A lot of PIM projects start together with an e-commerce project. The e-commerce project will make products available online and to maintain the product information a PIM project is started preceding the e-commerce project. In my previous post “What is Product Information Management?” I explained what Product Information Management is. But who would benefit from such a PIM project?
The e-commerce team
Since they are in most cases the first requesters for a PIM system, it’s obvious they will benefit from this. For a decent e-commerce site, it’s important to have as much information available as possible. For smaller shops it might be possible to manage this information in Excel or an ERP system, but once your shops starts growing you’ll need something to manage the amount of information
The catalog team
Does your company publishes an annual catalog, season special catalogs, flyers for fairs, etc. Then your catalog team knows the hustle to find all the correct product information, the latest approved images and the huge amount of work to put all this information in their publishing tool. Whit a decent PIM solution you can plug into tools like Adobe Indesign or vice versa. So all your catalog team has to do is creating templates and just selecting the products that need to go on the templates. Thus reducing weeks of works to just a couple of days.
You spent weeks on creating a new marketing campaign with a new styling, product images, descriptions etc. And now you have to update the company websites, web shops, catalogs, flyers,… With a PIM solution you only have to update your product information in the PIM system and it will be pushed to all your channels.
More and more sales are confronted with customers looking up details on the internet and “testing” the knowledge of the sales people in a store. Since all the information on the website/web shop comes from your PIM system, you can easily give access to sales employees via in shop computers or via tablets enabling them to answer all the test questions.
In your PIM system you can find all the technical specifications of your products, including spare parts, accessories, follow up products, … So certainly if you keep all the product info in PIM even if you don’t sell them anymore, after-sales can easily advise your customers if they are looking for spare parts or a new alternative for the product they bought from you years ago.
If a customer decides to buy from you not only depends on the price but also on the fact the customer thinks you are trustworthy. And can you make sure a customer sees you as trustworthy? By giving complete and consistent information, and since all the information comes from your PIM system it is consistent. Nothing is more confusing for a customer than seeing a product in an email promotion and to visit your website /web shop and seeing a different picture and product description.
A nice website /web shop, happy marketing, sales, after-sales people and customers and a fast ROI after the initial investment. What else needs to be said.
A decent and good maintained PIM system will pay itself back in no time since the entire company will profit from the centrally managed information and ease of use of the application and product data.