Product configurators for manufacturers are specific software tools that lead customers, sales representatives or dealers through a managed purchasing process. It also ensures that the end product meets all applicable laws, rules, and/or technical standards. Configurator designs range from simple question and answer systems that allow individuals to select products to add to a list, to more complex models that take customers through a detailed purchasing process which includes calculations, look-ups and specific pricing information.
Virtual Garage Application
Northwoods developed a custom Build-a-Bay virtual garage application for Equipment Solutions, a division of Snap-on. The Build-a-Bay provides access to product photos and details, allowing users to select Snap-on service facility components and arrange (drag and drop) them on a grid scaled to the size of their work bay. The virtual garage features components arranged and colorized, with a detailed list of the selected items, suggested parts for installation, notes, and Build-a-Bay sales contact information.
LDI Online Adapter
From LDI Industries to the OEM and MRO markets, Northwoods developed an online Adapter PMA Application. This application helps customers determine the adapter part number that needs to be ordered based on the LDI's hydraulic pump and electronic motor selections. Although the tool had been in existence for many years, it was distributed to customers on CD via USPS mailing. Moving the project online eliminated the cost of generating hundreds of CDs and mailing them to customers. It also better served field sales representatives, who are now able to create specs on the fly.
The Benefits of Product Configurators
Custom product configurators give customers an opportunity to build specific configurators. A good product configurator also prevents the user from creating false configurations, reducing the risk of the user requesting flawed designs.
Benefits to product configurators include:
- Simplifying the generation of quotes – frees up engineers’ time to work on designing products, instead of creating estimates
- Creating a more rapid response time for quotes – contact your clients quicker, and understand what they are looking for in more detail, without spending hours on the phone
- Creates automated documentation for quotes – saving time and ensuring a “paper trail” for your quote requests
- Eliminates human error in computing complex quotes – let the configurator do the math for you!