Intelligent Merchandising Service Promises Smarter E-Commerce

Mon, 02/06/2006

Intelligent Merchandising Service Promises Smarter E-Commerce

DEMO 2006, PHOENIX, Ariz., February 7, 2006 - CNET Channel, a property of CNET Networks, Inc. (Nasdaq: CNET), today announced a new service for making e-commerce smarter. Intelligent Cross-Sell™ (ICS) is a powerful yet simple-to-use service for e-commerce retailers that breaks through today's complex, manual process of selecting and cross-selling compatible products. ICS enables retailers to quickly and easily identify and cross-sell complementary products, such as the best accessories for a notebook computer, based on their specific merchandising criteria, including available inventory, profitability or manufacturer marketing program preference.

ICS, which will be available in Q2 2006, allows retailers to target and test across millions of product combinations. It will initially be offered to customers of CNET Channel's DataSource™ database of technology product content. With multi-vendor and multi-lingual product content on more than 2.4 million IT, consumer electronics and appliances SKUs, DataSource provides a rich foundation of detailed product content on which to run ICS.

"Merchandising is a complex field that has resisted automation, even for online businesses," said Chris Shipley, Executive Producer of DEMO 2006, the influential industry conference where ICS debuted today. "I selected Intelligent Cross-Sell to appear at DEMO 2006 because it is an innovative and practical solution for a woefully underserved area."

Although it is a key aspect of merchandising, choosing which products to cross-sell together has traditionally been done manually, like creating a seating chart for a dinner party. But with thousands of products, and millions of potential combinations, charts or spreadsheets cannot handle the complexity. So to keep the problem comprehensible, merchandisers take shortcuts, such as cross-selling the same accessory combinations across an entire category. These shortcuts result in lost sales and a diminished customer experience.

By contrast, ICS allows e-commerce merchandisers to systematically target and test for which products sell best together, regardless of the number of products. For example, a merchandiser can target mice as accessories for notebook computers by a key selling feature such as Bluetooth, the wireless standard. ICS will then automatically select Bluetooth mice, but only for notebooks that are Bluetooth-capable. The merchandiser can then further prioritize Bluetooth mice by popularity, profitability, manufacturer, or various other factors. Based on this targeting, ICS selects, delivers, and measures the resulting cross-sells.

"ICS works like a good salesperson thinks: Is this accessory compatible? Is it by a featured manufacturer? Is it popular?" said Steve Krause, Vice President of Analytic Products for CNET Channel. "The result is better choices for customers. And when customers have better choices, retailers sell more."

ICS's initial release will focus on CNET Channel's customer base of English-language retailers and resellers, who rely on DataSource to power their internal and e-commerce systems.

For more information about Intelligent Cross-Sell, please visit its dedicated Website, or call 1-877-276-5560.

About CNET Channel
CNET Channel (, a division of CNET Networks, is the world's leading independent source of product information, supporting both online catalogs and traditional sales processes with detailed content on over 3.2 million technology products worldwide. Over 2,100 high technology manufacturers and channel businesses in 35 national markets depend on CNET Channel to deliver world-class content solutions that maximize their sales effectiveness and minimize the cost and complexity of providing accurate and useful product information. Customers include Best Buy, CDW, CompUSA, Dell, HP, Insight, OfficeMax, Sony, Tech Data, Zones and many more.

About CNET Networks, Inc.
CNET Networks, Inc. (Nasdaq: CNET, is an interactive media company that builds brands for people and the things they are passionate about, such as gaming, music, entertainment, technology, business, food, and parenting. The Company's leading brands include CNET, GameSpot,,, CHOW, ZDNet and TechRepublic. Founded in 1992, CNET Networks has a strong presence in the US, Asia, and Europe.

About DEMO
The annual DEMO conferences focus on emerging technologies and new products, which are hand-selected from across the spectrum of the technology marketplace. The DEMO conferences have earned their reputation for consistently identifying tomorrow's cutting-edge technologies, and have served as launch pad events for companies such as Palm, E*Trade, Handspring and U.S. Robotics, helping them secure venture funding, establish critical business relationships and influence early adopters. Each DEMO conference features approximately 70 new companies, products and technologies. For more information on the DEMO conferences, visit

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