Home How Small Businesses Can Take Advantage of Recommendation Engines

How Small Businesses Can Take Advantage of Recommendation Engines

Recommendation engines have been an increasingly critical component of the Web in recent years, especially when it comes to retail and finding pretty much anything, from places to eat to films to watch.

Big players like Amazon and Netflix are known for their innovative and effective recommendation engines, the latter of which famously held a contest offering $1 million to anybody who could improve their movie recommendation algorithm.

The State of Recommendation Engines is a sponsored content series by BT Buckets, a leader in personalization and onsite behavioral targeting. Check out their solutions.

That’s great for companies with sizable budgets and a team of programmers, but how do smaller organizations get into the recommendation game?

Sell Products Through Amazon

Amazon has one of the most impressive and admired recommendation engines, and it has taken 15 years, a massive database of information and plenty of resources to perfect. A small company isn’t going to be able to compete with that, but then again, it doesn’t have to.

It may seem like a no-brainer, but rather than reinvent the wheel, smaller companies can simply get on board by selling their products via Amazon. By having products for sale on the eCommerce giant’s site, companies can ensure their products show up as recommendations for users who view or purchase related products.

Social Media Recommendations

This areas is going to be much harder to influence directly, but by having an active (and preferably well-connected) Facebook or Twitter account, a small business can, in effect, opt into each social network’s recommended users feature.

On either site, your ability to show up as a recommended account or page is heavily dependent on who your existing connections are. For example, Facebook tends to recommend Pages to users based on how many of that person’s friends like the Page. In time – if this isn’t the case already – Facebook could start to utilize other details in its Page recommendations, such as location, type of company and keywords found on the wall or info tab of the Page.

Related Content

While it may not always lead directly to revenue, the content on a company blog can be another area where recommendations can come into play for businesses. Most content management systems utilize some form of related content, typically by using tags or categories. A search for “related posts” on the WordPress plugins directory, for example, yields 646 results.

While content recommendations are far less technically complex (and lucrative) than product recommendations, they can be an effective way to keep traffic flowing through a site and hopefully find its way to the checkout page.

We encounter recommendation engines online just about every day. What are some more examples of how small or medium-sized businesses can utilize this technology? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.