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GoodRelations - The Web Vocabulary for E-Commerce

This is the archive of the goodrelations dicussion list

GoodRelations is a standardized vocabulary for product, price, and company data that can (1) be embedded into existing static and dynamic Web pages and that (2) can be processed by other computers. This increases the visibility of your products and services in the latest generation of search engines, recommender systems, and other novel applications.

[goodrelations] Search and Matchmaking on GoodRelations Data

Martin Hepp (UniBW) martin.hepp at ebusiness-unibw.org
Mon Feb 1 10:29:27 CET 2010

Dear all,

I am frequently asked whether GoodRelations provides classes and 
properties for describing the product or services included in an offer etc.
There seems to be a bit of confusion. GoodRelations provides two things:

1. A carefully designed set of classes, properties, and individuals for 
describing the offer and demand relationships between a business entity 
and a product.

2. A top-level ontology for specific products and services ontologies 
for describing functional aspects of products and services included in 
offers for sale, lease, repair, etc., i.e.
- gr:ProductOrService as a superclass and
- gr:quantitatativeProductOrServiceProperty, gr: 
qualitativeProductOrServiceProperty, gr:datatypeProductOrServiceProperty 
as superproperties for product features, and
- a bit more.

In "minimal" mode, you can use just part 1 of GoodRelations; it still 
buys you a lot, because you can combine "semantic" search with  fulltext 
search on a much smaller subset

See here: http://www.ebusiness-unibw.org/wiki/GoodRelationsQueries (draft)

Compare a Google search for "camcorder" with a faceted search for all 
GoodRelations offers (gr:Offering) that include at least one
gr:ProductOrServicesSomeInstancesPlaceholder, to which an rdfs:label or 
rdfs:comment is attached that contains the string "camcorder". You will

- search a much, much smaller text corpus (maybe 80 chars instead of 
Terabytes of text)
- narrow your search to English content using the RDF language tag (and 
expand it to other languages using Wikipedia etc.)

Detailed properties for describing the object or service (a camcorder, a 
car, an apartment,...) are being provided by GoodRelations-compliant 
ontologies for individual vertical industries, like eClassOWL, 
freeClass, Consumer Electronics Ontology (CEO), etc.

See here:


Such can be provided and are being prepared by many interest groups in 
relevant markets.

Also, you can use dbPedia URIs and/or turn proprietary catalog 
hierarchies into GoodRelations-compliant ontologies for describing the 
product in more granularity.

There will be recipes for those two alternatives at




The only important thing is that everybody uses the minimal top-level 
ontology part for product types and product features, as described here:


Ideally, there will be one or just a few dominating ontologies for 
product types, at least in a given domain. But you should expect a few 
hundred in reality, and real business matchmaking on the Web of Linked 
Data will require
- a sophisticated,
- iterative (find out how your types of interest are described - popular 
properties etc.), and
- hybrid (combine structural/semantic and text/HLT/Regex) search 
strategy - for a sketch, see


Any shop will increase its visibility on the Giant Graph of Commerce 
Data if he/she

- adds more granularity and
- chooses popular ontologies for the given vertical industry instead of 
just publishing a proprietary vocabulary, even if that was GoodRelations 

This will be the real challenge for future Search Engine Optimization 
using GoodRelations and RDFa. And there will be a trade-off decision 
between the effort and the impact, depending on the quality of the 
source data.

Many shops do currently just have a textual description of their 
products in their databases. We cannot force them to lift all that to a 
fully structured representation in one huge step, because they simply 
can't do that. But they can gradually add more detail.

Also, I have high hopes in OpenCalais and other NLT/HLT products for 
being able to lift minimal GoodRelations data to a more granular.

Again: GoodRelations supports a wide range of granularity - it really 
depends on the technical ability of the owner of the data to provide 

Best wishes

Martin Hepp

martin hepp
e-business & web science research group
universitaet der bundeswehr muenchen

e-mail:  hepp at ebusiness-unibw.org
phone:   +49-(0)89-6004-4217
fax:     +49-(0)89-6004-4620
www:     http://www.unibw.de/ebusiness/ (group)
         http://www.heppnetz.de/ (personal)
skype:   mfhepp 
twitter: mfhepp

Check out GoodRelations for E-Commerce on the Web of Linked Data!

Project page:

Resources for developers:

Overview - http://www.heppnetz.de/projects/goodrelations/webcast/
How-to   - http://vimeo.com/7583816

Recipe for Yahoo SearchMonkey:

Talk at the Semantic Technology Conference 2009: 
"Semantic Web-based E-Commerce: The GoodRelations Ontology"

Overview article on Semantic Universe:

Tutorial materials:
ISWC 2009 Tutorial: The Web of Data for E-Commerce in Brief: A Hands-on Introduction to the GoodRelations Ontology, RDFa, and Yahoo! SearchMonkey 

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