E-commerce content managers are increasingly tasked with rapid SKU expansion to support growth, improve content for seasonal key items, fix content in areas that are important and faring badly, or other such tasks. However, what makes these tasks complicated is that they are not small projects, are very often complex, have several moving parts or dependencies and need to be completed sooner than ever. Last but not least, they don’t come with heavy budgetary allocations.
While product content is often considered the “cost of doing business”, getting it wrong or doing a poor job is easy to detect and has conversion implications, whether online or in the store. A recent survey by a leading research firm states “almost 1/3 of US adults would consider buying from an online retailer they had never purchased from before, if that retailer offered detailed product information.” So while product content is essential to inform or educate a shopper, if done right it can help drive engagement and differentiation. Thus, improving your product content the right way to help achieve the right results.
Retailers often need to work with content providers to bridge knowledge gaps, capacity, expertise, and more. What parameters and questions are important when choosing the right content partner?
Domain knowledge and proven expertise…
- Does the content partner understand retail?
- Do they understand your context or problem?
- Do they understand your category?
- Have they done this before?
- Does the content partner have processes in place that are scalable?
- Do they have intellectual property that can drive efficiencies and time to market?
- Do they have the technology that supports scale, like an automated QA (quality assurance system)?
- Does the content partner have the ability to seamlessly work across multiple providers?
- Are they easily accessible?
- Do they co-ordinate and communicate effectively without burdening your resources?
- Do they periodically share how they measure up against SLAs for quality, timeliness, and cost?
- A critical evaluation is required. For example, a pilot of 30 SKUs or a category page will not uncover possible problem areas at larger scale or complexity.
Did you know: A Major Online Retailer Accomplishes Rapid SKU Expansion – 1/2 Million per Quarter – with the Help of Ugam. Read the case study here.
Mihir Kittur is a Co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer at Ugam. He oversees sales, marketing and innovation and works with leading retailers and brands with insights and analytics solutions around their category decisions to improve business performance.