Most Mail Order / eCommerce businesses have a requirement to control stock of certain SKU's which come in various sizes and colours, for example clothing. The 3EX.NET Variant Product system simplifies the creation and administration of this type of product.
The 3EX.NET system will allow for any number of variant types to be created, for example Size, Colour, Collar Size, Sleeve Length, or even Voltage, temperature rating etc.
It is possible for certain products of the same style to cost more to buy from your suppliers, likewise you may decide to charge more for certain items of the same style. For example, a size 18 T-Shirt may cost you more and therefore may be sold to your customers at a higher price, than a size 10 T-Shirt. When defining a Variant Type, you will stipulate whether or not the type drives the pricing of the product. At least one type must drive pricing, even if all products within a style cost and are sold for the same price.
In order to create your Variant SKU's, you must first create the Variant Base Product. This is the product from which all of the other SKU's will take their properties. Setting up a Variant Base product, is largely the same as setting up any other product, but some of the steps have been changed slightly to allow for variant pricing and costing, as follows:
The first step on the product wizard, allows the user to specify that the product being created is a Variant Base Product.
The Suppliers and Costs step works differently when creating a Variant Base product. This step now allows multiple entries, so that different Variant Types (i.e. different sizes), can have different costs assigned.
The Sales Pricing Matrix step works differently when creating a Variant Base product. This step now allows multiple entries, so that different Variant Types (i.e. different sizes), can have different selling prices assigned.
When creating / editing a Variant Base Product, the Product Variant Products step becomes available. This step allows the user to assign the different dimensions which can exist against the product. In the example below, two dimensions have been added for Colour and Size but there are no limitation on the number of variants available. The screen shot shows the Size entry popup launched. You will see that sizes up to 5.5 follow the normal pricing pattern, whereas sizes 6 and above are using Large Size Pricing.
Once the Variant Products have been created, the user can shoot through to the individual products in order to maintain any settings that may need to be updated per SKU, such as Barcodes.
Should a price need to be update, this is done by simply updating the details on either the Suppliers and Costs step or the Sales Pricing Matrix step, depending on whether or not you are updating the Cost or Selling price of the products. The user can then simply click the Update Variant Product Prices Button on the Product Variant Products step and the system will automatically update the individual SKU's.
Where a product has many different Sizes and Colours, it is important to display the product well on your eCommerce site, the last thing you want your website visitors to have to do is scroll through pages and pages of the same product trying to find the colour and size that they want. The 3EX.NET eCommerce platform has been specifically developed to handle Variant products. The screen shot below shows how a simple dress can be sold in a range of different sizes and colours. No extra work was required for this, by simply creating the product as a Variant product, the 3EX.NET eCommerce platform knows to display the products in this way, i.e. it knows to allow the user to select a style and then prompts them with the variant options available.