Don't Cross Contaminate Data

This is a fairly important point so I thought I would write a whole article about it. I've said it time and time again in other posts so I thought I would clarify exactly what cross contamination in product data actually is. Cross contamination means you are not supplying product data in the right fields.

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How To Categorise Your Products

Everyone has thier own category taxonomy. There are also taxonomys that are provided by the sourcing portals. You can use whichever taxonomy you wish. Below are the display formats for the fields that we support.

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How to Display Origination

Origination, extra charges and fees in the promotional products industry complicate ordering. Life would be easier if they just did not exist! It should all be worked out internally and the customer then given an all in price. This is how ProMart 2.0 works. We combine all the costs and display an easy single unit price.

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How to Name your Promotional Products

When naming your products you really want to come up with a unique name. Try not to cross contaminate data in with the product title. i.e. "Red Paneled Umbrella 1.5m Width" The data such as product colours and sizes should be in separate fields.  

If you keep everything separate then your client will have the option of combining them together using CONCATENATE.

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How to Setup Delivery Costs

Hugely important but often overlooked.  Your product data MUST include delivery costs.

Without this information your clients will need to make a phone call to do a quote on your products and will not be able to use your data for true e-commerce.
 

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How to Setup Lead Times

Most of the data we receive usually has the lead time shown in one column.

This is ok for display purposes, and can be easily imported into a standard alphanumeric data field, however.  If we want to go beyond a standard data field, and use the data as a searchable field then we need to look at separating this out.

 As a standard we should always try and stick to using one unit of measure.  I'm going to stick my neck out here and say it should always be working days. Not Weeks and Not Months.

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How to Setup Prices and Price Breaks

Setting up your pricing correctly can make or break the quality level of your product data. Having done some research on enquiries at several suppliers and distributors we have worked out that 93% of all enquiries could be quoted instantly if we had a minimum of 5 price breaks.  This is from data collected over a 6 month period. As with all the product data formats we have allowed for scalability.

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How to Setup Print Areas

I hope you like the image. (It's a Print Area!)

On top of supplying PDF proof templates, it can be very helpful to have the print areas supplied in a datasheet.  

Whilst most are usually a rectangular size it's a good idea to have a notes column, then you can enter special information such as "Diameter" or "See Visual" for more unusual print areas.  

It's also a good idea to list the print methods within this part of your datasheet.

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