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Jun 6, 2023 | 4 minute read

How Elastic Path is Simplifying Dynamic Bundling

written by Bryan House

So many products lend themselves to dynamic bundling. The other day, I was exploring outdoor pizza ovens online and landed on one that I wanted to buy. Accessories like a pizza paddle, wood pellets and other options for the stove were sold on separate sections of the website. For a high-intent buyer, it’s a no-brainer to offer these items as a bundle, providing choices for the consumer on which accessories to pick. So why don’t more companies do it? 

Because it’s hard. The lack of ability to offer dynamic bundles is tied closely to the product catalog. Rigid, inflexible product catalogs embedded in legacy commerce systems prevent companies from presenting these options to customers. What’s left on the table are opportunities to increase average order value (AOV) and move excess merchandise, which is particularly important in a tough retail economy. In fact, Forrester Research shows as much as 10 to 30 percent of revenue comes from upselling and cross-selling via product bundles. 

While some options like Salesforce or Shopify plugins exist for bundling, executing on dynamic bundling itself is far from simple. You still need extensive engineering expertise to make these plugins function seamlessly alongside your existing commerce system. As a result, bundles are static and difficult to change, leaving few options for merchandisers and consumers themselves. That’s why Elastic Path has been focused on simplifying this problem, allowing merchandisers to create their own dynamic bundles in five simple steps.

Giving Buyers Options for Bundling

Let’s look at the pizza oven example to illustrate how dynamic bundling in Elastic Path works. Product Experience Manager (PXM) makes it simple to create a product in your catalog and configure a bundle. Making a bundle dynamic means giving your buyers options for which items they’d like to add to their bundle, rather than forcing them into a rigid set of items preconfigured for them. 

Using Elastic Path’s business user tooling, Commerce Manager, it’s easy for a merchandiser or business user to set up their own dynamic product bundle.

You can select a component, or category of products, from which your customers can choose. From there, you simply choose how many items you’d require as a minimum (having a 0 minimum means customers can bundle any items with their purchase) and set the pricing and imagery for your bundle. Say I only needed the wood pellets and not the pizza paddle. As a customer, I’d immediately reject a static bundle, but a dynamic bundle would allow me to choose only the items I wanted. 

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Overall, the goal for dynamic bundling is to give merchants the freedom to bundle and move inventory as they wish, without having to wait on engineering to implement changes. In addition, dynamic bundling gives customers the flexibility to bundle only the items they want.

It’s important to note that dynamic bundling  works seamlessly with your existing commerce system through API connectivity, instead of a simple plugin. Rather than having to re-platform your entire system, you can experiment with features like dynamic bundling using the technology you already have. I explain this in a bit more detail in my post, How to supercharge your catalog without replatforming. The key takeaway: It doesn’t have to be hard or risky to embrace Composable Commerce and the experimentation that goes along with it. Starting small is a great way to test whether strategies like dynamic bundling work for you.