News & Blog

"PIM as a meaningful addition to ERP systems"

Excerpt: ERP systems have always been among the indispensable tools for companies in industry and commerce. But even these systems are increasingly reaching their limits, especially in the area of data management. This is exactly where PIM software comes in and equips companies for the new digital challenges of the market.

Product Information Management (PIM) plays an increasingly important role in the efficient handling of product information in the digital age. Data inventories from ever-growing product catalogs can be completely recorded and centrally managed with PIM. Many companies, on the other hand, have long relied on proven ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solutions to organize business processes. This now raises the question of how PIM can be linked meaningfully and seamlessly to such existing solutions.

While PIM software aims to manage product information such as SKUs, quantity units, or even images of products, an ERP system can be used to collect the company’s business information and control product inventory as well as pricing, accounting, and human resources. The systems thus perform different types of tasks. (Recommended reading: A detailed differentiation of both systems can be found here).  

A special feature of PIM solutions is the collection of product data from many different data silos. These are finally merged into a single central source (“Single Source of Truth”) and from there consistently and completely distributed to a multitude of channels.  The hypothesis that the management of products would be exclusively part of the ERP system is thus no longer tenable today due to the numerous advantages of complementary PIM software.

„The Global Product Information Management (PIM) Market size is expected to reach $17 billion by 2026, rising at a market growth of 11.4% CAGR during the forecast period.”

Source: KBV Research, PIM Market, 2021

So what are the benefits of integrating ERP and PIM systems?

Complete data control: The combination of ERP system and PIM software allows to manage product data and inventory, orders, company related data, etc. from a single source. It enables the responsible teams to sift through the content and push it out accordingly through existing multichannel channels, e.g. Amazon, Google Shopping, ebay and other marketplaces (including B2B). Redundant tasks and associated time are minimized through automation, saving time and costs.

Efficient data sharing: Sending product data to retailers, distributors or wholesalers is undoubtedly a stressful process. For companies that rely only on an ERP system for this, sharing this data is only possible to a certain level. With PIM software, brand managers can ensure that accurate, complete and meaningful product data is always made available to their customers. This not only allows a greater amount of data to be shared with stakeholders, but also facilitates collaboration across sales and marketing channels.

More channels, more sales: Whether small or large companies – without PIM, syndication of product content across multiple channels is one of the biggest difficulties for companies with a multichannel business model. Even more, most small businesses can only operate on a single sales channel, even though visibility in the market is one of the most important aspects to secure their market position and attract new customers. Most of the time, customers either don’t even notice that the company exists at all, or they just skim over it and then turn to the competition. In this case, a PIM system allows you to provide the required product data completely, in high quality and consistently across all the required sales and marketing channels.

„The information for a quality product experience requires the right technology, which we currently do not find in the traditional ERP or CRM applications (…). It is important that an organization make investments into supporting product experience management that uses an automated and intelligent PIM approach to optimize priorities and resources, simplifying the execution of product-related tasks and activities to improve outcomes.“

Source: Ventana Research, Product Information Management Value Index 2021

The need for a PIM solution becomes particularly apparent where ERP systems reach their limits with their range of functions and the basic functions of PIM software kick in. While ERP systems are suitable for complex, user-controlled business processes such as ordering, manufacturing processes or logistical tasks, they are not designed to capture product data of individual products in its entirety and manage it throughout the entire lifecycle. This becomes particularly clear in a direct comparison of the range of functions:

ERP basic functions:

  • Inventory and delivery tracking, order fulfillment and supply chain management
  • Customer behavior and customer journey tracking, CRM basics
  • Accounting
  • Management of customer-related data
  • Project management

PIM basic functions:

  • Provide high quality product descriptions and digital assets 
  • Include sales information, reviews and ratings 
  • Capture and output channel-specific information
  • Share data across multiple channels 
  • Collect and manage product specifications

The essential lesson now is to understand PIM software as a downstream component of an ERP system. Because although the latter is quite reliably able to serve certain touchpoints, there is at the same time a whole series of blind spots where a PIM system optimally approaches. This becomes particularly apparent when competing with rivals that penetrate your own market with very similar products (learn more about how to build long-term competitive advantages with PIM here). Nowadays, a simple, general product description alone is no longer enough to attract the attention of customers and achieve higher rankings in search results. The qualitative enhancement of product data through an integrated PIM provides a remedy here. 

Conclusion

The world of e-commerce is changing rapidly, creating new challenges for all companies that want to remain competitive in the market. Therefore, sales and marketing managers must act now and equip themselves with the essential e-commerce tools to efficiently manage all sales processes and create a unique product experience for their customers. Implementing an ERP system alone will not meet these requirements. Only in combination with a PIM software that can be optimally integrated is it possible to pave the way for success in e-commerce. After all, customers should be stimulated along their entire customer journey with high-quality product data, visibility should be improved through optimized assets in search results, and a user-friendly online store should be provided. 

Feel free to contact us for a non-binding online demo and experience live how our PIM system prodexa Cloud can be integrated into your existing IT infrastructure and which synergies result for your business model.

More articles:

How Digital Asset Management can revolutionize your video marketing

More and more companies are turning to video marketing as part of their digital marketing strategy. With good reason, as it turns out. But how can the increasing demands on multimedia content be mastered successfully? And how can the increasing amounts of data be managed efficiently?

Was ist der Return of Experience Werden Sie zum ROX-Star!

What is the return of experience?

In addition to ROI (Return of Investment), ROX (Return of Experience) is a metric that should play a big role in e-commerce. Customer experience determines up-selling or cross-selling and also post-purchase reviews. The direct link between customer perception, customer experience and actual behavioral changes is quantified by ROX. The engagement of the employees in the service departments of the companies is also included in the consideration of the ROX. A PIM helps deliver the best quality data across all touchpoints.

Successfully entering the digital transformation with a PIM system 

A Product Information Management System (PIM) makes the digitization of product data much easier and frees up space for other projects. A daring thesis? Yes! We know how it really works and explain in this article how the transformation succeeds.
Digital transformation means, especially for manufacturing companies, the right handling of product information. With a PIM system, workflows are simplified and information is available centrally.

Higher rankings through Product Listing Optimization

We all know that SEO is essential for the success of a product. But Product Listing Optimization (PLO) also makes a significant contribution to the marketing success of a product. It makes it possible to adapt the product content to the algorithm of the various channels in order to achieve sustainably better rankings.

Quick Commerce – the new trend for online commerce

After e-commerce comes Q-commerce. Quick Commerce (Q-Commerce) is all about speed and delivering the best customer experience. And doing so within the shortest possible time. The market is growing rapidly, right now it’s mostly groceries, but pharmaceuticals are the next quick commerce segment.

„The information for a quality product experience requires the right technology, which we currently do not find in the traditional ERP or CRM applications (…). It is important that an organization make investments into supporting product experience management that uses an automated and intelligent PIM approach to optimize priorities and resources, simplifying the execution of product-related tasks and activities to improve outcomes.“

Source: Ventana Research, Product Information Management Value Index 2021
Jetzt Vorteile live erleben

Lernen Sie prodexa Cloud für Ihre Branche in einer unverbindlichen und individuellen Produkttour kennen.

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud for the industry “Automotive & Vehicles” – download now for free (German version).

Experience the benefits live

Find out more about prodexa Cloud for your industry in a non-binding and individual product tour.

GRATIS DOWNLOAD
prodexa Cloud im aktuellen Report (2022) von TGOA: Erfahren Sie im aktuellen Report von “The Group of Analysts”, wie prodexa Cloud im Branchenvergleich abschneidet.
Download Report

prodexa Cloud im Report von “The Group of Analysts” – jetzt kostenlos runterladen.

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud “PIM with marketplace features” – download now for free (German version).

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud – “PIM for technical wholesale” – download now for free (German version).

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud for the industry “Tools & DIY” – download now for free (German version).

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud for the industry “Mechanical Engineering & Technology” – download now for free (German version).

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud for the industry “Construction Materials, Sanitary & HVAC” – download now for free (German version).

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud for the industry “Commerce & B2B” – download now for free (German version).

Download Whitepaper

prodexa Cloud for the industry “Electronics & Cables” – download now for free (German version).