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  3. Understanding SKUs for products

Understanding SKUs for products

As a handmade business owner, navigating the world of online selling can be both exciting and challenging. One crucial aspect to master is the use of Product SKUs (Stock Keeping Units). In simple terms, a SKU is a unique identifier assigned to each of your products. And there’s 2 pivotal reasons to have an effective SKU system implemented on your business on Crafter’s Market UK – Stock management and Google Shopping Eligibility!

What is a Product SKU?

A Product SKU is a code or alphanumeric combination that serves as a distinct label for each item in your inventory. It provides a quick and efficient way to identify and organise your products, making it easier to track them throughout the selling process.

Why are Product SKUs important for online selling?

1. **Organised Inventory Management:** – SKUs help you organise your handmade products systematically. With a unique code for each item, you can easily locate, count, and manage your inventory, preventing confusion and errors.

2. **Efficient Order Processing:** – When orders come in, having a unique SKU for each product ensures accuracy during the picking and packing process. This reduces the likelihood of shipping the wrong item to customers.

3. **Effective Tracking:** – SKUs facilitate precise tracking of your product’s performance. You can analyse sales data, identify popular items, and make informed decisions about your inventory, such as restocking or discontinuing certain products.

4. **Streamlined Communication:** – In collaborative environments or when working with online marketplaces, SKUs provide a standardised way to communicate about products. Whether you’re interacting with suppliers, retailers, or customers, using SKUs helps avoid confusion.

5. **Ease of Expansion:** – As your handmade business grows, introducing new products becomes more manageable with a well-organised SKU system. It ensures that each new addition has a unique identifier, maintaining order and clarity in your expanding inventory.

6. **Integration with Technology:** – Many e-commerce platforms, including Crafter’s Market UK, and Google Shopping, rely on SKUs. Integrating these codes makes it easier to sync your online store with inventory software, automating processes and saving you time.

Having accurate and well-structured SKUs is also important for making your product listings eligible for platforms like Google Shopping. Which Crafter’s Market UK is integrated with.

Google Shopping relies on product data, including unique identifiers like SKUs, to effectively display and categorise items.

Here’s why SKUs matter on Google Shopping:

1. **Product Identification:** – SKUs provide a unique identifier for each product, helping Google accurately match your listings with user searches.

2. **Data Feed Optimisation:** – When Crafter’s Market UK submits a data feed to Google Merchant Center (required for Google Shopping), including SKUs ensures that your product information is onrganised and easily understandable by the platform.

3. **Inventory Management:** – Google Shopping may use SKU data to track and manage your inventory. Accurate SKUs help prevent errors and ensure that the right products are displayed to potential customers.

4. **Enhanced Product Listings:** – Well-structured SKUs contribute to the overall quality of your product listings. This can positively impact your visibility on Google Shopping and improve the user experience.

5. **Consistent Product Information:** – SKUs help maintain consistency in your product data across different platforms. This consistency is crucial for effective cross-channel marketing.

While SKUs are important for Google Shopping eligibility, it’s also essential to provide other key product information such as titles, descriptions, images, prices, and availability. Ensuring that your data feed is comprehensive and accurate increases the likelihood of your products being eligible and displayed on platforms like Google Shopping.

Here are short lists of example SKU codes for businesses in the candle, embroidery, and original artwork industries:

### Candle Business:

1. **CNL-001-VR** (Vanilla Relaxation)

2. **CNL-002-ES** (Eucalyptus Serenity)

3. **CNL-003-LM** (Lavender Mist)

4. **CNL-004-SPC** (Spiced Citrus)

5. **CNL-005-AMBR** (Amber Glow)

### Embroidery Business:

1. **EMB-001-FLW** (Floral Embroidered Pillow)

2. **EMB-002-MN** (Monogrammed Napkin Set)

3. **EMB-003-BAG** (Embroidered Tote Bag)

4. **EMB-004-CRS** (Cross-Stitch Sampler)

5. **EMB-005-HOOP** (Hoop Art – Winter Scene)

### Original Artwork Supplier:

1. **ART-001-ABS** (Abstract Sunset Painting)

2. **ART-002-RCY** (Recycled Metal Sculpture)

3. **ART-003-LAN** (Landscape Oil on Canvas)

4. **ART-004-ABS-GLD** (Abstract Gold Leaf Art)

5. **ART-005-PRT** (Portrait in Charcoal)

These examples follow a consistent format: [Category Code]-[Product Number]-[Additional Descriptor]. Adjustments can be made based on your business’s specific needs and naming conventions.

SKU Structure Tips:-
**Consistent Format:** – Maintain a consistent format across all your SKUs to ensure clarity and organisation. For example, use a combination of category codes, product numbers, and descriptors in a standardised order.

**Meaningful Codes:** – Create SKUs that convey meaningful information about the product, such as category, variant, or other relevant details. This helps in quick identification and streamlines inventory management.

**Avoid Special Characters:** – Stick to alphanumeric characters and avoid special symbols or spaces in your SKUs. This minimises the risk of errors and ensures compatibility with various systems and platforms.

Updated on 3 January 2024

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