The average global eCommerce conversion rate is 2.86%. (Source is invespcro.com) Regardless of where your own conversion rate currently sits, your PIM will improve this powerful sales metric by between 17% and 56% According to A T Kearney, (Management Consultants.)
Zero in on your crowd-pleasing and profitable product lines – Easily promote and maintain focus on your hero products
Enable your consumers to shop with emotionally conscious goals in mind – The flexibility and product-focused approach of your PIM enables you to attach more intangible attributes to your products. Examples of these could be whether a product’s provenance is traceable, sustainable, environmental, ethical, or dietary considerations.
Deeply detailed product information – Being able to check all your product specifications and attributes instills buyer confidence.
Showcase your products in their best light – Higher quality imagery and videos enable customers to visualize your products and quickly answer their questions
What’s the true value of your customers’ polished buying experience?
64% of people say customer experience is more important than price when making a purchase. (Source is Gartner)
We’ve all arrived at an online shop and quickly bounced away because we found the site clunky and not user-friendly. A website that’s difficult to use grates on you. One of the first things we engage with is the store’s navigation. Subconsciously, we are looking to be gently guided and signposted through all stages of the buying process. We are looking for these “signposts” to be consistent and color-coded in brand colors. We want them to appear at the right time. We want the website’s product categorization to be logical and enable us to zone in on what we want within split seconds. Some websites hide their main product categories or don’t feature prominent buying buttons. Feelings of frustration start to creep in as you shop.
Some eCommerce stores annoyingly link to broken or outdated links or show discontinued items. This is likely because they don’t have a PIM system to bulk archive legacy products. In the end, your poor buying experience makes you vote with your fingertips. You bounce right off the poor website and straight onto a competitor’s store.
Your PIM system actively reduces your bounce rate by enabling you to add the right navigational tags and settings to your products right in your PIM. This information is easily configurable via your user-friendly visual interface. These settings then pull right through to your website navigation with search engine meta tags and settings configured too. Your PIM makes your website navigation easy, smooth, and naturally logical. This underpins your user experience and turns those first split seconds on your website into sales.
61% of organizations that invest in a PIM do so to improve their customer experience. (Source is Ventana Research)
Your PIM improves your product filtering
Simply put, your shoppers want to get to the product they want as quickly as possible.
54% of online shoppers abandon their purchase if they can’t find what they’re looking for quickly. – (Source is Episerver)
We have all encountered websites that make it difficult to search for what we want. The search function throws up crazy results or hundreds of them. There are still websites with old-fashioned database type Boolean search functions, that require the user to apply filters or update their settings with every feature. Some websites have product categories that are not logical or well mapped. Buyers will even choose one like for like retailer over another because their search function is easier, more user friendly and you can find what you want quickly.
Options, options, options
In the fashion industry, for example, there are hundreds of different design options for an item of clothing. There are size, style, color, length, seasonal and material variations to choose from. Customers want hundreds of options. They want a vast product range at their disposal. They want to use an intelligent, (or “fuzzy”) powerful search function to be able to choose from it all.
Savvy online shoppers need to be able to zero in on what they want quickly. They don’t want to have to look through hundreds of options when they actually hate cropped trousers or 80% of the styles are not available in their size. They want to personalize their options to their exact buying objectives. With technical innovations, these product attributes are becoming more subjective and personal. Attributes are beginning to be matched by AI-driven, hyper-personalized shopper data. This approach creates a tailored and emotional buying experience. These revenue-generating methodologies boost your online sales significantly by enhancing your customers’ buying experience. They enable them to harness new ways of researching and buying products. (like voice searching and color palette search) Voice technology adoption by retailers will grow 127% in the next year. – (Source is Salesforce)
To achieve these powerful search capabilities, your product information needs to capture lots of rich detail regarding its attributes, features, and categorization. Storing all this product data makes your product inventory work much harder to capture sales. The accurate data processing needed to achieve this level of product management requires the capabilities of a PIM.
31% of consumers wish their shopping experiences were more personalized than they currently are. – (Source is Infosys)
Hyper personalization techniques enable you to create the personalized shopping experiences your customers want. This personalization can be based on their age, gender, location, interests, etc.
Hyper-targeted messages and images that cater to specific interests and demographics are presented against that product. For example, offering a recycled cotton shirt to an environmentally conscious customer. To successfully provide this immersive, personalized product messaging requires your online sales platform to be able to store multiple versions of relevant product descriptions and images. While this greatly improves your product’s conversion rates, it also increases the amount of product data you need to store, manage, optimize and publish. Hyper personalization requires a reliable and well configured PIM system to underpin excellent product positioning.
Your PIM enables you to make use of online configurators
What’s an online configurator?
An online configurator is a software tool that enables your shoppers to build their own product with their own preferences. Shoppers become much more invested in their purchases when they personally design and customize their own items. Your buyers can customize their product using features like color, material, style, etc. (for the clothing industry for example) Having this software functionality at their fingertips enables them to put their own personality stamp on their product before they buy. They are able to immediately visualize their design and preview its personalized features online. This immediately makes them emotionally invested in purchasing their own creation.
What’s the value of using a configurator?
A custom-designed product can sell for 30% to 50% more than off-the-shelf items. (Source is Nike)
Convergence of configurators and innovative technology
Retailers of high-value items (like cars) are taking this process even further with Augmented Reality (AR) based configurators. These allow customers to preview their items with full 3D viewing functionality. Some furniture companies also allow you to see their sofa model in your own lounge, using AR-driven technology.
Why does a configurator need a PIM?
Your PIM enables you to harness the sales-boosting power of a configurator by ensuring that all the available personalization options are fully populated and accurate. A purchase driving configurator experience relies on accurate and complete data going into your product specifications.
A PIM also enables you to make more online B2B sales
What is the difference between online B2B and B2C purchases?
|Made on impulse
||Made after careful consideration
||Made with multiple decision-makers
|Quick buying process
||Longer research phase
|Products may not be compared with others
||Different vendors are compared against each other
||Rational, information-based purchase
|Buyers may use online marketplaces or their favorite online merchants
||The research phase begins with an online search
|Products are purchased based on likes and dislikes
||Suppliers may be scored against a product/project spec
|Buyers purchase according to their personal preference
||Practical/functional criteria must be fulfilled
|Buyers tend to prefer trusted brands
||The seller’s credibility must be externally validated via testimonials, reviews, etc.
|Buyers simply check out online
||Buyers expect a slick sales process
|Purchases are based on looks or cosmetic features
||Buyers expect in-depth product information
As you can see, the B2B buying process relies on much more product information and accurate specifications. B2B buyers are intelligent and considered, often needing to make a business case and cost justification to several key stakeholders. B2B needs are more complex, with more decision-makers involved. All of this makes B2B sales more nuanced and unpredictable. By centralizing rich product information, a PIM supports all of these unique sales requirements. This enables you to boost your online B2B sales.