Timing when to buy

Rakesh Agrawal, Samuel Ieong, Raja Velu

Research output: Chapter in Book/Entry/PoemConference contribution

4 Scopus citations


Most e-commerce sites to-date have focused on helping consumers decide what to buy and where to buy. We study the complementary question of helping consumers decide when to buy, focusing on consumer durables. We introduce a utility-based model for evaluating different approaches to this question. We focus on how best to make use of forecasts in making recommendations, and propose three natural strategies. We establish a relationship between these strategies, and show that one of them is optimal. We conduct a large-scale experimental study to test the performance and robustness of these strategies. Across a wide range of conditions, the best strategy obtains 90% of the maximum possible gains.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCIKM'11 - Proceedings of the 2011 ACM International Conference on Information and Knowledge Management
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 2011
Event20th ACM Conference on Information and Knowledge Management, CIKM'11 - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: Oct 24 2011Oct 28 2011

Publication series

NameInternational Conference on Information and Knowledge Management, Proceedings


Other20th ACM Conference on Information and Knowledge Management, CIKM'11
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • automated shopping
  • recommendation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Decision Sciences
  • General Business, Management and Accounting


Dive into the research topics of 'Timing when to buy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this