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Towards an Ideal Store
Searching for Consumer-Inspired
Structures in Product Networks
Kate Li, ISOM, Sawyer Business Schoo...
05/29/2015 2
Directions of Research
● “Product Sets”
– Identify product sets*—short-term consumer-
inspired purchase patte...
05/29/2015 3
Directions of Research
● “Product Sets”
– Identify product sets*—short-term consumer-
inspired purchase patte...
05/29/2015 4
Product Network
● Pairs of products frequently purchased together
– “Together”—within a 4-week window
– “Freq...
05/29/2015 5
Core Products
● Core Products: Products that are frequently
purchased together with too many other, seemingly...
05/29/2015 6
Product Sets
● Identify retailing-related geometric patterns in the
product network—product sets
● The produc...
05/29/2015 7
Cliques
● Complete Clique:
Each product is
connected to each
product; buy at least
two products
together
05/29/2015 8
Stars
● Star: The hub is connected to each leaf; all leaves
disconnected; buy the hub and exactly one leaf
● ...
05/29/2015 9
Pendants and Chains
● Pendant/Chain: Products connected pairwise in a
chain-like fashion; one or both ends ma...
05/29/2015 10
Wheels
● Wheel: A more
complex structure (a
special collection of 3-
cliques)
● A chain of at least three
pr...
05/29/2015 11
Hierarchical Synodes
● Replace the original products with the product sets
(synodes) and repeat the discover...
05/29/2015 12
Directions of Research
● “Product Sets”
– Identify product sets*—short-term consumer-
inspired purchase patt...
05/29/2015 13
Consumer-Inspired Departments
● In an ideal store, the products are organized by the
consumers' purchasing p...
05/29/2015 14
Ideal Store Construction
● Start with the product network
● Replace frequently purchased products with produ...
05/29/2015 15
● Nodes =
departments
● Arcs = co-
purchases
● Node labels =
references to the
original store
departments (i...
05/29/2015 16
How Ideal Is “Ideal”?
● Compare the performance of
the “ideal” store and the brick-
and-mortar (B&M) store:
...
05/29/2015 17
“Real” ≠ “Ideal”!
● The “ideal” store performs almost twice better than
the B&M store!
– The average basket ...
05/29/2015 18
Directions of Research
● “Product Sets”
– Identify product sets*—short-term consumer-
inspired purchase patt...
05/29/2015 19
This part is exploratory so far!
05/29/2015 20
How Long Is a Project?
● Look at the gaps between the store visits in the
same household: long* gaps probabl...
05/29/2015 21
Correlation between Projects
0 7 14 21 28 35 42 49
0.22
0.23
0.24
0.25
0.26
0.27
0.28
0.29
0.30
0.31
0.32
Re...
05/29/2015 22
0 7 14 21 28 35 42 49 56 63 70 77 84 91 98
10
100
1000
10000
100000
Project length for the gap=15, days
Numb...
05/29/2015 23
Project as a Subgraph
All projects Non-trivial projects
Min Avg Max Min Avg Max
Number of products 1 4.68 23...
05/29/2015 24
An Average Project
05/29/2015 25
We just started working on this. Next stage:
Unification and Classification of the extracted
projects.
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Towards an Ideal Store

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Using purchase information to redefine an ideal store?

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Towards an Ideal Store

  1. 1. Towards an Ideal Store Searching for Consumer-Inspired Structures in Product Networks Kate Li, ISOM, Sawyer Business School Zhen Zhu, Marketing, Sawyer Business School Dmitry Zinoviev, Mathematics and Computer Science, College of Arts and Sciences Suffolk University, Boston MA
  2. 2. 05/29/2015 2 Directions of Research ● “Product Sets” – Identify product sets*—short-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns ● “Ideal Store” – Rearrange store departments based on the consumer purchasing behavior ● “Consumer Projects” – Identify consumer projects—long-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns *Formerly known as “tiles”
  3. 3. 05/29/2015 3 Directions of Research ● “Product Sets” – Identify product sets*—short-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns ● “Ideal Store” – Rearrange store departments based on the consumer purchasing behavior ● “Consumer Projects” – Identify consumer projects—long-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns *Formerly known as “tiles”
  4. 4. 05/29/2015 4 Product Network ● Pairs of products frequently purchased together – “Together”—within a 4-week window – “Frequently”—statistically more often than by pure chance ● Arrange the products in a product network – 16,000 products (1.4% of all Store products) – 142,412 connections
  5. 5. 05/29/2015 5 Core Products ● Core Products: Products that are frequently purchased together with too many other, seemingly unrelated, products ● Such as: sodas, buckets, wood studs, paint trays, top soil ● Core products are also staples: they are the most frequently purchased products ● The core products pollute the network – Remove the products with 210 connections or more from the network!
  6. 6. 05/29/2015 6 Product Sets ● Identify retailing-related geometric patterns in the product network—product sets ● The product sets are represented as new nodes in the product network—the synthetic nodes (synodes) ● Synthetic nodes represent consumers' purchasing choices!
  7. 7. 05/29/2015 7 Cliques ● Complete Clique: Each product is connected to each product; buy at least two products together
  8. 8. 05/29/2015 8 Stars ● Star: The hub is connected to each leaf; all leaves disconnected; buy the hub and exactly one leaf ● Substitutable products!
  9. 9. 05/29/2015 9 Pendants and Chains ● Pendant/Chain: Products connected pairwise in a chain-like fashion; one or both ends may also be connected to other products; buy any two connected products (a “link”)
  10. 10. 05/29/2015 10 Wheels ● Wheel: A more complex structure (a special collection of 3- cliques) ● A chain of at least three products, wrapped around a star; buy: – any “chain link,” – the hub and any leaf or – all three products together
  11. 11. 05/29/2015 11 Hierarchical Synodes ● Replace the original products with the product sets (synodes) and repeat the discovery process until no more synodes are found ● Get wheels of chains, chains of cliques, stars of stars, etc. ● New product network: – 9,765 products (was: 16,000) – 27,698 connections (was: 142,412) ● Inspired by consumer purchasing behavior ● Easier to analyze (smaller, more modular)
  12. 12. 05/29/2015 12 Directions of Research ● “Product Sets” – Identify product sets*—short-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns ● “Ideal Store” – Rearrange store departments based on the consumer purchasing behavior ● “Consumer Projects” – Identify consumer projects—long-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns *Formerly known as “tiles”
  13. 13. 05/29/2015 13 Consumer-Inspired Departments ● In an ideal store, the products are organized by the consumers' purchasing patterns
  14. 14. 05/29/2015 14 Ideal Store Construction ● Start with the product network ● Replace frequently purchased products with product sets (synodes) ● Detect communities in the new product network – If two products belong to the same product set, they are represented by one synode and are guaranteed to be in the same community ● Rearrange products based on the community structure
  15. 15. 05/29/2015 15 ● Nodes = departments ● Arcs = co- purchases ● Node labels = references to the original store departments (in the order of decreasing contribution) ● Only the 15 largest and connected departments shown
  16. 16. 05/29/2015 16 How Ideal Is “Ideal”? ● Compare the performance of the “ideal” store and the brick- and-mortar (B&M) store: ― Use purchasing data ― Count the number of visited departments, based on the products (real or synthetic) in each of the 491,511 baskets that has at least one item sold in the “ideal” store
  17. 17. 05/29/2015 17 “Real” ≠ “Ideal”! ● The “ideal” store performs almost twice better than the B&M store! – The average basket contains the products from the same number of department – However, an “ideal” department is smaller than a B&M department “Ideal” store B&M store Departments per basket (absolute) 1.42 1.41 Departments per basket (relative) 0.04 (4%) 0.08 (8%)
  18. 18. 05/29/2015 18 Directions of Research ● “Product Sets” – Identify product sets*—short-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns ● “Ideal Store” – Rearrange store departments based on the consumer purchasing behavior ● “Consumer Projects” – Identify consumer projects—long-term consumer- inspired purchase patterns *Formerly known as “tiles”
  19. 19. 05/29/2015 19 This part is exploratory so far!
  20. 20. 05/29/2015 20 How Long Is a Project? ● Look at the gaps between the store visits in the same household: long* gaps probably separate one project (or project stage) from another ● *What is a long gap? The products purchased before the gap shall differ from the products purchased after the gap ● Operational definition: the inter-project gap minimizes the correlation between the departments from which the products have been purchased before and after the gap
  21. 21. 05/29/2015 21 Correlation between Projects 0 7 14 21 28 35 42 49 0.22 0.23 0.24 0.25 0.26 0.27 0.28 0.29 0.30 0.31 0.32 Real store “Ideal” store Minimal gap between projects, days Correlationbetweenprojects Smallest correlation area
  22. 22. 05/29/2015 22 0 7 14 21 28 35 42 49 56 63 70 77 84 91 98 10 100 1000 10000 100000 Project length for the gap=15, days Numberofprojects How Long Is a Project? 61% of projects are single-trip projects
  23. 23. 05/29/2015 23 Project as a Subgraph All projects Non-trivial projects Min Avg Max Min Avg Max Number of products 1 4.68 233 2 8.56 233 Number of components 1 3.38 103 1 5.2 103 Average degree 0 0.38 13.8 0.06 0.98 13.8 Clustering coefficient 0 0.047 1 0 0.12 1 Density 0 0.105 1 0.002 0.271 1 249,741 projects (96,497 non-trivial projects—i.e., the projects with at least one network connection,—39%).
  24. 24. 05/29/2015 24 An Average Project
  25. 25. 05/29/2015 25 We just started working on this. Next stage: Unification and Classification of the extracted projects.

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