Web Usage Mining Approaches for Web Page Recommendation: A Survey

Web Usage Mining Approaches for Web Page Recommendation: A Survey

H. Inbarani (Periyar University, India) and K. Thangavel (Periyar University, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2542-6.ch014
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Abstract

The technology behind personalization or Web page recommendation has undergone tremendous changes, and several Web-based personalization systems have been proposed in recent years. The main goal of Web personalization is to dynamically recommend Web pages based on online behavior of users. Although personalization can be accomplished in numerous ways, most Web personalization techniques fall into four major categories: decision rule-based filtering, content-based filtering, and collaborative filtering and Web usage mining. Decision rule-based filtering reviews users to obtain user demographics or static profiles, and then lets Web sites manually specify rules based on them. It delivers the appropriate content to a particular user based on the rules. However, it is not particularly useful because it depends on users knowing in advance the content that interests them. Content-based filtering relies on items being similar to what a user has liked previously. Collaborative filtering, also called social or group filtering, is the most successful personalization technology to date. Most successful recommender systems on the Web typically use explicit user ratings of products or preferences to sort user profile information into peer groups. It then tells users what products they might want to buy by combining their personal preferences with those of like-minded individuals. However, collaborative filtering has limited use for a new product that no one has seen or rated, and content-based filtering to obtain user profiles might miss novel or surprising information. Additionally, traditional Web personalization techniques, including collaborative or content-based filtering, have other problems, such as reliance on subject user ratings and static profiles or the inability to capture richer semantic relationships among Web objects. To overcome these shortcomings, the new Web personalization tool, nonintrusive personalization, attempts to increasingly incorporate Web usage mining techniques. Web usage mining can help improve the scalability, accuracy, and flexibility of recommender systems. Thus, Web usage mining can reduce the need for obtaining subjective user ratings or registration-based personal preferences. This chapter provides a survey of Web usage mining approaches.
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Applications Of Web Usage Mining

Personalization

Web Personalization simply means to understand the needs and interests of the visitors of the site and respond accordingly. Such a Web site recognizes each visitor and customizes itself by various ways such as determining the information that should be shown to the visitor or automatically changing the site structure in a way that will be useful and attractive for the current user. Personalization is attractive research topic, because it is critically important for the success of e-commerce companies.

Making dynamic recommendations to a Web user, based on her/his profile in addition to usage behavior is very attractive to many applications, e.g. cross sales and up-sales in e-commerce. Web usage mining is an excellent approach for achieving this goal, as illustrated in Cooley et al. (1999). The WebWatcher (Joachims, et al., 1997), SiteHelper (Ngu, et al., 1997), Letizia (1995) and Yan et al. (1996) have all concentrated on providing Web site personalization based on usage information. The system proposed in Yan et al. (1996) consists of an offline module that will perform cluster analysis and an online module, which is responsible for dynamic link generation of Web pages.

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