Many e-commerce players claim to be offering good UI and UX to make it easy for consumers to search for products while shopping online. However, it is a fact that many a time consumers struggle to zero in on a particular product on such sites, prompting them to opt for physical stores instead.
Chennai-based East Village Trading Pvt Ltd claims to be solving this issue with its recently-launched intelligent search engine called Tagalys. According to the company, Tagalys has the ability to accurately handle semantic queries by helping the consumer search for more specific items, thus increasing the conversion rates and sales for e-tailers.
“Product search at online retailers is virtually the same as a salesman/woman-assisted business at a physical store. You ask/search for something and expect to get relevant options, with choices of further filtering. This keeps the customers engaged and also increases the chances of getting the search converted into business,” said Antony Kattukaran, co-founder and CEO of Tagalys.
“While heavily-funded e-com sites like Flipkart and Snapdeal can spend millions of dollars to develop intelligent search systems, many smaller companies cannot afford to do so. This is where Tagalys comes handy,” he added.
For instance, if a user types in ‘red striped half sleeve cotton t-shirt’ in the search bar, it will display only relevant products and not the entire range of products coming under each ‘key word’ in the query. “Tagalys has custom algorithms that auto assign tags based on available data, and can scale across categories to handle high traffic,” he said.
The product is customisable so that clients operating in multiple verticals can use it based on their requirements. Tagalys can also increase employee efficiency by automating many manual activities related to search, claims Kattukaran.
The startup was founded by the duo of Kattukaran and Palaniappan Chellappan. An alumnus of University of Wisconsin (the US), Kattukaran had earlier worked at Deloitte and GE Healthcare. Chellappan is an alumnus of Sri Venkateswara College Of Engineering (Tamil Nadu).
Launched last month, Tagalys is currently in public beta. The startup has already bagged two clients – a fashion e-tailer in the US and a grocery e-tailer in India. The company sees massive opportunities for its product in the long term, as there is a steady growth in the number of stores being opened online. The firm is also looking at international markets.
According to Kattukaran, most e-commerce companies don’t understand the value, need or benefit of having an intelligent search in place. Nor do they have the data to make an informed decision.
“The market for search as a service is large and Tagalys will address a subset of it. We are not interested in every e-commerce store though,” noted Kattukaran. Currently a small team of five, Tagalys is looking to hire more people soon.
Talking about competition, Kattukaran said, “Our customer requirements are quite different from other players operating in this space. We have not come across anyone that directly competes with us. There are a few larger players in the market, but I doubt our paths are going to cross.”
With its headquarters in Chennai, Tagalys is also looking to expand its footprint to Bangalore. A bootstrapped company, it is not looking at funding in the immediate future. “Our immediate goal is to get some traction. We will look at funding only after winning some clients,” said Kattukaran.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)