Inspiration

I was looking for shelves to put up in the basement and turned to the Questions & Answers section on the Wayfair PDP page to get some questions answered. Once the question got submitted it was not clear if the questions got submitted successfully or not. As a result I submitted a 2nd time too and got 2 responses from the customer service reps. Given the above experience, I was determined to find a better/faster way in case I did not want to make a phone call or chat with a rep.

What it does

It answers questions our customers ask when shopping for products on Wayfair in real-time.

How I built it

I built it using the following components:

  1. Used the hack day project at https://devpost.com/software/wayfriend (by Amanda Mattson, Jack Bauerle, Jared Jones) as the UI container
  2. Fed a few SKUs to platform T's crawler such that it could scrape the data and create models for the same
  3. Updated the backend and integrated it with T's question answering API

Challenges I ran into

I have not worked much on UI technologies and am not aware of the anatomy of the PDP. The quickest way I could think of to get my hack up and running was to fork off the branch for project https://devpost.com/software/wayfriend. I was very clear about what I wanted to achieve but the biggest challenge was to translate my vision into modifications at different points in the code.

Results

Here are certain questions and answers:

https://www.wayfair.com/bed-bath/pdp/wayfair-basics-wayfair-basics-1800-series-6-piece-sheet-set-wfbs1741.html?&experiencetype=2&selectedvertical=7

What is the length of the flat sheet?

Dimensions King Size Flat Sheet 102'' Width x 105'' Length; Dimensions California King Size Flat Sheet 108'' Width x 102'' Length; Dimensions Queen Size Flat Sheet 90'' Width x 102'' Length; Dimensions Full Size Flat Sheet 81'' Width x 96'' Length; Dimensions Twin XL Size Flat Sheet 66'' Width x 102'' Length; Dimensions Twin Size Flat Sheet 66'' Width x 96'' Length;

What is the length of the king flat sheet?

Dimensions King Size Flat Sheet 102'' Width x 105'' Length; Dimensions California King Size Flat Sheet 108'' Width x 102'' Length

https://www.wayfair.com/furniture/pdp/trent-austin-design-adalberto-tv-stand-for-tvs-up-to-65-with-optional-fireplace-trnt4127.html

What is the BTU output?

The btu output is 4400 btus.

What is the width of the middle shelf?

The width of the middle shelf is 20.75\". The official answer 'The middle shelf is 15" W.' is incorrect

https://www.wayfair.com/furniture/pdp/darby-home-co-nadine-7-piece-breakfast-nook-dining-set-daby2015.html

Are the chairs counter high or standard?

NOTE: None of the answers are picked as relevance is below the threshold set

The official answer 'The chairs counter are standard.' should probably read 'The chairs are standard.' but this is an example where the question is beyond the bounds of the product data and needs to be submitted to the customer service queue.

What's next for Wayfair Real-time Answer-generation Platform

  1. Decide on the actual UI experience (a chat like interface or our current Questions & Answers interface?)
  2. Integrate with platform T's capability of in-context understanding of a series of such customer utterances in order to return the right result for both new and follow-up inquiries. For e.g. if a customer asks 'What is the width of the pillow case?' and follows up with 'And the length?', it can relate the 2nd question with the 'pillow case' context.
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