What is a product configurator software?
A product configurator software is an online tool that allows customers to customize and visualize products according to their preferences, such as color, size, and features, before making a purchase. It directly links customer's custom orders to the production process for efficient, on-demand manufacturing.
Why is product configuration important?
In an era where e-commerce is reshaping industries, the demand for personalized shopping experiences is surging. Recent insights reveal that nearly one-fifth of online shoppers are not just open but eager to pay more for products they can tailor to their preferences through product customizers. This trend underscores a significant opportunity: leveraging product customization can be a game-changer for businesses aiming to boost sales and justify premium pricing.
With a staggering 80% of consumers expressing a preference for brands that offer personalized experiences, the shift towards more customizable offerings isn't just a trend—it's a strategic imperative for staying competitive and relevant in the rapidly evolving marketplace.
What are the benefits of product customization?
Besides providing an enhanced shopping experience for your clients, product customization offers various benefits for your business, including:
Higher Customer Satisfaction: Customization allows customers to get exactly what they want, leading to higher satisfaction and loyalty.
Better Customer Engagement: The design process involves customers more deeply, creating a more engaging shopping experience. Customers typically spend significantly more time interacting with a product configurator than they would on a regular product page, enhancing their engagement and connection with the brand.
Customer Loyalty and Retention: Experiences allowing customers to feel like they participate to the product design, foster a stronger emotional connection to the brand, encouraging repeat business.
Larger Profit Margin: Products tailored to specific customer preferences are often perceived as more valuable. A recent consumer review revealed that 1 in 5 customers are willing to pay 20% or more for a personalized or exclusive product, allowing businesses to command higher prices.
Less Rush: The same review found that customers are more understanding when it comes to a longer wait for customized items, meaning the manufacturing team has more time to ensure quality in creating each personalized product.
Enhanced Brand Differentiation: Offering customizable products tailored to meet unique needs can distinguish a brand from competitors in a crowded market. Customization can cater to niche markets or individual needs, opening up new customer segments.
Market expansion: Consumers age 15-25 and 55 up are more willing to personalize their products and services, enabling you to reach a client pool far more extensive than ever before, by catering to niche markets and individual needs, opening up new customer segments.
Visual product configuration: With a product configurator tool, customers have a real time preview of their configured products, thereby not only improving their experience but also reducing the likelihood of product returns.
Data Collection: Customization options provide valuable data insights into customer preferences, aiding in future product development and marketing strategies.
Reduced Inventory Waste: By producing items based on specific orders, companies can reduce excess inventory and minimize waste.
In summary, from the most complex products to the simplest, a product configurator significantly enhances the customer experience. By personalizing each element of a product, businesses can meet diverse consumer demands, improve satisfaction, and drive growth.
Case studies: companies using a product configurator software
As you will see from the following examples, product customization isn’t reserved for a select few products; virtually any industry can take advantage of this modern tool. Some companies currently doing so include:
Nissan: From motors to exterior and interior colors, this veteran car company is making waves thanks to its extensive product configuration software.
Nike: This world-famous shoe brand shattered expectations when it launched its product customizer, enabling consumers to choose their shoe's final appearance with just a few mouse clicks. Personalized footwear was also sold at higher prices, with pairs starting at $110.
Nutella: Sometimes, even a small marketing stunt can boost sales tenfold. Nutella experienced this phenomenon firsthand when it enabled consumers to purchase custom jars with their names written on them, which subsequently increased revenue and media awareness for the company. This practice is particularly popular during special seasons such as Christmas, Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, etc., to offer unique gifts to your loved ones.
What to look at when choosing a product configurator software?
Making the most informed decision regarding your growing online business is a lot easier than it sounds, especially when choosing the best product configurator for your operations. With the sheer number of apps available on the modern market, the process of selecting the best solution can often be overwhelming — but with the right preparation, it doesn’t have to be.
Ultimately, every ecommerce business needs to focus on the balance between an efficient, practical and user-friendly product that helps a company achieve upwards growth. As you conduct your search for the right software, keep some of these critical considerations in mind:
Look and feel
You work hard to offer products that are well made and attractive to your customers, your product configurator software should be held to the same standards. There are a myriad of cheap configurators out there that might do what you need them to do. But will they measure up to what the top brands offer? A beautiful configurator makes your customers want to play with it, it engages your customers in an outstanding experience with your brand. Some design points to look out for:
How professional does it look?
Is it easy to understand?
Does it match your branding?
Is your product enhanced by the configurator?
This hockey jersey configurator does what it needs to do, but it does not make you want to play with it because the user interface looks quite overloaded and boring.
Here the configurator, made with Kickflip, compliments the product and has a professional and playful look. This will draw your customers to spend more time using it and ultimately buy!
How much does a product configurator cost?
Product configurator costs vary significantly; some self-service SaaS solutions offer scalable pricing, often starting for free and adjusting based on usage. On the other hand, the cost of custom-built solutions can reach hundreds of thousands, and updating and maintaining these solutions increases their total cost of ownership.
How can a product configurator improve your sales process?
A product configurator can significantly improve the sales process, offering distinct benefits to sales people. For sales reps, a product configurator simplifies the complex task of presenting all the options and configurations of a product to a customer. The configurator does this by showing real-time adjustments to the product as different options are selected, making the sales process more efficient, reducing errors and back and forth with customers.
What are the major features of a product configurator?
Before anything else, you should always ensure a product customizer is compatible for integration with your ecommerce platform — or else you might have to perform a custom integration. Additionally, keep an eye on content management; we recommend sticking with WYSIWYG configurators or editors for a practical setup experience.
Some other features a worthwhile product configurator should include are:
Real-Time Visualization: Provides a real-time 3D visualization or dynamic images of the product as it is being customized, allowing customers to see exactly what they are creating and how different options will look.
Dynamic pricing: Dynamic pricing involves real-time adjustments to base and additional options, incorporating pricing rules and cost calculations to determine upcharges instantly.
Rules engine: A rules engine for a product configurator applies configuration rules and logic to ensure that product customizations are valid and feasible. It manages the interdependencies between different product options, enforcing constraints and facilitating complex decision-making processes to streamline the customization experience.
Ability to add text and upload logos directly onto the product.
Multi-language and Multi-currency Support: Supports multiple languages and currencies to cater to a global customer base, making it easier for users from different regions to customize products.
Ability to modify the user interface, such as fonts and colors to make it match with your brand.
Mobile friendliness: responsive UI that is compatible with mobile devices.
Scalability: Usually hosted in a cloud platform, a product configurator should be capable of handling a large number of users and product options without performance degradation, ensuring a smooth experience even during high traffic periods.
With these essential points in mind, there is a final factor that is, perhaps, the most important: intuitiveness. After all, both you and potentially millions of users will be using it every day. Be sure to ask yourself these questions to get a feel for how intuitive your software choices are:
Is the interface visually appealing?
Is it easy to navigate through configuration process?
Does it provide helpful feedback and guidance to the customer, such as tooltips, error messages, and progress indicators?
Does it load fast, performs well and without bugs?
How important is customer service?
Finally, your product configurator software needs to come with efficient customer support, whether via phone, chat or email. After all, you’re building a pretty complex piece of technology — you’ll most likely need some help along the way.
Ultimately, your solution’s customer service quality can make or break how useful it’ll prove in the long run. Responsive and helpful customer support is essential to running a business in any industry; in the ecommerce world, it’s vital. Whether you need help getting started or a quick solution for an issue, having someone readily available on the other line who can walk you through the process is a must.
Furthermore, this factor can also impact the experience of your clients. If a consumer presents you with a question that you’re not sure how to answer, your configurator’s provider should be able to help.
Best product configurator softwares
Here's a list of the top product configurator software available to help you in your customization endeavors.
Kickflip: Kickflip stands out as a great platform since it provides an outstanding outcome while being very affordable. Kickflip is a powerful software that comes with important features such as dynamic pricing, inventory management, bulk order, adding text and images, print-ready files, live coloring and so much more. Additionally, Kickflip has hundreds of positive user reviews on the Shopify App Store and G2, so you can trust that it is a reliable and high-quality solution for your eCommerce store.
Configure One: Configure One offers an intuitive interface along with a range of flexible customization options. It’s also designed to help businesses streamline their sales and manufacturing processes, enabling them to generate accurate quotes quickly and efficiently.
Epicore CPQ: This is a robust product configurator software as Epicore CPQ helps businesses to design and quote custom products efficiently.
Threekit: Threekit offers a wide variety of features enabling you to customize your products efficiently for your customers such as 3D product visualization or augmented reality.
How to create a product configurator with Kickflip?
Kickflip's seamless integration with Shopify, WooCommerce or Prestashop brings a world of customization possibilities to your online store, enabling you to offer unique and tailored shopping experiences to your customers.
Integrating Kickflip to your online store is super easy, in just a few clicks you are ready to create your first custom product.
Step 1: Start your free trial
Start your free trial and install the Kickflip app to your online store to discover our powerful and visual app.Start your free trial
Step 2: Create your custom product
Easily create your custom product with Kickflip’s product builder. Whether you sell sporting goods or coffee mugs, whether you have 5 or 200 product options, we’ve got your back with a completely visual user interface that’s easy to learn and use.
Take a look at this quick video to get a better understanding of how easily you can create a product configurator with Kickflip.
Step 3: Design your product configurator theme
Take advantage of the beautifully designed themes available on Kickflip and customize every aspect to make it match your brand perfectly, thereby ensuring a strong and cohesive brand entity.
Step 4 : Set your custom product’s price and start making sales!
Establish your pricing for custom products using our dynamic pricing feature, which allows your customers to visualize any price variations as they include any add-ons.
How do you market customizable products?
Marketing customizable products effectively involves several actionable strategies to engage potential customers. Here are key steps to create a compelling marketing approach for customizable products:
Create a Dedicated "Custom" Section on Your Website: Establish a special section exclusively for customizable products on your website. This area should highlight the range of items that can be personalized, the customization options available, and the benefits of creating a unique product. Ensure this section is easily accessible from the homepage and is included in the main navigation menu. Use engaging visuals and interactive elements, such as a gallery of customized product examples, customer stories, and a step-by-step guide on how to customize a product. This dedicated space not only makes it easier for customers to find and explore your customizable offerings but also underscores your brand's commitment to personalization and customer creativity.
Leverage Social Media for Visual Storytelling: Use platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook to showcase the versatility and uniqueness of your customizable products. Post high-quality images and videos of different customization options and behind-the-scenes looks at the customization process. Engage with your audience through polls, questions, or contests that encourage them to share their customization ideas.
Create Targeted Advertising Campaigns: Use targeted advertising on social media and Google to reach audiences who have shown interest in customizable products or related categories. Utilize dynamic ads that display various customization options to capture the interest of potential customers.
Offer Exclusive Promotions: Encourage first-time customizations by offering exclusive promotions or discounts for customized products. This can motivate customers to try out your configurator and can lead to higher engagement and conversion rates.
By implementing these strategies, you can effectively market customizable products, creating a compelling and engaging experience for your potential customers that highlights the value and uniqueness of personalization.
Understanding and finding the best product configurator for your business can be challenging, but it’s not rocket science. By following these guidelines and keeping your objectives in mind, you can ensure your business experiences unrestricted success on ecommerce sites.