How Do I Create an Online Digital Catalog?

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by Eli Merrell | Last Updated: May 7, 2023

Creating a product catalog is an important step for your team to build trust with your audience. Take it one step further and move to digital and show your customers you really understand them. 

What Is a Digital Product Catalog?

Product catalogs are a full listing of the products a company sells along with important information. Product catalogs are also referred to as product guides, product catalogues or product lists. This resource is a comprehensive list of products and information that helps customers make informed purchases.  A digital product catalog is a complete listing of a company’s products in a digital format. Digital product catalogs can be presented as a PDF on the company's website. This option is static and will need to be manually updated every time there is a product update.  Digital product catalogs can also be found as an interactive digital experience. Digital experiences have the ability to be connected to a Product Information Management (PIM) Solution. The PIM will house all of your product information in one place making it a single resource for all your team’s product information questions. By connecting the digital experience to the PIM updates made to the PIM are automatically made in the digital experiences it is connected to. By connecting a PIM to a digital product guide editing information in one place means it’s been changed everywhere. 

What Are the Benefits of a Digital Catalog?

There are many benefits of a digital product catalog. Your customers, dealers, and distributors want clear accurate answers to their questions and product guides can be the source of truth.  A digital product catalog can be updated in real time therefore providing the most up to date and best information to your audience. Printed catalogs may be circulating with outdated information for months, possibly even years. Digital experiences are an interactive catalog example. Digital experience product catalogs allow users to interact with the product catalog, clicking to learn more information or sort products.  If your digital product guide is connected to a PIM the information can be quickly updated and in the hands of customers in seconds. No more waiting for the next round of printing or waiting to completely overhaul a PDF. Edits to products can be changed in the PIM and automatically shown in the product catalog.  Some digital product catalog examples can help with search engine optimization (SEO) benefits, depending on how it is implemented. SEO is a major factor in improving your presence on the internet. Why not have your product catalog do double the work? A digital product guide can give you important insight and analytics too. By tracking which pages and products are getting the most views you now know more about your customer behavior than ever before. You can also see the behavior path of your customers, how are they navigating through your brand? A digital product guide can tell you.  There are many digital catalog pros and cons. Make sure to review every detail and think about how it can benefit your brand the best.

How Do I Create an Online Digital Catalog?

There are many steps to take when it comes to creating an online digital catalog. Like any project it is important to break it up into manageable pieces that your team can execute.  First determine the structure of your catalog and what needs to be included. Will all products be highlighted including related products? How will you organize your products? Asking these questions in the beginning will give you the right framework to build the best catalog for your customers.  Next, it is time to gather the content that will bring your catalog to life. This means all of the product details your customers need to make informed purchasing decisions, such as product images and any other details that will help build confidence with your audience.  Now that you have all of your content it is time to add it to a PIM. Loading product information into a PIM creates a single source of truth for anyone working on this project. Your team knows the product information in the PIM is correct and can be trusted. They no longer need to worry about double checking multiple Excel sheets or Google Docs to make sure they have the most up to date information.  Now create an interactive digital catalog as a digital experience. By connecting the PIM to your digital experience half of the work is being done for you. You no longer need to manually type in product details. If a product is updated, make the change in the PIM and see the updated information in your digital experience in seconds.  Like any project, it is important to maintain it after it is done. Keep product information up to date in the PIM so the right information is in the hands of your customers at all times. As you learn customer behavior and industry best practices, make updates. Never stop improving for your customers. 

What Program Can I Use to Make a Catalog?

There are many options when it comes to catalog maker software. It is important to review all of the functionality of each digital catalog maker you are considering to ensure it is the best fit for you. Paying attention to these details will help you make the best online catalog for your brand. Lumavate is a great option because it offers the ability to make digital experiences without code, a PIM and a Content Management System (CMS). Lumavate also knows you might already have solutions you love and can integrate with other systems. This allows you to work with what you have or expand into new solutions.  With all of these offerings creating digital product guides is a breeze. Once your information is loaded into the PIM solution, digital experiences can be built in less than 30 minutes.  No more pouring over a PDF to make sure you’ve manually typed in all of the information correctly.  Learn how to make better product catalogs faster, book a demo today!

See Lumavate in Action

Meet with one of our experts to see how easy it is to centralize your product data, manage digital assets, and create digital product experiences. Trust us…you’re going to be wowed.