Personal Shopping Assistant

Your smart shopping cart across the web

a laptop displaying an app
"Simply fantastic – This app works beautifully. It’s simple to use, reliable and gets out of your way. "
Stefan, PSA fan

About Personal Shopping Assistant

Consumers are overwhelmed by choice in shopping today, choice of products, sellers, and choice in methods to shop for them. Personal Shopping Assistant is a global-first product, ready for multi-currency and multi-country use.

The Personal Shopping Assistant aims to simplify shopping and delight users by putting them in control and helping them make smart choices.

  • Automatically remember all your browsed products
  • Save to favorites and your personal boards
  • Get price change alerts for all saved products
  • Compare products across sellers and make smart choices
  • Suggestions for other places to buy, where available
  • Share one or more products using email or Facebook
  • Supports Microsoft, Google and Facebook login, to access across devices
  • On 1000s of shopping sites around the world
  • Quick favorite button
  • Feedback button and form inside the assistant for easy feedback
  • Support for 27 languages
  • Chat with the Bot assistant in Facebook Messenger
  • See “Other places to buy” within your browse experience (next to blue heart)
  • Available for multiple browsers – Firefox, Edge, Opera and Chrome
  • Available as a skill for Cortana

Read customer reviews on the Edge Browser extension in the Microsoft Store.

Video

Journey

If you shop online for products, you probably end up with a lot of open tabs on your browser, trying to compare sites to find the best deals. With Personal Shopping Assistant, you can bridge web, mobile and in-store shopping journeys into one fluid experience. This tool acts as a digital memory for online research, which can go on for days and weeks. It keeps track of product pages on different sites, and makes it easy to set up comparisons between them.

Since the project first released with the Garage in June 2016, the team behind the project has relentlessly sought to improve and innovate on what started as a simple shopping comparison add-in. From the project launch as a single Chrome extension, they have built for each major browser, created a bot for Facebook Messenger and a first-party Cortana skill.

Anand Sampathkumaran is on the Bing Ads team with the extension’s other creators, Gagan Chopra and Gaurav Jain. They used to run marketplace for Bing Ads, where they picked up experience with algorithms, matching and ranking. Sampathkumaran and his team started looking at browser data on shopping experiences, particularly those shopping for laptops. Their shopping journeys lasted weeks and weeks, as they kept going back to a few products over and over again.

“The Eureka moment is when we realized people have a basket of about 10 products in their head and we could help them make better decisions,” Sampathkumaran says. “We didn’t want them to leave the browser, so we gave them a comparison tool across sellers to see product pages side by side.”

“We launched a quest for personalization of Bing Ads results in 2015,” says Chopra. “As the very first thing as part of this quest, we learned how to observe people, so they get more satisfaction for what they do. We saw how the dots were connecting.”

Sampathkumaran thinks that one of this personal assistant’s biggest features is that it automatically remembers products, key details about it (such as the price) and where users saw it. These automatic captures can be favorited later. The team also found through their user studies that people wanted recommendations on other places to buy items they were interested in – and it’s worked, saving users hundreds of dollars.

“Seeing some of the projects The Garage has done gave us confidence to decisions we were making along the way. With the Garage, we can try things in the market under the Microsoft umbrella, without an existing brand,” Chopra says. “There’s also now more openness and willingness to allow small groups to work together and use open source tools and platforms. With fewer resources, we can do more. Garage facilitates that. We can take something from end to end without requiring resources across the organization.”

“We embarked on this project three years ago, and when we talked to the Garage two years ago, we found a home,” Sampathkumaran adds. “We are completely aligned with Garage’s consumer-centric strategy.”

A major update for Personal Shopping Assistant was released through Garage in June 2017 as the anniversary update. And they aren’t resting on their laurels. Chopra, Jain and Sampathkumaran are continuing to invest in Personal Shopping Assistant, and we can’t wait to see what their next move is.

Team

Personal Shopping Assistant team

Zhaoji Chen, Gagan Chopra, Jason Dong, Jaana Huotari, Gaurav Jain, Gabe O’Leary, Ethan Roday, Anand Sampathkumaran, Kun Shao, Zhuoqing Wu

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