How to create a great Product Specification Sheet

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If you can imagine a product, then there is a probably a factory who can build it. China and Vietnam have a seemingly endless number of manufacturers that have the capabilities to make a wide variety of products. But how do you know that the supplier makes your product exactly as you want? With a well-written product specification sheet. While it takes several steps to make your idea into a product, one of the first things you need to do is create a product specification sheet. Cosmo Sourcing has simplified this process into our simple sourcing, which has 4 steps: Plan, find, make and ship.

What is a product specification sheet?

A product specification sheet is a document that details what your product is. There should a broad overview as well as numerous sections that detail the individual components that you want to be delivered in a product. A good product sheet is concise yet thorough, having everything that the product needs, but without any fluff.  The product specification sheet will be received by your manufacturers and used as a reference for quotes and for the manufacturing of your product. Even before your product is made it is essential that a manufacturer has a product specification in order to give you an accurate quote.

A product specification sheet will also be used later when you order samples. We tend to use a modified product specification sheet as our sample evaluation form. IN the sample evaluation process, which we’ll discuss later, we create a checklist from the Product specification sheet, and we’ll go through line by line to check each detail on the sample to what was requested.

One thing to keep in mind when creating a product specification sheet is that manufacturers often cut corners. Be mindful of this and think of details that you want to highlight in order to ensure quality. You need to know that there is no such thing as a supplier that will get 100% of the product and details perfect, so you need to have an idea of what is acceptable quality to you and fill in your product spec sheet accordingly.

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Here’s a free Product Specification template!

If you’re not sure what a product sheet should look like, feel free to download a template we made. This is a basic template, so your template should be heavily modified to suit your product. Regardless fill in the email and we’ll send you our template that we use for our projects!

What should be included in a product specification sheet?

There isn’t a single good template for a product specification sheet, as each product is different and has its own attributes. Nonetheless, here is a list of potential

  • What is the purpose of your product

  • What material do you want your product made of

  • Dimensions

  • What features do you want it to have

  • Waterproof

  • Durability ratings

  • Compliance standards

  • What Color(s) should the product be?

    • Pantone color codes are universally accepted color standards so be exact if you need to.

  • What packaging do you want?

  • What standards does the product need to meet?

  • On major aspect or product, validation is figuring out what compliance standards are necessary for a product.

  • Pictures

  • Diagrams and graphics

Overall wording should be short and to the point. Pictures are also a great way to show what product you want to be made. You can find pictures of existing products, pictures of details, or pictures of a prototype you have made. Pictures and other graphics example are one way you can make sure that something doesn’t get lost in translation.

What format should this be in?

Most Product spec sheets are created in Excel or Word, but you should send it to your potential suppliers as a PDF. the reason for this is so the supplier does not alter it and you can make sure that there aren’t any formatting changes when emailed. Keep in mind that when you send out a Product spec sheet it will likely be shared any time by email and printed among staff at the supplier. Include page numbers and either a header or footer with your contact info on every page, as well as a page number.

Let Cosmo Sourcing help you!

Creating a product specification sheet is one of the deliverables in the first step of our Simple Sourcing process, We call this step PLAN. If you sign up for the PLAN package you’ll get an RFQ and validation report in addition to the Product specification sheet. You are free to use this guide and template to create your own Product specification sheet, however, if you want us to look over it and make sure it’s great, so feel free to reach out to us, and if you are interested

James KennemerComment