Machine Learning (ML)

When most people say “AI,” they’re really just talking about basic algorithms that synthesize inputs and spit out low-quality data. When we say “AI,” we’re talking about machine learning. Machine learning models don’t need to be explicitly programmed to provide personalization to each member of your audience. They can look for patterns and reach conclusions on their own, which creates an opportunity for personalization at scales that are impossible for other types of algorithms to achieve.

What is a machine learning algorithm?

An algorithm is series of rules used when performing a calculation, processing data, and reaching conclusions based on inputs. Machine learning is a specific type of model with algorithms that are designed to find patterns without human intervention. The machine learning model arrives at conclusions based on those patterns, and sends them to a computer. Then, the computer can make decisions that are complex and nuanced.

What exactly does that look like?

Imagine that your ecommerce store has 1,000 visitors a day. Those visitors will navigate your website or app, visit multiple pages, and make purchases. And each of them will do it in a way that’s unique to them.

But, even though each visitor is unique, patterns will start to emerge. Customers who search for “trail running shoes” might tend to pick one product in a specific colour over others. Maybe someone who buys a 5lbs tub of whey protein is more likely to buy a Batman shaker than any other cross-sell you offer. Or perhaps users who navigate to your about page and read your brand story historically purchase eyeliner more than any other cosmetic product you sell. These are the patterns that machine learning algorithms will notice.

Then, a technology like Coveo’s ecommerce personalization platform leverages those patterns to provide a customized search and recommendation experience to users. Your users feel more affinity towards your brand because they’re able to get exactly what they want, when they want it. And you’ll reap the rewards when they spend even more money in your store.

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