Configure, price, quote software is one of the most deeply valuable components of a sales-focused tech stack, regardless of product application or industry. With the right CPQ solutions, businesses across all sectors can architect environments that cater to “consumerized” buyers and their strong preferences for individualized experiences quickly, easily, and consistently.
And while the “price” and “quote” aspects of such tools are relatively self-explanatory in function, there are still a lot of questions surrounding configuration itself.
Most notably: what exactly is product configuration? And why is it so vital to incorporate if you want to stay competitive?
Product configuration is the process by which a seller or buyer can customize, modify, or otherwise augment what it is they’re looking to purchase, either directly or with the help of a sales rep, leaving them with a totally personalized order to submit.
Out-of-the-box or off-the-rack solutions aren’t satisfying buyers in the way they used to, thanks to the wave of consumerization mentioned above. Buyers in B2C settings have had their needs and wants heavily prioritized for a while, and those expectations bled into B2B eCommerce and other environments.
As the digital sales landscape exploded over the past three years, partially due to lengthy shutdowns of brick and mortar locations, online shoppers were faced with more accessible choices than ever before. This meant that a discerning buyer could shop around a bit until they found a vendor that catered to their most specific needs without compromising experience – ie, one with an established and accessible product configurator incorporated into their sales setting.
Product configuration software like the Logik.io Commerce Engine can be set up to account for varying product rules, restrictions, recommendations or requirements, bundles, upsells, promotions and more. Native to the Salesforce platform but headless in construction, our commerce logic engine supercharges your configuration capabilities by seamlessly integrating into your existing tech stack for both CPQ and e-commere applications.
Once all of those pieces of information – or logic – are imported into the system, it can intelligently guide buyers through their options and ensure that the product or order they’re creating can actually be made a reality, and that the configuration is best suited to their unique requirements and needs. It maintains determined product boundaries, within which the shopper can feel free to play.
Did you know: there are two different types of product configurators available today? We’ve put together the definitive guide to explain both product-based and attribute-based configurators, and which option is best for your business. Find it at https://learn.logik.io/configuration-guide.
Whether or not you’ve been aware of it at the time, you’ve likely engaged with product configurators in different areas of your day-to-day life. For example: if you, like so many lately, have been on the hunt for a new car, the experience you get when dropping onto their website is likely powered by CPQ.
Let’s set the scene – you know you’re looking for a four door sedan with a hatchback, and you definitely don’t want any bright paint colors. Any major car manufacturer will have a product configurator incorporated into their eCommerce environment that helps you physically configure a car to meet those specs.
Pre-set logic can narrow down which paint colors are available for which makes and models, along with interior options, and 3D renderings can help you visualize what it’d look like in action as you toggle between the swatches. Maybe the dark leather interior you liked going into the shop doesn’t really look as great with the light grey paint as you’d hoped – with the product configurator at hand, you can tweak and adjust until what you see on the screen is what you want to drive away with.
In such a setting, you may also be presented with suggestions for accessories or upgrades that relate to the input you provide. Sun shades, tire chains, extended warranties and the like could all fall through the cracks if left entirely to the discretion of the buyer, leaving easy money on the table.
Once you submit the order, you receive a digital receipt showing the sales BOM, while the construction line back at the manufacturing plant gets a manufacturing BOM to guide construction. In a live-time, dynamic setting, you’ve officially experienced the power of CPQ.
Buyers in the modern market are looking for that same functionality, scaled to the level of their prospective order. Whether they’re a restaurateur ordering thousands of industrial kitchen supplies from a manufacturer overseas or a new parent looking for the just-right built-in bassinet, there’s a way product configuration can be leveraged to make their experience that much better.
After all, it’s the driving mission behind Logik.io to help you sell more, sell faster, and maintain less.
In the course of configuring an order, it logically tracks that a buyer would want to see dynamic, real-time updates to their product or cart in accordance with their selections. Here, 3D product configurators can serve as visual, interactive representations of those choices.
For manufacturers especially, visualizers like this can provide an extra layer of confidence for the buyer that they’re truly going to receive exactly what they’re inputting – or, that what they’re inputting is actually what they want to order. It brings a hint of traditional sales to digitized environments, reminding the buyer that they’re still being taken care of by their seller, even in self-guided cases.
Logik.io has partnered with leading 3D visual commerce platform brand Threekit to deliver top-of-the-line configuration renderings straight to your website. No matter how sophisticated or nuanced your product offerings may be, our combined resources can bring product configuration from a laundry list of line items to life.
Hear from Threekit CEO Matt Gorniak on the importance of investing in visual commerce to keep your buyers and sellers satisfied, and the risks that come when you leave 3D configuration on the bench:
If you’ve yet to incorporate a product configurator into your architecture, it can seem intimidating to start the process. But, if you can honestly address the gap between your offerings and buyer expectations, you’re in prime position to start researching.
Buyers are clearer than ever in what they’re looking for – all you need to do is take the steps to meet them where they’re at. It doesn’t have to happen overnight, and it doesn’t have to happen all at once, but with a live configurator as part of your environment, you’ll be setting yourself up for success by future-proofing your tech.
We’ve compiled a list of the 5 main things you should consider – and avoid – when selecting and implementing your CPQ solution to make things a bit easier. And if you think it’s time to take the leap, we have representatives ready and waiting to hear from you. You can find them at https://www.logik.io/talk-to-sales.