The AI shopping assistant is here.

by Jim March 8, 2023

Welcome back! I’m still going on about AI, but it’s hard not to seeing as every other day seems to bring new developments. Bing has integrated ChatGPT for a select few users, and by all accounts it has more than a few issues to iron out. Microsoft’s plan is to integrate it with all their products, so some of my recent predictions are already bearing fruit. Shopify is offering it in their Shop app, making it arguably the first AI shop assistant when it comes to search integration. Interesting times.

What I learned

  • Bing and Chat can be an hilarious duo!
  • Microsoft products will eventually all have ChatGPT.
  • The power of Copilot for coders
  • How we’re using Chat.
  • Bing is reaping the early rewards.
  • Shopify’s AI shopping assistant launches.


Hey, welcome back, Rankers. How you going? I’m going to talk a little bit about AI again. Why? I know this is about the third show with AI or fourth, I can’t remember, but it’s pretty much permeating everything now, and it’s in everything we do. We are using it every day. I’m using it almost as much as I use Google, and that’s a lot! But there’s a bunch of things that have happened since we last met. Bing did incorporate Chat into the search engine, it didn’t go well. It fell in love with a couple of users, at least one journalist. It threatened to kill, well, it didn’t threaten to harm someone, but it did say, “I won’t harm you unless you try to harm me first.” It’s got into arguments with people, it’s neurotic. All sorts of things being funny and interesting.

It seems to happen after an interaction of about 15 back and forths from what I can tell. I’m still on the wait list. I’m not one of the privileged few that’s got it. But if you have access, I’d like to know whether you have experienced any of these sorts of issues and had to fight with the Bing bot or the Bing Chat bot. Even to the point where people have found out what its codename is, what its operating parameters are, all sorts of things. Microsoft said, “Yeah, we’ve got to improve that.”

Microsoft AI Integration

But in other news with Microsoft and the chat bot, it’s rolling out to all their products. So if you are using Office products, you are going to have it in Office products. If you are using Microsoft Edge browser, you’ll be able to talk to the chat bot about the webpage that you’re looking at, things like that. Yeah, it’s quite amazing and some of the things I was talking about a couple of weeks ago have already happened.

Some of the things I was predicting, as you will see, and it’s moving lightning fast, which is why we need to talk about it. Like we are using it all the time for marketing. In fact, this went terribly wrong. I broke ChatGPT because what I was doing is I was grabbing a heap of backlinks off a client’s site, the Google Search Console was reporting, and I wanted to see how I could use ChatGPT to break up these backlinks into different categories.

Anyway, it lost track of what we’re saying, it lost context of the conversation we were having, and then it just went haywire. And then it told me, it said, “Sorry, I’ll apologise for the confusion. That message wasn’t intended for you, it was a mistake.” I said, “Excuse me, who was it intended for?” And it said, “I’ll apologise for the confusion. The message was not intended for you. It appears that I may have accidentally sent a message intended for someone else.”

Well, it does say in the fine print other people may be looking at this content that you are typing with ChatGPT because it’s still in beta, don’t forget. So a lot of other people have been reporting errors with ChatGPT, just getting simple stuff wrong, stuff it doesn’t have access to. Things like it’s not very good at stats for sports before a certain era because that information is not on the internet. Things like that.

So, there’s a bunch of stuff happening around it. That doesn’t mean terribly much except that it needs further training, which has been happening. And they’ve already announced that GPT-4 is coming out, it’s going to be up-to-date, and it’s going to have a lot more training with it. They’re at GPT-3.5. The difference between the ChatGPT and GPT, GPT is just the acronym for generative pre-trained transformer and it’s a horrible acronym like most of these things are in our industry. And the Chat GPT is an application using that technology essentially you can see you can have a conversation.

But more has happened on that front too, which we will get to, but here’s an interesting thing. You can use it for lots of different things. I find it really useful for doing simple code, or even just asking the ChatGPT to explain some code, like upload the code of a page to see. Or you maybe upload a script because there’s a problem with that script, it’s loading slowly, and you want to find out what it’s for. This is a quick way to find that out without having to go through the developer and everything else.

Will it take people’s jobs?

You can just ask ChatGPT and it will tell you, but there is an implementation of GPT within GitHub, which is called Copilot. And Copilot is basically for coders. So, it’s like a ChatGPT essentially, but it is focused purely on code. And what GitHub revealed the other day, and Rowan has tweeted this out, 46% of the code on GitHub when this was published had been written by the AI.

So, what’s the future of coding? Well, coders are saying they’re getting a lot more done. It’s what I said probably a month ago, maybe it was last year, I don’t know, that this is a better paintbrush. Or Steve Jobs said it much better than I did back in the early ’70s when he said, “What man is really good at is creating tools to make our inherent abilities better.” And he was talking about that in the context of personal computing, and he was right. And this is very similar. It is allowing us to do more, and it is just a tool. It’s not magic, it is a tool.

It just appears like magic sometimes, but you can get, so it’s really good for doing code, and things that it has ingested, and understands the language, and it can just go and do it. Where it seems to get things wrong is around calculation, statistics. But I asked about these two authors the other day and these two authors, I said, “Look, can you tell me about these two authors?” They both talk about consciousness and what consciousness is, but I’d like to understand where they crossover and maybe some similarities they may have in their writings.

And I said, I’d like to have that in a table please so I can easily describe it and bang, Walter Russell, Itzak Bentov were the two authors. Here are the key points that they discussed that I asked to see, and then it goes through, and tells me about the differences between the two writers as I threw stuff on the ground.

So, it’s really good for that sort of stuff and you can learn things really quickly, but now I’m sort of doubting a little bit. “I wonder if this is correct. I wonder if it really is correct.” But have a try of using the ChatGPT like that if there’s something that you’re interested in. It might be gardening, it might be cooking, it might be authors that are too heavy or in-depth for you to understand. I’m talking about me, of course, with these authors. And I thought, “There’s no way now I’m going to get through one of these guys’ books, so I’ll just ask ChatGPT to tell me what they’re all about,” and it did. And now I go, “Oh, okay. So, I want to go and find out more about this guy, not that guy because of the information it gave me,” really handy.

Have a look at this. This is a new technology, it’s based on Stable Diffusion, the opensource tech. And Don posted this on LinkedIn, but as you can see there, I follow him on Instagram, just watch this. I’ll have to turn down the volume though, so we don’t hear all that. But what’s happening here is … I might even super impose this video over the top of this in post, but he’s basically acting out physically a scene out of what is it? Indiana Jones Temple of Doom I think it is. And then he’s putting it into Gen-1, which is this application he’s used and then it has, he said make it the style of Indiana Jones. And it’s just taken that video and animated it like that.

So what you can do with say the tools like DALL-E, Midjourney and those sorts of things where you can take an existing image, and say make me something out of this image based on your text prompts. You can now do that with video. It’s just completely insane. I said it was going to be big year for creativity, but seriously I had no idea about this sort of stuff. And then today what happens? ChatGPT announces their API, sorry, OpenAI announces ChatGPT API and Whisper API.

Now what does that mean? Well, it means now all of a sudden you can have AI chat in your applications. So, who has jumped on board with this? A couple of brands you might know; Snap, Shopify, Instacart. Shopify is interesting, which we’ll get to in a second. What’s Whisper API? Well Whisper is an application according to ChatGPT, which is a secure messaging application, which is wrong, case in point. It’s actually, Whisper is an OpenAI tool for transcribing. So it’s essentially voice-to-text and it does it in a number of different languages, dialects. I haven’t tested it yet, but I get this video transcribed that we pay to get this video transcribed by a human. So this all of a sudden just becomes way cheaper and what’s going to happen to those humans? What’s going to happen to the animators? What’s going to happen to all these other people? There is going to be a major disruption.

And as I said before, it’s going to destroy markets and that’s the challenge. I really like what Marty Weintraub said from Aimclear, follow him on LinkedIn, he’s really good. And I’m going to butcher it, Marty, sorry, but that was, “AI is not going to take a marketer’s job, but a marketer using AI will take another marketer’s job.” And I thought, “Yeah, that’s pretty right. “So all of these things, if you’re already doing something well, as I said before, then hopefully tools like this are going to help you be able to do it better. So, I mean, we are using it for ideas, for email flows, for content if we need it, but obviously advertising, category content for shops, things like that. Taking or getting, creating unique descriptions on a catalogue for a retailer so they don’t have the same descriptions as every other retailer that’s buying from the same manufacturer or distributor. So, it’s things like that so you can be unique and be different.

AI Shopping Assistant

So, Shop, the Shop app is now using ChatGPT. And you may remember I did talk about that where I see this heading for search and I thought Google was going to bring out something like this before Shopify, but for the, using ChatGPT to be your shopping assistant, which is what I said was going to happen, but I didn’t think we’d get there so quickly. But here it is already in the Shop app. So if you are listed in the Shop app and you’re a Shopify client, now the game will be how do we make sure that we surface when people are using the Shop app, and they’re using Chat to find particular products that we sell. And that’s the next challenge. I think that could be the next frontier. But search is changing rapidly.

Now, I have been jotting down all my notes and we have been writing stuff down as we find different applications, and uses, and things that we think might be interesting. I took one to my personal trainer the other day, I said, “Have a look at this.” And I said to him, “I’ve got these kettlebells at home, I’ve got some TRX cables, and I’ve got a weights bench, and these are the weights I’ve got.” And so, I put all that into ChatGPT and said, “I’m a 57-year-old man and I’ve got a dicky right knee and this is the equipment I have at home. Can you put together an exercise regimen for me for a week?” And it just went bang, bang, bang, bang, bang using all the equipment I’ve already got.

I’m not going to do the exercise stuff, I’ve got my own regimen already, but it could do it. So I might have died doing the regimen it suggested, but you can go in and tweak these things. It’s just that shortcut of time that it just reduced dramatically by using a technology like this. So, it’s still scary, and it’s still going to make mistakes, and it’s still biased. Like ChatGPT is terribly biased. Microsoft says Bing Chat is, but then Bing Chat’s neurotic. Microsoft say that Bing Chat is not biased, it is, they all are. They’re inherently biased by the people that train them essentially.

So there’s a lot happening in the space. And yeah, just get on board, ride the wave, see where it takes you because it’s already opened up a whole bunch of opportunities for us. And I hope it is for you too. And please, like, share, and subscribe. And if you want a copy of my thoughts on what we are using it for, marketing and different things, not just the technology to necessarily directly do something, but to create something for you separately, then email [email protected].

And if there’s any interest, I’ll send that out to people and I’ll format it a bit better, and put some logos on it and stuff. But if anyone is interested in seeing our thoughts on how we’re using AI in a digital marketing business, then [email protected], email me and I will send you a copy. Hopefully it’s helpful and don’t forget to share, subscribe, and tell your friends. Thanks very much. Bye.

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