Key Indicators your Organization needs a PIM
Rich product data lies at the core of a successful e-commerce business. It prompts customers to make well-informed buying decisions.
In the virtual world of e-commerce where the consumer can’t hold the product, complete and accurate product data is what leads to successful sales. If you’re not able to deliver the right information to your consumers, you’re losing their interest and trust in your brand.
Product Information Management
A PIM allows you to manage and simplify all your product data in a single repository and share it with your retailers. You can make faster decisions, communicate easily with your team, and save time on tasks that would otherwise be very tedious and time-consuming.
A key indicator that should drive your company toward exploring a PIM solution is the complexity of your product information. If you’re selling an array of products with different attributes on multiple channels, you need to ensure your data is organised and accurate.
You can’t afford to give out misleading information to your consumers, and expect them to come back to your online stores. But data complexity is just one of many factors. There may be a variety of other factors that enhance your business’s need for a PIM solution.
We’ll now explore some of these factors, and discuss how they can be made easier with a PIM solution in place.
1. You have homogeneous products
A lot of the time your product catalog can have products that share similar attributes. This means you’ll have to go through the repetitive manual task of putting in their features. And that is one mundane and time consuming ride. Also, did I mention how error prone manual tasks can be? Yes, quite.
In a market becoming increasingly dominated by e-commerce, you need to have accurate product information. The slightest inconsistency can leave a lasting impression on your customers, driving them away from your online store.
A PIM solution lets you upload product data aggregately. Instead of copying and pasting features again and again for different products, you can simply select them from a preset category and the system will automatically update all the product data for you.
The best part is that it takes one click to make all your product data go live on your web stores. This is never the case when you’re manually updating data on your e-commerce websites.
2. Your conversion rates are too low
Customer experience and your website’s conversion rate are both positively correlated; the better the consumer’s experience with your e-commerce store, the higher your business’s conversion rate. Give your consumers a sloppy looking e-commerce store with pages taking years to load, and watch that website bounce rate hit the ceiling.
This is the reason why businesses constantly analyse their customer behaviour on-site to see which areas need more work. Through this data, they can understand which part of their website consumers might be having issues with, so they can further improve them.
By analysing bounce rate and other metrics, they can really get hold of the elements that drive users to and from their website. A major factor that often goes overlooked in analysing customer experience is the role of product data.
You might notice a lot of cart abandonment on your e-commerce site, or customers visiting your website but not making a purchase. By analysing customer data, you’ll be able to see that these things are happening, but you won’t know why. It could be the page layout, it could be the load time, or the whole experience itself. But it could also be the product information.
When product data is mismanaged or disorganized, inconsistencies will hurt customer experiences and potentially lead to abandoned sessions during the buying process.
Using a PIM system to manage product layouts, data inputs, and category organization will ensure customers always have a smooth, friction-less experience. When consumers are sure that the product they’re buying is from a trustable and reputable brand providing optimal and accurate information, it will lead to fewer cart abandonments, increased sales, and much higher conversion rates.
3. You want to save time, and focus on other business operations
Have you ever spent a lot of time searching for a file because you don’t remember where you saved it? Or you might have spent hours and hours piecing together your product information, ensuring nothing goes awry?
Maybe you mistakenly entered the wrong data, and you had to edit the whole information again from scratch? Sounds familiar, right? Well, it happens, and more often than you would imagine.
All this ends in one common issue: the loss of time. This lost, or rather wasted time, could have been spent on other activities that enhance your customer’s experience with your business. You could have been strategising ways to personalise your customer’s experience, or planning future advertising campaigns. But you were too busy organising your product data manually when you could have automated the whole process in the first place. How, you ask? With a PIM solution. More precisely, Apimio!
Apimio is a solution that organizes all your product data for you. Your entire team can access the data in one place, and act on it accordingly. Rather than looking through bundles of data to find what you’re looking for, you can access all of it in one place, and update it as necessary.
4. The Go-To-Market time for your products is lower than expected
In a hyper-competitive e-commerce market, getting your products out fast is key to optimum sales. If you’re putting out products slower than your competitors, you’re missing out on opportunities that won’t present themselves again. You’re also allowing your competitors to reach your potential customers before you, and that’s never good in business.
Speed is everything in this fast-paced market, and while there are many different reasons why go-to-market lead time can be delayed, often complex product information is a major reason.
A dedicated PIM system streamlines your product data across all your selling channels, reducing your go-to-market time. By providing your team with a central platform to manage and streamline all your product information, you can ensure consistent and automatic data entry.
Manually putting in data for your products and ensuring that it’s consistent across all channels makes you lag behind in bringing your product to the market. Using a PIM software will automate this process, and with a few clicks your product data will be updated and uploaded to all your channels.
5. You’re managing thousands of SKUs
Managing a large number of SKUs can be very complex, especially when you want to display them on various platforms. Once you’ve crossed a minimum number of SKUs, relying on spreadsheets to manage product information simply becomes inefficient and after a certain point, impossible. Thousands of SKUs mean you need to manually enter the price, style, size, colour, material and other attributes of each of your products. Sounds like a monumental task, doesn’t it? Well, it is. But this can easily be automated.
A PIM solution eases the process of data entry by providing a single source of truth for all your product data. You can easily track and organise information, ensuring consistency and accuracy. Through one click you can update the attributes of all your products that are similar in nature.
6. You want to automate your product data for all sales channels
Manual processes don’t just take up a lot of time, they’re also more prone to errors. One error can ruin hours of hard work. As business processes increase, it can become extremely difficult to carry on with manual work, and some processes must be automated.
PIM is the solution to this. By automating how you manage your product information and ensuring your data is optimised ahead of time, it allows you to deliver the best type of information to your end-user. You can also prepare better for busy sales periods by adding custom product descriptions and images to match your website themes. Customers love to see customisation around different seasons.
7. You’re managing multiple retailers
While initially you may be selling to just one retailer, with time as the business grows, you’ll be selling to multiple retailers. As a manufacturer, this means you’ll have to manage product information from multiple sources. Not having a central solution for it will cause your data to be scattered and difficult to keep track of.
If you’re managing your data manually through formats such as excel sheets, you’re increasing the chances of errors in your product data. If retailers are not given the correct information about your products, it means that such data will reach your consumers, leading to lost trust in your brand, a tarnished brand image, and decreased sales.
Through PIM, you can make it easier for yourself to manage all your retailers and keep them up to date with all the product information. Each retailer may have different requirements as they might target different customers, so having a central database that allows you to tailor your data for each retailer can be very efficient and rewarding.
8. You’re receiving increased complaints from customers about inaccurate product information
Have your retailers been receiving complaints from your customers about getting products that were described very differently on the website? Or the website might be showing an item as available when it’s actually out of stock? Well, that’s on inaccurate product information, and why does it exist? Because your retailers are not communicating the right information to your customers.
These types of issues are bound to arise when you’re managing different products and their data manually. Information can take time to update and upload, and this serves as a major inconvenience for consumers. Not just that, one bad experience with your brand might stop them from re-visiting your online store ever in the future.
Using a PIMs lets you update all product data in real-time, and ensure consumers have access to correct information. You can directly upload all your product information as a manufacturer, giving you more autonomy over how your products are viewed at the public-front.
Rich Product Data is the future of E-commerce
If your business was able to relate to any of the factors we mentioned above, then it’s time for you to implement a PIM software. With e-commerce becoming increasingly popular amongst consumers, product data is only going to become more important than ever. When consumers can’t hold a product, they rely heavily on visual aspects and product descriptions. So if you’re not providing the most optimum information to them, they will shop from another brand that is.
Read about how Apimio can benefit your business here, and make the wiser choice for your business today.
An ERP contains different parts of data, including product, customer, logistics, and financial.
A PIM system on the other hand is designed solely to manage and store product information in a central location, and optimize it for sales and marketing purposes.