7 key considerations for a successful PIM initiative
Challenges caused by bad product data
Effective management of Product Information or PIM is one area of Enterprise Information Management that can make a real difference to the bottom-line of a company. It should absolutely be part of any digital transformation initiative and is particularly important for companies with tangible products. A good PIM solution can help address a large number of business issues caused by bad product data and the manual processes often used to manage it including:
- Longer time to market and slower new product introduction
- Out-of-stock situations and ineffective store supply
- Scanning errors and inaccurate stock information
- Invalid promotions or inaccurate pricing
- Order & invoice Discrepancies
- Inability to match customer feedback to the right SKUs
- Slower item updates and new product introductions
- Fines imposed on suppliers for changes to specifications
Core features and business benefits of PIM
There are a number of vendors in the PIM space including Informatica, Riversand, Stibo and many others but the general approach and benefits are similar. An effective, well-implemented PIM technology system, supported by the right people and processes can bring about significant benefits, not limited to:
Rich product data
- Faster time-to-market
- Operational efficiency
- Sales growth by better product presentation and promotion
Supplier and product data on-boarding
- Time and cost savings due to the high degree of automation and self-services for users; automatic merging of various data formats and sources in a single step
Product data management
- More efficient control of master data; assortments, items, hierarchies, features, references and so on
- Faster working processes across all departments, and greater productivity in the handling of product information
Data quality and business process management
- Consistency and re-usability of quality rules to streamline business processes with more efficiency
- Increase conversions in eCommerce through rich product content
- Ensure a holistic Data Governance policy to reduce risks
- Faster product launches across all channels
- Higher margins and conversion rates in eCommerce
- Increased sales through smart cross and up-selling
7 key considerations for a PIM initiative
So what do you need to think about in order to make your PIM implementation a success? Here at Entity Group we have been involved in multiple Enterprise Information Management projects including PIM. Here are our top 7 things to ask and look at in order to have a successful project that will optimise the benefits of PIM for your organisation:
Questions to ask:
- Does your organisation have an appetite for change?
- Can you identify process improvement opportunities and the business benefits they will deliver?
- Do you have a good current understanding of product data; product life-cycle and product data ownership?
Things to do:
- In case of a global PIM roll-out, always do a pilot implementation first. Put the emphasis on building a foundational PIM with core functionality before adding on niche features.
- Have a clear vision of the final PIM solution landscape and incremental phases to achieve this goal.
- Ensure that the information you input is of the highest possible quality and consumable across multiple channels.
– Good quality product data leads to efficient processes and enables product comparisons and will bring your product to the top of search results.
– Mobile Ready images of your products enables more shopping using mobile channels
– Product information, marketing text, features, bullets, images – the overall content is the key to creating seamless Customer journeys through multiple channels.
- Build in your regulatory requirements in advance. PIM can help enable compliance against US and EU regulation for Food (e.g. EU 1169), Allergens, Warnings information.
PIM ensures consistency, accuracy, and completeness of your product information and media assets to be delivered across multiple channels as quickly as possible which in turn enables faster time to market and streamlined new product launches.
You need to apply sound data management principles to PIM just as for any other EIM initiative – if you need help with these please take a look at our free “Crossing the Data Delta” book or contact us for more information!