Merchandising & ecommerce efforts relying on “clean” product data
Product data management is becoming an increasingly important facet of successful eCommerce operations. Cost-saving and revenue-boosting decisions rely on the data provided from all business departments and systems and contributes to the way a business remains competitive in the modern retail landscape. One recent report from TEKsystems found that data can play a critical role in reducing costs, identifying opportunities, improving sales efficiency, increasing effectiveness and bolstering the accuracy of future forecasts.
Recently, SalesWarp had a conversation with Jill Kerr, the Director of Merchandising and Production at luxury jewelry retailer Kendra Scott, that revealed the importance of product data management as it relates to eCommerce and merchandising efforts and how employees at Kendra Scott are making use of this product data regularly.
Product Data Management at Kendra Scott
Kendra Scott makes heavy use of data. In fact, information plays an important role company-wide. Finance, merchandising, wholesale sales, retail and store operations, Web and customer service activities all actively access the company’s product data in some way or another. Some departments such as product development and design, marketing and event planning depend on the merchandising team to provide accurate and “clean” data so that deliverables are created with a consistent message and design.
To ensure product data is “clean”, Kendra Scott manually audits and edits data as it is pushed and pulled through different systems to remove duplicates, inconsistencies, and errors. This task is the responsibility of the merchandise process managers, who manually create and maintain product data in all systems and across all sales channels.
Product data management can be a very time-consuming process for the merchandising team.
Kendra Scott deploys multiple systems, such as QAD, KWI and Magento, which makes tasks such as setting prices more difficult, because some systems do not seamlessly exchange data. The team also manually creates SKUs for new products. This process requires all product details to be entered in QAD according to specific product and vendor details so the SKU accurately populates on all sales and purchase orders.
Nonetheless, having pristine data remains a top priority for Kendra Scott. “It is imperative to have consistent data across every store and sales channel. In order to do so, we would need to include additional fields that may not be applicable to all channels (for example, wholesale price),” Kerr added.
Kendra Scott’s scenario is common across many retailers who are beginning to immerse themselves in the omnichannel space. By consolidating multiple systems to centralize product data management and create one source of truth, all departments, merchandisers and product managers can significantly reduce the time-consuming, manual and error prone tasks they are encountering today.
Click below to read the full interview with Jill Kerr: