Manual efforts are no longer enough to ensure data quality. That’s why data quality enhancement technology is an imperative.
When one in four consumers abandoned a purchase because of poor product information, product data quality raises serious concerns. Relevant, updated, and accurate product information is important for a seamless and memorable in-store experience that consumers look for can be a key competitive differentiator in retail.
The impact of poor product data costs retailers huge losses, mostly seen in shopping cart abandonment, returns, and loss of customers. US stores already saw a loss of 500 USD in 2020 because of product returns, 64% of which is due to wrong product information.
Product data quality doesn’t come easy; the industry faces multiple challenges managing product data integrity. Ecommerce stores need to innovate and invest in technology-enabled solutions to improve data quality. Data enrichment solution to data quality issues improves data content, making it useful for consumers. The story gives tips on maintaining high-quality data for that impeccable shopping experience.
Metrics for determining high-quality product data
Before we talk about how to maintain data quality, here are the five dimensions that determine high-quality product data.
- Accuracy of product information
- Relevancy of product information
- Completeness of product information
- Timeliness of product information
- Consistency of product information
3 tips for improved product data quality
1) Collect and prepare your current product data
Make a note of all your product data and prepare it for use on different channels and platforms. Review your product pages to check what is missing from your product content page. Look for missing gaps and fill them up; like if price or weight is missing for a particular product, update. Make sure that your product data is complete and accurate with all relevant information.
Ensure accuracy of data by validating and verifying the data against reliable sources. Inaccurate data is hitting retail businesses in a big way; wrong product data is the main reason for increased product returns and decreasing brand loyalty. Incomplete, inaccurate, duplicate, and inconsistent data is a serious concern in retail.
Data also needs enrichment with additional information, which could help consumers with an enhanced shopping experience. And lastly, since the data is captured from multiple sources such as ERP, suppliers, marketing channels, etc., the data needs to be integrated with your system. Managing product data has its own set of challenges and requires serious attention.
2) Organize your products and attributes
With thousands of products on your page, it gets important to organize the products in appropriate groups for better organization. Each product needs to be tagged and categorized in a way that they are findable in minimum clicks and time. Any lag in your search will lead to abandoned carts affecting conversion and retention.
According to a Forrester report, poorly architected retailing sites sell 50% less than well-organized sites. For that seamless shopping experience and systematic navigation, organize products in a way that customers get the option to filter, refine and sort product information. It should help them find the product quickly. Creating families and attribute groups helps in simplifying the process. Add as many attributes as possible, like color, size, price, etc.
You may add additional attributes like in clothes, customers may search for a particular fabric, or in food, the search could be for gluten-free food items and so on. Considering the huge number of products with diverse attributes, categorizing them would require domain expertise. This time-consuming service needs automation and is best outsourced.
3) Write relevant and impactful product descriptions
A well-written product description can get easy conversions, and therefore, it should never be overlooked. A consumer looks for more than just the mandatory details like price, weight, supplier’s name, etc. There is a lot of emotional buying happening these days, and consumers need to connect with the product.
A perfectly written product description describing unique attributes of the product benefits the personal appeal can influence the customer to buy your product. Write powerful descriptions that go beyond specs and usage; let it be storytelling. Talk about the product’s history or how it will be beneficial for the customer. Make sure you don’t lose your target audience; the language, tone, and content, should all be aligned with your target. Use words and phrases which are commonly used and don’t sound alien to your customers.
And most importantly, ensure that every product that goes live has metadata for optimal SEO. It is not as simple as it sounds. You need to get into the skin of the consumers to create a product description that a consumer will connect with. It requires research and a market survey to understand the client’s requirements.
To make your business grow, focusing on the product page is of paramount importance. You need to prepare well. Consumers today look for products with the flip of a finger and expect to find them within seconds. Any delay and you lose your customer to the next platform. Categorization and filters help in the easy findability of the product. Once the product is discovered, it should have accurate, consistent, and updated information. A strong-worded description is another takeaway.
All these require a team of experts and technology. Considering the enormous volumes of products being put in by retailers, data quality enhancement technology gets imperative. Manual efforts can’t reach such high levels of data quality required. The right approach would be to invest in data technology or outsource your data enrichment requirements to experts.