile application. Julie understands and interprets customer text or voice inquiries and provides relevant information and personalized recommendations. For instance, the bot can help find the most affordable ticket options, make reservations, or change travel dates.
AI technology is also at the core of voice search solutions since they rely on NLP, speech recognition, and ML algorithms to understand the queries and respond accordingly.
Businesses and eCommerce companies, in particular, are adopting voice search technology into their applications. For instance, Walmart, Target, eBay, and Etsy integrated Google’s voice assistant into their mobile apps to make the shopping experience even more seamless.
Some companies go even further and use voice search to become more engaging for customers. Patron Tequila partnered with Alexa, Amazon's voice assistant, to create a unique voice-activated search feature that walks users through making cocktails.
The company now collaborates with virtual assistants like Google Home and Amazon Echo Show to provide customers with personalized cocktail recommendations from the best bartenders in the world.
Advanced search solutions
AI-powered advanced search tools are based on a combination of ML algorithms and NLP models that provide more accurate and relevant search results. Such search engines expand users' queries by identifying related keywords and concepts that may be relevant to the search.
One of the reasons companies invest in advanced search solutions is enhanced customer experience and personalization that increases retention rate. Let’s say a user goes to Netflix and types in “The Office”, which is no longer available on the streaming service. Instead of seeing “No result” on the screen, there will be recommendations of other sitcoms, which might convince the user to stay and check those out.
So, how can you integrate advanced search functionality? One of many options is Microsoft Bing AI, which can be integrated into software through the Bing Search API. It provides various AI-based features like web, image, video, and news search. Microsoft even gives access to documentation and code samples needed for integrating the Bing Search API.
Real-time content personalization
Personalization is no longer a bonus, it’s a necessity. And AI is exactly what helps businesses make those personalized recommendations nearly 100% accurate. While in the past we were targeting certain segments of users, AI now makes it possible to appeal to every single user individually. Let’s go over some examples.
Adext AI is a tool that helps businesses increase the performance of their digital advertising campaigns by automating the process of ad optimization and targeting. Basically, the AI analyzes data from previous campaigns, determines their best-performing components, and then creates new ads. It also optimizes targeting by finding the right audience across platforms like Google Ads, Facebook Ads, and LinkedIn Ads.
Another useful platform is UberFlip, an AI-powered tool businesses use to create and manage personalized content experiences for every individual user based on their preferences, website behavior, social media activity, etc.
UberFlip can be integrated into your software through the Uberflip API. Developers can also build custom integrations between the platform and CRM systems, CMS, and marketing automation platforms. Additionally, UberFlip offers various analytics tools for businesses to monitor the performance of their content.
Lead generation and data mining
As a rule, the main purpose of software run by B2B companies is to generate leads and collect valuable contact information. And once again, artificial intelligence is the solution to doing it more efficiently.
AI can analyze a business’s existing customer base and other data to identify leading trends and common patterns and help optimize landing pages through text and visual suggestions.
One such AI-based service is ZoomInfo, a database provider that offers lead generation technology to find potential customers for its clients. The AI algorithm of this platform analyzes data from companies’ websites and social media and thus identifies businesses that can be interested in certain products or services.
ZoomInfo has its own APIs that allow developers to integrate the lead generation functionality into existing CRM and marketing automation systems.
Predictive analytics tools
AI-powered predictive analytics technologies provide businesses with solutions to numerous tasks, including predictive maintenance, sales forecasting, fraud detection, and supply chain optimization. Let’s review some examples.
IBM's Maximo is an enterprise asset management (EAM) software that helps businesses manage their equipment, facilities, infrastructure, and other assets. The solution offers several integration options, including APIs and web services.
Commonly used in manufacturing, energy, transportation, and healthcare, Maximo’s predictive maintenance functionality uses data analysis and ML algorithms to detect equipment failures before they actually happen. As a result, companies can prevent equipment downtime and cut maintenance costs.
Another popular use for predictive analytics is sales forecasting, which identifies future sales trends. A vivid example of such solutions is Salesforce's Einstein Analytics. This AI-powered cloud-based data analytics platform enables companies to visualize and analyze their data and gain valuable insights into business performance.
Like most solutions mentioned in this section, Einstein Analytics can be integrated into existing software platforms through APIs and connectors.
Image and video recognition
AI-powered image and video recognition functionality helps businesses automate certain processes, increase efficiency, and improve customer experience. To be more specific, eCommerce businesses use it to automatically categorize products based on images or scan the products and identify defective ones.
Zillow, a real estate company, uses AI-powered image recognition technology to analyze features and amenities in property pictures like fireplaces, balconies, gyms, swimming pools, and so on. This data is then used for property valuation and categorization.
As for customer experience, image and video recognition and analytics tools are often used for content personalization. For instance, Amazon uses image recognition tools within its product recommendation system and analyzes images of the products customers browsed to make custom recommendations.
Suppose image recognition functionality is integrated into mobile apps. In that case, customers can scan products to get more information or take pictures of issues they are having with purchased items and get possible solutions from the AI-powered system.
The AI-based image and video recognition solutions that can be integrated with APIs include Google Cloud Vision API, Microsoft Azure Computer Vision, IBM Watson Visual Recognition, and Clarifai.
Implementing AI solutions
If you are reading this article, chances are you are truly invested in pursuing innovation and making your business stay ahead of the game. So, how do you transform this aspiration into action and embrace the use of artificial intelligence in business? In this section, we’ve prepared a guide to help you do that.
Step 1. Identify the objectives you plan to achieve with AI
The first thing to do before getting started is answer the questions about why you want to integrate AI solutions into your software and what goals you plan to achieve with them. Basically, at this point, you’re just exploring how to use artificial intelligence for the benefit of your business and whether it’s at all possible.
Additionally, you can research how your competitors are using AI in business. As a result, it will be easier to define what kind of processes you want to enhance or automate with AI and start looking for a partner to help you implement this project.
Step 2. Choose the AI solution that suits your business needs
As you know from the previous section, there are tons of ready-to-use AI solutions available for all kinds of purposes. Choosing a suitable tool completely depends on the specifics of your field, the issues you plan to solve with the project, and the budget you can allocate to it.
For instance, if you’re running an eCommerce business, AI-powered chatbots for customer support would be a smart investment, while a B2B company might look into AI-based lead generation tools.
At this point, you can decide on the type of AI your business can benefit from, like an NLP model or a data mining solution. And once you connect with the development team, they can provide you with a list of specific AI products to consider based on their experience and research.
Step 3. Find a development partner to implement the solution
Now that you know what you’re looking for, you can define clear requirements for your project and look for prospective partners.
The team composition will depend on the scale of your project, but ideally, you will need a UI/UX designer, a web or app developer, a QA and DevOps engineer, and a project manager. Additionally, an AI project can benefit from data scientists to help with data refining and management.
All things considered, when working on artificial intelligence implementation, we suggest choosing a software development company that offers a wide range of specialists over hiring individual freelancers.
You might wonder why such a project requires so many specialists. After all, many AI services can be integrated into software via APIs.
The thing is, if you plan to extensively use an AI solution as a full-fledged part of your software, there is a lot of data modeling work to be done, and APIs alone cannot solve it. That is why you require a skilled development team for an AI integration project.
Step 4. Integrate the AI solution and train it if necessary
Before integrating the AI solution, it’s important to set the metrics to help you and the development team measure its effectiveness in the future. Later, this will make it easier to decide whether the solution is worthy of more investments.
After choosing the tech stack and making a development plan, it’s time to get to integration. In some cases, the team might need to prepare data the AI algorithm will be trained on. This process involves feeding information into the model and making adjustments until the AI’s results are accurate.
Once the AI model is trained, the team can integrate it into your software through the necessary code and APIs.
Step 5. Test, deploy, and monitor
When the AI solution is seemingly ready, it’s time to ensure it complies with the development best practices and standards, OS guidelines, and so on.
The more you test your AI, the more accurate and helpful it is. We recommend releasing the new features to a limited number of users so that you can test, collect feedback, and make the solution work flawlessly when officially released to the wider public.
Lastly, remember that AI solutions are not ones you can release and forget about: they have to be continuously monitored, tested, and refined to ensure stable and effective performance.
To sum up, we’ve prepared a checklist with all the crucial stages of the AI integration life-cycle. Feel free to save it for when you’re working on your AI implementation project.
Mind Studios’ experience with AI
Mind Studios has always been driven by innovations, especially when they help us deliver better results. So, it’s no wonder that specialists on our team are highly optimistic about the benefits new AI solutions can bring us and our clients, and are continuously learning how to make the most of them.
As a software development company, Mind Studios takes on projects that need to be created from scratch and ones that need to be upgraded and enhanced with up-to-date technology. This means we can build custom software and enhance it with suitable AI services after conducting proper research, or we can integrate these AI solutions into your existing software.
Moreover, some ready-to-use AI services can be additionally trained on the client’s data. For example, Mind Studios worked with an experimental application that scans wine bottles, provides information on the wine, and offers a list of stores where users can buy it. We integrated an existing AI-based computer vision model to implement this idea and trained it on the client’s database.
Such an approach can be applied to various products and industries. For example, TensorFlow developed by the Google Brain team is an open-source software library offering AI models that can be additionally trained to match the needs of a specific business.
Our team has been using artificial intelligence not just as a way to enhance our clients’ products but to simplify our own work as well. For instance, our UI/UX designer Bohdan shared his experience of using Midjourney, a generative AI program, for one of our projects connected to cryptocurrency.
“We needed to build a landing page and create three visuals to match the services. The points to cover were pretty abstract, and there were no references, That’s how I came to test Midjourney for the first time. I made clear detailed prompts so that the results would match my requirements exactly, and I found the solution that seemed perfectly suitable.
However, the client asked the team to make certain adjustments. And ironically, after experimenting with different prompts and discussing more references, I still ended up creating the design manually by myself.”
Despite the fact the team didn’t use Midjourney’s design in the end, Bohdan believes AI is defining the future right now.
“I think that solutions like Midjourney will become more widespread, and we’ll get to the point where they are integrated into all kinds of software to speed up different operations and make everyone’s job simpler.”
We couldn’t agree more: the fundamental role of artificial intelligence in business is to make success more achievable.
AI implementation helps businesses cut costs in the long run, boost productivity, improve decision-making, and increase user engagement. But above all, it gives them a powerful competitive advantage and helps establish an image of a company embracing innovations if those benefit their customers.
Adopting modern technologies like artificial intelligence gets you a head start in the race to become a leading business in your niche market — and that is worth pursuing.
If you have any questions on how to use AI to your business’s advantage or want to explore the idea you have — Mind Studios is ready to help. Fill in a short contact form, and our business development team will schedule a free consultation for you to answer all your questions and guide you through possible implementation strategies.