Nearshore Americas

Automation VS Customer Experience: The Case of Amazon Go

In today’s world, where technology is advancing by leaps and bounds, its relevance in virtually every aspect of our lives is undeniable. In the retail arena, technology has transformed the way people shop and companies interact with their customers. However, in this sea of technological advances, it is crucial to remember that the human factor and the customer experience are fundamental elements that should not be underestimated.  

It is indisputable that technology has enabled companies to better understand their customers through data collection and analysis. Segmentation based on accurate information has made it easier to offer more personalized products and services, tailored to individual consumer preferences. This personalization has been well received and has boosted customer loyalty and satisfaction.

However, the mistake lies in thinking that complete automation of the purchasing process, without human intervention, is always the best option. 

The absence of human presence in the case of Amazon Go stores exemplifies how too much technology can lead to a disconnect between a company and its customers. Although the idea of cashierless stores seemed innovative and attractive in terms of efficiency, they neglected a crucial aspect: the customer experience.

The absence of human presence in the case of Amazon Go stores exemplifies how too much technology can lead to a disconnect between a company and its customers.

Customer experience is not limited to a simple commercial transaction. It is a set of interactions that a customer has with a brand from the beginning to the end of the buying process. It involves emotions, perceptions and sensations that influence the purchase decision and loyalty to a company.

In the case of the Amazon Go stores, while the technology behind them was impressive, the lack of human contact meant that customers lost that warm, personal connection that an employee provides. Human interaction is essential to establish trust, resolve doubts, provide personalized recommendations and create an emotional bond between the brand and the customer.

It is important to remember that each customer is unique and, although technology can collect data on their preferences, only a human being can fully understand the deeper and more subtle needs of each individual. Empathy, creativity and personalized treatment are elements that only human beings can bring to the shopping experience.

This does not mean that technology should be discarded; on the contrary, it should be used as a tool to enrich human interaction and enhance the customer experience. The combination of technology and the human factor is the ideal approach to achieve a balance that delivers the best results.

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The customer experience should always be the primary focus for any retail business. Technology should be used to better understand customers and personalize the offer, but it should never completely replace human intervention. Empathy, emotional connection and personalized treatment are aspects that only employees can provide, and are essential elements in maintaining customer satisfaction and loyalty.

True success in retail lies in finding the balance between technology and human interaction to provide an unforgettable shopping experience.

Abelardo Cruz

Abelardo Cruz is a cybersecurity and AI researcher with experience in both the public and private sectors.

Abelardo graduated as an Electronics and Telecommunications Engineer from Mexico’s National Polytechnic Institute (IPN). He holds a double master’s degree: one in Optoelectronics & Electro-Photonics, from the National Institute of Astrophysics, Optics and Electronics (INAOE); and another in Autonomous Electronic Celular Architectures, from the National Center for Technological Innovation (CNIT).

He worked with Mexico’s Center for Investigation and National Security (CISEN) in 2016, helming the development and implementation of the country’s strategy against cyber crime. He was also Sub-Director of Cybersecurity at the Bank of International Settlements and is currently the CEO of cybersecurity firm DEFTEKK, which he founded.

Since 2018, Abelardo has been deeply involved in the research and development of neural network and AI technologies.

His lines of work currently include cybersecurity, neural networks, AI, advanced technologies and general AI.

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