June 27, 2016

How to handle product information in the required level for today’s B2B shopper?

Marjo Ylitolva

Solution Manager, Team Lead, Tieto

B2B purchasing is chancing rapidly to more information centric and independent. Today's shoppers are expecting relevant product information regardless of time and place. 

This is why Product Information Management (PIM) has become a strategic asset and vital enabler for every B2B company to manage their product information in an efficient and timely manner. This writing concentrates on B2B product information management, for B2C insight you can visit our earlier blog.

PIM is a concept to manage product content related to customer or external stakeholder. There are number of internal stakeholders such as marketers and product managers as actors who are working with product information. PIM enables to manage all product-related content, both structured and unstructured, for all channels, in a centralized way. PIM tools help companies to harmonize all product content related to customers, i.e. marketing and technical, of their offering.

What are the challenges that B2B companies face with product information?  

B2B companies are facing large investments to get their products out to use. Depending on the industry the products need to be designed and manufactured. In order to market, sell, deliver and support, the product information needs to be available in different systems like ERP, CRM and eCommerce, just to mention a few. This is of course important, but what is crucial is that if you don’t have correct and relevant information about your product, it simply doesn’t sell.

Every company wants to provide a great customer experience to their customers - a happy customer is a returning and spending customer. How to handle traditional sales channels such as direct sales and dealers, and at the same time add new online channels such as mobile or social. On top of this challenge, companies must also communicate more with their customers. B2B buyers like to have accurate product information available in the personally preferred channel, in the right context. More detailed information is required with pictures and videos with good quality and relevance.

All organizations that are trying to get product offerings to different markets know that the challenge is to get the product offering out to the market in the right timing, with coherent message and rich content across all channels. Having a superb product offering, together with rich product information, is the foundation for giving customers a great experience.

What do you gain with PIM?

  • Competitive advantage with reliable and consistent product information in all channels
  • Efficiency enhancements for product life cycle and PIM processes throughout different organizations
  • “Single-source-of-truth” for marketing related product information
  • You can track PIM activities in one system
  • Cost savings through process improvements and less manual work
  • New channels for product information

The future of PIM in B2B?

The future of PIM is about managing the product information for the whole customer journey, over and over again. The journey starts from awareness, continues to a concrete need, followed by order and delivery, and finally to the use and self-service of products and services. For your customer this is an endless journey, and by providing unique customer experience with product information, you make sure it never ends without purchase.

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Read more

Tieto Industrial Experience – the future of B2B customer engagement
Tieto Retail Experience – the shopping of the future

 

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