Meet Pete, the e-commerce search product manager.

Meet Pete. Pete’s in trouble.

Underneath his smile, Pete’s worried! Image by Paul M. Bartusch

Pete’s just been hired as Product Manager for Search at electronics retailer Chorus Electronics. His boss, a Vice President, has asked him to build a ‘best-in-class’ e-commerce search engine, to ‘increase customer satisfaction and drive improved revenue’. 

Pete knows that there are lots of customer complaints about the existing search engine. He realises that some of Chorus Electronics’ competitors have a much better search experience – and he doesn’t have the budget of some of the bigger ones like Amazon. He also knows that great search goes beyond simple text matching, and if you get it right it’s a competitive advantage.

He’s worried that their current solution is expensive, doesn’t offer enough flexibility for true innovation and locks Chorus Electronics into a single vendor. He needs to bring control of the search solution in-house – in short, he wants to own his search. He’s been looking at freely available, open source search engines like Apache Solr and Elasticsearch – but these platforms won’t give him everything he needs.

He’ll also need to measure, tune and test search – so his search team can focus on the innovative ideas that will put Chorus Electronics ahead of the competition. Luckily there’s other open source projects that Pete’s team can use for these functions – but integrating them into a cohesive whole will take time and effort.

In this series of blog posts and tutorial videos, we’re going to introduce Chorus, a project that gathers all these tools together – and we’re going to show how we can make Pete’s life a lot easier (and keep him out of trouble!) with practical examples of how to build great search for Chorus Electronics. Chorus is a joint initiative by Eric Pugh, Johannes Peter, Paul M. Bartusch and René Kriegler.

Read the complete Meet Pete series about e-commerce search:
1. Meet Pete, the e-commerce search product manager.
2. How does Pete, the e-commerce search product manager, build a web shop?
3. Pete solves the e-commerce search accessories problem with boosting & synonyms
4. Pete learns about selling search keywords with Chorus
5. Pete finds out how to rate search results to create a judgement list
6. Pete learns how to scale up search result rating
7. Pete learns how to curate search results for a single query
8. Pete establishes a Baseline Relevance Metric
9. Pete improves a new class of queries with redirects