Are your B2B customers using a procurement system to conduct business transactions with your site? Want to attract large customers? If you are serious about growing your business revenue, it is time to invest in a PunchOut catalog.

Define PunchOut

PunchOut refers to a specific set of technical protocols that connects the supplier's catalog to the buyer's procurement system. Purchasing organizations that use a procurement system often demand PunchOut to simplify their purchasing process.

A Punchout Catalog is a subset of a supplier's online catalog and its content is unique to every B2B customer. In simple words, PunchOut catalog is customized as per the needs of the buyer.

An Ariba PunchOut catalog establishes a connection between the Ariba procurement system and the supplier's site.

Who uses PunchOut Technology?

Suppliers having large catalogs commonly use this technology to run their B2B business. Unlike the CIF catalog, an Oracle PunchOut catalog - no matter how huge it is - can be quickly updated.

When you are using a CIF catalog, updating the catalog is a very time-consuming activity. But with the PunchOut catalog, it is an effortless activity. With PunchOut, you can add or update products without having to spend time recreating the entire catalog.

No wonder, suppliers who frequently update their catalog use this technology. Say a supplier wants to update product prices or stock availability on a frequent basis. He can do it quickly without having to replace the entire catalog.

Suppliers who are handling government contracts also implement PunchOut protocol for their customers. This guarantees contract compliance as customers doesn't have access to non-contract catalog.


From the suppliers' point of view, the SAP PunchOut catalog allows them to promote their business in a better way.

Simply put, this technology plays a very crucial role in better communicating your marketing message. For instance, you can design a unique marketing strategy for every PunchOut account. You can show customer-focused upsells/cross-sells, discounts, offers, etc. This, in turn, drives sales and boosts business growth.

From the customers' point of view, PunchOut allows them real-time visibility of inventory and pricing. Whenever the supplier modifies its catalog, the changes are immediately visible to the customer. Moreover, B2B customers get an Amazon-like shopping experience.

Types of PunchOut Catalog

In level 1 PunchOut catalog, the buyer logs into his own procurement system, clicks the PunchOut link which takes him directly to the supplier's contract catalog.
Level 2 PunchOut catalog comes into picture when the buyer is connected to multiple suppliers. This protocol allows buyers to use the procurement system's search functionality to access products located in different supplier catalogs.

For instance, the search results will show you to which supplier catalog the product belongs. Clicking on the link takes you directly to the product details page of that specific PunchOut catalog.

On the whole, whether you want to keep your existing B2B customers or attract new ones, implementing PunchOut technology is the best option. It will help you to boost your sales opportunities and take your business to the next level.

Author's Bio: 

Arnaldo is an American writer for various digital news publications. After being in the ecommerce industry for more than 15 years, he has a good understanding of what it takes to make an ecommerce business successful.