1 Universidade Portucalense, REMIT & Univ. do Minho, Centro Algoritmi (PORTUGAL)
2 Finantech – Sistemas de Informação SA (PORTUGAL)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2019 Proceedings
Publication year: 2019
Pages: 11090-11101
ISBN: 978-84-09-14755-7
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2019.2732
Conference name: 12th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 11-13 November, 2019
Location: Seville, Spain
The Web can be regarded as the largest database available and presents a challenging task for efficient design and access. Web mining aims at the discovery and analysis of useful information from the Web through the use of data mining techniques.

In this paper we report our experiences in applying web mining techniques to an e-business platform of a retail company. The company related Web content data and its usage are analyzed with data mining tools. The underlying idea will be to address web marketing purposes, suggesting improvements for both the on-line business and the website. The work reported here in was developed in the context of an Erasmus Intensive Programme (IP) Project, the IP WISDOM (Web Information System Data Organization Modeling) project, where several European higher education partner institutions were involved. The long-run objective of the IP WISDOM is to build an international curriculum in which the partners can subscribe. Each edition of the IP project was, therefore, a part of a long-term project to develop a joint European Curriculum for Web Mining studies.

The practical case in which the project was based is a Portuguese retail company that is mainly focused on the clothing business. A major goal for the project hereby described was to help the company to identify a strategy to improve the sales and marketing for the e-commerce channel.

For the data analysis several data sources were used. These included the website sales data as an excel file, access to the company’s Google Analytics account, a Web server log file and the company profiles in social networks such as Facebook and Twitter as well as videos on the company YouTube account. Interviews with the representatives of the IT and Sales/Marketing departments of the company were also useful to gather additional information about the company business strategy and goals as well as to help to identify the business questions that should be addressed with this study.

Data mining was performed using MS Excel and SPSS software and mostly covered attempts to find useful information and discover relationships and patterns on the data analyzed and extracted from web page contents. Google Analytics was used to mine the web traffic of the website so as to track user activity patterns from usage logs and user interactions with the website.

From the data and web mining performed, it was clear the company website needed to be improved so as to be more effective, attract more visitors/customers and, therefore, become a means to increase online sales. Suggestions for improvement were, thus, identified, so that the company could more easily address these goals. These included SEO and website advertisement, use of a product recommendation system, promotion of online sales, rewarding of loyal customers, improving the interaction with customers through social media, making the website accessible for mobile devices and website load optimization.
International cooperation, International project, Web mining, Web marketing, e-business.