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Building the Perfect Data Feed - Step 1. Setting up Your Master Feed

Product data is often fragmented and incomplete. However, existing technologies can complement an incomplete feed with additional data sets where previously none were possible, creating enhanced, enriched & high quality product data feeds. Setting up your master feed is the first step in ensuring your products can always be found, wherever consumers are looking. 

Creating the perfect master feed can be a complex, time consuming process and no two retailers have the same challenges. There are many ways of enriching, enhancing and normalising product data to ensure consumer relevancy, but how do you set up you master feed? Let's take a look at some of the options:

 

SOURCE DATA

 

Source data comes in different formats, so it is important to find a provider that can work with most of these formats. Data can be provided either from URLs or FTP locations hosted on your site, or pushed to a dedicated FTP location. Due to the sensitivity of some information being sent, SFTP locations should also be provided. 

You can either provide all of the required information in a single data source or you can provide multiple sources in different formats as long as they all contain the unique ID, which will help merge the files. At Intelligent Reach, we also have the ability to concatenate data so we can add multiple product files together in our system to build the full product feed.

 

SCRAPING

 

We always try to recycle the data feeds you have spent time developing, but if you cannot build a feed or cannot provide some of the required data, then we can do this by scraping your site. We can either merge the additional data to fill in the “gaps” or use the scrapped data as your main source feed, which requires no IT resource at your end.

We try to retrieve sites information within a 24h window to make sure prices are as accurate as possible, and stock information are matching what a user would see on site. However, site navigation relies on multiple factors, such as web server response time, page loads, and count. In other words, the busier a webserver is, and the higher the page count, the slower and longer it will take for the data to refresh in the system.

 

ASSOCIATED PLUGINS

 

Plugins such as Magento or Demandware, export straight from the site database, which allows merchants to have control over the data that will be exported and avoids potential discrepancies with the data caused by load limitations. This ensures data going to your marketing partners is as accurate as possible, including prices and stock level for all your products on our platform.

You can find out more about the benefits of using source data over a traditional scrape here. The plugins allow us to integrate with the ecommerce platform's order management system and provides a bridge to managing orders on marketplaces launched on the IR platform.

 

More about our Magento Plugin

 

Our dedicated data quality team are fundamental to retail success, leveraging a variety of tools and strategies to enhance, enrich and normalise product data, producing the most relevant content for consumers. In the next step, we are going to tell you more about high quality product data and how you can optimise it.

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