MPhil Developing novel e-commerce analytics dashboard for customer and product Insight

Qualification: MPhil

Departments: School of Informatics Management

Application deadline: 30 August 2021

Start date: As soon as possible



Dr John Panneerselvam and Dr Angela Izah

European Regional Development Fund

Project Description:

Books2Door Ltd is a leading online bookseller, which offers exceptional books at affordable prices. With the motivation of promoting online book sales further, the company is looking to exploit the available sales trace logs, and other relevant dataset to become a data-driven and innovate e-commerce business. 

This aim of this MPhil project is to develop analytics methodologies using heterogeneous data sources to generate predictive insights into customer buying behaviour, optimising pricing strategy, inventory management and to predict product performance. Successful applicant will conduct research to investigate state-of-the-art statistical, machine-learning and deep-learning techniques, as appropriate by addressing the contemporary issues in data management and analytics of heterogeneous sources of raw data. The outcome of this project will be the development of a novel data-driven decision support system for Books2Door, which can convert raw data into insights and present such insights in an intuitive dashboard for decision-making. The challenge and novelty lies in the development of an autonomous analytics framework encompassing the following features.

• Map the company metrics that will enable a better understanding of books that can be classed as profitable, high demand, low demand and less profitable, to facilitate right stocking of books for reducing cost, and generating more revenue and profit.

• Identify the optimal price point to maximise total profit, to deliver a competitive advantage within the pricing strategy

• Identify books that could attract a new market or expand current market share

• Understand the current customer base and their buying patterns to promote more sales to current customers

• Inventory slow moving goods, pinpoint these in inventory of 1 million books

• Forecasting price changes of competitors (based on analysing relevant datasets reflecting market trend)

• Predict bestselling books based on internet trends by analysing the correlation between the release of online web series and corresponding book sales.

• Forecasting general sales trends and demands in the market for appropriate book stacking

• Develop an intuitive dashboard to present the aforementioned insights for easy decision making

Midlands Engine



This Industrial MPhil is funded by the Leicester Innovation Hub (through European Development Fund monies) and the sponsoring organisation, Books2Door Ltd.

The studentship provides:

  • Stipend of £1,166.67 for 12 months (total Stipend £14,000) 
  • Tuition Fees at UK/EU rates for 12 months.

UK/EU or international* applicants can apply.  

*international applicants must be able to pay the difference between UK and International fees themselves. The difference in fees for 2021/2 entry will be £16,325.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Essential Requirement 

BSc Software Engineering, Computer Science, Information Technology, Mathematics or related subject areas at UK 2:1 Honours or better or overseas equivalent.

Evidence of English language if applicable.

Desired Requirements

MSc Information Systems, Data Science, Big Data analytics, Computer science, Data Analytics, Business Intelligence or similar disciple.  

A PG diploma in big data analytics or data science may be an advantage. 

Knowledge of computer programming, R, R-studio, Python may also be an added advantage.

Previous work experience on similar projects may be an added advantage.  


Informal enquiries

Informal enquiries

Project enquiries:

Dr John Panneerselvam Email:   Tel : +44 (0) 116 2523883.

Dr Angela Izah Email:

Application enquiries:

PGR Admissions Office


How to apply

How to apply

Please use the Apply button at the bottom of the page and select September 2021 entry.

The MPhil start date is flexible so we will manually amend this if a different start date is agreed.

In the funding section of the application please include the project reference  LIH 334 MPhil Studentship  in the space provided.

In the proposal section please provide the name of the supervisors and project title (a proposal is not required).

With the application, please include:

  • CV
  • Personal statement explaining your interest in the project, your experience and why we should consider you
  • Degree Certificates and Transcripts of study already completed and if possible transcript to date of study currently being undertaken
  • Evidence of English language proficiency if applicable
  • In the reference section please enter the contact details of your two referees in the text boxes provided or upload letters of reference if already available.




The Leicester Innovation Hub is part-funded by European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).    

UK/EU or international* applicants can apply.  

*international applicants must be able to pay the difference between UK and International fees themselves. The difference in fees for 2021/2 entry will be £16,325.

The MPhil student: 

  • have graduated within the last 3 years in a related discipline
  • adhere to project confidentiality; at the start of the project
  • assign any arising IP from the project
  • base their MPhil degree thesis on the research outcomes of the project
  • work closely with the SME company to undertake the research project
  • deliver monthly progress reports and a comprehensive project report to the University and sponsoring SME in addition to the MPhil thesis.