FAST First eCommerce Vendor to Integrate Personalized Recommendations with Site Search, Navigation & Merchandising

Kurt Peters

Leading Online Retailers Now Have a Single Platform for Building Dynamic, Personalized Storefronts

Shop.org, Las Vegas, NV – September 17, 2007 – Fast Search & Transfer™ (OSEAX: FAST.OL) (FAST™), the leading global provider of search technologies, today unveiled FAST Recommendations, a new personalized recommendations offering integrated with its existing search, navigation and merchandising platform, FAST ImPulse. With the addition of personalized recommendations, FAST is the first and only eCommerce software vendor to provide online retailers a complete platform for building next-generation, personalized, search-powered online storefronts, helping to drive revenue, reduce complexity and costs, and improve reliability and performance.

"In the last few years, site search and navigation have become critical components of eCommerce technology because they give shoppers a more effective means to search and browse without getting overwhelmed by extensive online product catalogs," said Rachel Happe, research manager for IDC`s Digital Marketplace group. "Today, innovations in recommendation technologies have taken eCommerce to the next level by filtering catalogs based on consumers’ behavior and preferences, giving them a way to discover relevant products that they may not have otherwise sought out and driving higher conversions for online retailers."

By learning the preferences and interests of each and every shopper, FAST Recommendations helps online retailers deliver a truly personalized “micro store” for each customer. Easily deployed on a live eCommerce site, FAST Recommendations builds a personal profile for every customer based on their searches, product views, purchases, and any other information that is explicitly provided, such as their age or gender. The software then creates relationships between like products and content based on the interaction of shoppers with the storefront, and delivers real-time, dynamic recommendations anywhere on the site. FAST Recommendations include not just the familiar “related-item” recommendations, but also personal and social recommendations to provide multiple paths to discovery.

“Choosing a single vendor for all ‘filtering’ technologies, from search, to navigation, to recommendations, will help major online retailers cost-effectively build the dynamic, personalized storefronts that only a few like Amazon and Netflix have achieved today,” said said Joe Lichtman, vice president of product management, FAST Search & Transfer. “Our integrated solution allows online retailers to deliver true personalization and manage all online merchandising from a single application, helping them achieve their key goals of increasing conversions and order values, and building extreme loyalty with customers.

A Unique Approach to Discovery Content
Most recommendations tools and services are limited because they rely on knowledge of products in a specific category, such as movies, or lack the intelligence to filter out one-off events unrelated to a customer’s personal profile. These limitations can result in poor recommendations and lost revenue. FAST Recommendations provides unmatched value to online retailers because it forms content relationships based purely on shopper behavior, and uses a patented approach to identify and remove unrelated or one-off events. As a result, online retailers can effectively up-sell and cross-sell between categories and can provide truly personal, relevant recommendations – helping to drive conversions and order values to new levels.

“It’s increasingly important for e-commerce sites to use recommendations, in addition to advanced search and navigation, to help improve stickiness and increase revenue,” said Justin Ziegler, co-founder and Head of IT at PriceMinister (www.priceminister.com). “As one of the largest European C2C marketplaces and a longstanding FAST customer, we have greatly benefited from FAST’s leading solution for e-commerce search and navigation. We look forward to evaluating FAST Recommendations, which should help us better serve our shoppers and give us a leg-up on the competition.”

FAST Integration, Scale & Performance
Online retailers who partner with FAST now have a single vendor for site search, product discovery and online merchandising, helping to reduce the cost and complexity of building dynamic, online storefronts and personalizing merchandising strategies. From a single merchandising console, online merchandisers can now manage search terms, facets, promotions, and recommendations, as well as view live analytics to identify and respond to trends as they occur. Furthermore, customers will benefit from FAST’s unmatched performance and scalability, SOA-based flexibility and the highest R&D; commitment in the industry.

About FAST
FAST is the leading global provider of enterprise search technologies powering some of the world’s best known companies. FAST helps its customers deliver applications and services that connect their users to the right information, the right products, and the right people. By making search a central part of business infrastructure, FAST’s customers leverage search to drive business results. FAST’s solutions are used by more than 2,600 global customers and partners, including America Online (AOL), Cardinal Health, CareerBuilder.com, CIGNA, CNET, Dell, Factiva, Fidelity Investments, Findexa, IBM, Knight Ridder, LexisNexis, Overture, Rakuten, Reed Elsevier, Reuters, Sensis, Stellent, Tenet Healthcare, Thomas Industrial Networks, T-Online, US Army, Virgilio (Telecom Italia), Vodafone, and Wanadoo.

FAST is headquartered in Norway and is publicly traded under the ticker symbol `FAST` on the Oslo Stock Exchange. For further information about FAST, please visit www.fastsearch.com.

© 2007 Fast Search & Transfer and FAST are trademarks of Fast Search & Transfer ASA. The FAST logo, FAST ESP are registered trademarks of Fast Search & Transfer ASA. All rights reserved.


Dell, Fast Search & Transfer, Netflix, Online shopping, personalization