Product Information Management (PIM) ensures that your company keeps product data across all your channels: e-commerce platforms, marketplaces like Amazon, social media platforms and many more. Effective Product Information Management is an important factor for company success across all sales and marketing channels. Product information forms the basis for customer experience initiatives at all major touchpoints facing customers, be it the corporate website, a social media platform, a catalog or live interaction.
Your customers expect comprehensive, relevant and trustworthy product information across all channels and digital touchpoints to enable them to make informed purchasing decisions. The amount of product content needed to support an Omnichannel experience cannot be managed by traditional practices, so new technologies and solutions must be used to deliver accurate and reliable product information from the beginning of the supply chain to product delivery. Retailers, manufacturers and brands need to provide accurate product data through their distribution channels to optimize the story their products tell. [Sources: 4, 10]
PIM allows you to centralize your product data and set rules to ensure it is consistent and appropriate across all your channels. However, if your business has internal systems such as a product information manager, PIM can create a source of integrity concerns for product data, including distribution channels.
Existing marketing tech stacks are not equipped to optimize the customer experience from the point of view of product content. Ease the burden of so much product content that is being managed by marketers, create a smoother transition to Omni-channel Retail, and improve the alignment of sales, engineering, product teams, and customer support. In the highly competitive e-commerce space, retailers are differentiating themselves by finding out how easily they can improve their online product information and integrate their data across multiple sales channels and marketplaces.
If your growth strategy involves selling more products globally, there are steps you can take to increase your efficiency by streamlining the collection, storage, and sharing of your product information across your distribution channels. A centralised PIM plays a crucial role in the dissemination of product data across channels. With a PIM, companies can manage comprehensive product descriptions, feature lists, and user manuals better organized and faster. [Sources: 0]
The use of a Product Information Management Systems system to capture, store, manage and access product content through different distribution channels can speed up the process for manufacturers and consumers. A PIM enables companies to better control product information and ensure consistency across channels, including web portals, point-of-sale (POS), mobile platforms, marketplaces, kiosks, and the Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
There are many ways to sell things but a full-time job can be managing the product sales channels if your business does not have a PIM (Product Information Management System) system. Dealing with tens of thousands of products, copying and pasting inventory, prices and other product information across hundreds of channels is a significant waste of marketing resources, especially when operating in six global markets.
Product distribution is one of the most important steps that is often overlooked, as brands opt for cheaper and simpler options instead of developing a legitimate sales strategy. If your customers are frustrated because they are unable to get the information about the product they need, they turn to your competition. If they find that they can find the product at a different price or through other channels, this can lead to conflicts with your intermediary partners and damage profits. [Sources: 5, 13]
Indirect channels involve multiple middlemen before the product reaches consumers. Distributors are middlemen who supply their own products from the manufacturer and sell them directly to retailers. Direct distribution is when the manufacturer sells directly to the consumer, which means that the manufacturer takes much more responsibility for making a great product.
For example, a company that makes clothing and sells it directly to its customers via an e-commerce platform can use a direct distribution channel. If the same company relies on a network of wholesalers and retailers to sell its products, it can use indirect distribution channels. Indirect distribution channels may appear expensive and tangled but in reality direct distribution channels are expensive to maintain and do not guarantee efficient distribution of products and services.
Selective or live-intensive exclusive distribution: Manufacturers limit the number of outlets allowed to sell their products and do not enter into exclusive agreements with a retail partner. If manufacturers opt for exclusive distribution, they enter into contracts with retailers who only sell products in certain shop windows.