On Sept. 19, Etsy announced it had acquired private analytics and AI company Blackbird Technologies to enhance its search capabilities. Since Etsy is an online retailer of rare products and handmade crafts, though, some might question the prudence of its purchase.
Etsy bought Blackbird Technologies for an undisclosed sum of money. What we do know is what the company gets in the exchange: Blackbird’s analytics engine that analyzes shoppers’ behavior to predict and suggest personalized search results, image recognition and cataloguing to enhance user searches, and spelling correction and predictive type to speed up the search process.
In addition to the technology, the techie team at Blackbird will also be joining Etsy, including the two company co-founders. Etsy believes that the team and the technology they have developed will eventually be used in other areas of business outside of search. For example, the AI could be applied to Etsy’s seller services program, which at last report accounted for 58% of the online marketplace’s revenue.