Catalogues have been fueling consumer behaviour since inception. Even children can relate to leafing through a pre-Christmas catalogue in search of items to fill Santa’s list. Drawing a star on specific items of interest or folding a crease on pages for reference.

Just a decade ago catalogue mailings were at peak. In a few short years catalogue production slowed as marketers and retailers were forced to tighten budgets and dabble more actively online. In recent years the catalogue has witnessed a rebirth. In many cases retailers have renewed or revised the print catalogue to complement their web properties. With a broadened scope catalogues are once again fueling spending in the retail arena.

For catalogue producers one of the simplest and cost effective means to entwine print catalogues with digital properties is a Flip Page catalogue. Flip Page catalogues include the familiarity of the print medium but offer a robust set of tools to further enhance the consumer experience.

History

 The American Standard Product Selector and Pricing Guide. Available in ENG and FRE languages.

The American Standard Product Selector and Pricing Guide. Available in ENG and FRE languages.

American Standard Canada has been at the forefront of the plumbing products business since the first chinaware facility was opened in downtown Toronto in 1907 and has gone on to design and manufacture bathroom and kitchen products that have changed the face of the Canadian bathroom.

Today, marketing its products under one distinctive brand: American Standard, the company creates stylish products with unexpected features and great performance that makes life easier for their customers. The company's continuing commitment to product research and development has resulted in exclusive technologies and innovative designs that deliver ingenuity, quality and performance when providing plumbing professionals and Canadian homeowners with the American Standard "Total Bathroom" experience.

The Project

American Standard Canada displays its diverse product selection via a print catalogue. The 2016 Product Selector and Pricing Guide contains over 500 pages of faucets and fixtures for both residential and commercial applications. It is produced in both English and French language versions.

The digital price guide, which has been produced since 2014, offers the familiar layout of the print catalogue with a number of interactive elements.

The digital catalogue is offered to consumers and suppliers via the company website ‘americanstandard.ca’. Flip Page also produced an American Standard catalogue App which shares the same features as the online catalogue but can be downloaded from the various App stores. The catalogue App was produced for American Standard sales team members. The App guide provides access to the entire American Standard product line-up with or without connectivity.

One of the major benefits of a digital catalogue is the ability to update the content almost instantly. As American Standard introduces new products or deems others ‘no longer available’ the pages within the digital catalogue can be updated simultaneously. The revisions can then be pushed to the active or live digital catalogue or App. The ability to shift ‘on the fly’ is unique to a digital catalogue which allows consumers and team members to remain current with American Standard trends.

Branding

Awareness and recognition are imperative for all brands. At no point should a consumer question whose brand they are engaging with. As a result, both the American Standard digital catalogue and catalogue App include prominent logo placement and colour selection.

 Whether on desktop or tablet, the American Standard brand and colour scheme is displayed prominently.

Whether on desktop or tablet, the American Standard brand and colour scheme is displayed prominently.

Interactivity

American Standard has leveraged over 35 existing sales or informational videos and embedded them within digital catalogue pages specific to that product. Each video offers additional product detail and information not available within the catalogue pages. The page location of each video can be determined by accessing the ‘Video’ menu within the main toolbar.

Video Embed example - http://www.flippubs.com/publication/?i=289215&p=122

The American Standard digital price guide contains thousands of interactive links from product numbers to product specification sheets on the American Standard website. External links to product specification sheets offer a similar purpose as video integration - further product detail.

External Product Link example - http://www.flippubs.com/publication/?i=289215&p=210

Internal page links are found throughout the catalogue in order to aid user navigation. There are four unique sections and each section contains a table of contents. Each table of contents entry throughout the entire catalogue is linked to a corresponding page. Similarly, any page references within the pages of the catalogue are linked to the appropriate page.

Table of Contents link example - http://www.flippubs.com/publication/?i=289215&p=20

Page reference link example - http://www.flippubs.com/publication/?i=289215&p=192

Navigation

Navigation in a digital catalogue should be seamless. It should aim to replicate the paginated content of the paper edition while integrating digital-native tools to facilitate consumer engagement.

Since American Standard uses a unique naming convention for the different sections within the pricing guide we made sure to maintain that naming convention within the digital catalogue viewer. In other words, the Portsmouth Champion Pro toilet located on page A94 in the print catalogue can similarly be found on page A94 in the digital catalogue.

However, if the exact location of the Portsmouth Champion Pro toilet is unknown it can be found easily by using the Search tool within the viewer toolbar. The Search function can be used to identify a product by phrase, single word or even a product number or SKU. The search results will provide a page listing of the various occurrences of the chosen search.

The four defined sections of the 2016 Product Selector and Pricing Guide are quickly accessed using the Page Tabs or the Contents menu in the viewer toolbar.

As mentioned, the American Standard Guide is produced in both an English and French language version. In multi-language scenarios the viewer or graphical interface is matched with the chosen language of the paginated content. Access to the alternate language version is simple using an Archives button placed within the toolbar.

Analytics

The interactive nature of the American Standard Product Selector and Pricing Guide provides an opportunity to delve deeper into engagement patterns and usage. Data and information collected by the analytics suite can provide valuable insight. For example, geographic (local and regional) data can assist in determining new or emerging markets. Similarly, product click-throughs provide valuable information related to product preferences/interest and can be used to plan for product placement or layout in future price guides.

A digital catalogue provides limitless capabilities for marketers to complement and enhance their print edition. Let us help your brand expose your products to more consumers efficiently and effectively.