Why Also Bought does not support automatic reverse recommendations?
Sometimes we are asked why Also Bought does not support automatic reverse recommendations, i.e., if a product A gets B as a recommendation, why don't automatically B gets A as a recommendation?
While this may make sense at first sight, we tested it and discovered that it could create a lot of other issues and confusion, so we finally decided not to implement this feature.
The main issue is: while B may be a good recommendation for A, the opposite is not always true.
For example, imagine that your customers are browsing a low-profit product and you want to suggest other more profitable products. If we show automatic reverse recommendations, when the more profitable product is browsed, the less-profitable would be suggested.
On the other hand, there are things like the order of the recommendations that cannot be controlled easily. Which one of the reserve recommendations should go first and based on what criteria?
We can think of an inordinate number of scenarios where this reasoning is valid so automatic reverse recommendations is not a "one fits all" solution for all purchase scenarios and may lead to poor recommendations.