Product discovery is a crucial component for online shopping. However, item-to-item recommendations today do not allow users to explore changes along selected dimensions: given a query item, can a model suggest something similar but in a different color? We consider item recommendations of the comparative nature (e.g. “something darker”) and show how CLIP-based models can support this use case in a zero-shot manner. Leveraging a large model built for fashion, we introduce GradREC and its industry potential, and offer a first rounded assessment of its strength and weaknesses.
Word embeddings (e.g., word2vec) have been applied successfully to eCommerce products through prod2vec. Inspired by the recent performance improvements on several NLP tasks brought by contextualized embeddings, we propose to transfer BERT-like architectures to eCommerce: our model - Prod2BERT - is trained to generate representations of products through masked session modeling. Through extensive experiments over multiple shops, different tasks, and a range of design choices, we systematically compare the accuracy of Prod2BERT and prod2vec embeddings: while Prod2BERT is found to be superior in several scenarios, we highlight the importance of resources and hyperparameters in the best performing models. Finally, we provide guidelines to practitioners for training embeddings under a variety of computational and data constraints.
We investigate grounded language learning through real-world data, by modelling a teacher-learner dynamics through the natural interactions occurring between users and search engines; in particular, we explore the emergence of semantic generalization from unsupervised dense representations outside of synthetic environments. A grounding domain, a denotation function and a composition function are learned from user data only. We show how the resulting semantics for noun phrases exhibits compositional properties while being fully learnable without any explicit labelling. We benchmark our grounded semantics on compositionality and zero-shot inference tasks, and we show that it provides better results and better generalizations than SOTA non-grounded models, such as word2vec and BERT.
We present Query2Prod2Vec, a model that grounds lexical representations for product search in product embeddings: in our model, meaning is a mapping between words and a latent space of products in a digital shop. We leverage shopping sessions to learn the underlying space and use merchandising annotations to build lexical analogies for evaluation: our experiments show that our model is more accurate than known techniques from the NLP and IR literature. Finally, we stress the importance of data efficiency for product search outside of retail giants, and highlight how Query2Prod2Vec fits with practical constraints faced by most practitioners.
In an attempt to balance precision and recall in the search page, leading digital shops have been effectively nudging users into select category facets as early as in the type-ahead suggestions. In this work, we present SessionPath, a novel neural network model that improves facet suggestions on two counts: first, the model is able to leverage session embeddings to provide scalable personalization; second, SessionPath predicts facets by explicitly producing a probability distribution at each node in the taxonomy path. We benchmark SessionPath on two partnering shops against count-based and neural models, and show how business requirements and model behavior can be combined in a principled way.