How to Search with the SAP CPQ Product Catalog

How to Search with the SAP CPQ Product Catalog

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Author: Mirza Baig

SAP CPQ enables users to easily search and add products to a quote. This eliminates human error and the use of outdated spreadsheets for products and pricing. By using the effective dates feature, for instance, discontinued products will be automatically hidden from user search results after the specified date. Read on to learn more about the benefits and capabilities of SAP CPQ

Key terms in SAP CPQ 

Before diving into the details, let’s first have a quick look at key terms and product hierarchy.

A catalog is typically a default landing page in CPQ. It contains products organized by categories and subcategories. It can be navigated by the Navigation Tree, Categories (drill-down), Search, Favorites, and Compare product features.

Categories represent logical groupings of products. It represents the highest level for organizing products and can have many subcategories.

Products can be a simple (non-configurable) or a complex (configurable) product. Products can be assigned to multiple categories or subcategories.

Attributes are product options and also known as product features, properties, specification or characteristics. They are used to define and search for products, and can be displayed in many ways; such as a drop down list, checkbox, radio button, text fields, calculated values, etc. Attributes can be rules-based for any constraints such as allow/disallow certain values or hide/display a drop down field.  

Along with being flagged as optional or mandatory, attributes can also be set to show as line-items for the product on quotes and can be shared between multiple products. This is a huge benefit as it reduces the number of times an attribute has to be created. For example an industrial pump’s horsepower attribute can be created once and reused for all other pumps. Admins can further limit certain allowable values for pump A and limit other allowable values for pump B.


Catalog Search

Products can be searched by clicking on a category name or image and then into their subsequent sub-categories. Some users call this drilling-down on categories and sub-categories. Users can also use categories and sub-categories in the left side bar with a navigation tree. The navigation tree allows users to expand or collapse selections.

Users can search for products by clicking on the search icon that opens up an input field. Users can search by name, part number and product description. Searching by description triggers the auto-suggestion feature to complete the word or the phrase.

Note: when searching by part number, the entire part number must be entered.

Using the filter feature (funnel icon) shown below, users can search by product name, its description, part #, product type and price range. Clicking on the funnel icon displays a pop-up window that the user can fill out.


cpq product 1


Another way to search is by using the Favorites feature. As shown below, the star icon can save products to favorites that can be retrieved at a later time. This is quite handy when there  are a few popular products with many configurable attributes that are regularly quoted.   

Recently viewed products are another alternative to view more recently worked on products. Similarly, breadcrumbs is another way of navigating to categories or subcategories.  

cpq product 2

Adding Products to Quote 

Once the product is found, use the “Add” button to add it to the quote. Simple products don’t require any configuration and can be added to quite right away (simple products have fixed attribute values whereas configurable products have selectable attributes). Configurable products require make-to-order (MTO) product feature options that are selected by the users. Once all required configuration is complete, then users can add the product to quote. 

cpq product 3

The compare feature in SAP CPQ allows users to select multiple products and display them side-by-side. Finally, when a quote or a proposal is created for the required products, with its pricing, it can be sent to the customer via email, downloaded, or printed. 

Final Thoughts

Navigation around the product catalog and the search feature are easy-to-use in SAP CPQ. Filtering the catalog, favorites, breadcrumbs and recent products are another way getting around the product catalog. Additionally, the compare feature enables users to view information about multiple products at once to help them choose the right one. 

A good user-experience with rich features contributes to wider user acceptance. It allows users to quickly get to the right products within just a few clicks, add it to the quote, apply discounts, and generate proposals for the customer.

To learn more about how SAP CPQ can benefit your business, reach out to us at

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