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Are print catalogues a thing of the past?

Traditionally, print catalogues were an effective way of advertising your products to potential customers. But with the advent of eCommerce, are they old hat? And should retailers be shifting their attention online?

As more and more people choose to do their shopping online, it could be argued that there’s less of a need for the good ol’ print catalogue. Despite this, catalogues still prove popular amongst retailers. Why? Lets take a look… 

Brand awareness

Delivering a catalogue to somebody’s front door ensures they’ll at least be aware that your brand exists. They might not read through it, but seeing your logo, and possibly getting a feel for what your brand is about, is better than nothing. If they do choose to have a quick flick through, that’s great. They’ll see all of your products and prices (a flyer or other, cheaper options would only provide limited information), and could be encouraged to visit your website. Business Insider proposes that shoppers spend more money after looking at high quality print catalogues.

Cost effective

Referral Candy suggests that the average print catalogue costs $1 to produce but generates around $4 of sales in return. They also report that 45% of customers browse catalogues before buying online, while a further 54.4% use catalogues before heading in store to make a purchase. If catalogues produce a substantial ROI, it’s no surprise they’re still considered a viable marketing channel by many leading retailers.

 Omni-channel marketing

With so many customers and so much competition, it’s important for retailers to reach their potential customers in every way possible. While some may land on your website or walk through your doors, others won’t have a clue who you are or what you sell. Think of a print catalogue as some friendly encouragement, with substantial shelf life to boot. Customers may spot something they like, then head in store or online for further research or to buy, or choose to hang on to the catalogue for future reference. It offers a long-term reminder of your products and prices to customers who may otherwise forget. It’s not dissimilar to taking out a print or TV ad in the sense that it’s just another way of engaging with potential customers.


Remember, the better your catalogue, the more effective it’s likely to be. That’s where a trusty PIM system, like MatrixCMS, comes in. It provides oodles of awesome functionality, which allows retailers to create a catalogue that’s right for them. Offering real-time production visibility, MatrixCMS helps you to keep track of every step of production. It also lets users tailor audience messaging by tagging multiple descriptions to different products depending on customer or brand, and multi-language functionality means retailers can produce print catalogues for customers almost anywhere in the world.

For all this and much more, including exclusive demos, visit, call 0161 804 1850 or email To keep up with all the latest news and blogs, follow us on Twitter @matrixtweets or ‘like’ us on Facebook.

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