Order form: All you need to know

A purchase order form is a necessary tool for every business. It helps to improve financial and inventory control, manage incoming orders, and streamline the procurement processes. In this article, we will see in detail what is a purchase order form, what is necessary to include there, and how to create one for your business in a couple of minutes.

What is a purchase order form? 

A purchase order form is a template that is used for a purchase order. Generally speaking, it is a written agreement between the buyer and the seller about quantity, quality, time of delivery in the form of a document. It is mostly used at the B2B market when wholesaler, manufacturer, or retailer sells a high number of products at once.  

Digital order form template

Products & Services

An order form is used when businesses purchase both products and services. For example, you need to print out a brochure as a part of your marketing campaign. A printing agency will ask you to fill out a document where you will tell how many brochures do you need, what type of paper the agency should use, etc. 

Online & offline 

We have defined a purchase order as a document. However, it does not mean that it should be printed out. Lots of businesses that are operating online use a digital purchase order form. The difference is that in the online world it can be used for people, not just companies. Imagine the last time you bought cloth online? You need to select a size, color, and quantity before submitting. In other words, you are filling up an order form. 

What to include in your order form?

Based on the Purchase Control article, a general order form should contain the following fields. 

  • Information about the seller – the name of the company, address, contact info.
  • Information about the buyer – the name of the company/person, address, contact info. 
  • Purchase order number – a unique numerical identifier of the order. 
  • Information about the products – quantity, characteristics, etc.
  • Pricing – total and for each particular product.
  • Shipping details – when a product will be shipped, approximate date of arrival, address for delivery. 

After filling up a form, the customer usually received a confirmation via email, message, or even a phone call, if a seller needs to confirm any details.

How to create an order form? 

Catalog Machine is online software that allows you to create an order request form ready for printing or design a catalog with an embedded order form. Let’s see how you can create a PDF purchase order form in 3 Steps.

Step 1. 

After logging in to the system, go to Catalog and click Crete New on the top right corner. 

create new catalog

Select the Blank option on the very left. Click Create your catalog. 

catalog type

Step 2. 

Now you need to select a proper layout. 

Click More types on the right part of your screen. 

Working area for creating catalogs

Select Order form from the appeared page layout options. 

Order form layout

Now you need to select a template that suits your business needs: with product images, wholesale or static order forms. All of them are fully customizable, so no worries if you need to add extra information or change the design. 

Step 3. 

Customizing order form. 

Add products you would like to include. 

You can add products one by one, all products at once, or a group (collection or category). 

After adding, you can click Update Products to finish creating. The other option is to select Fields and Design to add more or delete some product fields and change the design. 

Play around with the available options to find the one that you like the most.

Adding products to order form

To preview how it will look like a PDF document or download it to your device, go to View/Download, PDF section, and select the option you need.

Adding an order form to an existing catalog

… is even more comfortable. 

Go to the catalog, click on the Orders on the left sidebar.  

Creating catalog

Here you can enable orders right from the catalog. 

As you can see from the image below, it will appear here once someone makes an order. 

List of orders

Advanced Settings 

Configure order request settings from the Order Requests page.

Configure order request settings from Order Requests page.

  • Custom caption for the button and order form
  • Enable product prices and totals for order requests
  • Enable product variants (displayed for products that have variants) with fields
  • Fill in the order form header and footer.
  • Add custom fields
  • · Select product fields that will be added to a notification email, presented at the order request form for your client and order request details page for you.
  • Configure a notification email sent to your customer

Order Request Settings

Order Request List, Details, and Management

Go to the Order Requests page from the right sidebar to access the list and details pages. 

the list and details pages. 

On the list page:

  • Manage simple order request life-cycle: Accept, Reject or Close order requests or delete them. These actions are available from list and details pages.
  • Filter orders by text, status, products, and dates
  • Export orders in CSV format

Order Details

Click on Order ID to access the Order Request Details.

You can add your notes on the Order Request Details page.

Manage order numbers

Change order request number by clicking on it and entering the number that will be synchronized with your system. After that, all new orders will be automatically enumerated using your system (ex. Renamed last order is 1234, the next one will be 1235). The system recognizes only the numerical part of the order name. So, if you name the order ABC1234, the next one will still be 1235. 

Manage list of orders

Back to Order Request

Now you know what a purchase order form is, why you need it, and how you can easily create one with Catalog Machine

The Elements of a Product Catalog: Table of Contents, Contact Info, and Your Story

How do i make it easier to navigate my catalog? Will my customers be able to reach out to me? Does it matter what my business is all about? This catalog digest helps you with all that and more.

Table of Contents

It’s important for whoever is viewing your catalog to be able to easily navigate it and not spend too much time looking for what they need. A table of contents with page numbers and product names can make the shopping experience for the customer much more enjoyable and stress free.

Featuring Images from: Brumleve Industries Wholesale Pricing Catalog

Not only is having a TOC a great way to make a shopping experience smoother, it may help the maker of it as well. If in the future you wish to edit your catalog and add certain products or remove them, the table of contents you made will help you do all this faster. Also having a Table of Contents may also show that you are more professional to the people viewing your product offering.

“Implementing Shopify and having Catalog Machine integrate with it has been a life saver in getting our products, descriptions, and prices automatically imported. We will be distributing our catalog to our wholesale customers. They will now have a color catalog with a much better layout of product, images, and prices”. -Michael Brumleve, Brumleve Industries

Business contact info

Your customers, whether it’s a single individual or a store you are supplying, need to have easy access to your contact info. Make sure to include it either on the first few pages of your catalog or potentially at the end.

Featuring Images from:  Seattle Pump and Equipment Vac-Tools & Accessories Catalog

 

“I found Catalog Machine through the Shopify App Store and immediately began working on our company industrial tools catalog. 2 weeks later I had an extensive 179 page tools catalog filled with hundreds of products that my sales team and customers could use immediately. Something I was dreading became a fairly simple and enjoyable process thanks to Andriy and Catalog Machine!!”- Cole Childers, Seattle Pump & Equipment co.

Tell your story

One of the pages from your catalog can show your vision, how your business started off and what it is that inspires you and everyone involved to keep going with it. You shouldn’t be afraid to self promote.

Featuring Images from:  V’Enza Creations LLC Wholesale Catalog 2018

“I use the catalogs as 3 different options at the moment. I have LOVED having these, they allow me to change things if needed and I have viable information I can instantly send to potential clients!”- Sheila Vaske, V’Enza Creations LLC

Effective storytelling will get the customer engaged. And since you’re marketing your product and business with the catalog anyways, you shouldn’t hesitate to let the customer know a bit more about who they are buying from.

 

For the full galleries featured here you can visit the links below:

https://www.catalogmachine.com/brumleve-industries/catalogs/wholesale-pricing-catalog.html

https://www.catalogmachine.com/seattle-pump-and-equipment/catalogs/seattle-pump-and-equipment-catalog.html

https://www.catalogmachine.com/venza-creations-llc/catalogs/venza-creations-fall-2017.html

7 steps to create an online product catalog that sells

Increase sales and market your small business with a cost effective online product catalog.

Your catalog – What, Who and Why?

what-who-why

Your business is design, manufacture, service or retail. You could be a Shopify, Etsy or eBay seller. You have products or services you need to sell, online, offline or both, and you are asking the question – How do I create myself a successful product catalog? Not just an aesthetically pleasing or comprehensive but a powerful sales tool which delivers critical conversions and products sales for your business.

We aim to answer that for you with seven effective steps to producing a product catalog which will entice and reach even the most passive of customers.

How to begin making your cost effective product marketing and promotion solution that sells…

Consider three elements as you start your catalog creation journey…What, Who and Why.

What

What are your products or services, how well do they fit to an informative or promotional style? What is the best way to present them, what level of information and sale nudging is needed and what are your industry “norms” or your competitor approaches? Informative catalogs may be more suitable to employees, experienced buyers and professional services.  Promotional style, sales oriented, bright and engaging pages are more applicable to product sales, consumer services and attracting new buyers.

Who

Which of course brings us onto the audience; who exactly are your customers or buyers and what do they expect? What works in your marketplace and why? It’s ultimately critical that a product catalog is tailored to the product buyer, as any mismatch will jeopardize sales hugely.

Consider timber sales. The experienced business or trades buyer needs only to know wood type, dimensions and price. The home DIY enthusiast, amateur builder or crafter needs to know which type of wood is more relevant or suited to their project and why. The former, an experienced B2B buyer needs a simple, easy to use, even tabular layout to quick find their requirements, price and order. The latter, a consumer buyer, wants to know the properties of each type of wood, how long it will last and may be engaged by quick DIY guides, tips, information about complementary wood care products.

Why

Answer the why, the “What’s in it for me?” for your buyer, matching your product or service to their needs and answering any questions, overcoming any objections and your “sale” is made.

We can use the example of a home improvement retailer. Their buyers’ reasons for purchase can include:

Fulfilment of need – they require materials, lighting or furniture. The catalog should be factual, include dimensions, price and key information.

Problem resolution – the product may need to be a certain size, shape, color or fit for an existing project.  Think space saving storage or furniture design for owners of smaller or city homes, explaining how space can be maximized by each product will convert the sale.

Satiation of desire – the buyer strives to attain a lifestyle or gain pleasure from a purchase decision, a beautiful room or home.  Allow the buyer, through the product catalog, to visualize themselves or their home with a certain style to win them over.

Money – getting better value or saving money is of course a massive motivator for purchase decisions. The product catalog can emphasise price, old price/price reductions, value for money and feature top sellers, deals and discounts.

Answer the buyer’s subliminal “What’s in it for me?” and your product catalog is well on its way to being a successful tool in your online product marketing portfolio

With good understanding of What, Who and Why  we can move to answering How to create myself a successful product catalog.

Continue reading “7 steps to create an online product catalog that sells”