Tech retailer will use The Filter’s discovery platform to suggest products to customers

Maplin partners with Peter Gabriel firm to boost its shopping experience

Maplin has teamed up with a business founded by musician Peter Gabriel to improve customers’ shopping experiences.

The retailer will use discovery technology developed by The Filter, which was established in 2004 by Gabriel.

Maplin said that it will use the platform to “to recognise significant shopping patterns and combine these with an individual’s taste to deliver predictive personalised suggestions to customers”.

“We’ve long known about our ability to increase consumption and engagement in digital media, but more recently we’ve been working to prove our technology in ecommerce by creating new features that offer shoppers personalised product and navigation choices and give retailers valuable predictive insights,” explained James Routley, CEO of The Filter.

“Winning this deal with Maplin underlines the success we have had in transitioning from digital media to retail. The results have been stunning. We look forward to helping Maplin achieve a considerable uplift in revenue for their online services.”

An explanation of The Filter’s technology states that the platform “ingests the product catalogue of the service, records interactions then blends a number of types of recommendation”, including:

Popularity – “The most basic measure. More popular choices are boosted, particularly where there is little evidence of personal user taste.”

Tag relatedness – “This is relatedness based upon similarity and relatedness of metadata (category, product name, description, brand, etc.)”

Consumption relatedness – “This is relatedness based upon techniques evolved from ‘collaborative filtering’, whereby groups of users that display similar consumption habits are used to influence the recommendations given to other users like them.”

The service also utilises “consumption data from a particular user (historic and ongoing), a taste profile for each user and a blend of the above recommendations biased towards each user’s taste.”

“The blend of all of the above is adjusted to present the ideal combination of familiarity and discovery for each service. This approach allows the service to learn from the consumption patterns of individuals and groups.”

“Personalisation can be applied to search results, product and content recommendations, navigation options and communications.”

“Personalised discovery will give Maplin a significant market advantage,” added Esther Allen, Maplin Electronics’ head of ecommerce.

“Our goal is to create the best shopping experience for each customer, one that will both enable them to find the products they love quickly and discover new products they may not have discovered otherwise.”

Existing customers of The Filter include BT Vision, Nokia, SBS, Blinkbox, Fuhu and Vudu.

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