Highly complex web portals and catalogs
Web portals and catalogs are a lifeline for global commerce. After all, they enable people to search for, find, compare and buy products. At the same time, the quality of the product information plays a key role in purchase decisions. Industrial and commercial companies are required to provide valid data at all times. However, the product data are complex and change frequently. Central systems are able to assist companies in maintaining complex product data, publishing these data on their own or external sales portals and automatically generating printed catalogs for example. Noxum provides its content and product information management system for this purpose.
Würzburg, September 14, 2012 – Noxum GmbH, the specialist for content management and editorial systems, has implemented its software systems for global sales portals and producing catalogs at companies with a number of separate sites. The system architecture allows them to grow in response to changing business requirements. At the same time, authorization management regulates how many and what users can access the data.
Product data requirements
Just like customers place demands on the quality of products, they are demanding when it comes to product information and the information service too. Given the fierce competition, companies must also offer customers a positive shopping experience. They do this through high-quality product presentation, search facilities and advice as well as the design of their sales channel. For example, easy-to-find information ensures satisfied customers and is the basis for a positive shopping experience.
Companies endeavor to achieve this by providing information tailored to individual target groups. They often diversify their sales channels and the associated product information too. Naturally, producing high-quality product information for a large number of sales channels poses a particular challenge for companies. After all, product life cycles are short and information must be provided for a range of channels from catalogs, brochures, operating manuals and service documents to websites, online shops and support services. Consequently, companies do not have much time to produce consistent, valid and high-quality product information for the various media and languages. To make matters worse, the product data are not usually available from a central source.
Without system support, maintaining, harmonizing and updating these data is a complex, error-prone task. Central systems for managing product data provide the basis for product and service quality on portals and in catalogs. With a suitable product information and content management system, the product data are maintained on a one-off basis and master data from merchandising systems are imported. However, the large number of product data sets from various sources requires extraordinary performance and high scalability on the part of the system. With the PIM system from Noxum, industrial and commercial companies from various sectors are able to manage the product data for all their international online shops and catalogs at a central location.
Data maintenance through product information management
The data can be maintained in the departments in which they were created. This is possible thanks to a granular system of authorization management. Authorized employees, e.g. from purchasing, sales or customer services, can access the PIM system, maintain their specific data or work with the data that are available. The PIM system supports data maintenance through complex heredity concepts. Heredity mechanisms further reduce the maintenance outlay. For individual product versions, only a fraction of the product attributes then need to be maintained. For example, product recommendations relating to individual articles can be assigned to entire product lines.
When working with the system, staff benefit from workflow management and links to ERP or translation management systems for example. The structure behind the product concept and a variant management system allow the efficient, clear management of language versions for international target groups. A translation management system is used to provide content in the necessary languages, while Noxum publishing technology allows the content to be published in various media. At the moment, product data can be published in web portals and shops as well as printed, Internet and CD/DVD catalogs.
Worthwhile PIM and content management system use
For the use of such systems to be worthwhile, the data structure must be reproduced centrally in the PIM system. Using a PIM system can reduce the outlay involved in maintaining product information in a number of respects. The product information can easily be updated and can automatically be prepared for specific markets. The different values for the various markets can be taken into account in the PIM system. Product information can be created and translated much more quickly and cheaply. The information building blocks are transparently linked within the system. Individual products can be shown in a clearly structured manner and the information relating to these products can be found easily.
Content managers are able to focus on content creation and are offered support when publishing for target markets. The time needed to publish on the web is reduced considerably, while the automated processes prevent copy and paste errors, thus resulting in data of impressive quality. Product updates, translations and approval processes can be carried out more easily and quickly. Retailers and end consumers benefit from having reliable, valid product data available on their portal. They are given assistance when selecting and ordering products, and the overall burden on the service is reduced. And ultimately, the users of the system and the product information are satisfied.