Google’s Riegert: AI Changes Market For Consumers, Enterprises


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Washington — Generative AI has proven that it has the potential to change the way consumers and suppliers alike look at their markets. At a learning session during the Sweets & Snacks Expo titled More In Store: How Generative AI Is Impacting The Grocery Channel, Laura Riegert, director of CPG for Google Cloud, told attendees that part of Google’s mission with its creation and use of artificial intelligence is to make data easy to access and understand. 

Riegert said generative AI evolved from the search feature, and that Google has always expected this change to happen. Instead of one search that may or may not give a direct answer, Riegert said generative AI has the capacity to have a dialogue with the user to find the best solution for them. 

Consumers and enterprises have different uses and needs for generative AI, but it is important in both cases for data to be protected, Riegert said, adding that Google’s priorities for generative AI are to be secure, open, accurate, and user-friendly. 

Riegert used retailers Kroger and Walmart as examples to demonstrate how generative AI is already helping enterprises. Kroger wanted to find a way to maximize associates’ time when they were at work, and by utilizing a task manager powered by AI, Google was able to solve this problem. Walmart used generative AI to save more than $10 million per week in food waste by utilizing Google Cloud to detect and react faster when food was going bad. 

Consumers can optimize their spending and time with generative AI because it uses past searches or queries to give the best response. Riegert used the example of a consumer looking for chocolate almond milk. Using only the search feature is less efficient, because it might show results for chocolate, almonds, or milk, whereas generative AI, as it becomes more logical, can narrow what someone is looking for and give them not only what they are looking for, but cheaper, better options. 

A concern of using generative AI in place of human employees, Riegert said, is the lack of personal interaction in customer service. The solution has been a series of AI-driven customer service improvements that have made it easier to get personalized and contextualized help. This has resulted in a year-over-year 20 percent increase in self-serve checkout rates and a 35 percent reduction in full-serve checkout rates, Google Cloud found. 

Riegert said generative AI has reshaped the market for both enterprises and consumers, and that “whether they want it better, faster, or cheaper, we’ve got this.”