What is Product Configuration Software?
Product configuration software, also known as a product configurator, allows customers and businesses to design or personalize products to better meet the needs of the customer. It gives the buyer a better understanding of a product, its customizable options, and related costs. It gives the seller the ability to showcase all a product’s features. It is usually a part of CPQ (Configure, Price, Quote) software, which provides quotes for complex and highly customizable product offerings.
This software is an especially valuable tool for businesses whose products require buyer input prior to the manufacturing process. It supports dynamic updating of any element of a product and sale: base options, add-ons, upgrades, pricing, and discounts.
Cloud-based software makes it convenient for sales reps, distributors, and buyers to customize a product. Rule-based configurations define all possible variations for a given product. As the options are explored, real-time product visualizations are presented along with their associated pricing.
Product Configuration Software Features
A basic product configurator will automatically configure product models based upon the options selected.
Key product configuration software features include:
- Business Rules Processing
- Configuration Rules
- Pricing Rules
- Real-Time Product Visualization
- 2D Drawing
- 3D Imaging
- CAD Automation
- Real-Time Cost Calculations and Pricing
- Website Embedding
Product Configuration Software Comparison
Before purchasing product configuration software, it is important to consider whether a basic product configurator will meet your needs or whether you require that it be part of a CPQ solution.
Determining the extent of your needs for the following capabilities will help you choose the right software.
- Rules Engine: How complex is your product’s customizable features?
- Visual Product Configuration: What impact do options have on the appearance of your product?
- Automated Price and Quoting: How complex are your pricing structures?
- Ease of Use: How easy is it for the business to set up and maintain? How intuitive and friendly is the interface for buyers to use?
- Cloud-Based: What are your access needs? Do you need to be able to access the platform from anywhere with an internet connection?
Review your decision to make sure that it will be satisfactory for both internal users and external customers.
There is a broad range of price points based upon the features included in the software. Most vendors use a pay per user, monthly pricing structure that ranges from $25 to $500 per user. This pricing is often combined with a required minimum number of purchased licenses. A few vendors offer one-time purchases that can range from $1,000 to over $60,000.
Some vendors offer free trials, while others provide limited free versions. Many CPQ vendors recommend you reach out to them to review your requirements, so they can come up with an optimal solution and a custom quote.
Customer support is provided in the pricing; however, some vendors limit the time for their free support. In those cases, an additional fee is required for ongoing support.