Show and Recommend
The boa constrictor in the photo really doesn´t have good reasons for camouflage other that to get close to its prey before attacking.
But you would not hide what you´re trying to sell!
You would not blindfold the sales-persons of your store!
One of the great advantages – for customers and store-owners – are the ears and eyes as well as the experience of those attending the store and its customers. When I walk into a store, similar or complementary products are placed together. When I take a close look at a specific product or even have decided to buy one, the sales person attending usually shows me alternatives or complementary products, even special deals. And I appreciate that. And the store-owner does as well.
So why, if it doesn´t even cost anything, wouldn´t you do the same online?!? Amazon does it. eBay does it. And ever more smaller online vendors also do it.
Now the big players have extensive marketing budgets and even some of the bigger online shops can spend money on developers and consultants. Manually selecting the right up- or cross-selling options is cumbersome and cannot be personalized, hence, will not get the same added value for the customer and in turn not result in the same revenue increase of the shop.
But not everything is about sales and shops. Most of the internet is actually about information. But recommendation engines focus completely on commerce, not on content.
There are dozens of recommendation engines out there. There are those specialized on certain shop systems and those which focus on a certain clientel. Recolize focuses on small and medium sized ventures who do not have a great budget to invest in marketing engines. At least not for now. The software sets them up for free, instantly and starts working with no further input. However, it does give the shop-owner endless possibilities to customize recommendations by product type, price, popularity, location, etc. etc..
…it´s like hiring a sales person who doesn´t cost anything until he or she starts really working a lot or you decide to teach her new tricks 😉