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7.4.0 Release Features and Functionality (August 31, 2017)

New features and functionality in the 7.4.0 BuyerQuest release include: 1. The ability to designate preferred products to provide product search result boosting for any search; 2. Updates to allow suppliers to limit catalog uploads to deltas (changes and additions only); 3. Improvements to numeric searches and support for organization-specific custom synonym sets; and 4. Receipts import. 7.4.0 was released August 31, 2017.

Marketplace Module - Search Improvements

Platform and Tool Set Enhancements to Search

Buyerquest continues to upgrade and refine search features and the toolset available to System Administrators to adjust and finetune search. A number of recent enhancements to the BuyerQuest platform have significantly improved the functionality of search.

For an in-depth discussion of search functionality and platform features available to refine search, see Search Enhancements in BuyerQuest - White Paper.

Improvements to Numeric Searches

BuyerQuest continuously improves search algorithms used by the its search engine. One recent development has focused on improvements to the treatment of special characters in a numeric search, resulting in more effective searching for the dimensional aspects of products. When searches include sizes or specifications  -- such as "1/2" or "1.2"  -- the characters are searched together, significantly improving the expected results. 

Weighting Adjustments Used in Search 

The weighting of fields used by search has been updated to assign greater relevance to terms found in the Product Name rather than in the Short Description.  High-ranking search results feature products whose names contain the search terms, to better align with expectations.

Multiple Term Searches - ‘AND’ Search with ‘OR’ Fallback

BuyerQuest has made further platform adjustments to how the system interprets and presents results for multi-term searches.

When a search is initially run, the system assumes that multiple terms comprising the search are joined by the ‘AND’ search operator; this means all terms must be found in order for an item to be returned as a search result.  For example, if a user searches for ‘green bananas’, the system interprets the search as “find items in the catalog with ‘green AND bananas’ and display those results”.

If no products are identified that match all terms, a message provides the option to see partial matches:

Selecting this option re-executes the search using an OR operator to parse the search terms, returning results where only one of the terms is present. Using the previous example, the system interprets the query as “find items in the catalog with ‘green OR bananas’ and display those results”:

BuyerQuest Or Search Results

See Documentation Topics:

Synonyms Supported for Use in Search

Search Synonyms 

Synonyms are a way to associate similar words or phrases together to achieve a desired set of results. This allows organizations to define - and manage - similar words and phrases to bring more consistency to search results.

As an example, the words “glass” and “cup” can be  associated as synonyms; a search for “cup” or “glass” will provide a similar number and type of results;  however, the ranking of these results may vary depending on other aspects of the configuration.

BuyerQuest has implemented a process for making an organization-specific synonyms file easy to update and deploy on an ad-hoc basis. Requests may be made through BuyerQuest customer support, and deployment will be handled as for custom configuration settings maintained on a per-client basis.This will allow for continuous improvement in search at organizations providing synonyms files, and one that requires minimal overhead to deploy to a given Production instance.

Search Replacements

Additionally, replacement functionality within search can be used to further fine tune results.  For example, in a search for “1/2 in. screw”, a replacement can be defined for “in.” to be replaced with “inch”, and results for “1/2 inch screw” are returned.

Replacement functionality is available to be managed directory by the System Administrator in the Admin Control Panel. 

Search Using Synonyms and Replacements

The following table summarizes how Single-term (for example, ladle) and Multi-term (example, plastic ladle) Replacements and Single-term and Multi-term Synonyms can be used with these enhancements:

 

Replacement - Single Term

Replacement - Multiple Term

Synonym - Single Term

Synonym - Multiple Term

Original - Single Term

Original - Multiple Term

See Documentation Topics:
Search Results Management

Global Search Boost for Preferred Products

Organizations may designate specific products as "preferred" to boost their ranking to the top of any list of relevant search results. When a Preferred Product is found through a search, it is automatically boosted to the top of the results list. 

This "global boost" capability for specific products provides an additional tool for organizations to use in strengthening their guided buying approach. It provides a quick and easy means to mark products for greater visibility across all relevant searches without having to specify multiple variations in the search strings applicable to boosting a given product.

For example, before the implementation of Preferred Products,  a product would need to be boosted within the search results of individual queries such as ‘drill bit’, ‘drill bits’, and ‘½ inch drill bit’.  Now, the product can be set as a Preferred Product, designating it for a global boost, and if it naturally returns in a given set of search results, the system will move to the top of the results list. This significantly reduces the overhead required to manage products an organization would like to feature in search results.

When a product has been designated as a Preferred Product and it is returned in a search,  the system automatically moves this product to the top of the search results, and it is denoted with a Preferred Product badge icon: 

BuyerQuest Preferred Product

Details

  • Designation of a product as "preferred" is enabled in the Admin Control Panel with a new product attribute. 
  • Preferred Products may also be imported through the Master Data Import functionality in both full (complete replacement) and delta (added and changed entries). 
  • Preferred Product information may also be exported. 

See Documentation Topics:

Improvements in Display of Featured Products

Featured Products, as showcased in a widget on the Home Page, benefit from a clearer and more concise display of key information. 

See Documentation Topics:

Platform Module

Receipts Import

Organizations may import receipts in bulk in csv format using the data loading functionality available in the System Administration section of the Admin Control Panel. Batches of receipts may be uploaded in delta mode only, as new records added to an existing store of Receipts

Details

  • The Receipts Import uses a template that contains both header and line-level information.
  • If the Receipt comes from an ERP, the ERP Receipt number is featured in the details page. 
  • A history entry is created on the Receipt and the Purchase Order history also shows a Receipt entry from an external system. 

See Documentation Topics

Suppliers May Perform Delta Catalog Uploads (New and Updated Records)

BuyerQuest expands its advanced catalog management features with the capability for suppliers to load catalog updates rather than reloads of all the items in a catalog. The accommodation for delta uploads offers speed and flexibility in catalog management and applies to the upload of common fields data.

See Documentation Topics: