We met with a prospect today that sells manufactured doors for homes. One of the interesting things was that they had only 3 door varieties but with all of the window configurations and customizations they had over 7,000 SKUs creating probably thousands of variations.
He wanted to create an online order configurator. With their current system, a 100 page printed product guide, not even their sales reps could figure out how to sell the product and it takes more than 15 minutes just to calculate a price.
The owner of this company was a really nice guy and I would have liked to work with him, but with the solutions we knew about we couldn’t help. It would take 6 months and we’re not prepared to take on that sort of project now, and I don’t think he was either.
My advice to him was to simplify his product. However, I must admit to not knowing his business very well. Perhaps this level of variety is prevalent.