Will provide retailers content for online, in-store use
ROSEVILLE, Calif. — The North American Home Furnishings Assn. is launching a service that it said will allow home furnishings retailers to access supplier product data in an easy, standardized format they need to compete with e-commerce giants.
NAHFA DataLink, developed for the retailer association by RM Innovation, enables seamless streaming of manufacturers’ product data to retailers, providing rich, relevant digital content they can use on their websites, e-catalogs, point-of-sale systems, in-store digital signage and more, officials said.
Product suppliers in any home furnishing category can use the system to have their product catalogs digitally standardized for free, regardless of the size or format of existing files. NAHFA said the DataLink already is loaded with hundreds of thousands of home furnishings SKUs including area rugs, accessories and several furniture catalogs.
Retailers will be able to stream their suppliers’ product data for “a nominal monthly fee based upon the amount of product SKUs needed,” the association said. The program is available to all retailers, but NAHFA members will receive a discount.
“Furniture retailers have forever been frustrated trying to access manufacturers’ data — photos, pricing, measurements and style — in a standardized format,” NAHFA said in a release. “That meant online home furnishings shoppers frequently did their research and shopping with national e-commerce giants. With NAHFA DataLink, local retailers can now supply the same photos and information shoppers are looking for, to buy locally.”
NAHFA CEO Sharron Bradley called the service “a game-changer for home furnishings retailers,” adding, “This will help level the playing field between brick-and-mortar retailers and e-commerce giants.”
NAHFA DataLink will automatically update supplier catalog data, eliminating discontinued products and adding introductions as they become available. It’s easy to use and frees retailers “to continue building their brick-and-mortar stores,” Bradley said.
At the Las Vegas Market, the association’s leaders plan to meet with suppliers to explain the service and encourage their participation. NAHFA said the system is secure for product suppliers, keeping vendors and their representatives in control of their content and how much of it individual retailers have access to.
Retailers, meanwhile, also can control how much of the data they choose to stream and use.
Retailers interested in learning about NAHFA DataLink can speak to NAHFA representatives during market at the Retail Resource Center, World Market Center B-1050, or call (800) 422-3778.
“We’re always looking for innovative ways to support NAHFA members and the industry,” Bradley said. “That’s why we’re so excited about NAHFA DataLink.”
For more in-depth coverage of the new program, see Furniture/Today’s Las Vegas Market opening day issue.