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Ninth International Network Conference (INC 2012)

Ninth International Network Conference (INC 2012)
Port Elizabeth, South Africa, July 11-12, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-84102-315-1

Title: The Use of Customer Profiles for the Personalisation of User Interfaces
Author(s): Andre Calitz, Sherwin Barlow
Reference: pp125-138
Keywords: E-commerce, Customer Profiling, Product information displays, SOA, Cloud Computing, Windows Azure.
Abstract: Businesses increasingly obtain data and information from customers in order to conduct customer profiling. On-line customer profiling has provided many benefits, including increased sales and the creation of personalised user interfaces. Customer profiling also provides the opportunity to provide product recommendations to customers and to improve customer relationships. Personalised user interfaces or product information displays (presentation modes) used on e-commerce websites are important factors that influence a customer’s buying decisions. The provision of the most appropriate product information display, based on customer product knowledge can increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. Using customer profiling to personalise product information displays with Service Oriented Architectures (SOA) and Cloud Computing is increasingly being used by businesses which provide the ability to purchase products and services on-line.

In this research study an e-commerce website was designed and implemented using web services. The primary objective of this research was to determine whether a relationship exists between a customer’s product knowledge level (novice, intermediate, expert) and a product information display preferred on an e-commerce website. The three most commonly used product information displays used are list, commented list and matrix layouts. The customer’s product knowledge levels were determined using a decision model which was linked to the three different product information displays. The results indicated that a relationship exists between a customer’s product knowledge level and the product information display preferred. The research findings supported related research indicating that customers with a novice product knowledge level prefer a matrix product information display which contained a large amount of detail.
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