Shopify Announces New AI tool, ‘Sidekick,’ to Help Entrepreneurs

Shopify Sidekick announcement

“Entrepreneurs are heroes…and every hero needs a sidekick,” said Shopify founder Tobi Lütke, as he revealed a new AI tool — called, yes, ‘Sidekick’ — that aims to revolutionize the management of Shopify stores using the power of artificial intelligence.

In a video released on Twitter to announce the new feature, Lütke described it as having a business partner by your side who is “deeply competent, totally committed to you and available around the clock.”

In the short demo of Sidekick provided during the video, the feature is activated by a ‘Robin’ icon (as in Batman’s sidekick Robin). When this is clicked, a column appears on the right hand side of the Shopify dashboard that lets you ask Sidekick — ChatGPT-style — to do things for you.

In the video, Sidekick is shown performing a range of ecommerce tasks. These include explaining why there had been a drop in a store’s revenue; putting products on sale; changing the product range displayed on a store’s home page; making radical changes to a store’s theme; and writing website copy.

A still from the Shopify sidekick demo where a Shopify merchant asks the tool to explain a drop in sales
A still from the Shopify Sidekick demo where a Shopify merchant asks the tool to explain a drop in sales

No release date has been announced for the feature — but we are informed at the end of the promotional video that it is ‘coming soon.’

2023 has seen an explosion in the popularity of artificial intelligence tools, with AI ChatBot ChatGPT taking the world by storm and the search engine giant Google announcing its own generative AI tool, Bard, in response.

A number of other leading website builder companies — including key competitors Squarespace and Wix —  are currently experimenting with AI features, and given its status as one of the web’s most popular ecommerce solutions, it’s not surprising that Shopify is to keen to harness the power of conversational AI and embed it into its platform too.

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