The best Approach to Effective Ecommerce Catalog Management

Ecommerce Catalog

What do you do when someone from your sales team, marketing team, customer support, retailers, or distributors needs specific product details?

You look for it in your product catalog and pass on the information. But what happens if the information is not up-to-date? It will cause many problems for your partner, staff, client, or whichever stakeholder requested the information.

Now, imagine one of your customers getting wrong or obsolete product details from your catalog.

Embarrassing. Isn’t it?
Heres are some research findings published in a Baymard blog to support this argument-

  • 61% of sites require their users to search by the same product type jargon the site uses, e.g. failing to return all relevant products for a search such as “blow dryer” if “hairdryer” is used on the site, or “multifunction printer” vs “all-in-one printer”, etc.
  • 46% of sites don’t support thematic search queries such as “spring jacket” or “office chair”.
  • 32% of sites don’t support symbols and abbreviations for even the most basic units, resulting in users missing out on perfectly relevant products if searching for inch when the site has used or in in their product data.
  • 27% of sites won’t yield useful results if users misspell just a single character in a product title.
  • 25% of sites don’t support non-product search queries, like “returns” or “order tracking”

This is why you should focus on eCommerce product catalog management for your online business.

What is Product Catalog Management?

Product Catalog Management

A product catalog is a collection of data and media that lists the essential product details. The details include the product features, dimensions, price, weight, color, reviews, and media like images, videos, and animation. Like all things are digital today, a product catalog is also stored and managed online.

Having the details right is not enough. They need to be updated frequently. They need to be organized into various categories and hierarchies. You must be able to sort, filter, and search through the catalog.

Product Catalog Management is the strategic approach to manage, organize, standardize and publish the product data across all sales channels in real-time. It provides accurate and reliable product details for your customers 24*7 to ensure customer satisfaction.

Who needs a Product Catalog?

Today, almost every business sells online. Ecommerce owners normally have multiple sales channels to have a wide customer base. To keep up with your competitors and pricing trends, you need to frequently change your product content. 

Let’s talk about your customers. To reach a wider audience, your marketing team needs to market your brands across multiple platforms like social media, online shops, comparison search engines, review websites, marketplaces, etc.

Apart from your marketing team and your customers, your partners, suppliers, retailers, distributors, buyers, store clerks, customer support staff, store and warehouse managers, external parties like agencies and resellers – all of them need your eCommerce product catalog!

Why should you focus on Ecommerce Product Catalog Management for your online business?

Before buying any kind of product or service, anyone likes to know every detail that they can get their hands on. With a good product catalog, you can provide your stakeholders, business partners, and your customers with rich and complete product data. 

This section will explain why you should focus on your eCommerce product catalog management.

1. Provides rich and consistent information

rich and consistent information

The main intention of any product catalog is to provide product information. Both the internal and external stakeholders spend a great deal of time getting their hands on the various product details. With good product catalog management, there is a smooth flow of information saving lots of their time.

To sell your products, sales representatives often need to collect the product details. A digital product catalog will provide them with accurate and updated information to generate sales with their customers.

Product data is not limited to the basic details like dimensions, color, size, volume, price. etc. The product catalog includes other details like certifications, images, videos, ideal conditions for usage, warranty, safety measures, version, manufacturing date, etc. Such information establishes trust with your customers.

2. Accelerates your business growth

business growth

Before you push new products on your eCommerce website, you need to make sure that the product attributes are accurate and up-to-date. If you sell on multiple eCommerce platforms, you will have to update those sites too. If your product catalog is disorganized, it would take days and weeks to release your new products. 

You constantly have to share information with different tools and software like PIM (Product Information Management), ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), etc. A well-maintained product catalog improves your business operations. 

When you start an eCommerce store, managing a product catalog seems easy. As your business grows, your products and brands increase. Your retailers, distributors sellers, and resellers need an efficient catalog system to ensure lesser time-to-market your products. This will increase your ROI (Return on Investment).

3. Powers omnichannel marketing and selling

On how many eCommerce websites and offline stores do you sell your products? Each of these channels will have its own format to list the product details. You need to manage your product details at each outlet. This happens to be one of the biggest challenges an eCommerce business owner or the responsible staff faces.

This is why you need to invest your time, money, and energy in product catalog management. It helps you to keep track of the listing requirements and product details on multiple channels. It makes omnichannel selling easier.

It’s not just the various eCommerce websites you should focus on. You need to focus on omnichannel marketing – Marketing on various platforms like social media, print media, advertising, search engine advertising, etc. No matter the marketing channel you use, product content is a must.

4. Enhances customer experience

Whenever your customers need some details regarding your product, they either browse the eCommerce websites or contact customer support. They require accurate and reliable information to make a purchase decision. If they contact customer support, the chatbots and your customer support staff need to provide the necessary information as quickly as possible.

An efficient product catalog management system will have a centralized information hub that is available to your staff round the clock. Your support staff can provide information in real-time. When your customers browse through your website, they find extra product details with images, videos, links, discounts, offers, reviews, etc.

This enhances the customer experience. With the right information in hand, they are more likely to go ahead with the purchase. Thus your conversion rate increases.

5. Customize product catalogs

If you are in the eCommerce business, you must provide a great shopping experience. One way to do that is through customization. To boost your customer retention rate, you provide customized offers, discounts, and prices for your customers. With a good product catalog management system, customization becomes smooth and easy.

And it’s not just customization for individual customers. When you sell on multiple channels, you need to customize your product pricing according to the marketplace. Product catalog management ensures that the product details remain the same while the prices are customized keeping in par with the marketplace guidelines.

Customized pricing according to the buyer’s ability is a common practice in B2B. Varying prices for the same product to different customers can be easily maintained with product catalog management.

Key Takeaway

No matter how big or small your business is, product catalog management is a must. Because no one wants to buy a product when they have no idea what they are spending their hard-earned money for.

And it’s not just about providing accurate details to your customers. An efficient product catalog management system saves your time and money. It helps to grow your business.

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