Below you will find a glossary of many of the terms you will come across while using the Realtime Mapping Tool.
Single / Bundle Product
One of the first decisions you will have to make when using the Realtime Mapping Tool is whether your product is a single product or a bundle.
The majority of your products will most likely fall under single products. These are your standard single items or ranges.
Bundles, also known as multipacks, are a collection of existing items from your system. These packages are perfect for setting up collections of related items to be sold together with a discount to stimulate sales. You may also sell products made up of multiple parts that are all for sale individually on your system.
Be careful not to confuse bundles with product ranges. A bundle is a collection of different items, whereas a product range is a single product comprised of multiple variations of that product.
SKU stands for Stock Keeping Unit and functions as a unique code that allows you to easily keep track of your products. Quite often products will have similar sounding or complex names making it difficult to tell one from the other at a glance. A SKU takes the guesswork out of the equation and allows you to be sure the product you are looking for is the right one.
SKU's are a vital component of any multi-channel ecommerce system as they act as the constant that connects a product listed in many different places.
Unlike other product identifiers such as GTIN's (Global Trade Item Number), UPC's (Universal Product Code) and EAN's (European Article Number), SKU's are specific to each vendor. This allows you the flexibility to create SKU's for products yourself when needed. Just remember, they must always be unique.
Also bear in mind, because SKU's are not universal, you can not rely on others using the same one as you. For example, a supplier is likely to have a different SKU for a product than you do. That being said, if you know what SKU's your supplier uses, there is nothing stopping you from using the same ones to make life easier.
A good SKU needs to tow the line between being logical and simple, yet mildly descriptive. Try to avoid making them merely a string of numbers, but at the same time don't simply copy a products name and remove the spaces.
Product Name & Product Range
The difference between product name and a product range is very important in Cloud Commerce Pro. A product name is the name given to a specific product variation within a range. The product range is the name of that range as a whole. As an example, imagine you sell t-shirts. The product range might be called "Nike T-Shirt" but that range will contain many variations of that t-shirt in different sizes with names such as "Nike T-Shirt - Small" and "Nike T-shirt - Large".
The product range is most commonly used as the listing title on your sales channels. The product name is mostly your for own internal use, to help keep track of the different variations that make up the range.
If you are using Cloud Commerce Pro's powerful warehousing features, it is likely you use barcodes to scan your products when picking and packing orders.
It is important not to overlook the weight of your products. This information plays a large part in informing Cloud Commerce Pro of what the appropriate shipping rule will be when you sell something. Getting this wrong can mean consignments getting cancelled by the courier causing disruption for you and your customers.
To organise your products in the sales channel view of Cloud Commerce Pro, products are placed into a descriptive category. These are best kept as simple and generic as possible. Also try to avoid creating too many categories as it can easily create clutter.
The simplest way to understand product options is to think of a product range. A product range is a collection of single items that are essentially the same, but with a few subtle differences. A good example of this would be a t-shirt. That t-shirt most likely comes in a range of sizes and possibly colours. This is exactly where product options come in, as they define what those subtle differences are.
Product options such as these allow your sales channels to populate swatches and drop-down boxes so your customers can choose a product based off one or more of those options.
For an in-depth look at product options, click the link below:
It is important that every product has a wealth of data that helps to define what that product is and how it differs from everything else in your inventory. We use attributes for this. These can be used for filters on your website such as adding brand, style or GTIN etc.
VAT Rate %
Here you can set the typical VAT rate for the product, which will normally be the UK's 20%. Don't worry if you sell to other territories where you are VAT registered and require a different rate, as this can be set when listing the item on one of your international sales channels.
Here you can add as many images for the product as you like which can later be pushed out with the listing to your various sales channels. It is worth remembering that some channels limit the number of images each product is allowed.
Amount in Stock
This is the actual number of units of this particular product. If you need to set any pseudo stock levels, you can do this per sales channel once they have been listed or mapped to an existing listing.
Default Price (RRP)
The NET price (pre VAT) of your product. You can set this to the products recommended retail price to remind you of it, as you can set a different price for the product on each sales channel independently when listing if you wish.
This is the product description that will be pushed out to your sales channels. Every product should have a robust description to help customers understand and choose between items.
If you are a reseller you likely have various different suppliers. Information about your suppliers can be entered against each product, along with supplier SKU's and prices making re-ordering products much more efficient.
Enter your warehouse bay and warehouse name here if you use Cloud Commerce Pro's warehousing functionality.
These are the physical dimensions of your products which can be used along with weight to accurately calculate the correct shipping service when they are to be dispatched.
This is an external reference for the product which can be used to identify it other than your own SKU. It is up to you what you prefer to use for this. Examples would be unique product codes from the manufacturer or supplier SKU's.
Here you can tell Cloud Commerce Pro if you need any additional labels for the product when it comes to dispatching it. This would be used for products that require multiple shipments maybe because they are made up of many different parts.
Auto Purchase Order
If you wish to use auto purchase orders, you can set the mode here. By default this will be turned off. This allows you to set Cloud Commerce Pro to automatically re-order items once certain conditions are met, as set by you.
Handling Time (Days)
Also known as lead time, this represents how long it takes to prepare the product after it has been ordered so it can be shipped. This is very useful if you sell anything that is made to order, or things that require assembly or customisation before heading out to the customer.
Large Letter Compatible
There is quite a price jump between Royal Mail's large letter size and their small parcel services. It is important to know if a product can be sent via large letter to ensure you are not wasting money on a shipping service you don't need. Ticking this box for compatible products will ensure they are picked up by the relevant shipping rule and sent correctly.
Harmonized System Codes, often referred to as commodity codes, are a standardized numerical method of classifying traded products. They are used by customs authorities around the world to identify products when assessing duties and taxes and for gathering statistics. They begin as 6 digit codes administered by the World Customs Organisation, but other countries can add to the codes depending on their needs usually ending up with a 10 digit code.
HS codes classify goods for import and export so you can:
fill in declarations and other paperwork
check if there’s duty or VAT to pay
find out about duty reliefs
You can look up HS codes on using the governments trade tariff tool via the link below: