In the e-commerce industry, structured and rich product content is the key to success for any brand. However, launching a new product using tons of spreadsheets is a nightmare for marketers. So, why do brands need a PIM? To manage their product content efficiently. That is why brands rely on Product Information Management (PIM) tools to ease their job across all industries. For example, Philips, LEGO, HP, DELL, Lenovo, Bestway, Braun, and SpinMaster all use a PIM.
If you only have a few products, spreadsheets might still work fine. But what if you need to manage the content of hundreds of products? A PIM tool will be necessary, especially if you have a lot of images and other digital assets, which are crucial for enhancing the online shopping experience. The digital assets regularly get lost within an organization. A PIM is more efficient and time-saving for marketeers than spreadsheet file exchanges. It guarantees uniformity, even if there are tens of product managers working on product content creation and updating these simultaneously.
An internal and dedicated PIM has one significant advantage: flexibility. You can fully customize and design it according to your brand needs. However, developing a PIM tool will entail a considerable investment in time and money to meet the expectations of your marketers.
Alternatively, a PIM in-the-cloud requires relatively little investment. But, it comes at the expense of flexibility, as it is a generic application shared by many different companies with different requirements.
In both cases, plan training sessions for your marketeers and follow up regularly on their product content updates. If your company is new to e-commerce and PIM, starting with a cloud solution is best. You will be familiar with the use and understand your company requirements.
TIP: Train and retrain your marketers, data consistency is essential in the e-commerce.
Digital Rights Management (DRM) is playing a more and more crucial role for brands. Especially in the case of luxury or exclusive brands. They might need to deliver only a part of the portfolio to their channel partners. This option is available in the Icecat PIM. Product managers can limit a brand portfolio and make only a part of it accessible to certain channel partners.
Brands and industries that are more familiar with e-commerce already show a deeper understanding of the flexibility online retailers seek, for example, in the IT, Consumer Electronics, Toys, Telecommunications, and Office supplies markets. They need trustworthy and complete product content. On the other hand, they also want to differentiate their content from their competitors and be unique.
TIP: Balance the needs for retailer flexibility with requirements for brand-controlled content.
Another central point explaining companies’ advanced use of PIM tools and content syndication stems from their vast experience with e-commerce and underlying ICT platforms. Brands like HP, DELL, LEGO, Philips, Lenovo, and retailers all have a 360° overview of the process of product content syndication. From content creation and updates to integrating the various channel partner platforms.
Last but not least, Icecat advises manufacturers to rely on one common PIM across all markets, selected on the headquarter level. A single PIM strategy guarantees “one single truth” in all countries. All benefit from local departments in the different countries where the brand is active.
Whether you opt for a PIM system or not, internal or cloud-based, make sure your product content is structured, rich, up-to-date, and consistent. It will gain online visibility and control of your brand’s online image. Your (selected) channel partners will benefit from search attributes and complete product content. It will increase the online shopping experience, (potential) customers can easily compare products and make the right buying decision.
Read further: News, PIM, product content, product data-sheet
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