Last updated: How to manage multichannel product information for seamless CX

How to manage multichannel product information for seamless CX


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Enterprises today engage, sell, and provide services across multiple channels. With automation and AI, a seamless end-to-end customer experience is evolving. This is particularly important for product manufacturers, distributors, and retailers as they expand across B2X channels and markets.

Seamless CX begins with harvesting various sources of product-related data and centralizing the output into a flexible data model. This model guides how product data is collected, organized, structured, and related within a centralized hub.

Understanding the data requirements of all channels is key to determining the technical requirements that will ultimately produce tangible business results.

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No small feat: Multichannel product information management

Before diving into best practices, let’s look at some of the common challenges companies face when managing multichannel product data.

  1. Inventory management: Maintaining accurate inventory levels across multiple channels is complex. Overstocking or stockouts can lead to lost sales or excess costs.
  2. Product information consistency: Brand integrity depends on consistent product information (descriptions, images, pricing) across all channels, but different channels may have specific formatting requirements.
  3. Order fulfillment: Coordinating order processing, shipping, and returns across channels can be daunting. Different fulfillment centers or logistics partners may have varying capabilities. Timely and accurate order fulfillment is critical for customer satisfaction.
  4. Marketing coordination: Creating cohesive marketing campaigns across channels requires alignment. Balancing channel-specific strategies while maintaining a unified brand voice can be tricky.
  5. Customer service: Customers expect consistent, top-flight service regardless of the channel they use, but providing seamless customer support across channels is challenging.
  6. Data integration and analysis: The complexity of managing and analyzing data from multiple channels requires powerful data management tools.

Multichannel management demands careful attention to detail, robust systems, and effective coordination to overcome these challenges and ensure a seamless customer experience.

Multichannel selling requires flexibility

The need for comprehensive and accurate product information has surged with the rise of multichannel selling. And as businesses expand, it’s becoming increasingly intricate. Effective multichannel product information management considers future requirements.

One of the most essential principles in PIM data modeling is elasticity, which refers to the ability to stretch and expand as data grows. Like a rubber band, an elastic PIM data model expands and adapts with product catalogs over time.

A flexible data model is key to successfully selling products across various channels. Here’s why.

  • Customization and personalization: A flexible data model allows businesses to tailor product information to the specific requirements of each channel. Customizing content ensures that it resonates with the audience on different platforms. Personalization, such as adjusting product descriptions or pricing based on the channel, improves CX.
  • Channel-specific attributes: Different channels have unique requirements and attributes. A flexible model accommodates these variations, allowing businesses to include details relevant to each channel. For example, an e-commerce website might need high-resolution images, while a mobile app may prioritize concise descriptions.
  • Efficient content syndication: Flexibility enables efficient content syndication by centralizing data and ensuring updates propagate seamlessly to all channels. This consistency builds trust with customers.
  • Scalability and agility: As businesses expand to new channels or adapt to changing market dynamics, this agile model supports scalability and quick adjustments without disrupting existing processes. Agility in managing product data ensures responsiveness to market demands.
  • Compliance: Different channels may have varying compliance requirements (e.g., labeling, product specifications), and regulations are continually evolving and differ based on which country products are sold. A flexible data model allows businesses to incorporate these regulations into their product information to maintain compliance.
  • Real-time updates: Channels operate in real-time, and product data must reflect the latest changes. Flexibility facilitates real-time updates, ensuring accurate information across all touchpoints, whether it’s price adjustments, stock availability, or promotions.

The high price of rigidity

When a product data model lacks flexibility, companies run into several limitations when managing multichannel product information and selling across multiple channels.

  • Inefficient integration: It’s hard to integrate various systems such as point-of-sale, ERP and e-commerce websites. This prevents seamless flow between channels, affecting real-time updates and consistency.
  • Customization constraints: Rigid data models can’t adapt to channel-specific requirements. The inability to customize product information (descriptions, pricing, images) for each channel leads to suboptimal customer experiences.
  • Data discrepancies: Inflexible models result in inconsistent data across channels, which lead to inconsistent experience that confuse customers, erode trust, and harm brand reputation.
  • Slow content syndication: Manual content syndication is time-consuming; delayed product launches and updates hinder speed to market.
  • Limited scalability: Rigid models struggle to accommodate growth or new channels. Expanding to additional channels becomes cumbersome and slow.
  • Compliance: Meeting regulatory requirements (e.g., labeling, specifications) becomes complex, increasing the risk of non-compliance and legal penalties.
  • Higher maintenance costs: Inflexible systems require custom integrations or costly upgrades. Maintenance expenses reduce profitability and agility.

Without real-time visibility, a company can’t respond quickly to market changes. They miss opportunities, allowing competitors to gain an edge. A rigid product data model hinders agility, customization, and synchronization across channels.

Businesses must prioritize flexibility to thrive in multichannel environments.

GenAI + multichannel product information management

Integrating generative AI into product information management (PIM) is revolutionizing how organizations handle the complexities of managing product data across multiple channels and markets. Benefits of genAI for PIM include:

  • Predictive analytics and insights: Significantly improves decision-making processes in product management. By analyzing vast amounts of data, AI algorithms identify trends, predict market changes, and suggest optimal product development and positioning decisions.
  • Better personalization: Enables personalized recommendations based on user behavior and preferences. Whether tailoring product offerings or suggesting relevant content, AI-driven personalization improves the user experience.
  • Market trend predictions: Analyzes historical data and external factors to predict market trends. Product managers can proactively adjust strategies based on these insights.
  • Content creation: Helps generate product descriptions, metadata, and other content, which streamlines content creation and ensures consistency across channels.
  • Dynamic pricing: AI algorithms can optimize pricing based on market demand, competitor pricing, and other variables. GenAI helps product managers adapt pricing strategies dynamically.
  • Supply chain optimization: Predicts demand fluctuations and supply chain disruptions. Product managers can proactively manage inventory and logistics.

GenAI empowers product managers to navigate the complexities of managing multichannel product information by providing data-driven insights, personalized experiences, and agility in a rapidly changing market.

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