Product Catalog Management

Best Practices: eCommerce Product Catalog Management

Customers are well-versed with the online technology now. From online shopping to online ticket reservation; several usual activities have transformed from offline to online. Customers navigate through various websites before making their decision. Hence, an eCommerce business must be able to provide the right product information to customers at all times.

A product catalog is essential for every eCommerce business and it ensures that the products are conveniently available online. An efficient product catalog directly impacts the sales of the organization. However, creating and managing a product catalog effectively can be challenging at times.

Challenges in Product Catalog Management

  • Different information coming in from multiple stakeholders from inside and outside the organization. For example, if measurement units differ then it can create a major problem in product catalog management

  • If the internal data is not converted properly for users, then incorrect product categorization can create issues.

  • Choosing a catalog management tool can be a challenge in itself. Before selecting a tool, one must understand the working of the tool in detail.

  • Product catalog growth is directly proportional to business growth. The need of the organization must align with the need of catalog.

Let us look at some of the best practices of product catalog management:

1. Offer Quality Product Information

The importance of providing valuable and correct product information to the customer can never be emphasized. The first objective is to ensure that your customers feel comfortable while they navigate through the eCommerce website. This also means that the website must not only be user friendly, but also customers must be able to easily locate their desired product.

By offering accurate product information customers will start trusting your brand and this will help them make faster purchase decisions. High quality product information includes technical attributes, attractive high-resolution images, videos, inventory information, units of measurement, and product usage combinations and recommendations. All the information must be updated to optimize the overall shopping experience of the customer.

2. Categorizing product catalog

Customers look for easy navigation options and clear categories like filter, refine, colors, etc. However, one must categorize their product catalog by considering the customer’s point of view. For example:

  • Using ‘M’ to denote “Medium” to represent a product size

  • Keeping consistency in all measurement units

  • Adding various product attributes to different products based on customer needs and not have limited attributes to all products

3. Measuring the catalog management process

To effectively manage a product catalog the business must understand three pointers and analyze them from time to time:

1. Which parts of the product catalog are managed by the stakeholders?

2. Who is affected by the catalog changes?

3. When during the process does the changes affect the most?

Once you are able to understand these factors, you can quickly seek for the right person who can help you during the mapping process. Catalog management mapping processes helps you understand the different steps to be taken and in which order.

4. Offer recommendations and suggest alternatives

A product catalog must not only offer the right product information, but also suggest alternatives and recommendations for different products. This will give ideas to the customers and also provide alternatives in case a desired product is out of stock.

5. Managing your Product Catalog Database

Catalog management is similar to information management and must be maintained well. Hence, one must create a product catalog database to ensure that the right information is given to the customer. This also prevents information errors and enables expansion of products.

The above-mentioned best practices will help an eCommerce business to manage their product catalog efficiently. The eCommerce businesses are developing online as well as offline product catalogs in order to provide maximum shopping experience to their customers. While online catalogs help in faster navigation through the website, offline catalogs help in easy-to-read experience for the customers. Both are equally important to enhance business sales.

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5 Proven Techniques To Lower Bounce Rate On Your Website and eCommerce Store

If you are reading this space, the chances are that you have a pretty website, an established name, reasonable search traffic, lead-generating ads yet experiencing a higher bounce rate on your website and eCommerce store.

In other words, genuine visitors looking for products/services in your niche area are simply bouncing off the website without even giving you a chance to convert them as your customer. 

Let’s jump into defining what constitutes a High Bounce Rate. As per Google Analytics, Bounce Rate is the percentage of single-page visit which increases when: 

  • Users exit your website just after viewing a single page
  • Users follow an outbound link just after viewing a single page
  • Users click the back button after viewing a single page
  • Users go through the entire page and not interact with any element on your website

As a result, it majorly affects your conversions and sales revenues. Additionally, Google takes your bounce rate into account as one of many factors on how to rank your site on its Search Engine Results Page (SERP). The higher the bounce rate, lower the rank, the poorer is your discoverability online.

Here are some pre-requisites that you are required to ensure in order to bring the bounce rate under control for your eCommerce store. 

Improve Page load speed

Consumers expect a typical webpage to load in about 2 seconds or less. Beyond which they began to move on to your competitor’s site. 

Not only consumers, but even Google considers the page loading time for ranking your site. If your site is consistently slow to load, it will result in a higher bounce rate as well as slip in SERP rankings. 

Here, we are also recommending to integrate a sub-second website module to your eCommerce store.

 

Check for Product page optimization

Sometimes businesses end up concentrating too much on-site UX that they fail to optimize theproduct content and data. Ultimately, it’s the product page that makes or breaks the sale.

Having a clean product page with genuine reviews, adequate attributes, relevant user manuals, effective Call-To-Action texts, compelling product descriptions, simple colour theme, appropriate placement of “Add to cart” and “Buy now”, all contributes to lowering of bounce rate.

Additionally, offering faster checkout, mentioning recognized credentials will improve your sales conversion and reduce bounce rate. 

Offer a visible and accurate site-search solution

As elementary as it may be, proper visibility of a site-search box is very essential for an eCommerce site. According to a 2002 report, an ideal search box should be 27-character wide. 

You can choose to customize it accordingly: fixing it at the top of the page so that visitors who scroll down the page never lose sight of it and having an auto-fill search box are recommended.

Using Taxonomy and Attribute development approach will offer better navigation and search functionalities to the users. It will incentivise the users to go beyond a single page and interact more with the website, thereby reducing your bounce rate. 

Optimize your website for smartphones/tabs

Improvements in mobile technology have drastically increased the use of smartphones and tablets.  Almost 95% of your customers, including that of B2B customers, prefer shopping using their mobile devices. 

Therefore, it makes more sense to optimize your web page elements for viewing on mobile devices other than conventional desktops. Even Google Analytics has started considering mobile-friendliness as a ranking factor for its SERP. 

Personalize shopping using exit-intent popups

It is proven that Exit-intent popups on eCommerce sites will lead upto 20% increase in conversion rate. Exit-intent popups can be your last resort to prevent users from exiting your website. 

Such popups if used wisely can make users interact with various elements on your website, thereby reducing single-view page exit, i.e. bounce rate on your website. 

Best things to mention in an exit-intent popup would be to show promo codes and discounts, offer to find the desired products, ensure free shipping etc. 

Thanks to the opaque nature of eCommerce, building trust among your customers come to be of prime importance before you make a sale. This is majorly achieved by implementing the above-discussed techniques.  

However, let’s assume you own a local business operating in Austin, Texas. It is found out that most of the traffic came from the region outside the area of operation. Kudos to your SEO efforts but visitors are prone to see your location and leave, heading back to search results. In such cases too, the bounce rate is incredibly high.

So, where did you go wrong? While integrating the above pre-requisites on to your site will impact your bounce rate and improve site UX, we suggest you book an appointment with our expert Solutions Provider, who will help analyze your bounce rate in the context of your business and also offer specific solutions to minimize it.   

 

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How can an eCommerce Company Benefit from the Catalog Updation Services?

An eCommerce business has to deal with a large chunk of data at all times. Considering the fact that all of a company’s information related to its products and services are made available to the customers online; the product information must be correct. And to ensure that the product information given to the customers is right, a product catalogue must be created and updated regularly.

One of the major challenges for an eCommerce company is to maintain an updated product database. Incorrect product information can not only lead to dissatisfied customers but also loss in sales and reputation of the eCommerce business. In addition, potential buyers find it difficult to navigate through the website and search for a suitable product. This hinders with their purchase decisions as well.

Updating product information is a continuous process. Product catalog must be maintained and so must be the high-resolution product images to attract potential buyers. Having an updated product catalog can offer the following benefits to the company and the buyer.

Benefits of Catalog Updation:

·  Efficient Search Engine Optimization (SEO) ensures your products show up often in search engine results

·  Makes it easy for the buyer to navigate through your site enabling faster buying decision

·  Shows product recommendations to buyers on the site to increase sales opportunities.

·  Customers can easily view the available promotions, discounts, and offers on various products and services.

There is a variety of product catalog services that helps increase the online presence of any eCommerce business. High-quality images and content are included to make the product catalog more appealing, attracting new users. The product catalog services include:

·  Catalog content management

·  Catalog building and indexing

·  Catalog conversion

·  Catalog image processing

·  Catalog updation

The catalog updation team takes care of the entire process starting from identifying the desired products, gathering product specifications and price, and creating a unique product catalog, to regularly updating and maintaining the product catalog.

Availability of advanced technologies tend to eliminate the process of manual catalog updation. The entire catalog updation process is automated, ensuring that the discounts on specific products are mentioned at the right time for promotional purposes. Once the catalog is prepared, product descriptions and images can also be changed easily.

The right product information must reach customers at all times. This helps customers to make faster purchase decisions. Customers can simply provide their specific catalog updating requirements, and the services provider will start developing a customized solution.

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Three ways to Streamline your eCommerce Supply Chain

Supply Chain is an important process for any organization which enables efficient movement of raw materials and finished products from the manufacturer to retailer, distributor, finally reaching the end customer. A strong supply chain can reduce costs and increase customer satisfaction.

For an eCommerce setup, the supply chain process includes sourcing, storage, fulfillment, distribution, IT and transportation. Supply chain most often takes care of three aspects of any product – Price, Quality, and Lead Times. It depends on the organization whether they want a well-priced product, high quality product, or a product that reaches the fastest to the market. The main objective of supply chain is to have the right products in the right quantities at the right moment and at minimal cost.

Here are some of the benefits of an efficient supply chain management:

·  Reduction of costs across the supply chain and more efficient management of working capital

·  Efficient management of raw materials, work-in-process, and finished good inventory

·  Increased efficiency between supply chain partners and their transactions

·  Enhanced customer value

In this blog, we will look at the ways in which you can streamline your eCommerce supply chain in order to help it function more efficiently.

1. Dock to Dock Processes and Systems

Avoid stock delays by increasing throughput and product order cycle time. One can improve the process by getting some work done by the manufacturers, in order to reduce delays and expenses. It is best to have vendor compliance policies, transportation routing guide, and product specifications barcoding in place to ensure that there is minimal mismanagement. This way supply chain delays can easily be avoided.

2. Optimize Inventory Management

Inventory management is an important part of supply chain. Having the right items in stock at the right time can be challenging. The solution to overcome this challenge is to be efficient in planning, purchasing, and managing inventory. Another tip is to have clear communication with the vendors on the purchase order delivery dates.

3. Reduce Shipping Costs

eCommerce companies are finding ways to shorten their delivery time which will result in reduced shipping costs. Shipping costs can be reduced significantly if one takes care of the inventory management. Having the right stock and shipping it at the right time helps in faster delivery. This way, customers can expect low-cost shipping charges or even free shipping charges at times.

Streamlining supply chain is very important for any eCommerce business as it enables better customer service. This also proves to be of financial advantage to the organization, since it reduces freight costs, and optimizes the entire process for better functioning. Companies must assess and streamline their supply chain process regularly in order to avoid any fulfillment delays and unnecessary expenses.

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Product Data Descriptions that Connect with your Customers

For an eCommerce store, product descriptions do what sales agents do in a brick and mortar store. Right product descriptions convince your customs to buy your products. Why do some products connect instantly with the customers? Let’s look at some points that will persuade your e-store visitor to make a purchase.

  1. Self Explanatory Descriptions

It has more to do with the way the product is placed for the customer with the appropriate words and Images. Product Description is never about the number of words but how you put it across, self explanatory descriptions do the job for you. For Eg: 

Here, in one glance the customer or a visitor to the e-store can make out the details of the product with all the relevant information.

  1.  Use Keywords Wisely 

Use words in title and descriptions that a customer is likely to type while searching for a product helping in SEO rankings. Free keyword tools such as GoogleKeyword Planner  and Keywordtool.io, or paid platforms like SEMRush and Ahrefs help to perform in depth keyword research.

You need to find a keyword with search results of 100-10,000 keywords which are marked as “low difficulty” or “low priority” and include them in your product descriptions. Placing keywords in product descriptions especially in product titles does increase your e-store search rankings. Look for ways to include keywords in the ‘Title’ , ‘Meta description’ , ‘Alt’ Tag and product description body.

  1.  Turn Features into Benefits

Be specific about your product. Making dry statements like “very good quality “that generalize your product doesn’t help. Putting across each product feature with its benefits brings out the credibility of the product.

For example: WOODBAY Men’s Grey Running Shoe

Product Description:

Breathable mesh and synthetic upper for natural movement

PHYLON midsole for optimum comfort

Crafted for simple support these running-inspired slip-ons feature textile mesh.

  1.  Make it easier for your readers to Imagine 

A customer cannot touch and feel your products during an e-store browsing. You need to let customers imagine how they would feel having the product in their hands. Practice writing lines that intrigue the user with words such as imagine, discover, experience and explain to the reader the positive feelings of owning and using your products. 

5. Show them positive reviews of your product

It builds trust among your customers. Ask you customer’s reviews about your product during browsing and also after a purchase. Most customers after a satisfying purchase would be happy to put a good work across. Indicate reviews and rating in each product description page to increase the visibility of the feedback.

6. Images and Other Media (Vidoes, Brochures)

Keeping text descriptions short and featuring your product through images, videos, graphic bullets, icons enables to get the right information to the customer.

 

 

Data Description writing services is a niche area that Altius specializes in, enabling it to showcase your products convincingly  in order to connect with your potential customers. Altius understands your audience so that the most relevant information is pulled out about your products and business, and projected  through skilled content description.

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Make your e-store work more for you with Unifi-I

Unifi-I enhances your e-commerce store with sub-second-page load speeds, giving the user a better e-shopping experience, which helps to retain customers and build a relationship. Converting your eCommerce sites to sub-second eCommerce websites accelerates your conversion by 15-30 %. 

Let’s look at how Unifi-I can get more out of your e-store for your business. 

  1. Improved User Experience – Improves user experience such as navigation and searchability. Seamless skimping between pages without delay or search results or page clicks that output the results in instant, keep users engaged in your e-store.
  1. Speed – Unifi- I enable faster loading of WebPages. The ideal response time to keep the visitor engrossed in your e-store is 0.1 sec. Unfi-I achieves a sub-second page load by making your website ultra fast and super fast which helps to load web pages faster making your e-store connect with your visitor instantly.
  1. Increased Time on Site – Visitors spend more time with your e-store when it is easy, comfortable, and user friendly to surf through your e-store. With Unify, It results in more traffic, and more browsing actions get converted to purchases resulting in better conversion.
  1. Right Technology and Tools – Unify-I integrates your e-store using front end technologies such as Progressive Web Applications (PWAs), Single-Page Applications (SPA), and AMP which decrease the page load time for speed optimization. 
  1. Better SEO Rankings – Improved page loading speed results in decreased abandonment rates and makes people come back for more. With higher SEO ratings due to increased traffic, your website will be recognized by Search Engines like Google, Bing etc.
  1. Improved Conversion Rates – Faster page loads result in better conversion rates. Pages that are loaded in 2.4 seconds have a 1.9% conversion rate. Even a slight increase in conversion rate has a huge impact on the e-store revenue. 
  1. Advantage over competitors – With a modern front end using Single-Page Quick Ordering Web App technology Unifi delivers the competitive advantage in a faster page load that your e-store requires to stay at the top of the game. The website that loads faster will rank higher. 

A study proves that 53% of web surfers exit from pages that take longer than 3 seconds to load. Even a one-second delay in website page loading time reduces the number of page views by 11 %. This goes on to show how page load speed is crucial to reach your customers and it is the most important aspect for a successful online presence. 

Altius’s quest to offer perfect eCommerce Solutions have led to continuously assimilating, researching and analyzing customer’s business needs and the hindrances they face in running their e-store. Unify-I offers e-stores’s ease in running the platform with awesome navigation and speed to generate higher revenue.

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How Crucial is Catalog Building and Indexing

The ECommerce catalog enhances a customer’s shopping experience online. Retailers are looking for ways to keep B2B and B2C customers informed and engaged about the products in their e-store. A well managed online product catalog helps to meet customer behaviors by ensuring visibility for your products. A clear and concise catalog will highlight your company as well as build trust and credibility between the customer and your business.

ECommerce Catalog Management is the process of organizing data in a consistent, user-friendly, attractive manner across all sales channels like Digital channels such as Websites, Apps, Automated Retail such as self-service kiosks, Resellers, Whole sellers, Agents and others.

The online catalog provides precise information about your e-store products such as product name, descriptions, price, supplier or manufacturer information, and other related product details. Any information regarding the products needs to be accurate for customers to identify with the product they are looking for.

People are spending more time online than ever, so it is imperative for retailers to have catalog data that gives the best online experience. Products with vague information result in loss of business revenue. An organized data that is cataloged gives users the opportunity for product discovery which is crucial for sales conversion. 

Here are the benefits of Catalog Building and Indexing that retailers cannot overlook. 

  1. Instant launch of New Products in the market

Retailers are launching new products every month; they need to be instantly available for customers over multiple channels. It can take 30 to 60 days for products to go from offline to online digitization. Automated tagging of inventory helps to classify inventory into appropriate categories by auto-generating product attributes, data discrepancies, and fixing data inconsistencies. Automated enriched product data will be enriched, consistent and uploaded for the customers across all sales channels simultaneously.

  1. Better Omni Channel Experience due to Automated Tagging 

Automated Retail Solutions helps in product accuracy and to keep track of inventory on a real-time basis. Retailers need precise inventory statistics for sales and that is enabled by correct categorization of products. Automated product tags help brands to keep track of stocks providing a hassle-free omnichannel experience for their customers. 

  1. Increased Loyalty Base from customers 

Traditional manual product tagging procedures require a lot of man-hours for eg: tagging 200 to 300 products a day can take upto 30-40 hours. With high possibilities of inaccuracies that can range from visual inaccuracy to misclassified product title to wrong tags, automated tagging is a saving grace for many retailers and distributors to get the tens of thousands of products tagged in minutes with accuracy. Customers will be able to locate products closest to what they are looking for giving them a good online experience making them loyal to the brand.  

  1. Faster discovery of products By Customers 

Catalog building and indexing in the order that is filtered by Manufacturer, Brand, Price, Type, Products, and more allows high-quality and unified product information to be visible and helps customers narrow their search preferences faster. With the right categorization, chances of shoppers discovering and buying a product are more likely resulting in more transactions.

  1. Real-Time Inventory Visibility reducing the Gap between Demand and Supply

Retails can gauge their product stock better with the catalog management    process. It allows them to gauge their inventory based on categories, subcategories, images, layout, and more for their audiences with varied preferences in purchasing patterns. For a retailer, products need to be tagged accurately in their inventory to ascertain their product stock better. This helps to analyze the inventory stock based on the product categories and helps to connect with audiences enabling smarter merchandising and better forecasting of business revenue. Catalog management helps retailers tend to customer demands in real-time.

Conclusion

Catalog Building and Indexing processes help to acquire consistent product databases by identifying duplicates, correcting errors, standardizing naming, titles. It helps retailers, distributors, and manufacturers to take stock of inventory and connect their products with the right consumers in real-time.

Altius technologies enhance customer experience by making important product information quickly and easily accessible from the Altius’ Catalog Indexing Services with a faster time-to-market helping customers discover your products quickly and efficiently.

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Why images are important for your e-store?

Images are visual representations of text. It is certainly true that one image is equal to 10,000 words. Viewers relate instantly to an image representation of the product.

Image guarantees the authenticity of your products. Customers looking to buy products look for a snapshot of the products in order to identify them.  Without images, the product becomes suspicious to the customer and the customer becomes apprehensive to confidence to make a purchase.

Images need to be of high quality, appropriate size showcasing varied angles of the products in the right light, setting and background.

Thus product images are a necessity for eCommerce success.

Customer Attention

Images create visual impact in your e-store, so quality images are essential that will catch the user’s attention because it is the first thing the user gets attracted to. People cannot touch and feel products in an e-store, so it is essential to portray the best version of the products through images.

An ideal  product image would be crystal clear pictures of the product in different angles that provides a clear idea of the product to the user. The image options should include viewing angles, zoom, multiple images, and more.

Let’s look at some of the must have features when a product is displayed in an image of an e-store.

1.Quality & Quantity of Image

Quality of an image not only brings clarity of the product of your e-store but also enhances the visual appeal of your e-store.

Customers will be convinced of their choice when the product is displayed in the most appealing manner. Most images of your product with different angles will give an added perspective to the customer to make the choice of buying the product.

2. Image Size

Image size is an important factor before uploading your images. Proper size of the image with dynamic zooming facility will be convenient for the user to get a better view of the image instead of a static one.

Poor quality and oversized or undersized images will create a bad impression for your e-store, reducing the demand for your products.

Altius recommends a guideline size for your product images that is 1024 X 1024 pixels for the best impact.

3.Proper Backgrounds

 A uniform, clean and smooth background provides the customer with a good experience and will help them to choose a product. It is highly recommended to shoot your photography at a clean and shiny place where your images of your items or products will come very bright and clear for the customer to view. Investing in a good photography camera will pay dividends later for your e-commerce store. With tons of free image footage available on the internet, choosing only free images without watermarks should be considered.  Altius professionals help to redesign the colored and watermarked background to white image background that makes free available images on the internet usable. 

With digitization penetrating all the areas of our lives, having an e-store is imperative today. Having a strong online presence will outreach your brand and business globally.  Altius has been consistently delivering efficient and reliable image services such as (Image Collection, Image Capturing and Editing) for clients from various domains like Electrical, Electronics, Clothing, Jewelry, Safety & Security Industries and many more.