The Internet has changed the way people stay informed and buy products. Companies are now forced to find ways to offer better deals, and this necessitates the use of price tracking software.
Retailers are now beginning to appreciate the intelligence of such programs as they provide strategic insights and many other capabilities. These programs offer accurate as well as actionable insights to retailers. This is done by tracking the sales and price points on similar items. Before investing in such a program, every company should consider the following items.
What to check before investing in a software package
1. How does it work? – This is important because if the tool just does “scraping” by checking price comparison websites only, then the information is incomplete.
2. Why is this not a good idea? – There is no doubt that it is hard to get the much-needed data from competitor’s sites. Such data is incomplete and considered noisy. The best packages will circumvent this choke point and find the essentials and present it in a usable form.
3. What kind of quality assurance can one expect? –While price tracking software packages have tools which automate the data collection process, it needs a human touch to verify and also ensure accuracy. In the current business environment, data accuracy is paramount.
4. How scalable and flexible is it? – As a business grows, its needs change. A software package should offer scalability and also be able to handle millions of price points and track the same number of products, in multiple categories. A sophisticated tool is usually designed to grow with and provide its users, the features they need.
5. Is it compatible with the technology in use and configurable as well? – Software should have some amount of flexibility so that users can define parameters and set scenarios which are unique to a particular industry sector. This will help users to understand the impact of pricing decisions and their eventual implementation. Also, check if it integrates with an e-Commerce platform so that automated re-pricing can be implemented.
Not all price tracking software packages are the same as their prices. Retailers should take stock of their requirements and find out what value they can have, and what price. A robust software package will provide users with a complete, scalable, configurable solution which offers smart insights.