Conrad categories to assign
- Ambitious product range expansion plans
- Time-consuming manual product onboarding
- Further potential for process digitization
- Complex and demanding data model
- Data team working to capacity
HOW ONEDOT HELPED
- Bringing large catalogues online swiftly
- Automation of manual data preparation steps
- Empowerment of teams by modern software
- Generation of richer product information
- Relieving data team by automating processes
Conrad Electronic is one of the digital pioneers in the electronics industry. During its almost 100 years of history, the family business Conrad Electronic has successfully evolved from a specialist mail order company for electronic components to one of the leading international omni-channel suppliers of technology and electronics. Their wide range of innovative services and technologies offered is holistic, customer-centric and future-oriented, available from anywhere at any time. New service models such as Conrad Connect, an award-winning IoT project platform, and the Conrad marketplace for B2B customers prove that Conrad Electronic lives up to its reputation as a digital pioneer and will continue to shape the future of the electronics industry.
Conrad Electronic has ambitious plans for its online marketplace. Around 10 million products are expected to be available by the end of 2020 to offer buyers a wide range of products, which means significant growth on top of today’s offering. The share of retail business will be expanded as well. Maintaining high data quality at this fast pace of changing product information while reducing manual efforts at the same time presents a huge challenge.
The huge variety of product data which is being provided by suppliers to accompany their physical goods is required to be transferred to internal systems timely and efficiently. As much relevant product information provided by the suppliers as possible is to be taken into account. The products need to be correctly assigned to the relevant Conrad navigation structure to offer customers an optimal shopping experience while improving conversion rate at the same time. Consistency of search filters is paramount so that all products can be found and purchased efficiently while shopping.
To overcome all these challenges, Conrad Electronic relies on Onedot’s expertise.
“We can ensure efficient supplier onboarding and accelerate the expansion of our marketplace by relying on Onedot. This will take our internal processes to a new level of digitisation.”
Ales Drabek, Chief Digital & Disruption Officer at Conrad Electronic SE
All unstructured or differently structured product catalogues provided by suppliers have been uploaded to the Onedot platform for onboarding. Most commonly encountered catalog formats are different versions of BMEcat, Excel or CSV. The entire product catalogues have been process for new suppliers. Already existing products have been reconciled with the received product catalogues to ensure that only new products would be onboarded.
As a next step, Onedot has been used to assign Conrad Electronic category information to the new products. Conrad employees are able to see how high the confidence of the software was when assigning a category, which allows focused feedback and easy overriding of proposals by the Onedot software.
Following that, product attributes by suppliers have been mapped to the attributes of Conrad. Similar to assigning categories, Conrad users may view any proposed mappings and override or extend them if necessary.
After attribute mapping, attribute values have been harmonised and assigned to Conrad value lists where available. Any transformations to such values can be reviewed for completeness and amended if required, using generated reports.
During the entire supplier onboarding process, Conrad Electronic was able to monitor the progress and provide feedback on any data transformation steps, ensuring full traceability of results.
As a result, Conrad Electronic received one file per supplier containing the onboarded product catalogue. These product catalogue files could be imported directly into the PIM.
Onedot received regular snapshots of PIM product data in order to train the Onedot machine learning models using latest data. The latest Conrad Electronic product data model including structure, attributes and value lists has been published with Onedot on a regular basis, all using the Onedot SFTP service.
“Onedot was the only onboarding software able to learn on the market that convinced us. Launching this initiative has been made easy by the user-friendly Onedot application and the data team was up and running quickly.”
Michael Klement, Senior Director MDM & SEO at Conrad Electronic Group
The raw product catalogue from the suppliers have been prepared in such a way that the catalogue could be imported directly into the Conrad Electronic systems. More than 550,000 SKUs have already been successfully transferred into the Conrad systems, correctly assigned to the approximately 5,000 Conrad categories and mapped against the almost 12,000 Conrad attributes.
After a few feedback iterations and the expansion of the training data, Onedot made it possible to achieve an accuracy and hit rate of over 90% in the product categorisation and attribute mapping.
The ambitious time schedule of Conrad Electronic regarding the product range could be adhered to and Conrad employees felt enabled during the onboarding process. Furthermore, repetitive manual data maintenance could be significantly reduced in the data team.
Thanks to Onedot, Conrad Electronic is able to focus on expanding their marketplace, maintaining better supplier relationships and offering meaningful product ranges relevant to their customers, further strengthening Conrad Electronic’s market position in the highly competitive electronics market.