Santa’s little helper: makes decision-making easy this holiday season

December 13, 2012

OCE-supported web-based tool helps consumers make better purchasing decisions on electronic gifts is a decision engine that takes the pain out of buying and improves customer satisfaction by providing personalized, high quality product recommendations.

The number of shopping days till Christmas is dwindling and the campaigns by big box electronics retailers and the like are heating up. Not to mention, those Boxing Day door crashers are right around the corner. If you're not a techie you want to know which electronics make good gifts; if you are a techie you want to make sure you're giving (or getting) the very best. Either way, you want to do your research first – but at this point, is there time? has already done the research for you. This decision engine aggregates information from around the web to help consumers make better purchasing decisions. Using the web-based tool you can enter the features you’re looking for in a camera, TV, laptop, tablet or mobile phone, including your preferred price range, brand, etc. and sort them by your own criteria. You can compare brands or models one-on-one to help you narrow your search. And with easy-to-understand infographic style visualizations, you don’t need to be a product expert to understand why one product is a better choice for you than another.

For example, you’re looking for a tablet for your gadget-happy father. You select tablets on and enter your top price range of $400. You know he’s into high resolution, so you select resolution as a criterion and slide the slider up to the high end of resolution options. You also know that he rarely uses his laptop because it’s too heavy, so you select weight as a criterion and slide the slider to the low end. Immediately you know that Google Nexus 7 is the number one rated tablet that fits your overall profile – and that you can expect to get it for around $225. When you drill down into it, you can see how it compares to the other top two competitors (Apple iPad mini and the Google Nexus 10) in terms of performance, reviews and popularity and its overall score of 92. 

Now that you know what you’re looking for you can browse retailers for the best deal. Many Sortable users opt to make their purchases online, but if you prefer to see the products in person, Sortable’s web-based platform also works on most smartphones, allowing you to compare different products right at the store.

The tool is very popular for camera purchases, likely because there is one for any budget. This holiday season, the site has seen an increase in searches for tablets and TVs as well. This time of year is Sortable’s busiest with traffic picking up the week of Black Friday, often doubling by American Thanksgiving weekend and continuing to increase as the time crunch gets tighter and tighter. 

“Holiday shopping can be stressful, but it doesn't have to be,” says Sortable Co-founder and CEO, Chris Reid. “Sortable can help you do most of your holiday shopping right from your home computer and help you avoid making an impulse purchase you may regret later. We know that our customers are better informed because our retail partners have seen a 75% drop in returns from people who use our service.”

OCE provided Sortable with two rounds of Market Readiness funding to help establish proof of concept and leverage its unique concept across many domains.