B2B Ecommerce: Managing Product Data Sheets

B2B Ecommerce: Managing Product Data Sheets

October 2, 2018 11:01 pm

B2B retailers know that producing product literature might be a whole lot of work. Examples embrace specification sheets and security knowledge sheets. Each take time to create and hold present. They will add to a service provider’s already busy workload.

The info for the literature comes from totally different locations. A few of it comes from marketing personnel, some from product administration, and a few from accounting and stock techniques.

Regardless, retailers want a system to make sure the newest sheets are on their web sites and in any other case obtainable for gross sales personnel — probably in a number of languages. The sheets help consumers and handle all the time-altering laws and necessities from, say, the U.S. Division of Transportation and the U.S. Occupational Security and Well being Administration, amongst different businesses.

Furthermore, outdoors events, comparable to distributors and print publications, depend upon the info, as do third-social gathering providers that retailer the sheets and supply 24/7 entry to fulfill regulatory necessities.

It's a lot to maintain monitor of.

On this submit, I’ll tackle find out how to streamline the method.

Streamlining Knowledge Sheets

Begin by reflecting in your present processes. How do you produce knowledge sheets and who's concerned? The method might be guide. Maybe your marketing staff develops the product literature and places it on a shared drive for the complete firm to entry. From there the literature is uploaded to your website.

Some corporations have developed a proprietary database for his or her product literature, which they combine with their website to streamline.

Others use a product info administration software — comparable to inRiver (my firm sells), Riversand, Informatica — which is a central repository of product knowledge that feeds to varied distribution channels and places. It could possibly make the method of sustaining literature rather more environment friendly. PIM software can even scale back the time required to record new merchandise in your website.

Should you choose not to make use of PIM software, nevertheless, contemplate these three ideas to enhance effectivity.

  • Streamline the upkeep course of. Can one file apply to a number of product pages? In that case, you possibly can add, say, a spec sheet as soon as after which examine a field for all of the merchandise it applies to. There is only one place to replace the file, as an alternative of getting to go to every product web page.
  • Contemplate a separate database. When you don’t have a proprietary database of your product literature, it might be worthwhile to create one. This might allow you to create a central supply of data to combine with a number of web sites or outdoors providers.
  • Remove guide redundancies. In case you persist with a guide course of, there are methods to make that extra environment friendly. Write down all the steps in your course of and search for alternatives to get rid of redundancies. Assessment the method with the personnel and brainstorm on how one can make it extra environment friendly.

Additionally, take into consideration how you can present the perfect expertise in your consumers. Product literature will construct belief and assist convert consumers into lengthy-time period clients. The data solutions consumers’ questions, which inspires them to order from you. They usually want the info to satisfy their required regulatory security requirements.


Listed here are some examples of how corporations present product knowledge sheets on their web sites.

Staples.com hyperlinks to its security knowledge sheets on the backside of product descriptions, reminiscent of Loctite Tremendous Glue Gel Management, under.

Note the blue "Safety Data Sheet" link at the bottom of this product description.

Word the blue “Security Knowledge Sheet” hyperlink on the backside of this product description.

Staples.com additionally presents a web page to seek for an merchandise and the outcomes embrace a hyperlink to a cloth security knowledge sheet for merchandise that match the search time period. This may be useful if the customer is on the lookout for a number of knowledge sheets.

Staples offers a page where you can search for the item and it provides a list of the MSDS for products that match the search term.

Staples presents a web page the place you'll be able to seek for the merchandise and it supplies “Materials Security Knowledge Sheet” lists for merchandise that match the search time period.

Flinn Scientific is a supplier of science supplies for educators. The corporate’s web site features a button on the product pages to view the security knowledge sheet — SDS.

Flinn Scientific has a purple button on the lower right on each product page to view its safety data sheet.

Flinn Scientific has a purple button on the decrease proper on every product web page — “View SDS” — to view its security knowledge sheet.

Then, when customers click on on that button, they land on a web page to obtain the PDF or to reserve it to their library.

Users at Flinn Scientific's website can download the safety data sheet PDF or save it to their library.

Customers at Flinn Scientific’s web site can obtain the security knowledge sheet PDF or reserve it to their library, as proven on the decrease proper.

Carolina Organic Provide Firm, one other supplier of science supplies for educators, gives a cloth security knowledge sheet — MSDS — on a “Assets” tab on the highest of every product info web page.

Carolina Biological Supply Company offers a material safety data sheet — MSDS — on a "Resources" tab on the top of each product information page.

Carolina Organic Provide Firm provides a cloth security knowledge sheet — MSDS — on a “Assets” tab on the highest of every product web page.

Additionally, in its major “Assets” part, accessible from the home page, Carolina Organic Provide consists of all of its security knowledge sheets.

In its main "Resources" section, Carolina Biological Supply includes a page of all of its safety data sheets.

In its major “Assets” part, Carolina Organic Provide features a web page of all of its security knowledge sheets.

Effectivity and Service

Enterprise house owners attempt to enhance operational effectivity and supply higher service to their clients. Utilizing know-how to take care of product literature and make it extra accessible to consumers can accomplish each wants.

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