Anyone in the top-tier management of multi-million companies understands just how important PIM is to the workings of their respective companies. PIM (or product information management) is a holistic way of managing products coming in and coming out of your business.
It’s an effective product management system that is a great alternative to micromanaging individual products. PIMs are more important now more than ever, with the proliferation of online retailing. The PIM management systems can be easily integrated with other facets of your business to streamline its activities.
A PIM system may not seem so important when you’re just starting your business. However, once you scale up operations, the system becomes more of a necessity than a luxury.
In this article, we will comprehensively establish what product information management is and why it’s so important for your business. You can then decide whether having a PIM setup is worth having or not.
What Is a PIM System?
From the name product information, it’s clear that PIM has something to do with managing products. However, defining PIM that way barely covers the scope of what a product information management system is and does.
Product information management is a holistic process that involves every aspect of product data. It is the process through which companies handle product data for marketing and distribution purposes. It is from this data that companies can improve company operations to bolster their success.
What Information Do You Need for Good PIM?
Data information is at the core of PIM, so for your PIM set up to be effective, you need the right product information. Some relevant information vital for an effective PIM system include:
- Basic product info – This includes information like the product name, SKUs, product descriptions, and the likes. Basic product info is information that uniquely describes the product. Most of this info is found on the packaging of the products in question.
- Technical specs – Technical specs are the unique attributes of the products in questions. They include stuff like length, width, and other dimensions. Things like ingredients, chemical composition, and warranties also qualify as technical specifications.
- Sales Information – Information that pertains to the sale of the product. This information can be anything from selling prices to customer reviews and testimonials. Such information is crucial for RND and future marketing endeavors.
- Manufacturer and Supplier info – This is the information of all third-parties that are responsible for the products that engender your business. This includes stuff like spreadsheets. They also include supplier names, branches, and all the certifications.
- Marketing information – Keeping tabs on all things marketing is a vital part of a PIM system. Marketing data include SEO (search engine optimization) elements, keywords, and marketing agency information.
These are just a few examples of what info a typical PIM system entails. Since business needs vary from company to company, you should expect the type of information needed for PIM also to vary. Other information for PIMs includes design specs, localization data, and digital information, to name a few.
Types of PIM Systems
You can broadly classify PIM systems into two categories open-source and saas/cloud. Let’s briefly look at what each PIM system entails.
Open Source Systems
Open source means software made freely available to developers and coders. These PIM systems have an open-source code that the company can manipulate to suit their specific needs. The company, however, needs a robust IT department in place to be able to make these changes.
Cloud systems, as you might have guessed, are PIM systems on the cloud. A cloud PIM system is much easier to set up than an open-source system. You also get all the benefits of cloud including flexibility, versatility, and ease of access.
What Makes a PIM Strategy Successful?
A PIM strategy is only as good as the number of resources and effort you put into it. With that in mind, there are other aspects of your PIM system that will determine its overall success in practice. Here are a few elements of a successful PIM strategy.
It’s important to get as much information as possible for your PIM systems. However, for the information to count, you need quality info. For example, having SEO-oriented content makes the information available to a wider audience.
The quality of information and content is imperative for easy usability. It also engenders a more acceptable condition for potential online retailers to embrace your products.
You should define a hierarchy over who gets to access which information. That’s because if sensitive information falls in the wrong hands, it could be detrimental to your business. It’s imperative to have a PIM system with restricted control and access permissions.
Doing so ensures that only the right people gain access to information they need. It hinders any unauthorized access, which enhances your company’s data security.
The information from your PIM system should also be relevant to the consumers beside you. It’s best if you also have a customer-centric approach to your PIM system. That way the information can be valuable for your customers and also your marketing and expansion operations.
Why Is PIM So Important?
You can’t understate the importance of a good PIM strategy. Any successful business owner will tell you just how important the PIM system is. This is why your business needs a PIM system ASAP.
A good PIM system is vital for the growth of your company. It streamlines your expansion efforts by leveraging information to facilitate smooth expansion.
You want to match customer expectations. There’s so much difference between customer demographics. So when expanding, you might have to customize your products to meet the expectations of a demographic.
Establish a Product Information Management System for Your Company’s Benefit
Your company stands to benefit a lot from a robust product information management system. Consults IT experts today and find out how you can establish this system for your company.
Remember to always keep in mind the elements of a good PIM system for it to be effective. Also always use the information from the system to advance your company objectives. If you don’t do so, then you’re simply undervaluing your PIM system.
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