Product Information System Examples Companies
Product and product solutions are plentiful and permeate the market, often overwhelmingly. Clients and customers have access to more information than ever, and having this much data can start to confuse and obfuscate the messaging behind the product. Customers may feel that their pain points are not addressed in a company's message, which can cause a mismatch in values and what the product is trying to convey.
Product information, now more than ever, is highly critical in helping a potential prospect and existing customer transparently understand the value proposition of that product so that it is apparent throughout the buyer's journey.
In this Product Information Management best practices (PIM) guide, we'll answer the critical questions: "What are the benefits of information management?" and "What is the main use of PIM software?". Along the way, we will provide the best PIM programs, tools, and management objectives, ending with solid market examples of critical players enabling the growth of many organizations throughout various industries.
What Is the Purpose of Product Information?
Product information refers to any relevant and accurate information about a product that is used to describe its functions and specifications. A stock-keeping unit (SKU) is a great foundational example of a rudimentary part of product information used to keep inventory in retail and manufacturing channels.
Some other examples of relevant product information for your workforce are basic and stand-out features: dimensions, product specifications, and core functionality. Digital assets are usually placed side-by-side as a descriptive term for product information, which includes how-to videos, user manuals, spec sheets, photos, videos, audio files, and other documentation.
Product information also benefits customers looking for specific colors, sizing, functionality, and other valuable information necessary for the buyer's journey.
What Is the Main Goal of Product Information Management?
Every detail relevant to the product must be stored and accessed somehow. While some companies begin doing this through spreadsheets, it can be challenging to coordinate with the rest of the organization, especially when looking to scale.
Product information management is used to centralize the storage of this information, including SKU, pricing, features, product descriptions, dimensions, functionality, etc. Product information management can grow to encapsulate anything related to product information, including digital and creative assets.
With access to Digital Asset Management (DAM) integrations, PIM software can store owners' manuals, product sheets, videos, and high-quality photos and update these assets and information in real time.
What Are the Benefits of Effective Information Management?
Effective information management does much more than provide a single source of truth for the organization to store and access product information. Effective information management offers your employees, partners, and the management team the confidence to move forward in decision-making and crafting tailored digital experiences to personalize messages to accounts and potential prospects.
What Challenges Are Involved in Information Management?
Effective information management is kept from achieving its true potential when teams do not have the proper product information management tools. One of the biggest challenges that form a substantial obstacle in the way of creating and managing accurate product information is data silos.
Teams accessing product information must tailor and repurpose it, which drives the destructive practice of storing spreadsheets and product guides on localized drives and team channels.
When each team creates its spreadsheet for referencing, over time, this creates confusion about which version is correct — and can cause huge issues with the manufacturing, compliance, and sales process.
What Is an Example of Product Information Management?
The competitive landscape is extensive, but here are some PIM software examples of strong contenders:
User-Friendly Interface: Plytix PIM is known for its intuitive and user-friendly interface, making it easy for users to navigate and manage product information efficiently.
Data Centralization: Plytix allows for the centralized storage and management of product data, ensuring that all relevant information is easily accessible and up-to-date.
Open Source Framework: Pimcore is an open-source PIM solution offering flexibility and customization options for businesses with specific requirements.
Multichannel Support: Pimcore supports multichannel publishing, which allows businesses to deliver consistent product information across various channels.
Comprehensive Product Experience Management (PXM): Lumavate offers a comprehensive PXM platform beyond traditional PIM. It centralizes product data and includes DAM and DXP functionalities for creating digital product experiences.
Rapid Implementation: Lumavate is known for its fast implementation, allowing businesses to set up and operate the PIM solution quickly.
Cost-Effective with Extensive Functionality: Lumavate is often 75 percent more cost-effective than competitors while providing expansive functionality, including PIM, DAM, DXP (Digital Experience Platform), text messaging, form builders, and many other integrations.
Who I Responsible for Information Management?
Information management is the responsibility of all employees and management. Information management can usually be approached through a top-down approach, where executives and managers provide the benchmark template for storing and accessing information responsibly.
That said, the ultimate responsibility and stewardship of information management and product information is a product information manager, their team, and the people they liaise with.
What Is the Role of a Product Information Manager?
For a Product Information Manager to succeed in their role, some responsibilities and skills must be inherently present, such as subject matter expertise. This is why a Product Information Manager may be assigned internally to the organization, and technical talents can be substituted within the team from the best channels.
The Product Information Manager is more than just a custodian; they are ultimately responsible for the accuracy, storage, management, access control, and security of the PIM tool and product information throughout the organization.
Strong leadership, project management, subject-matter expertise, networking, negotiation, and time management skills would make the Project Information Manager successful and motivate the team to champion the process and its success.
Depending on the scope and function of the PIM solution, the platform may have many different features and functionalities. For example, if your PIM integrates with a DAM and DXP solution, this role can be merged with that of a Digital Experience Manager.
What Is the Meaning of PIM Software?
Exploring the benefits of managing product information may be clear to you and your team at this point in the guide, but one question will be: "How can we manage such a large process?" The answer lies in a PIM solution.
A PIM solution is specialized software enabling users to curate and manage product information carefully. Some solutions, such as Lumavate, combine functionality with other functionalities to make product information easier by combining it with proper digital asset management and using these tools to create powerful digital experiences.
What Is the Purpose of a PIM Solution?
At its core, the primary purpose of a PIM software solution is to provide a single source of truth. This beacon acts as a repository of all product information in the organization. A PIM should actively discourage employees from creating their spreadsheets of product information, as version control and consistent updates will create a fully responsive environment that provides everything a team needs in real time.
PIM software is essential to many divisions and teams, as it is repurposed for different mission statements. Still, each department will aim to align with the brand message and the values the brand embodies.
What Are the Objectives of PIM?
The target market for a PIM is in the name; it is specifically designed for companies with multi-faceted and numerous products you will need to keep track of. Products are not just created once; multiple versions of the product and iterations of the same product and regulatory changes can rapidly cause an organizational nightmare in keeping track of these changes so that the company's ongoing concern is assured.
The manufacturing industry is one of the most prominent examples that can use a PIM to its full potential. The design and manufacturing team uses a PIM solution to keep an inventory of the number of products on hand and the different types of products in production (or even suspended).
Great PIM solutions offer tools for audit trail and reporting. Distribution channels and partners can use this information to discern quickly what products are performing the best and why. The compliance and governance team is enabled to identify and determine data access to critical individuals so that they stay onside with company policy and appease regulators during audits.
A PIM does not only provide technical information. Good PIM software integrates with DAM and PXM solutions to provide essential information and tools for the sell-side aspects of your business, such as sales, customer service — and, of course, marketing.
What Does PIM Mean in Marketing?
The marketing team mainly uses product information to create messaging marketing campaigns and coordinate the overall marketing strategy through digital experiences. Examples of digital experience include effective landing pages, microsites, text messaging sequences, and interactive digital catalogs or website elements.
The marketing team needs access to the proper tools to create digital experiences. They will access product information from the PIM and digital and creative assets from the DAM and use the DXP platform with the other integrations to create these digital experiences.
Lumavate offers full integration with these three platforms, which supports the ability of your marketing team to create these digital experiences without needing to rely on overly technical resources.
What Are the Key Components of PIM?
Now that you have a broader understanding of the purpose of a PIM and how it can drastically improve the manufacturing, marketing, and distribution process, below are the top components that you can expect from a powerful PIM solution once fully implemented:
Quality Content: A proper PIM offers the most accurate and up-to-date version of the product information so that your employees and partners can have complete confidence in what they are accessing.
Accurate Targeting: Having correct and timely access to product information enables teams to move quickly and tailor their messaging to meet the requirements of each specific audience.
Centralized Accessibility: Without a holistic place for storage of version-specific and accurate product information, teams will make their own spreadsheets and fragment data further to create unnecessary data silos.
Governance and Compliance: Stay onside with internal and external regulations through complete audit trails and designating the proper controls for each user.
What Is a Good PIM?
When selecting any solution, including an excellent PIM, the first step is to conduct research and due diligence. Before taking a look at all the services that the market has to offer, here is a checklist to discuss with your team what you may need from your PIM:
What core, meaningful, and "nice-to-have" features do we need?
The most important question to start the evaluation is the required functionalities, which will significantly impact the solution. Some PIM solutions will offer core functions, such as storing existing product information, while others will require you to use third-party solutions to get the most out of your needs.
For example, Lumavate offers a Digital Asset Management (DAM) tool that is out-of-the-box with the solution. This enables you to start correctly creating and managing your digital assets without spending time searching for another CMS or DAM solution on the market.
Lumavate further includes additional features into core functions as part of a comprehensive package. Product Experience Management (PXM) platforms offer a full suite of functionality, but they must be purchased separately. When choosing Lumavate, you can access a PXM during the initial implementation phase.
What systems should integrate with our PIM?
After carefully selecting your functionality requirements, it's time to take stock of what third-party solutions you need to integrate within the platform. Some solutions, such as Lumavate, already have built-in integrations - while other non-PIM solutions, such as Shopify and Adobe CMS, may require you to use their host of products to remain within the ecosystem. Conduct your research thoroughly; some solutions will not offer the necessary integrations.
How will we use the stored product information?
Once you have considered your integrations and functionality, the next step is to focus on the most critical function of your PIM — product information. Storing your product information is one thing, but proper access is where the PIM starts to shine. Control over access is a great example, as certain divisions may need to be privy to certain information but not others.
The reasons for this are numerous: compliance concerns, product specifications, marketing tools and messaging, management direction, and analytical purposes to view trends. The product information, such as sales resources, events, channel partners, product catalogs, and websites, can be displayed creatively to create stunning digital experiences.
Most PIMs will have a centralized hub for product information storage, but many do not have a great way to share the information and sync it up with a website or digital catalog. A built-in Digital Experience Platform helps reduce the need for third-party solutions with your PIM package and sets you apart from the competition.
How quickly and easily do we need to implement this PIM?
A PIM and all its associated software and solutions are a powerful and transformative toolset that will require proper project management and implementation. Adopting a new solution should never be rushed, but the luxury of time is not always at your disposal. The right solution must be both practical and timely.
PIM solutions can take months to implement, and enterprise solutions with large providers could have external consultants and account managers assigned for upwards of a year.
One of the best ways to implement your PIM solution quickly is to find one with a free trial that can be used risk-free immediately and provides enough integrations to comprehensively get the job done during your pilot team testing phase.
What is our budget for investment?
With a range of anywhere between $1,000 to more than $250,000 annually, your budget considerations must be flexible during your research phase. Many PIM solutions disclose their pricing terms and aim to get you on a discovery call to understand your needs and budget.
Other platforms like Lumavate believe in full disclosure and pricing transparency. With a publicly listed price starting at $499 a month, it's one of the most cost-effective solutions on the market.
Lumavate: Transcending the PIM solution
When centralizing product data, the first step in any process is to take inventory of your assets and resources and place them in a unified and safe repository where they can be retrieved and refined dynamically and efficiently.
Lumavate offers out-of-the-box functionality to get started and implement all core functions in less than a day, providing access to a robust DAM that helps to create proper digital experiences for every moment in the customer journey. Digital experiences seen by customers, channel partners, employees, vendors, and other team members contribute to their understanding of the product information process.
Lumavate stands out with its text messaging functionality, over 40 integrations, and unparalleled customer support. With bi-weekly updates and features added regularly, Lumavate prides itself on being one of the most efficient solutions on the market. Unlike other platforms, we believe in pricing transparency. See for yourself how Lumavate is considered 75 percent more cost-effective when compared to other solutions.
Demo Lumavate for absolutely free to experience how transformative a PIM, DAM, and DXP can be for establishing the authority and reputation of your brand.
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