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Inktomi Upgrades Commerce Engine

Internet infrastructure software company Inktomi Corp. this week unveiled its Commerce Engine 3.0, upgraded to include automated merchandising, targeted opt-in e-mail marketing tools and new feature search capabilities.

In addition, Inktomi Commerce Engine results can now be tightly integrated with the Inktomi Search Engine and other Web search services, "enabling portals and destination sites to unlock new revenue streams without compromising search relevance or performance," the company said.

The Inktomi Commerce Engine is in use by more than 50 companies in a range of markets including portals, destination sites, retailing, banks, credit card services, insurance providers, telecommunications providers, Internet appliance providers and wireless portals.

3.0 enhancements include:

  • Automated Merchandising: Customer sites can incorporate merchandising offers that are automatically generated and targeted from Inktomi's product database, comprising hundreds of merchants and over 5 million products Inktomi's profiling and targeting system dynamically promotes the most popular and successful offers into heavier rotation
  • Search-Commerce Integration: This enables portals and destination sites to integrate relevant product offers with Web search results. For example, a consumer who searches the Web for information on digital cameras would also be presented with matching product listings that link directly to merchant "buy pages."
  • Product Spotlight: This opt-in e-mail marketing platform integrates with Inktomi's product database, merchandising and user profiling systems to drive overall customer relationships and repeat traffic. Users can sign up for offers and alerts via rich HTML e-mail and specify delivery frequency and areas of interest
  • Local Merchants: The upgraded platform includes support for local merchant listings, allowing consumers to select nearby merchants offering services such as installation or same-day delivery
  • Reporting and Analysis Tools: The upgraded Inktomi platform provides a robust billing, reporting and data mining infrastructure capable of supporting complex global partner networks and a variety of pay-for-performance affiliate models

Inktomi's private-label offering encompasses a rich set of outsourced commerce services, including merchant recruitment, XML product database aggregation, full text and product feature searching, targeted merchandising, user profiling and personalization, affiliate tracking, data mining, billing and reporting. Commerce Engine 3.0 is expected to be rolled out during the third quarter of 2000.