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The role of PIM in supporting international expansion

There’s never been a more opportune time for product-centric businesses to expand into new markets. Borderless digital commerce is embedded in our world and scaling a business can be relatively straightforward, with the right tools. However, it can also be a significant challenge. One thing is clear, though. Customers worldwide expect the information they seek about a given product to be accurate, up to date, relevant and attractive. A PIM software solution is the ideal tool for ensuring that is always the case, regardless of the location of the market you are selling into.

In this insight article, we’ll briefly analyse the challenges of expanding to new markets before moving onto the many ways in which a PIM system benefits your expansion strategy.  

International expansion – the challenges

Adding more countries to your range of markets not only needs mindful planning and preparation, but also the necessary insights into of how things work in those markets – your plans must be tailored to fit the profile of each territory.

If you are to be successful (an avoid potential pitfalls), you need a solid basis to manage the entire supply chain during international expansion. This includes dealing with the issues around translation (such as cultural norms like appropriate wording and type of content), and working with different currencies.

Getting all your ducks in a row is made much easier with a PIM solution, as it contains many of the capacities you need to launch successfully, and be agile in a highly competitive digital commerce environment.

How PIM powers international expansion

Scalability, security and consistency - sharing data between supply chain partners and multiple locations

A PIM offers a consistent, secure, and scalable approach to sharing data with supply chain partners across multiple locations. Businesses can store, manage and access their information from anywhere, worldwide.

Essentially, a PIM is the ‘single source of truth’ for all your product data, ranging from product specs to digital assets like video and images, to customer information. It ensures that all stakeholders in the supply chain have an accurate and up-to-date view of how things work inside each step along the way: whether it be raw materials being sourced or finished goods being sold on shelves, physical and digital, around the globe.

As you travel towards genuine competitiveness in digitally driven commerce, these fundamental changes require organisational recalibration in terms of delivering on business aims. The mission and practices behind full-scale digital transformation can only be embedded and acted on by analysing and finding the pain points in the organisational culture – this means entrenched attitudes, assumptions, and activities. Our expert business consultants, with extensive experience with brands, manufacturers, distributors, and retailers are perfectly equipped to work with you to create a digital transformation roadmap to approach this seismic change with confidence.  

Responsive Supply chain partners - the right information at the right time

Because PIM nurtures transparency of information by offering a unified view of business operations and supply chain, it enables a business to share product data across multiple locations with all people concerned with managing end-to-end supply chains having access to the same, high-quality information at any given moment. The result? Your business partners can make decisions based on real-time data rather than outdated or incomplete reports – this means greater agility to capitalise on opportunities, and greater responsiveness and capacity for timely action when issues arise.

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The power of PIM - connecting companies across the globe, with data available anywhere, at any time

A PIM’s power means connectivity with companies across the globe, and ‘anywhere, anytime’ data availability. It also helps businesses make better decisions by providing comprehensive insights into business focuses such as spotting markets with growth potential, or where to allocate resources for maximum impact.

A PIM helps to manage global expansion by enabling you to:

  •       Understand how each market operates through a single source of truth for all customer information (e.g., product features, prices)
  •       Identify opportunities for growth based on emerging customer preferences across regions or countries;
  •       Identify new markets based on customer segmentation data
  •       Build relationships with potential partners who share common interests with existing customers (sales leads)

PIM technology for scaling your business

With the right technology in place, all supply chain partners can understand the status of given operations at any moment, enabling them to make better decisions about how to move forward with their own processes. For example, if you’re selling on Amazon and want to expand into Europe or Asia but don’t yet have enough staff resources, a PIM system is capable of managing such an expansion without you needing more people.

Consistency: translated information in a single format

To guarantee consistency, you need a single source of currency data. Then, you can use this source to feed all other systems in your organisation requiring currency information. This ensures that everyone has access to the same data and can make mindful decisions based on it. This important information also needs to be presented consistently across all channels and websites, so customers understand what they’re looking at when they see prices listed in different currencies.

Final Words

PIM is foundational for expanding your international reach with the confidence that processes, workflows and channel management are used optimally. A PIM allows you to share data across multiple locations and speeds real-time decision-making. A PIM system’s capability to connect businesses worldwide and generate usable product data anywhere, 24/7/365 will power expansion and satisfy customers in diverse markets. Advances in technological capabilities (such as artificial intelligence, cloud capabilities and data analytics tools) are opening up opportunities. If your business harnesses the power of a PIM solution effectively, it will put you at a significant competitive advantage.

Start with Data has enabled many businesses to get their product data ready for international expansion. Get in touch to find out if you are embarking on the same journey.

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