Tag Archives: Multichannel

We Are Sports – SportScheck Omnichannel Retail

Are you a manager dedicated to fashion, B2C or retail? This blog provides an overview what companies can learn on omnichannel from SportScheck.

SportScheck is one of Germany’s most successful multichannel businesses. SportScheck (btw Ventana Research Innovation Award Winner) is an equipment and clothing specialist for almost every sport and its website gets over 52 million hits per year, making it one of the most successful online stores in Germany.

Each year, more than million customers sign up for the mail-order business while over 17 million customers visit its brick and mortar stores (Source). These figures undoubtedly describe the success of SportScheck’s multichannel strategy. SportScheck also strives to deliver innovative concepts in all of its sales channels, while always aiming to provide customers with the best shopping experience possible. This philosophy can be carried out only in conjunction with modern systems landscapes and optimized processes.

Complete, reliable, and attractive information – across every channel – is the key to a great customer experience and better sales. It’s hard to keep up with customer demands in a single channel, much less multiple channels. Download The Informed Purchase Journey. The Informed Purchase Journey requires the right product, to right customer at the right place. Enjoy the video!

What is the Business Initiative in SportScheck

  • Providing the customer the same deals across all sales channels with a centralized location for all product information
  • Improve customer service in all sales channels with perfect product data
  • Make sure customers have enough product information to make a purchase without the order being returned

Intelligent and Agile Processes are Key to Success

“Good customer service, whether online, in-store, or in print, needs perfect product data” said Alexander Pischetsrieder in an interview. At the Munich-based sporting goods retailer, there had been no centralized system for product data before now. After extensive research and evaluation, the company decided to implement the product information management (PIM) system from Informatica.

The main reason for the introduction of Informatica Product Information Management (PIM) solutions was its support for a true multichannel strategy. Customers should have access to the same deals across all sales channels. In addition to making a breadth of information available, customer service still remains key.

In times where information is THE killer app, key challenges are, keeping information up to date and ensuring efficient processes. In a retail scenario, product catalog onboarding starts with PIM to get the latest product information. A dataset in the relevant systems that is always up-to-date is a further basis, which allows companies to react immediately to market movements and implement marketing requirements as quickly as possible. Data must be exchanged between the systems practically in real time. If you want to learn more details, how SportScheck solved the technical integration between SAP ERP and Informatica PIM

Product Data Equals Demonstrated Expertise

“I am convinced that a well-presented product with lots of pictures and details sells better. For us, this signals knowing our product. That sets us apart from the large discount stores,” notes Alexander Pischetsrieder. “In the end, we have to ask: who is the customer going to trust? We gain trust here with our product knowledge and our love of sports in general.” Just like our motto says, “We get our fans excited.” By offering a professional search engine, product comparisons, and many other features, 
PIM adds value not only in ecommerce – and that gets us excited!”

Benefits for SportScheck

  • Centralized location for all product information across all sales channels
  • An agile system that is capable of interweaving the different retail processes across sales channels into a smooth, cross-channel function
  • Self-Service portal for agencies and suppliers with direct upload to the PIM system

For German readers I can highly recommend this video on the customer use case. If you are interested in more details, ask me on Twitter @benrund.

PS: This blog is based on the PIM case study on SportScheck.

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Best Practices: Distributor Kramp Serving All Customer Requests With Long Tail Strategy

Our blog frequently provides best practice stories of our customers using product information management (PIM) for their business model. This case is about the “long tail strategy” at Kramp.

Tines, hand tools, spare parts for agricultural machines and hydraulic motors are the order of the day at Kramp.  Kramp, based in the Netherlands, is Europe’s largest wholesaler of accessories and spare parts for motorized equipment, agricultural and construction machines. The company’s business model and e-commerce strategy is exemplary. Kramp is using product information management (PIM) for their long tail strategy in e-commerce.

Kramp’s Value Proposition: “It’s that easy”

“We want to make it easier for our customers, partners and suppliers. We believe in the future and the power of e-commerce”, said CEO Eddie Perdok. Kramp grew the product assortment from about 200,000 to 1,000,000+ items from about 2,000 suppliers.

Previous stock policies in mail order retail always meant having limited space. In the catalog there were only a certain number of pages available. Even the logistics were limited – warehouse storage limited the possibilities so much that the majority of companies tried to find the “perfect catalog range” with the largest number of bestsellers.

The Digital Assortment Has No Limits

“Compared to other sales channels, the internet gives us significant cost advantages”, says Eddie Perdok. The digital department store consists of servers that can be easily extended at any time.

Adding a new product requires no more than a few additional entries in a database. The challenge is that the product data must be obtained from the suppliers and then distributed before products can be presented in a shop. The range is therefore often limited because the product data cannot be efficiently updated and sale is lost to other vendors are retailers.

Europe’s largest wholesaler of spare parts for agricultural machines and accessories focuses on managing all product data from a central data source for all sales channels and languages.

Longtail_PIM

 

Customer and supplier feedback is an important factor

“We want to bring customer opinion and supplier knowledge together”, explains Eddie Perdock. “Online customer evaluation combined with the knowledge of the manufacturer puts us in the position of being able to optimally control our stock”. In e-commerce, vendors, retailers and customers are coming closer and closer together.

 Benefits Kramp realized with PIM on their long tail strategy

  • Quick ROI due to short implementation phases
  • Better customer satisfaction due to optimal data quality
  • Higher margins and turnover in e-commerce due to niche items in long tail
  • Easy, professional handling of mass data lowers process costs
  • Short product introduction times to new markets

You can learn more on using PIM for long tail business on the entire case study or hear Ronald Renskers, Manager Product Content at Kramp, and others talking on the latest video.

Massively increasing the assortment is one of the top trends retailers and distributors focus on, according to Forrester Principal Analyst, Sucharita Mulpuru. Forrester’s research shows that retailers’ biggest competition are brands that sell directly to consumers. Marketplaces like Amazon result in higher margins, according to Forrester and www.pim-roi.com.

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PIM 7 Speeds up “Time-to-Shop” in Multi-Channel Commerce with Highest Quality Data

The Product Information Management (PIM) solution from Informatica is used by large international manufacturers and retailers, including Saks Fifth Avenue, Otto or Puma. The latest version of the Product Information Management (PIM) solution from Heiler Software is available now. “With PIM 7, our aim is to help our customers be the first to bring their products to market and sell more with highest quality product information”, said Rolf Heiler. Watch the video and visit the microsite to learn more on the business values of PIM 7.

PIM 7 gives the answer to the four key challenges of our customers, based on frequent collaboration within the user group and and our market research:

1. Improve conversion, reduce return rates with quality data

Conversion rates and return costs are key factors for success in e-commerce. 40% of consumers intend to return something when ordering. 40% order more variations of a product. According to Rolf Heiler “Quality data is of the most critical importance for managing these key performance indicators. Informatica PIM 7 integrates with the industry leading data quality solution from Informatica, our customers can enhance the quality of their data and accelerate their processes. Product Information Management helps our customers in B2C and B2B to grow and transform their business model towards the future”.

Our new PIM 7 enables our customers to establish clear standards for data quality, track the KPI over time,  and communicate the data quality improvements and business impact both internally processes and to the partners. PIM 7 allows all user within the company and partners, to collaborate on achieving the improved conversion rates and up-selling.

2. Reduce time-to-shop with an ease of collaboration

Did you know that according to Gartner 90% of the business critial information is outside your enterprise? Imagine how important collaboration is. Heiler Software offers its customers speed, agility, and the ability to get to market quickly, thanks to its comprehensive collaborative options, that open access to processes for all roles relating to product information through an easy-to-use web interface. “For our customers, time-to-market also means, time-to-shop. How long does it take to make new or modified assortments available on web platforms?” Schuster finishes by explaining that: “With PIM 7, all key functions are now also available via web access. We have also enabled access to these collaboration capabilities on a wide range of mobile devices, allowing our customers to sell their products faster.”

3. Make the data available to the enterprise with Service API

Large international companies tend to have a complex hybrid and heterogenous IT ecosystem. Thanks to its comprehensive Service API, our PIM 7 makes product data available for to all consumers. Examples include product searches in a call center, integration with mobile apps, or access to product data within an ERP solution. Based on the new web services, Informatica’s customers and partners can also adopt enterprise standards, such as SAP Process Integration (PI), quickly and directly.

4. Improve industry reach

PIM 7 also opens up new possibilities in the area of data modeling. An enhanced, flexible data model ensures that heterogeneous product assortments and complex hierarchies can be mapped with ease. Thanks to the data model enhancements, it’s now even easier for Informatica customers to fulfill their specific requirements, for example, for even better web shops and mobile solutions.

Summary of PIM 7

As a summary Informatica Enterprise PIM 7 comes with integration of the industry leading Data Quality solution from Informatica. It allows a 100% web based collaboration of all business critical product data processes. The comprehensive Service API for lists, media, meta, enumeration & management of data makes product data available to the enterprise easily. It provides a high standardized and flexible product data model for quick time-to-value.

All of the key information about this solution and details of its potential applications are available from Informatica online at: http://www.informatica.com/pim7/

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9 KPIs for Top Retailers’ Multichannel Commerce – Infographic driven by PIM

When seeking to justify an investment in Product Information Management (PIM) and building the business case, companies can investigate which key performance indicators are impacted by PIM. The results of the international PIM study demonstrate that a return on investment (ROI) from an Enterprise Product Information Management (PIM) solution is possible within the framework of a multichannel commerce strategy.

1. Search engines
60% of web users use search engines to search for products. (Source: Searchengineland.com)

2. Time-to-market
The results of the international PIM study show that a return on investment (ROI) from an Enterprise Product Information Management (PIM) solution is possible within the framework of a multichannel commerce strategy. Over 300 retailers and manufacturers from 17 countries participated in the extensive study by Heiler Software. The study delivers more than 30 pages of measurable results. One such result is that PIM leads to a 25% faster time-to-market thanks to SEO products. (Source: www.pim-roi.com)

3. Shopping cart abandonment
90% of shopping cart abandonments occur because of poor product information. (Source: Internet World Business Magazine)

4. Product returns
40 is the critical number. 40% of buyers intend to return a product when they order it. 40% order more variations of a product. 40% of all product returns are due to poor product information. (Source: Magazine Wirtschaftswoche 7.1.2013 and Return Research  – average German mail-order market)

5. Print impacts online
Printed catalogs lead to a 30% boost in online sales. (Source: ECC multichannel survey)

6. Cost savings in print catalog publishing
PIM enables a saving of USD 280,000 by automating manual print catalog production. (Source: LNC PIM survey 2007)

7. In-store sales and customer service
61% of retail managers believe that shoppers are better connected to product information than in-store associates. (Source: Motorola Holiday Shopping Study 2012)

8. Margins with niche products
80% of Heiler PIM customers say they sell at higher margins by pursuing a long tail strategy and increasing assortment size. (Source: www.pim-roi.com)

9. Social sharing
Social sharing generates value. And, on average across all social networks, the value of a social share drives $3.23 in additional revenue for an event each time someone shares. (Source: Social commerce numbers, October 23, 2012)

9-top-kpis-for-top-retailers

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