Maximizing profit using recommender systems
Traditional recommendation systems make recommendations based solely on the customer's past purchases, product ratings and demographic data without considering the profitability the items being recommended. In this work we study the question of how a vendor can directly incorporate the profitability of items into its recommender so as to maximize its expected profit while still providing accurate recommendations. Our approach uses the output of any traditional recommender system and adjust them according to item profitabilities. Our approach is parameterized so the vendor can control how much the recommendation incorporating profits can deviate from the traditional recommendation. We study our approach under two settings and show that it achieves approximately 22% more profit than traditional recommendations.