How to Structure Your Ecommerce Catalogue
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Ecommerce solutions and websites are driven by their Catalogue. The structure of the Database used is very important in that it determines factors not only of the storage of the Product Data but how that information can be retrieved and used.
One of the early choices an eTailer must make is how to define a product as separate from a product option. Many people will assume that (for example) a T-shirt design will form a product and the different sizes will be the product options. This may be a very logical way to look at the problem and certainly in traditional retailing you would definitely stack the tshirts according to design and let your customers check through the stack for their size.
The front end of an ecommerce website will definitely reflect this logic, viewing t-shirts by design and not by size. The CMS may also let you work in a similar way, allowing you to add or define a product by its main attribute, design of T-shirt, but also to include options for the customer to choose the correct product, T-shirt size.
Your Database, however, should separate out the options into different product codes for each option. if you lay the Database out in such a way then you can check very easily how many of each size you have sold and how those numbers have changed. This way you can use the Reporting functions of the CMS to reorder only those product options which sell very well and to avoid unnecessary costs by not ordering large numbers of rare sizes or options.
If you are unsure of how to layout your Ecommerce Catalogue, remember to take the advice of your ecommerce experts, as they will know not only how to separate your products but also what specific data that you need to include.
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