Artificial intelligence has been powering modern marketing for several years now.
Before that happened, many people thought AI for marketing was a gimmick. But it has since helped forward-thinking marketers make sense of big data, engage customers in the form of chatbots, and all to achieve better customer targeting and personalization.
That last part is now seeing Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI) embraced in web design.
Creating a great site takes time, money, and for first-timers, trial and error. ADI is promising to change that.
In 2016, Jerry Yang, an early investor in the pioneering AI web design startup Grid, properly summed up what AI web development and design is meant to achieve. He said that: “cloud-based artificial intelligence will reinvent web design by eliminating the mundane, time-consuming parts of web development and creating elegant websites in a fraction of the time for a fraction of the cost.”
When the Grid failed flat on its face, even after Fast Company had christened it the “website of the future”, many thought that was it.
But is AI web design down and out?
In this article, we will look at how AI is used in website creation in general. Before that, a quick look at how Wix ADI and Jimdo Dolphin work.
How AI Website Building Work
From Grid, Wix ADI and Jimdo Dolphin followed. But those are just two out of a handful of website builders that are trying to incorporate artificial intelligence into the website building process.
So how does it all come together?
At the heart of the AI website building process is the artificial intelligence algorithm. Groundbreaking info, I know 🙂
The algorithm takes advantage of a huge database of color schemes, website layouts that have shown to work favorably, navigation cues, fonts, images, and templates to put together the structure and look of a website.
To ensure users get the feel or website personality they are looking for, the AI website building platform will pose several questions for you to fill in as much detail as you can.
Wix, the website builder service, introduced Wix ADI in 2016. The company still offers a traditional Editor-type website builder.
Creating an ADI site is simple. Questions you are asked include what your business name is, its location, and what you provide as well as asking you to upload your logo.
Based on the answers you give back, the algorithm analyzes its database, searches for more of your online information (such as your social media channels), compares its data with your responses, and creates a “draft” site you can review – all in a few minutes.
If you like what you see, you can just hit publish. If you don’t, however, you can choose to continue until you find a combination of website elements and color scheme you love.
For example, Wix ADI will analyze your logo to come up with color schemes they can then apply to the rest of the site.
You can still make tweaks to the design or get a professional web designer to help boost its personality.
Jimdo Dolphin and Wix ADI work quite similar. Both take advantage of the fact that web designers use standard design patterns to create a working site.
But, Jimdo Dolphin gives you the option to import Instagram photos for the AI algorithm to use among other improvements they added in late 2018.
Like its Wix alternative, Jimdo Dolphin’s AI algorithm will rely on the answers to basic questions it’ll ask you, compare them to its vast database of website elements and modern design best practices, before showing you a ready-to-publish site.
If you are interested in how good are these algorithms in practice, last year we did extensive testing that covered 5 different AI website builders so you can check that resource for a more detailed comparison.
How AI Is Making the Website Building Process Better in 2020
Here are some major things to expect going forward.
Creating Progressive Web Apps (PWA)
Using Progressive Web Apps means they do not have to install mobile apps that take up space in them while they don’t use the app multiple times a day.
Google recognizes PWAs as well, so they may very well be here to stay.
Creating Pre-made templates
Web designers themselves can now hook into functionalities that allow them to quickly inject content, upload resources, and control permissions. These templates allow almost anyone to create a basic website without much coding experience.
Analyzing and optimizing for SEO
A superpower that AI uses is Machine Learning (ML) technology. That means an AI-based website can record and analyze what checks out as far as search engine optimization is concerned over time and automatically integrate its “lessons learned” to boost the ranking of a website.
That means building websites with AI could soon give the site an upper hand when it comes to visibility, organic traffic, and conversions.
The power of AI also extends to learning site users’ online behaviors, tracking a customer journey across multiple touchpoints and recording all the data in one place, using it to create hyper-relevant buyer personas, and also help with lead scoring them.
Surveyed, 76% of website visitors said the most important factor of web development and design for them was the ability of a website to make it easier for them to find out what they were looking for.
Using predictive analysis, quick reinforcement learning, and the ability to find patterns and organize uncategorized data, AI can help webmasters give their target audiences what they want, when they want it.
User experience optimization
AI is already helping on that front on top of making font (readability), call-to-action text placement, and intuitive website layout (dynamic modular component system) suggestions to improve user experiences site-wide.
These recommendations move us into a sphere of prescriptive analytics which in essence means that not only will AI help you recognize the sources of different issues, but it will also offer you a few viable solutions for every given problem. For example, in the near future, AI might recognize that the main culprit for loading issues your website has for your international audience is because of the limitation of your current hosting provider, prompting you to consider new hosting solutions.
Similar to how artificial intelligence is used by marketers to learn more about, nurture, and finally convert leads to buying customers, AI in website building is playing a huge part in persuading browsers to commit to purchasing.
For example, smart site owners are now combining chatbots, interfaces, and natural language processing powers of AI to provide more conversational, customer-facing exchanges to build rapport, a major contributor to increased sales.
Smart tools such as Mozilla’s Enhanced Privacy Protection are leading the web development community to more transparent, GDPR compliant website tracking. And this is a trend to watch in AI website building going forward.
Boosting security at scale
Many small-scale sites do not have a lot of security concerns. That is until they get much more traffic than they used to and their design and build can no longer keep up with increasing security needs site-wide.
One of the strongest benefits of artificial intelligence for website building is the ability to scale functions with fluctuations in users’ needs, keep track of what’s working, and what could be improved before it goes haywire.
With more people and brands looking to have the latest website features, optimal user experiences, and instant feedback on design changes, artificial intelligence is offering a powerful and quick way to help satisfy all of those demands.
From helping site owners provide real-time personalization to taking advantage of pre-made templates, AI will continue to take an increasingly important role in website development and design in 2020 and beyond.