How much does a PIM Cost?

Estimating the pricing of a PIM solution falls into the ‘how long is a piece of string?’ question category. Perhaps an exaggeration, but there are a number of variables which heavily influence what your company will pay for a PIM solution. The benefits of a PIM solution are tied to the extent to which it aligns with your business aims and processes. The majority of PIM vendors use a sliding price scale – the more features and user licences you need, the higher the price.

What factors influence the price of a PIM?

The basic information which any solution provider will want to know involves the following set of questions:

Therefore, the design and implementation of a PIM solution has different demands depending on your requirements. What ultimately determines the pricing range is how much each factor impacts on the complexity of your circumstances. At Start With data, we have devised our own High-Level Scoping questionnaire for your PIM Initiative. Your responses will allow us to talk to you in greater detail to scope your precise requirements. We can then present this PIM pricing range split up over the 4 principal cost aspects.

The 4 Key PIM project cost factors

So, what are these four PIM pricing determiners? Here is a brief outline.

1. Analysis

These costs are incurred in the orientation phase and include doing your own research into the PIM market. These costs can involve using the services of a PIM specialist consultant to orient your purchase process. To guarantee a smooth and expert phase, you can outsource management of the implementation phase to the best consultancies.

This analysis doesn’t only decide which PIM you want to implement. Identifying the key internal stakeholders early is crucial so as to ensure clarity and consistency in what your solution needs to be and the parameters applied to go/no-go scenarios. Outside experts can help to formalise and structure the analysis phase, because the time, money and esources invested in this phase are crucial for successful implementation.

2. Design

Designing your PIM solution brings  into play operational factors connected to your business processes. This means asking questions about how your IT architecture will look after implementation and what you need and do not need to change

At the design stage, you will work out how your product hierarchy will be implemented. If you have an ERP system, how will it communicate with the PIM and which system takes the lead concerning product data? Another key factor is how the workflows of teams around your organisation will be reflected by the design.

Finally, the design needs to take into account the type and number of output channels to be connected to the PIM.

3. Implementation

The implementation phase involves a series of costs across several areas; training of staff, onboarding and migration of data content and processes from the legacy system. There will also be associated installation costs. All these costs usually occur in the first year to 18 months but bear in mind that the system will probably need upgrades and amendments as well as further development of connections to and integration with any other systems.

Of course, note that even if you keep implementation in-house, the person-hours invested still represent PIM implementation-related costs.

4. License

The implementation phase involves a series of costs across several areas; training of staff, onboarding and migration of data content and processes from the legacy system. There will also be associated installation costs. All these costs usually occur in the first year to 18 months but bear in mind that the system will probably need upgrades and amendments as well as further development of connections to and integration with any other systems.

Of course, note that even if you keep implementation in-house, the person-hours invested still represent PIM implementation-related costs.

Are there any other factors you should consider?

  • The number of SKUs the PIM needs to handle is another important variable when pricing a PIM solution, as it is an indicator of how complex the solution is. Additionally, the number of attributes you are handling per SKU will have an effect on data storage and transfer costs.
  • Storing and transferring media is also a cost driver. The number of data assets (images, videos and other visual materials) will affect the storage space required, as will their quality. A PIM for e-commerce print-quality images and graphics aren’t space-consuming but demand for product information like HD videos and HD images is on the rise. 
  • An on-premise PIM and a SaaS e-commerce solution is a common set-up these days, and you may experience reduced performance on real-time data lookup. Vendors often enquire about your locations, as the graphic user interface is so high these days so the respective locations of server and user can affect performance speed.
  • Languages with special characters (like Arabic or Chinese) add to the price of the solution. These requirements may need a sub-project to themselves.

 

The real benefits of a good PIM solution reveal themselves once you have integrated your PIM solution with your output channels. The more integration, the greater the opportunities for automation. This increases the value for you as a customer (and vendors are well aware of this). 

And finally, Customer Support Services

It is well worth researching what features you expect before implementing PIM. Vendors may provide a range of out-of-the-box functionalities, while others only offer these features as custom add-ons. When buying licences, enquire about the customer support offered inclusive of the price per user. What channels do you get? Chat and automated online support, or a real person?

Find out more

If you would like to find out more about how product data management, PIM and MDM can create value for your business, we’d love to hear from you – Ben Adams, CEO Start with Data

PIM Calculator

Fill in our High-Level Scoping Questionnaire for your PIM initiative to get an estimated cost.