Manchester Metropolitan University's Research Repository

Product searching with shopping bots

Rowley, Jennifer (2000) Product searching with shopping bots. Internet Research, 10 (3). pp. 203-214. ISSN 1066-2243

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Shopping bots are an important new innovation which support consumers with the product search and identification stage in e-shopping. This paper reviews the search facilities offered by shopping bots. A number of shopping bots that include books in their product range, have been visited with a view to analysing their search facilities. Using trial searches for three different best-selling books, title, author, and keyword search facilities available in a number of bots were further investigated. Finally the output from the search in terms of the number of items, and suppliers identified, and the price, was analysed. The effectiveness of bots does not only depend upon search facilities but also depends upon product coverage, and other added value features such as publisher and consumer reviews. Consumer search behaviour, in general, and the way in which consumers will use shopping bots are fruitful areas for further research.

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