Why digital commerce needs engagement intelligence

blog

January 18, 2021

Traditional PIM solutions give content a one-way journey. There's a better way.

Digital commerce is how organizations drive most revenue today. For high engagement (highly customized) purchases, product information has become a differentiator that takes basic product information and transforms it into a strategic asset. A recent article in Forbes calls content in e-commerce a digital arms race as nothing is more important than ensuring your product information is hitting the mark for every customer touchpoint.

A harsh reality 

Unfortunately, a harsh reality is that current options for managing product information to meet today’s demands are insufficient. And, they are holding back revenue growth across both B2B and B2C organizations.

To manage the vast amounts of product information that is generated and required today, brands have turned to product information management (PIM) solutions. A PIM is an excellent (and essential) solution to manage ever-changing content, together with digital assets to give business users a single platform to syndicate product content across channels and marketplaces.

The missing loop 


However, the process became very linear. Product information is sent on a one-way journey and there has been no feedback loop in place to audit the product information, to learn from the story it is telling online, and to iterate, and improve on it. And with the pace of digital commerce, that leaves a big gap in the process.

Even as consumers, we know that accurate, complete, and compelling product information is critical to our customer journey. It is what drives engagement and ultimately, sales. We need to be able to find the products or solutions we seek online and when we do, we expect a great buying experience from the first search term used to the final push of the button to purchase. 

A brand promise 


This creates pressure on the brand, and a need to continually monitor and update their content to keep pace on the digital shelf. Too often issues including out of stock and poor visibility impact the buying experience and lost sales.

Content development efforts are often collaborative and against tight deadlines. Add in the fact that regulatory guidelines, marketplace requirements, market conditions, and buyer preferences are constantly changing.

Marketers and product managers do not have the time to look at stacks of reports or disconnected dashboards to try and figure out what to do next to maximize buyer engagement. They need to be given real-time data and insights for the next best actions and the ability to make changes in an instant.

Engagement intelligence 

For a brand to compete and win, despite all the challenges faced, it is fundamentally important to gather intelligence from each and every single customer touchpoint so it can influence revenue. You need to understand at scale and across all your engagement points, how your products are displayed, determine if they are inspiring your customers to purchase, and ensure they convert. The gathering of this Engagement Intelligence™ is important so you can take appropriate action on it is the next critical step.

With a PIM solution you can quickly resolve content related issues and syndicate back out to your channels. However, having a PIM solution that is not integrated with digital shelf analytics makes things a little clunky to say the least. Look to streamline processes and systems if possible.

Winning on the digital shelf means leveraging the power of a PIM and doing it with engagement insights that come from digital shelf analytics. Continue to leverage consistent, relevant product content across channels and use smart monitoring to find out what is working and what is not in your online channels. Keep that data feeding that into the PIM solution and take action.

Read the inriver press release today about the acquisition of Detail Online. Learn how inriver can now deliver Engagement Intelligence as the only Digital-first PIM™ solution on the market.

Author

David Copeland

Senior Product Manager

David is a senior product manager at inriver. He has worked in the software industry for the past 20 years and within e-commerce for the past five, focused on solving the biggest issues facing brands selling on the digital shelf today. With a passion for solving problems, David believes that with the right technology, process and people, brands have an amazing opportunity in front of them.

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