When it comes to selling products online, a multi-channel approach is one of the best ways to reach new audiences. But multiple channels can be a nightmare to manage without additional support. Utilizing a product listing tool will simplify your operations, allowing you to spend more time on big-picture development and less time managing catalog information and inventory.
Here’s what you should look for when selecting a multi-channel product listing tool.
What is a Multi-Channel Approach?
In ecommerce, a “multi-channel strategy” means that you’re offering your product across multiple marketplaces or selling platforms. For example, many businesses choose to partner with external marketplaces like Amazon, Etsy, and eBay, to offer their products to a wider range of customers. While multi-channel selling strategies are a fantastic way to increase brand awareness and exposure, the more channels you add to your repertoire, the more challenging it will be to smoothly manage products across multiple interfaces.
Multi-channel product listing tools address this issue by providing a streamlined way to direct product information and inventory data across all selling channels. Instead of manually updating products listed on each channel, product listing tools help simplify the process by offering a platform to host a single truth of product information and synchronize with every channel for all your ecommerce management needs.
Features to Look for in Your Listing Tool
Like many elements of running a business, there’s no “right answer” when it comes to selecting an effective listing tool. The most important thing is to consider the needs of your business and select a listing tool that aligns with your requirements.
In general, here are a few features to consider when selecting your multi-channel listing tool:
Selling Channel Integration
First and foremost, ensure your listing tool is compatible with your target selling platforms. Most businesses only use a handful of the most popular online marketplaces, so if you use a smaller marketplace or multiple dropship selling channels to sell your products, it’s essential to ensure you’ll still get the full benefits of your multi-channel listing tool.
List Management Features
The primary function of a listing tool is to help you manage your stock across multiple channels. Therefore, a listing tool should provide user-friendly product content creation and listing capabilities centralized on one platform. Listing tools should enable you perform necessary tasks like updating product descriptions and tech-spec across all channels and viewing inventory changes in real-time.
Some listing tools have a limited number of SKUs (stock keeping units) available. In general, each iteration of a product (e.g. size, color, material) will have a different SKU to help categorize and delineate a wide variety of similar items. If your business uses a large quantity of SKUs, it’s essential that your listing tool has the capability to host all your SKUs. Additionally, it’s important to have features to group related SKUs together in order to share similar content and be presented on the same product detail page across your sales channels.
When you run an ecommerce business technical difficulties are bound to arise. Select a listing tool that offers excellent customer service so you have instant access to problem-solving support should the need arise. Determine customer service quality by reading reviews or asking friends who run online businesses for recommendations.
Last but not least, it’s essential to fit a multi-channel listing tool into your budget. After all, you don’t want new technology to put more strain on your business. Make a list comparing the prices and services of various multi-channel listing tools to determine which option ticks the most boxes. In general, avoid products that are too “ala carte” and require you to pay extra for every additional service.
What are the Benefits of Multi-Channel Listing Tools?
- Save Time: listing tools are more efficient than completing data entries by hand. You’ll save time (and money) in the long run.
- Eliminate Human Error: Even ecommerce business owners are only human, and a listing tool is a fantastic way to limit avoidable human errors in product listings and inventory count.
- Scalable Growth: Listing tools are built for a scalable industry. With the support of an automated listing system, you’ll have room to expand your business.
Partnering with Digitbridge
At Digitbridge we offer a fully integrated all-in-one ecommerce operation management platform built for the industry, by the industry. Our embedded PIM module is designed to help businesses manage their product information from creation to optimization, and listing on multiple selling channels. We are dedicated to offering our clients a customer-centric experience by helping businesses of all sizes adapt to the modern ecommerce world and efficiently organize, ship, and purchase their products. Think Digitbridge might be the right solution for you? Contact us today!