Posts Tagged ‘Black Friday’

How BestBuy is SPARQLing This Holiday Season


Jay Myers of BestBuy recently wrote, “Shortly before Black Friday, one of my colleagues approached me with a curious question. ‘Mr. SVP XYZ was talking today about us creating a promo page of ‘stocking stuffers’. Do you think you could produce a list of products that might be ‘stocking stuffers’?’. After some discussion, we agreed that these products would be under $20 and be 5”x5” or smaller to qualify as a stocking stuffer. In a couple hours time we had a SPARQL generated list of 190 products (thank you @bsletten) on a promo page for anyone who searched for the ‘stocking stuffers’ phrase. A classic last minute, rogue (skunkworks?) effort.” Read more

Moviegoer Social Sentiment: Big Data Analysis For Big Business

Like lots of other families over the recent Thanksgiving weekend, we made our way to the movies. Our choice: Life of Pi. We’d highly recommend it, and according to the IBM Social Sentiment Index, as applied to Moviegoer Social Sentiment over the holiday weekend, so too would a lot of other folks. It earned a 90 percent positive rating.

IBM has engaged in the social sentiment index pursuit in some other endeavors – using its advanced analytics and natural language processing technologies to analyze large volumes of social media data, it had another recent take on Black Friday, for example. It tallied up that shoppers expressed positive consumer sentiment on promotions, shipping and convenience as well as the retailers themselves at a three to one ratio (see our story here for other takes on semantic tech weighing in on the holiday shopping season).

It’s also applied its social media analysis smarts to studying births of trends (cycle chic is on the rise), and which tennis player was on the hearts and minds of the crowd at the U.S. Open (Novak Djokovic and Laura Robson winning the love, with positive sentiment scores at 90 percent or better).

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Semantic Tech Checks In As The Holiday Shopping Begins


Photo credit: FlickR/crd!


With Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday and Small Business Saturday behind us, and Cyber-Monday right in front of us, it is clear the holiday season is in full force. Apparently, retailers – both online and real-world – are doing pretty well as a group when it comes to sales racked up.

Reports have it that e-commerce topped the $1 billion mark for Black Friday in the U.S. for the first time this year, with Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, Target and Apple taking honors as the most visited online stores, according to ComScore. Consumers spent $11.2 billion at stores across the U.S. on Black Friday, said ShopperTrak, down from last year but probably impacted by more people heading out to more stores for deals that began on Thursday night. The National Retail Federation put total spending over the four-day weekend at a record $59.1 billion, up 13 percent from $52.4 billion last year.

Not surprisingly, semantic technology wants in on the shopping action. Social intelligence vendor NetBase, for instance, just launched a new online tool that analyzes the web for mentions of the 10 top retailers to show the mood of shoppers flocking to those sources. The Mood Meter, which media outlets and others can embed in their sites, ranks the 10 brands based on sentiment unearthed with the help of its natural language processing technology.  Read more

Give A Little Bit

In addition to getting the best retail deals for friends and family on Black Friday or this very Cyber-Monday, the holiday season also is a good time to think about helping others.

Semantic technology is playing a part in that too – both from the standpoint of consumers who want to reach out and the organizations that want to be reached out to.

DailyFeats, a social platform for positive actions that incorporates detailed semantic understanding about such efforts in order to categorize them and recommend to users related actions (see here), is building up more partnerships for supporting good causes. It’s recently added opportunities for users to redeem the points they earn on the service for partner donations to 501©3 non-profits. For 50 points, Cigna, for example, will make a $1 donation to P2V, which matches military veterans with shelter pets to help them heal from psychological wounds.

Read more, Microdata, RDFa, and Black Friday at BestBuy

Best Buy LogoJay Myers, Lead Web Development Engineer at BestBuy, has moved the proverbial ball forward yet again by creating an implementation of the vocabulary in BestBuy’s Black Friday web pages.

First, a bit of history…

Myers began incorporating structured data into BestBuy web pages in 2009. Starting initially with basic store information (hours of operation, location, contact information), Myers soon expanded the project to include product pages, music data, and the 600,000+ item product catalog. This work quickly became a widely cited use-case for semantic markup. In particular, it brought a lot of attention to the RDFa syntax and the GoodRelations vocabulary. The effort resulted in improved page rankings, richer display of BestBuy search listings in browsers, and — after putting user-friendly tools in the hands of store managers —  enabled Myers to tackle the retail problem of Open Box returns.

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