Auction eCommerce

Product Catalog for Auction eCommerce

October 5, 2022  |  8 min read

Why Use Product Catalogs for Auction eCommerce?

Product catalogs have a wide range of uses for auction eCommerce platforms. You can get the most out of your product catalog by customizing it to your business, so your users have a more intuitive experience. This means aspects such as the presentation style, filtering system, and search function can be tailored to your business without the cost of a completely custom auction website.

For example, you can optimize your auction eCommerce product catalog to filter based on location first so users can input their zip code and find something near them that they can go pick up. It all depends on what your auction eCommerce platform offers to your users as to how you want to configure your product catalog.

How Product Catalogs Can Help Auction eCommerce

A product catalog implemented into your auction eCommerce platform will enable you to make a much better experience for your users and therefore increase retention and sales.

Through our years of experience working with clients utilizing product catalogs for their auction platform, we've discovered that a robust, customized product catalog can answer the following common questions users have:

  • Where Is It Located? – Oftentimes, winning bidders may have to pick up their item, so they'll want to know where it is and how far they have to go to get it. That's why using location filters in the search is beneficial for auction eCommerce—it lets customers learn where something is before they purchase.
  • Is It In Stock? – Customers don’t want to be surprised with the message “item not available” when they get to checkout. That's why it's a good idea to let them know right away if it's in stock or not, and if they can purchase now or if they must wait until a new shipment comes in.
  • How Can I Optimize Costs? – With the right setup during auction website development, product catalogs can be vital to helping your customers save on items and fulfillment costs. Customers will appreciate the opportunity to optimize their logistics, and this can also build trust.
  • Are there Free Returns/Refunds? – No retailer or auctioneer wants to deal with unhappy customers returning products or requesting a refund. To minimize the risk of this happening due to ordering process errors, you can set up a quoting system or workflow for approving certain bids. This is especially relevant for large purchases, such as houses in the real estate industry.

Make the Most of Your Product Catalog for Auction eCommerce

When setting up a product catalog for your auction eCommerce platform, it's important to remember that it will work best when optimized for your specific use case and platform users.

That's why we made our product catalogs so versatile and adaptable—to better suit your particular needs and industry. Integrate your product catalog with any ERP, CMS, or other back-office system so your auction eCommerce platform has a single source of truth. This gives you the opportunity to use the latest-and-greatest software tools without having to change the core system you have in place.

Product Catalog Features for Auction eCommerce

  • Map View – With this type of presentation, customers can search based on zip code and use an interactive map view to see where different offerings are located.
  • Approval Process – Some orders may require an approval process before a customer can order or place a bid. That could mean signing legal documentation or signing up for an escrow account.
  • Automatic Updates – With an ERP integrated with your back-office system, inventory and other details are automatically updated onto your website. End users can view whether something is in stock, backordered, or out of stock, and set up a notification for when something becomes in stock again.
  • Optimized Presentation – The presentation and format of the product catalog automatically adjusts to the user’s preferences and chosen catalog and filters.
  • Product Comparisons – Product catalogs give users the ability to compare products quickly, which gives them the information they need to make a purchasing decision.
  • Enhanced Filtering – Built-in analytics within the catalog help you determine what people are filtering for. You can then utilize machine learning to automatically progress the most often used filters to the top of the list for a more user-friendly filtering system.
  • Navigation Depth – A navigation menu can be included on the side of the page for easy access. And beyond category filters, there’s filters for category and suppliers, too. With this depth of filtering and navigation, users can easily access different areas of the catalog.
  • Minimum Order – Some items may have a large minimum order quantity, so it’s important that users can set a minimum order that’s required so they can see if it’s within their budget range.
  • Supplier Details – In addition to details about the product itself, there can also be details about the supplier, such as whether the supplier is on the site, their response rate, and what seller level they are (e.g., Silver or Gold). These factors help drive interaction between the buyer and the seller.
  • PromotionsAuction marketplace software can also display personalized marketing for different sellers who want to promote their products within the marketplace. You can have sponsored listings at the top with organic results beneath those.
  • Prioritize the Display – Choose what customers will see and filter for first to prioritize that filter. You could do location, product type, item quantity, etc.—whatever would work best for your customers.
  • Product Variations – Let customers sort through variations of a product, e.g., different sizes of track spikes. Variations can have different prices that are dynamically applied based on what's selected.
  • Dynamic Pricing – Different prices can show up for different customers on select products. When a customer logs into their account, they’ll see their account-specific discounts, promotions, coupons, etc. Dynamic price ranges can differ based on the filters selected as well, such as the number of items and type of material.
  • Dynamic Search Field – The catalog search field can be dynamic based on the customer that’s logged in. A customer might have a particular vendor they usually buy from, or a certain set of items they often buy. When they go to search and start typing, the dynamic lookup field will filter the list of items based on the activity associated with that account.
  • Custom Fields – Products in the catalog can have an unlimited number of attributes or custom fields that work as filters. Products can automatically have certain attributes applied to them when they are placed into a category, and we can add this data dynamically based on an ERP integration.
  • Stock Indicator – The product catalog can include a visual indicator of stock levels. There can be a green dot for in stock, yellow for backordered, and red for out of stock. There can also be rollover icon tooltips where users can get more information.
  • Discount Indicator – If there’s a discount, it’s good practice to show how much the discount is for. This is also something that can be set up and filtered for in Clarity’s product catalog.
  • Details in Rollover – We have a rollover where, if you want to turn on this feature, users can compactly see options to add to a favorites or wish list, add to a compare list, or add to an in-stock alert. Or the rollover can contain information about delivery and shipping options, for example.
  • Sticky Bar – A sticky bar that floats down when going through the list of items can let users see various details. If fulfillment and containers are important for your marketplace, the sticky bar can show the capacity on different containers so users can optimize their load.

Product Catalog Example: Auction-Specific Functionality

For product catalogs, there will be industry-specific required functions. As an example, we’ll go over an eAuction platform.

  • Approval Process – To get into the auction view or place a bid, users need to go through an approval process. This can include adding a payment method, checking to agree to terms and conditions, making an escrow account, or signing a legal document (we can integrate DocuSign or our own native e-signing capability for this feature).
  • Presentation Styles – In the auction view, there are different presentation styles the user can choose from. One view provides information in a grid format and the other is in a list format. Another presentation style includes a grid format for auctions but also a side panel with available filters to select from, such as categories, sellers, seller ratings, current bid price, and a date range or timeline.
  • Auction Listings View – No matter the types of auctions you're running, auction listings can be shown in a detailed or compact view, depending on the user’s preferences. The auction listings page is especially useful for auctions that have multiple countdowns occurring due to the easy sorting and filtering functionality.
  • Product Photos – The auction page has photos of the products split into three sections within its container. This allows the user to glance through multiple images without having to go into the product details page. They can also see the location and the items within the auction, and the time for the auction.
  • Auction Details – This presentation style shows the items within each auction, and users click the left and right arrows in the auction container on the page to flip through the images. Other details are also displayed, including the seller information, terms and conditions, fulfillment information, and details about their bid.
  • Notifications – Users can set up a notification for an auction to be reminded of various things to do with the auction. For example, they can get a reminder of when the auction will end, when they’ve been outbid, or other useful information. They can also choose a preferred method to receive the notification (i.e., text, call, email) and add information specific to that notification (i.e., phone number, email address). Users can even add auction events to their calendar.
  • Affiliates – We can also specify whether there are affiliates. Affiliates can have their own landing page to be able to promote the catalog, and they can be branded and promoted. We can show the items in the catalog as restricted for a particular affiliate, as branded based on the affiliate, and track which affiliate landing page users went to. These things help affiliates gain credibility.

Key Takeaways

Tailor to Your Auction Platform

Product catalogs can do a lot for auction eCommerce, but only if tailored to your business. Work with Clarity to enhance your product catalogs and user experience.

Optimize the User Experience

Continue to optimize your auction website with our built-in analytics and machine learning. Learn which filters are used the most so you can bring those to the top of the list.

Use Robust Auction Software

Ensure all your needs are met by working with an experience developer like Clarity to get a robust, customizable auction eCommerce platform that helps your business grow.

Discover Your Optimal Product Catalog

We can build your product catalog however you need—just let us know. We've been developing product catalogs and auction eCommerce platforms for years and we're happy to share our expertise. Don't hesitate to sign up for our completely free, and obligation-free, discovery session. We'll go over your business needs and provide expert advice on what features and functions would suit you best.

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Autumn Spriggle is a Content Writer at Clarity Ventures who stays up to date on the latest trends in eCommerce, software development, and related topics to provide readers with the latest and greatest. She strives to help people like you realize the full potential for their business.