Apple and IBMThirty years ago, Apple welcomed IBM to the personal computer business. This week, news came that eBay has purchased Hunch, a recommendations service whose taste graph technology helps personalize shopping experiences based on users’ interests. We at Baynote would just like to say:

Welcome eBay.

Seriously.

eBay’s move underlines – to the tune of $80M – the strategic importance of personalization to online retailers. More specifically, it validates the critical importance of personalizing based on something other than a customer’s demographics or past purchase history. As pioneers and long time innovators in intent-based personalization, we couldn’t agree more with that emphasis – we wish them well.

Of course, eBay’s move raises the bar for every other online retailer. The more relevant and personalized the shopping experience becomes on a high-volume site like eBay, the higher will be consumers’ expectations for all online shopping.  Fail to meet those expectations at your own peril.

You say you don’t have $80M lying around to throw at other personalization innovators? No problem, we can help. And our price won’t include nearly as many 0’s.