Product information management (PIM) plays a crucial role in ensuring that businesses can provide customers with accurate and up-to-date product information across all channels. In today’s real-time economy, both the volume of data and the number of distribution channels continue to expand, adding more complexity to managing product data effectively. Artificial Intelligence (AI) can empower PIM by automating and speeding up many time-consuming tasks at scale, allowing businesses to focus on enhancing the user experience. Here are a few ways that AI can enhance PIM to improve the user experience, plus six Best Practices to follow when implementing AI.
The Challenges of Managing Product Data
It’s no secret that managing product information is difficult: Data is dispersed across multiple systems and channels. It is time consuming to manually compile and maintain accurate product information across systems, and the potential for error exists at every step. PIM solutions have been developed to help businesses manage their data better in a more streamlined and consistent way. However, even with the best PIM system in place, the data needs to be updated continuously, which requires a significant amount of manual effort which adds delays and introduces more errors.
How AI Can Help Build a Better PIM
Brands and retailers have always used product data to influence and shape a buyer’s journey in their interactions with the product. However, the corresponding risk for brands and retailers is that When product information is inaccurate or incomplete, the customer can have a negative experience—which leads to lower conversions, decreased sales, and possible damage to the brand’s reputation. Typically, PIM systems help these companies ensure that customers have access to the most accurate, current, and complete product information across all channels.
However, while PIM systems are crucial for maintaining a “single source of truth” of product information, the process to maintain data accuracy and completeness is time-consuming and difficult. This is where AI can step in to enhance PIM systems. For example, using AI algorithms, businesses can automate the continuous process of data updates, by having the AI automatically implement the new product data from multiple sources, in real-time. This reduces the need for manual data collection and entry (which adds to the risk of errors), while ensuring that end users have access to the most current and accurate information.
In addition to simply performing collection tasks at greater speed, AI can also help improve the accuracy and consistency of product data. By using machine learning algorithms, AI can identify and correct errors in product data—such as incorrect product names, descriptions, or pricing—in real-time. AI can also be used to autogenerate product content by using keywords and selecting tone of voice. These capabilities can also help to implement system-wide data changes, such as a new packaging size or changes to a product’s label text, ensuring consistent uses of that information. These added capabilities offer significant time and cost savings around system-wide data updates, improving the overall efficiency of businesses.
Best Practices for Successfully Implementing AI in PIM Systems
When it comes to implementing AI in PIM systems, here are six best practices that businesses should consider:
- Define clear goals and objectives: Before implementing AI in PIM systems, businesses should define clear goals and objectives that align with their overall business strategy: What is the specific problem (or problems) that need to be solved? What data sets will be leveraged, across which systems? What outcomes are needed? Having clear and defined boundaries will help ensure that the AI implementation addresses specific business challenges and provides measurable results.
- Start with a pilot project: Rather than implementing AI in PIM systems across the entire organization, businesses should start with a pilot project to test the technology and evaluate its effectiveness. This can help identify any potential issues or challenges early on and refine the implementation approach.
- Ensure data quality: This cannot be overstated! AI algorithms rely heavily on data, so it’s essential to ensure that the ddata being fed into the PIM is of the highest quality. Businesses should clean and standardize their data before implementing AI, and continually monitor data quality to ensure accurate and reliable results. Even if the goal of the AI project is to improve data quality, there need to be rules and references for the AI to determine the best outcome.
- Involve key stakeholders: AI implementation in PIM systems should involve key stakeholders across the organization, including IT, marketing, sales, and operations teams. This can help ensure that the implementation meets the needs of all stakeholders and that everyone is aligned on the goals and objectives.
- Invest in training and education: Implementing AI in PIM systems requires a skilled workforce that understands how to work with the technology. Businesses should invest in training and education for their employees to ensure they have the necessary skills and knowledge to work with AI tools and technologies.
- Continuously monitor and evaluate results: Implementing AI in PIM systems is an ongoing process, and businesses should continuously monitor and evaluate the results to ensure that the implementation is delivering the desired outcomes. This can help identify any issues or areas for improvement and refine the implementation approach over time.
By following these best practices, businesses can successfully implement AI in PIM systems and reap the benefits of enhanced data quality, improved user experience, and increased efficiency.
How Syndigo Leverages AI Today
Syndigo uses AI technology partners including Cloudinary, Azure Cognitive AI services, and AX Semantics to enhance their PIM and DAM offerings.
Syndigo has integrated Cloudinary’s Digital Asset Management (DAM) solution, which includes AI-powered image enrichment capabilities. This allows Syndigo to automatically enhance and optimize product images, making them more visually appealing and engaging to customers. By leveraging Cloudinary’s DAM and AI capabilities, Syndigo is able to provide a more effective and efficient solution for managing and enhancing product images, ultimately helping their clients to improve their online sales and engagement.
Syndigo leverages AI and Generative AI for these important content activities:
- Image enrichment for eCommerce
- Closed-caption transcription
- Content enrichment for compliance and conversion
- Real-time product description enhancement
- Content translation at scale
Syndigo incorporates Azure Cognitive Open AI services to improve their product content quality, utilizing advanced capabilities such as content enrichment, sentiment analysis, and content moderation. By leveraging these features, Syndigo enhances their product content with relevant insights, analyzes customer sentiment, and ensures compliance with industry standards and regulations. Through the use of these advanced capabilities, Syndigo delivers high-quality product content that helps retailers and manufacturers improve customer satisfaction and boost sales.
And Syndigo’s partner alliance with AX Semantics allows clients to solve complex multilingual challenges that impact product information by providing an automated way for content teams to create and maintain product content, then automatically update it in a way that generates content for any product in any language, while maintaining the quality of those product descriptions, without human editing.
Leveraging AI Today and Tomorrow
Although public awareness about AI has exploded recently, Syndigo has utilized AI capabilities for many years to transform how businesses manage PIM, automating laborious tasks, and allowing for more emphasis on enhancing the user experience. By implementing AI into PIM and MDM solutions, Syndigo is helping businesses improve efficiency and productivity, optimize customer experience, and achieve better data governance and compliance. Syndigo is committed to implementing best practices and learning from successful implementations to deliver these benefits and empower businesses to enhance their PIM with AI.