How a consumer electronics brand reduced counterfeit products within 90 days & saved $15M

Consumer Electronics

Learn how a major consumer electronics company identified and reduced the risks of counterfeit products across several markets by leveraging advanced natural language processing (NLP) technology.

  • 90 days or less was how long it took to identify and reduced counterfeit risks

  • $15M was the estimated costs in savings

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In this case study, we show an example of how a global consumer electronics company identified and reduced the risks of counterfeit products by turning to artificial intelligence technology. In particular, natural language processing (NLP). 

Tracking counterfeit and ‘fake’ goods is a complex and difficult task for businesses. It can be a major challenge for brand management, sales, marketing, and legal teams. Many companies in the consumer goods sector, especially electronics, encounter numerous illegal issues with the online and offline sales of counterfeit products.

The problem of counterfeit and fake goods has been increasing in the last few years due to the growth of e-commerce. With complex supply chains and multichannel sales, keeping track of every single route to market has been all the more difficult. Counterfeit and fake goods are available through unauthorized online channels and even on large legacy sites like Amazon.

Pinpointing exact cases of counterfeit products in consumer feedback

Main Problem

Our client, a multinational consumer electronics company, sells a wide range of innovative digital devices and equipment to their consumers across categories like household appliances, kitchenware, and home office – just to name a few. At the same time, this has, unfortunately, led the company to experience multiple illegal cases of their original products being sold as ‘fake’ replicas and counterfeited versions to consumers.

Therefore, our client was in dire need of a modern solution that could help them to:

  • Automate the collection of a vast stream of customer feedback across various online channels, and within a matter of weeks
  • Automate further the process of sorting and analyzing the data to detect possible counterfeit cases
  • Track and pinpoint specific independent groups or third-party sellers that were susceptible to counterfeiting

Since our client had already been collaborating with Wonderflow on several other projects at the time, they decided to leverage our technology even more to address this particular dilemma. Wonderflow’s features that benefited the client’s situation the most:

Global brand leverages Wonderflow: Playing 'detective' with AI

Main Solution

As an AI-based, unified text mining platform, Wonderflow’s AI utilizes a specific technique called natural language processing (NLP) to automatically scan and analyze our client’s vast stream of structured and unstructured texts (i.e., consumer ratings & reviews). Although the ability to trace counterfeit and fake merchandise using NLP is a relatively novel approach, our technology is advanced enough to do so. Therefore, the client in this particular case was able to: 

  • Quickly access entirely accurate insights: Wonderflow’s AI automatically collected and analyzed both private and public feedback and tirelessly scraped dozens of online platforms ( e-commerce reviews sites, emails, call center transcripts, community forums, blogs, social media, etc.). In turn, insights were delivered within a few weeks, and since the sourced opinions were authentic and unbiased words left by real customers, it makes the given data all the more truthful and valuable.
  • Possess an in-depth understanding of customers, competitors, and the overall industry: Our system could extract and report only relevant results after scanning the entire dataset while simultaneously nitpicking specific target keywords, mentions, or topics (“counterfeit,” “fake,” “duplicate,” “copy,” “not real,” etc.). It also analyzed the entire consumer electronics market for other similar cases, including those of competitors, thus granting our users a 360-degree view. Additionally, as another result, we discovered that in some cases, up to 70% of our client’s products sold on a certain website were, indeed, fake. They were sold as “legitimate” items to customers, which, of course, made the brand feel cheated along with hundreds of thousands of buyers. 
  • Easily grasp all the numbers: New data was then automatically translated into a more comprehensible user language, and also generated clear reports with visual summaries. Consequently, our client’s employees could better understand what kind of counterfeit cases there were, how they occurred based on what customers described, where ‘fake’ items were being sold, and so forth.* Thanks to everything being presented on one screen (our dashboard, the Wonderboard), any relevant department could easily access and share these insights

*After identifying and tracking the possible sources of counterfeits, our team and the client could not convince the fraudulent organizations to remove the counterfeit products from the market. Consequently, our client had to file a lawsuit, which successfully urged the sellers to cooperate better.

Tracked and reduced counterfeit risks within 90 days while saving $15M

Main Results

As a result of leveraging Wonderflow’s technology to help pinpoint and trace specific cases of counterfeits, our client significantly reduced the number of related cases within three months. If the client had hired analysts or the authorities to perform the investigation, it would have taken them months on end to identify and track down the illegal sellers.  

Furthermore, a conservative calculation shown by our client reported that the company saved 15 million dollars in missed sales and from several potential annual costs. The number of low-rating reviews about our client and their affected products was also reduced while at the same time, customers’ overall trust for the brand increased. 

Since then, our client has continued to rely on Wonderflow’s support in monitoring, tracking, and analyzing customer feedback regarding possible counterfeit issues. Consequently, this has significantly helped reduce the future risks of counterfeiting while discouraging the same kind of vendors from committing such crimes even more. 

 

Wonderflow respects the client’s wish to share limited information in this case study. To learn more about how our technology improves businesses, check out our tailored solution pages for Ratings & Reviews Analysis support.

About Wonderflow

Wonderflow empowers businesses with quick and impactful decision-making because it helps automate and deliver in-depth consumer and competitor insights. All within one place, results are simplified for professionals across any high-UGC organization, and department to access, understand, and share easily.

Compared to hiring more analysts, Wonderflow’s AI eliminates the need for human-led setup and analysis, resulting in thousands of structured and unstructured reviews analyzed within a matter of weeks and with up to 50% or more accurate data. The system sources relevant private and public consumer feedback from over 200 channels, including emails, forums, call center logs, chat rooms, social media, and e-commerce.

What’s most unique is that its AI is the first ever to help recommend personalized business actions and predict the impact of those actions on key outcomes. Wonderflow is leveraged by high-grade customers like Philips, DHL, Beko, Lavazza, Colgate-Palmolive, GSK, Delonghi, and more.

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