Web mining is the process of analyzing an assortment of behavioral, demographic, lifestyle, transactional, Internet and geographic information for the personalization of offers to online consumers in real time. It is the use of artificial intelligence algorithms coupled with data networks for the analysis of all of this information – via software agents which mine these data sets at their original location of storage – triggering targeted offers as consumer events take place. In web mining there is no latency between analysis and action – instead it is one single integrated continuous process – facilitated by the use of strategically positioned software agents to mine and model multiple data sets associated to online consumers.
Web mining can involve all of the traditional data mining processes of classification, segmentation, clustering, association, prediction, and modeling the only difference is that the analyzes result in immediate action. Unlike data mining, web mining is dependant on the use of software agent to trigger targeted offers as events take place in real time. An agent is a program that takes action on behalf of a process, which in this case can be cross and up selling, customer retention, risk assessment, fraud detection and counterterrorism.
Web mining supports the ability to market to individual customers based on the data collected horizontally across multiple data sources about them individually and leveraging it immediately as events or transactions occur, such as when an email is received or a visit is to a website takes place. In web mining real-time data analytics becomes a continuing and iterative process in which business decisions and action are continuously refined and perfected over time in order to offer relevant advertisements, product, services and content to online consumers.
The data components for web mining can involve user-provided information, server log files, cookies, form-generated datasets, email, as well as commercial demographics, life-style information, previous browsing activity, prior sales, transactional data, Internet geolocation, search keywords, re-directs or referrals, and other consumer related behavior. In web mining responses and offers are driven by real time events and interactions. Web mining unlike data mining which existed prior the Internet explosion involves a new paradigm of data collection, integration and analysis. Web mining involves pattern recognition via a seamless stream of activity taking place over a decision network and not a static warehouse. Web mining works by performing data analysis via networks, using software agents to mine, collaborate and discover conditions and features which can lead to increases in sales, cross-selling opportunities and the targeting of specific products or services.
Web mining provides an enterprise the integrated tools for analyzing all type of data sources from multiple departments, from different locations from different formats for an assortment of deliverables such as propensity to purchase scores, risk scores for fraud, prediction of customer behavior or the creation of customer categories or groupings. Web mining enables an enterprise to leverage their everyday communications with actionable knowledge discovery, real-time business intelligence and targeted customer responses. Web mining enables an enterprise to make the right offer, to the right customer, as events take place in real time.