…and why we make them
Google is expanding its artificial intelligence capabilities to help consumers shop for gifts during the holiday season.
Beginning Nov. 16, Google will update its Search Generative Experience (SGE), which brings generative AI capabilities into search, to help customers shop.
Google is also expanding its virtual try-on tool to include men’s tops. A feature to generate photorealistic images of what you’re shopping for will also be available in December.
“This is the first holiday season where generative AI is really a part of the larger cultural conversation,” Julie Black, Google director of shopping product, told USA TODAY.
Search Generative Experience is different than a regular Google search as it uses generative AI technology in the search. It is a feature that consumers can opt into in Search Labs on the Google app, the Google home page or on Chrome desktop.
Beginning Nov. 16, the experience will be upgraded to include shopping. Consumers can put in search terms like “great gifts for home cooks” to see results of products to buy or experiences like a cooking class, said Black.
“Through our research, we find that 28% of people find holiday shopping for others difficult because they just don’t know where to shop,” said Black.
The search will also include articles from publishers for consumers to read more about the subject or product, she said.
To opt in, go to goo.gle/sge-gifts
Google launched a virtual try-on option earlier this year for women’s tops, but is now expanding it to include men’s tops, said Black.
“Generative AI has created opportunities to help bring the traditional fitting room to life and help you understand what a piece of clothing will look like on you,” said Black.
Google research has found that 80% of online apparel shoppers are more likely to buy a piece of clothing online if they feel confident about how it will look on them, she said.
Beginning Nov. 16, the virtual try-on experience is expanding to include men’s tops with a try-on icon at brands like Abercrombie & Fitch, Banana Republic, J. Crew and Under Armour. A photo library of virtual male and female models range from size extra small to 4XL and represent a variety of body types, ethnicities, hair types and skin tones, Black said.
Another new feature, which will be available in December, will use AI to generate photorealistic images using words put in the search tool to find products based on those images.
The search will be combined with 35 billion shopping listings on Google.
“It allows me to really quickly and iteratively explore visually the space of products and more easily move from what’s in my mind’s eye to what’s in my shopping cart,” said Black.
Betty Lin-Fisher is a consumer reporter for USA TODAY. Reach her at blinfisher@USATODAY.com or follow her on X, Facebook or Instagram @blinfisher.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Google is expanding use of AI to help with holiday shopping. Here's how
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…and why we make them