August 29, 2007

Competition Looming From Private Label Products

What Manufacturers Can Do To Differentiate Their Products

According to an article authored by Jim Lucy in the December 8th issue of Electrical Marketing eNewsletter, the next big issue to hit the electrical market will be a debate over product branding. While manufacturers have sourced products from low cost manufacturers for years, the debate over product labels is just beginning to percolate. Wholesale distributors and manufacturer representative companies are signing global manufacturer contracts and private labeling the products under their own brand name.

Lucy points out that it will not be the first time a global importer took this approach. To protect their brands, manufacturers need to do more to differentiate their products from new competitors.

One way to address the challenge is to provide enriched business information about your products to your trading partners via the Industry Data Warehouse (IDW2). Enriched product information, which is based on a hierarchy or level of detail, is a schema or format for delivering product attributes that describe the product in more detail. Often misunderstood as a way products are commoditized, the enriched data schema actually enables manufacturers to provide very unique and specific information for that product allowing them to differentiate their product from their competitors.

Additionally, product images and technical information be it material safety data sheets (MSDS), line drawings, warranties, etc. may also be included as part of the IDW2 enriched product information portfolio. All and all, providing more information about your products will help them stand out. To learn more how providing enriched data, product images and catalog data to the IDW2 can help separate you from the others and increase your sales, please contact Bob Whitehouse at 703-562-4608.