Matalan launches groundbreaking GenAI tool in UK retail first


Kin + Carta, the global digital transformation consultancy, has created a generative AI and Large Language Model (LLM) tool for UK retailer Matalan, which allows it to create detailed product descriptions for new items as they are added to its online inventory.

The company said this is a first for the UK retail sector.

Matalan online AI tool

Developed and delivered in only three weeks from the original brief, Kin + Carta built a Generative AI solution that can create product descriptions using product metadata and imagery for Matalan’s full product range.

These product descriptions aid the retailer to improve SEO and conversion rates and create rich, accurate product descriptions with an absolute minimum of data input.

Using generative AI, Matalan can now employ a new style of description that is longer, more emotive and contains added value.

The bespoke model is also configured to read product imagery, picking out details from any photo images to include in the description.

The descriptions are overseen by a copywriter team to ensure accuracy – and the tool can write a hundred descriptions in thirty minutes vs the maximum of a hundred descriptions a day from Matalan copywriters.

Kin + Carta said the tool was built utilising Vertex AI, part of the Google Cloud suite.

Ewan Nicolson, Director of AI & Data at Kin + Carta, said: “This new tool is using generative AI to increase operational efficiency in Matalan’s in-house copywriting team and vastly multiply the number of detailed product descriptions Matalan can post onto its ecommerce site every day.

“This is the type of situation where generative AI is at its best, creating rich, bespoke content in a matter of moments that has a real impact on sales.”

Ali Jones, Chief Customer and Omnichannel Officer at Matalan, said: “As the UK’s first retailer to be leveraging Generative AI in this way, this is a hugely exciting moment for Matalan.

“Not only does it demonstrate innovation into new and so far unexplored areas, but it shows our commitment to putting our customers and the shopping experience first – whether they’re shopping on our website or through the Matalan app.

“This all ladders up to our ambitious business transformation, so it’s a proud moment to be announcing this industry-first, today”.

Matt Hildon, Retail and Travel Portfolio Director at Kin + Carta, added: “Matalan has quickly harnessed the power of generative AI.

“This new technology is ideal for ambitious retailers that are keen to see enhancements to both operational efficiency and the customer journey.”

Kin + Carta said its retail experience is helping create digital native businesses and modernising major retailers in the enterprise space.