Apptus eSales Exposure Strategies 

Expose products intelligently and lift your bottom line

What’s your strategy on your e-commerce site? What’s your business objective? How do you make sure this is reflected on your site?

Apptus eSales Exposure Strategies offer a practical method to answer these questions and integrate your business goals on your site, and there are good reasons to do so. 

E-commerce optimisation quickly gets complicated when you start realising most optimisation services can only affect a small portion of your site, and won't take into account the interactions between various capabilities as Search, Navigation, Recommendations and Ads.

This makes it hard to affect and measure the impact on your entire site, which is probably what matters at the end of the quarter.

Questions

What is Apptus eSales Exposure Strategies?

Exposure Strategies is a function in Apptus eSales that enables merchandisers to select the most appropriate eSales algorithm for product exposure towards different business goals. Think of it as a switch telling most areas on your site to drive towards a certain business objective: conversion, revenue or profit. The switch activates one of the three business objectives.

Apptus eSales Exposure Strategies flow

AConversions
Expose products that sell more 

Lifts products that contribute to
Conversion
 as much as possible and yet trying to conserve Revenue and Profit metrics.

B

Revenue
Expose higher priced products 

Lifts products that contribute to as high overall Revenue as possible with as small negative effect on the other metrics as possible.

C

Profit
Expose high margin products 

Lifts products that generate as much Profit as possible and minimally sacrifice conversions and revenue.

How does it work?

Consider Apptus eSales as a salesman in your store. You can tell him he can sell whatever he wants as long as the achieved sales satisfy your main objective: sell more items, maximize revenue or profit.

For any optimisation to happen on your site you need a conversion to happen, so Apptus eSales keeps track of conversions for you, and essentially stores the conversion properties for every product in your catalogue and how these change over time.

Now, in order to optimise a site for revenue or profit, Apptus eSales estimates expected revenue/ profit when making ranking decisions and learns what works and what doesn’t in relation to the conversion properties. Read more.

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Example of Exposure Strategies A/B test result

A – Expose higher priced products
B – Expose products that sell more

The three result columns illustrate the difference in output measured in conversion, revenue or profit. Upper and lower values in each column indicate the range corresponding to 95% interval of confidence; the middle value represents the average prediction for the metric.

What's in it for you?

It optimizes your exposure while taking advantage of integrated Search and Navigation capabilities.
This makes sure that all inputs from your site are aligned. It also means that if you do not have this functionality you'll need a switch for each and every capability: quite difficult to achieve overnight and impossible to orchestrate with manual work.  

Aligns your exposure strategy with your business objective.
This allows you to adjust the system to your fundamental business profile.

Change exposure strategy on demand. The demand character changes and so need you. Built-in A/B strategy-tests support you to evaluate different alternatives against each other. 

Exposure Strategies impact over time

Ensemble learning top seller algorithm layered with probability methods 

At the core of the exposure strategies capability is Apptus Top Seller algorithm (patent pending, EP 16185313.0, US 15/680 44).

Apptus fashion net

It optimises the fundamental ranking challenge at the heart of most product listings which is very prevalent on e-commerce sites.

To do this efficiently we use ensemble learning methods that inspect and exploit the ideal time interval for how to best rank a top seller list in every given context. 

To catch trends, Apptus Top Seller algorithm benefits of a trend-sensitive approach, which can balance your trending products with your consistent sellers. 

This is extremely important for achieving good results. If you only catch trends you won’t show consistent sellers, and if you only focus on consistent sellers you won’t capture the trends. A balance is needed for an optimal output.

What we’ve done is essentially that we’ve created a second algorithmic layer around our proven Top Seller algorithm using standard probability methods. 

This creates a ‘larger’ algorithm that can evaluate what product selection contributes best towards a given business objective and thus predict sales and select products that are biased towards revenue or profit optimization at will.

Exposure strategies exploit trend opportunities without hurting the consistent sellers.

Four common use cases

merchandising

1. Establish your baseline not just for conversion, but for revenue & profit

WHY: Baseline knowledge is power.

WHEN: This should be the first thing you do after getting Apptus eSales.

HOW: Run an exploratory test of the three available strategies.

EFFECT: Running a test allows you to immediately make an informed choice on the exposure strategy that delivers the best baseline for you.

2. Payday optimisation

WHY: End of the month can be a hotter time for cashing in rather than increasing your customer base.

WHEN: Around pay-day for the current market

HOW:  Move from Conversion Strategy to Profit/ Revenue Strategy

EFFECT:  Depending on your industry, effects can be rather dramatic, we’ve seen profit metric lifts for the given time period of about 5-12%. 

customers shopping
customer browsing

3. Multishop e-commerce

WHY: Using all-in-one business strategy may be limiting. If your profile is high-end fashion you should optimize for revenue or profit. But if you have an outlet profile you should optimize for conversions. And if you cover both, adjust separately for each.

WHEN: On a continuous basis, once you have figured out the objective with each shop.

HOW: Assign different exposure strategies for different shop, depending on its profile.

4. Discount times

WHY: Get rid of large old stocks.

WHEN:  Reduced price periods (after Christmas, beginning of summer, etc.)

HOW: Optimize for Conversion instead of Profit/ Revenue.

EFFECT: Typically you can lift your site wide conversion rate around 3-6%. Layer this with additional savings in stock keeping costs to get a full picture. 

online shopping

Exposure Strategies and customer experience

With Apptus eSales you have now three different experiences connected to the three business objectives.

Choosing one or another determines what products Apptus eSales will show, which makes the exposure strategies capability instrumental and powerful. After all, merchandising = business strategy.  

Exposure strategies is shifting the whole customer experience with one easy to use button and no technical dependence. At Apptus we have consistently witnessed the value of our implementation in many and various industry use cases.

Exposure strategies optimises the whole experience in terms of - autocomplete search details, in what product suggestions you see, and when executing the search in the second results search: the ranking is different depending on the strategy you use.

This is impossible to achieve on a daily basis - you will need to stay dependent on technical people doing these micro-changes and will be still far away from consistency.

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