Simple Product Catalog Template

Have you ever sat down at a restaurant, and the server hands you a menu that doesn’t provide any descriptions or allergy information? You have questions. Like what is daikon? Are there nuts in a certain dish? How are you supposed to know what to order? 

The simple answer is you have to ask your server or attempt to find the information online. 

This is why product catalogs are important. They allow consumers to see all the product information they need like pictures, product descriptions, and pricing information. Without this information, how can they decide which product is going to best meet their needs?

Product catalogs are not some new marketing tool. They have been around for a long time and are essential to your brand’s marketing strategy. If consumers are interested in your product, they naturally want to know more. If the information they need is not readily available to them, they will do research to see if your product meets their news. Product guides are filled with accurate information about your products; it's best that consumers get information about your products from your brand. This way you control the narrative about what your consumers are learning about your products.

What Is A Product Catalog?

product catalog, also known as a product guide or product list, is a document containing a list of a company’s products with additional product information. Product guides offer consumers all the information they need to make a purchasing decision. Marketing teams should use a product catalogue to guide consumers to relevant products that will enhance their customer experience.

Some information product guides may include: 

  • A Company Introduction
  • Product Names
  • Product Images
  • Product Descriptions
  • Product Benefits and Features
  • Pricing Information

Marketing teams have used product guides to provide consumers with a list of all available products so they can easily find the right product for their needs. Some marketers even think outside of the box by organizing their product guides to promote related products and accessories on the same page. For example, if a consumer is looking at an Apple watch, Apple would be smart to recommend a durable case that fits the specific model the consumer is considering. This shows that the brand understands their consumer’s needs and includes useful suggestions that aid the consumer during their buying journey. 

Product guides can be distributed at trade shows, sent to prospective customers, or even made available on your brand’s website and social media channels. Employees can use product guides for training purposes, because they need to know key information about a product in order to sell it effectively.

Type Of Product Guides

The type of product guide you are using needs to be aligned with the type of products you sell.

Some common types of product guides include:

  • User Manuals: These provide detailed instructions on how to use a product. They are typically used by consumers who have purchased a new product and need help getting started.
  • Installation Guides: These provide detailed instructions on how to install a product. They are typically used by consumers who have purchased a new product and need help getting it up and running.
  • Product Catalogs: These provide an overview of the products you offer, including photos, descriptions, and pricing information. They are typically used by consumers who are considering purchasing a product, or by salespeople who are giving presentations to potential consumers.
  • Technical Manuals: These provide detailed information about a product's features and specifications. They are typically used by engineers or other technical employees who need to troubleshoot problems or develop new products.

Another factor when creating a product guide is your target audience. Make sure the information included in the product guide is relevant to what they need to know about your products.

How To Create A Catalog

Creating a product guide can be a challenge but there are things that you can do to make creating a product guide a lot easier. One challenge many face when creating a product guide is collecting all the product information in one place so you can use it to create the product guide. Oftentimes product information is scattered across multiple platforms making it hard to find, hard to get to, and even harder to know what you’re missing.

After you have collected all the product information you need, how do you know it's accurate or up to date? You may have to double check the product information to make sure your consumers don't read inaccurate information about your products. This can be overwhelming since many manufacturers don't have a product information management (PIM) solution in place and often manage their product information via Excel spreadsheets. Without a single place to store product information and assets, it can be extremely cumbersome to compile everything needed for the product guide.  

Another challenge when creating a product guide is the delivery mechanism. Marketing teams at manufacturing companies spend hours compiling product information and formatting it into a product catalog PDF, oftentimes for that information to become outdated once they are done. This often results in outdated information landing in the hands of customers and dealers. 

Creating a digital product guide and using a PIM solution to manage the product information ensures consumers, partners, and dealers always see the most current product information.. You save money by eliminating the printing and shipping costs, save time by having your product information in a centralized location, and you will delight your audience with accurate product information.

Creating a product guide can be overwhelming, especially if product data is stored in disparate systems. It is not uncommon for large organizations to manage product data in Excel files. While Excel files can organize product information, it is not advised to make a product catalog in Excel. Rather than looking for advice on how to make a catalog in Excel, seek information about making a product catalog based on data in Excel. We recommend you begin by creating a simple product catalog and then add to it over time. It's like writing any other piece of content. The first draft is the hardest part. Once you get that done the rest is a breeze.

When creating a product guide you should determine the structure of your product catalog and the information you want to include in it before you start collecting the product information. Structuring your product guide allows you to know exactly what product information you need and where to place it within the product guide. 

After structuring your product guide, you should gather all of the product information and related assets. This can either be an easy task or a hard one depending on if you are using a PIM solution to store your product information. Lumavate’s PIM makes storing, pulling, and managing product information intuitive. All data and assets related to specific products are stored in the PIM. When creating a product guide in Lumavate, any product information stored in the PIM can be quickly pulled to display where it is needed. As product data is updated in the PIM the new information is immediately displayed in any digital experience tied to that product.

Once you have gathered all the product information needed for the product guide, add all of your product information and related assets to a PIM solution (if you have not already done so). Doing this allows you to automatically update your product guide any time you edit the product information in the PIM solution.

Now it's time to actually create the product guide. The best way to create a product guide is by building a digital experience that is tied to your PIM solution. This makes your product guide more accessible and always up to date. After some editing, your product guide is officially finished. You can place your product guide directly on your brand’s website or share it using a link or QR code. In the case you need to update the product information you can update your product data and related assets using the PIM, and have them instantaneously available in your product guide/catalog. Using a solution like Lumavate makes it easy for you to manage your product data and digital assets using Lumavate's PIM functionality, and allows you to build digital experiences tied to product data in less than 30 minutes.

What Is An Example Of A Product Catalog?

You may be asking yourself. What are examples of product catalogs? It's natural if this is your first time learning about them. The best product guides give consumers a curated experience. Product guides are often used during the holiday season when consumers are looking for gifts and ready to spend money.

“The internet largely is an unorganized mess. It serves very well when a consumer knows what they’re looking for, but not as much for general browsing,” said Chad Lusk, senior director at Alvarez & Marsal’s Consumer and Retail Group. “Catalogs serve to assemble these curated collections of goods where you can see multiple items paired together … that effectively triggers ideas.” With so many brands operating online now, from traditional retailers to DTC brands, catalogs are also a way for companies to cut through the noise of digital marketing.

A good example of this is Walmart and Amazon who sent out their catalogs geared towards children with pages filled with the most popular toys. Home brands like Ballard Designs, Grandin Road, RH and Frontgate have issued their own catalogs with holiday decor displayed across their pages to ignite design inspiration. Lowe’s created its first “toy” catalog targeting its professional consumer base intended to serve as a guide for deals during the holiday season. Sam’s Club sent out its first-ever holiday catalog in October.

What Is a Good Product Catalog?

The difference between your average product catalog and a good product catalog are many details that create a whole picture. So our advice to you is to be detail-oriented when it comes to creating your product guides.

When creating a good product catalogue you want to keep your consumer in mind. Something to think about is if your product guide is easy to navigate. Now it may be easy for you to navigate because you created it, but will it be easy for your consumers to find the product information they are looking for? Something as simple as a search functionality or navigation bar could solve this for you.

Clear and concise product descriptions help you consumers better understand what the product does, and how it can benefit them. If your product descriptions are unclear, your consumers could decide not to purchase the product solely because they don't understand what it does.

High-quality images and comprehensive product information can help your consumers paint a better picture of what the product does, what it looks like, and how it will benefit them. High-quality images can not only show what the product looks like, but it can also show how big or small the product is or even how to properly use the product.

Your product guide should have consistent formatting and layout. Having this makes your product guide look more professional and authoritative. Your customers will also appreciate this because they know what information to expect when reading your product guide.

Product features, specifications, pricing, and availability information can all be reasons to choose your product over a competitor. Most purchasing decisions are based on either price, added features, or availability. Having this information available to your consumers can keep them from going to a competitor.

The best product guides are tailored to their target audience. Lumavate allows you to create as many product guides as you need with a platform that helps users create digital experiences more efficiently.

What Is the Best Software to Make a Catalog?

The easiest and most effective way to create product guides is to use technology to your advantage by using a platform like Lumavate. Lumavate is a digital experience platform that includes a product information management system within its suite of functionality. 

A PIM solution allows users to create, store, and edit all of their product information in a centralized location. This enables you to create, edit, and find product information more easily when creating a product guide. 

Create a Product Catalog with Lumavate

Lumavate’s platform also allows you to create product guides as digital experiences within the platform using a product catalog template. Using Lumavate’s simple product catalog template can help you get started. This simple product catalogue template includes detailed product information such as images, product descriptions, related accessories, and more. Since Lumavate offers a PIM solution within the platform, your product guide automatically updates when the information is updated in the PIM

Want to see our PIM in action? Schedule a demo with one of our product experts or take an on-demand tour yourself. 

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.