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Effortless Commerce Experiences

Help shoppers find the most relevant products and content to drive purchases. Upload your catalog and Lucidworks can curate search and browse experiences for each customer, pre-configured to do the work for you.

Intended Audience

Ecommerce and customer experience leaders looking for the best in class technologies to help shoppers find products to purchase

Attendee Takeaway

Learn how leading companies use innovative technologies to understand shopper intent and surface relevant products and recommendations.


Tom Allen, Director Commerce Applications, Lucidworks

[Tom Allen]

Hi, my name is Tom Allen, and I’m a senior product manager at Lucidworks. Today, I’m going to show you our new vision for commerce. 

Everyone is graded on metrics now. KPIs and OKRs are what the industry is using. Bonuses are increasingly tied to these metrics. Let’s look at a few that are important for commerce. 

AOV, average order value. The more a guest is buying at once, the more revenue you’re making. LTV, customer lifetime value. If you can build brand loyalty, you can keep the revenue coming in longer. Conversion rate, an old standby that means different things to different businesses, but it’s vitally important to keep track of. Return rate, an underrated metric. But if guests aren’t keeping a product after they purchased it, you’ve got problems. TTV, time to value. Let’s zoom in on this metric. 

I would argue time to value is the most important metric. If everything you do takes months or years to implement, everything gets more difficult. If you manage an e-commerce site and your goal for the quarter is to increase your core KPIs, a solution that takes that long to implement means you’re missing your bonus. 

On top of that, the last two years has taught us all that no one can really predict future needs. The key is being agile and resistant to shocks in the system. Part of the agile development methodology is conceding that you can’t know everything upfront. The longer it takes to implement something, the less agile you can be. 

So really, time to value can be the convergence of your other metrics. If you implement and iterate quickly, your other metrics will follow. Think of it as the prerequisite for all of your other KPIs. The faster you can demonstrate value to your stakeholders and your customers, the easier it is to get buy-in, the easier it is to tackle the really hard problems. 

A side effect of building a solution towards that time to value goal is lowered time to resolution. With these new solutions, any issue you see, we see. Fixes for these issues can be pushed as they’re done and tested. 

Another big one is time to value on new features. To borrow a phrase, if a new feature on a product is launched but you can’t use it because you’re two versions behind, does that feature really exist to you? Part of these new applications is getting new features in your hands faster than we ever have before. 

I’m gonna switch over to my browser now. So now I’m gonna show our vision for how these new solutions can accelerate your commerce search experience. I’m gonna go ahead and log in here. Now I’m at the entry for managing your applications. We can also manage our users here and invite more of the team to use it. I can see if they have received an activation email and if they’ve clicked on it. I can do all of this without involving IT. 

Let’s go ahead and create a new application. Before we select the application type, I wanna highlight part of our design philosophy. See that “Let us know!” link in the bottom left? We’re striving to introduce feedback mechanisms wherever we can to hear from you as quickly as possible. Anytime that we have a dropdown with options, we wanna add a “let us know” link so that if you don’t see your option there, you can provide us feedback right away. 

And that way we can drive our product roadmap off of your feedback. 

Since I’m building a commerce application, let’s select Product Discovery. I’ve got multiple storefronts across regions, so I’m gonna call this one North America, and I’m gonna give it a short description. Let’s go ahead and click Create. I’ve created my app and it’s showing in the list now, so let’s configure it. We’ve added helpful wizards to guide you during configuration. 

Looks like I’ll need to set up a product catalog and an inventory data source. Let’s get started. I’m going to enter my access keys. We’re initially looking to grab your data for cloud bucket, so I’m gonna add in my access key ID and my secret. 

One thing you’ll notice is that we’re gonna connect to your AWS account right away. This is to provide feedback as soon as possible. If there was a typo on the keys, we wanna know that before you enter the rest of the information. 

Now I need to add my product catalog and inventory source details. So I’m going to give these names and labels. The labels are optional. They’re just mainly there for you to sort through your data. You can see that the Bucket dropdown is all prefilled for you. Because we authenticated with AWS already, we can get a list of buckets that this user has access to. I’m gonna do the same for my inventory. 

All right, let’s move on to the next step. So now I’ve hit the summary. I don’t need to do any index pipeline work or write any code to get that indexing running. All of that is done for you. So let’s go ahead and click Finish. 

So now we finished creating the app and we’re at the hub. There’s a little tour here, but I’m gonna skip that and dive right in. This hub and all of the interface is built for business users. We didn’t build this for search engineers, we wanted to make it simple and guided enough that any business user can come in here and get what they need to done. 

We can view relevant metrics on this hub page. Up here, we have the conversion rate. We can filter by date range. We can see how that’s affecting different segments. Down here, we have tasks. These smart alerts were automatically generated. So in this case, the product has noticed that you are getting new product catalog changes once a week. So we’ve created a smart alert when that change has occurred. 

Down here, we’ve got more metrics. We’ve got our click-through rate, we’ve got our top searches. And down here, we’ve got our null searches. So these are searches where no products are being returned. 

Over here, you can see resolved null searches, and they’re being resolved by Never Null. This is applying AI algorithms to automatically intercept your null searches and show relevant products based off machine learning. This is a feature that is automatically configured for you. You can opt out, of course, but there was no work done to set this up. It was automatic. 

Down here, we have our user segments. You can manage these. You can configure different templates at different segments. So if you wanna have a different template show for women versus men, you can set that up. 

Down here, we’ve got our feature templates. These are set up for your different campaigns. Black Friday is coming up, so I have a campaign landing page for that. And I’ve also got one for holiday for after Black Friday. All of these can be configured and managed here. 

And finally down here, we have our data sources. This is the catalog and inventory we just set up. Looks like the catalog is still crawling. I’m sure it’ll be done soon. 

Let’s switch over to the Merchandiser tab. Here, you can simulate searches and browses as if you were a user on your site. You can change which segment you’re viewing as, and you can manipulate the results in context on the fly. So here I’ve triggered a default landing page. I’m going to switch my segment to women. So now that I’ve switched that segment, I’ve triggered a different template. In this case, I have this trending items zone showing up here. This was added to the template. And again, no setup beyond adding this to the template was required. No coding of the trending items pipeline. This was all done for you. 

Down here, I’ve got my search results. Oh no, I have a women’s segment page and I have two men’s shirts showing as the first two things. I’d better get rid of them. So I’m going to in context block both of these. Now they are hidden from the search results, but that is only on this preview version. I don’t wanna have changes done and affect the live site right away without verification. So now that I verified that the results look good, I’m gonna go ahead, I can see my two changes up here as pending, and I’m gonna hit Publish. 

And now my live site is updated and those men’s shirts are gone. Phew. Now I’m gonna do a search. So I did a search for “blue training tops”. One thing you can see here is our rewrite where we’re automatically filtering and reading from the query that “blue” is color, “training” is an activity, and “tops” is a category. And it’s automatically applied these filters to the search. You can see that I’m seeing some real good results here on the right. This is another one of those features that comes automatically. And I can opt out of this, but I didn’t have to do anything to set it up. 

Features like these, we’re gonna try and introduce as often as we can and roll them out to you as soon as we can. And that way, improvements can happen on the fly over time. 

So that’s a quick preview of our offering, but there’s much more to come. Thanks so much for attending. And if you’re interested in early access to this solution, please fill out our form to talk to us.

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