How to Setup CAD Models on Your Website (and what NOT to do)
CDS CAD as a Service™ is a Cloud based solution for online 3D CAD model and 2D CAD drawing viewing and downloads from your website via a web browser. Here are the steps needed and what NOT to do:
1. Ask yourself these questions:
- Has the internet changed the buying process for my customers?
- Do your customers visit your website to learn more about your products.
- Are they searching and finding products online sometimes without talking to a supplier?
- Am I sure that my products are remaining in contention and I am not missing opportunities?
- Is my data already normalized in one master data set which drives all my marketing...
- Are your customers asking for CAD models or CAD drawings of your products?
- If so, how do you meet that need today?
- Is your engineering department being burdened to generate and deliver ad-hoc CAD models?
- Do your competitors offer online CAD models or CAD drawings of their products?
- If so, is it a competitive advantage over you?
- Do the majority of the '10 Ways to Use CAD Integration to Increase Sales for Industrial B2B E-Commerce Suppliers' apply to me?
- Are my parts too simple for this approach?
By the way, CAD as a Service™ has worked very successfully for parts as simple as lugs and fasteners so don't think that your parts need to be complex to benefit from website CAD. Even a simple caster is complex to draw in 3D and the more design time you save for your customers the more valuable your CAD models are. (The graph shows where designers search for CAD models of parts they need)
If the majority of your answers are YES, online CAD models could probably be a strategic sales driver for you - proceed to step 2
2. To offer online 3D CAD models of your products you first need the models:
- If you don't already have 3D CAD models of your parts CDS can build them for you very efficiently by highly experienced CAD design specialists:
- By building 'outer envelope' models the user gets what they need but internal detail (your IP) is protected
- By building models as small as possible so they download as quickly as possible
- CDS ModelServer (the product behind CAD as a Service) can generate or configure multiple CAD models for families of similar parts from a single parametric model - one CAD model can cover 10's or 100's of parts.
- If you do already have 3D CAD models CDS can use them either as is or as a starting point to build you an online CAD part library (including IP protection).
- Ensure your CAD models are built in a non-proprietary format that leaves you free to use them in the future in any CAD system or any CAD download system. Just as you don't want to be constrained or locked into any one CAD vendor's CAD system so you should not let yourself be locked into any one CAD Download vendor's system. You should always retain ownership of your models into the future and ensure they are in a vendor independent format and therefore portable. Beware some vendors who lock you into their proprietary formats and thereby restrict your ability to change vendors in the future.
3. Contact CDS to discuss:
- CAD as a Service™ integrated seamlessly into your existing website with the same look and feel as your site so its as easy as possible for your staff and customers to use it
- Seamless integration with your Digital Parts Catalog or Configurator which may or may not be the CDS Catalog or CDS Configurator products
- Support for all major 3D CAD Systems including a large variety of Native and Neutral CAD file formats for your 3D parts and sales drawings
- 3D model viewing in any web browser without having to install other software or plug-ins - includes spin, zoom, pan, full screen
- CAD models of 3D parts or 2D drawings generated on the fly - options and accessories like switches, shocks, and other mountings can be drawn into the CAD model. Request CAD models in Open/Extend or Closed/Retract positions
- B2B lead generation - capture user information - CAD Engineers gladly provide contact info in exchange for your CAD models - this may be the best B2B lead gen. idea for any industrial supplier
- Real time Analytics reporting available 24*7 - CAD Download activity notification & reporting
- Available integration of CAD model download sales leads with your CRM system, including SalesForce®, Hubspot®, SugarCRM®, Microsoft Dynamics®, Oracle®, and more
Now you know the process and questions to be addressed in order to add CAD Model downloads to your website. If you'd like to discuss your situation, request a demo today!