One of our biggest jobs at RedLaser is maintaining and growing our product database. The shoppers who use our app every day depend on us to have the freshest, most accurate, and broadest product information out there. We know it is a bit of a mystery how we get our product data, though.
We start with data from eBay and other eBay-owned companies, like the eBay Commerce Network (just renamed, from Shopping.Com). Not every product on eBay has the UPC information we need to uniquely link it to a product in the RedLaser database, but we work closely with the eBay catalog team to figure out how to push the API to its limits and pull out every match we can. Our biggest risk with eBay data is that we get too many low prices! We run algorithms which identify the eBay results which are most relevant to our users, focusing on showing a range of products — used and new, from top-rated sellers and the occasional hobbyist.
Next, we’ve partnered directly with many of the world’s top retailers. These stores provide us data feeds of all their products. With a select number of merchants, we’ve partnered to make a much easier way to buy, just by putting in your PayPal ID and PIN (these merchants are indicated with green-highlighted prices).
We aggregate all our information, and put it through a rigorous cleaning process (we’ll cover this next week). The best information is added to our catalog, which has grown well over 4,000% since RedLaser was acquired 2.5 years ago, and now covers hundreds of thousands of merchants in nearly any country you can think of.
Fortunately, deciding what prices to show is the easiest part: We sort all online prices from lowest to highest (while local prices are sorted by distance, nearest to farthest), and don’t bias our results in any way, for any partner.
If you’re a retailer or manufacturer, adding your data to RedLaser is easy. Find out more here.