The foundation of YC PIM is provision of configurable product types. Although products share some core information that allows them to be processed by e-commerce systems (such as SKU code and price) this information is far from being enough from the customers' point of view. Customer require detailed information about what they are buying and once we are getting into this realm we quickly realise that all products are very different. Consider the specification parameters for a TV versus groceries versus beauty products versus fashion products. Each of these product types require different set of data to describe them efficiently to the customers and encourage them to proceed with the purchase.
In order to solve this problem YC offers the platform offers a concept of product types, which are configurations to provide a focused view on the product information. Product types allow to:
- Create attribute view groups to define product parameters relating to a common concept. For example "Audio" view group defined for "Laptop" product type can consist of "Audio system", "Built-in microphone", "Number of built-in speakers" which would give a complete view on the audio capabilities of a particular laptop.
- Create searchable attributes. Most manufacturer provide very detailed product information, which works very well when there is a limited set of products. Once we get into thousands of products much of the information starts to overlap and introduce a lot of "noise", which makes searching for specific products difficult. This is especially true for attributes such as product descriptions. For example consider a phrase "this will look nice with our red hand bag" for a "dress" specified in products's description, which would make this "dress" a part of "hand bag" phrase search or "red" colour. This is not necessary wrong (in some use cases) but in general can leave customers puzzled or even annoyed to see dresses in their searches for hand bags or a dress in a different colour. This is is why YC allows the platform allows to specify exactly, which attributes should contribute to search thus providing only clean and relevant keywords.
- Create navigatable attributes. Some parameters are very important to customers purchase decision making process and thus we put emphasis by configuring them to be part of the navigation menu. For example "CPU speed" or "laptop screen diagonal" could be much more influential factors than "number of USB ports" for a "Notebook" product. In order to place those into attribute navigation all is needed is to select a checkbox in product type attribute configuration.
- Provide comparable views
. Once the product type views are configured it is trivial to present information to the user showing key differences by listsing listing comparable parameters side by side.
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Full text search index holds all this data combined together is scope of a shop and makes it available the customer to see.
|It is highly recommended to start with product type configuration overview to gain understanding into how product information in made available to the storefront and which part thereof affect specific functional areas.|