Effective July 1, GSA will roll out a new GSA Advantage! website aimed to create a better user experience. They are not only creating a new look and simplified User-Interface (UI), they are streamlining the process of finding products for Federal buyers. Some highlighted changes include:
GSA Advantage’s Improved Shopping Experience
GSA has focused on improving the output of results to provide the customer, or anyone else using the site, an easier shopping experience that is very similar to today’s commercial e-commerce websites. For example, customers searching for writing pads will be able to sort through new attributes, such as paper size, the color of the paper, and even by how much recycled content the pad contains; all features that the current system does not have. Currently, users will have to continuously browse through pages of content to find the right product. Be ready to see a roll-out of new product attributes sometime this summer!
Products with duplicate part numbers have also been combined to show the customer pricing and delivery options for different contractors. This feature is now available in the “buy/compare” feature, but bugs in the system such as different units of measure of quantities, prevent accurate grouping.
GSA Advantage Will Provide Personalized Agency Portals
Users belonging to a particular agency will have tailored portals, or “Virtual Stores”, that are specific to the agency’s needs and requirements. Be expected to see much more focus on sustainability, environmental attributes, goaling requirements, etc.
Upcoming Changes on GSA Advantage!
GSA is continuously improving the MAS program to reduce costs (saving taxpayers) and will try to simplify the acquisition process for both you and the buyer as much as possible, therefore is far from finished in updating its systems. Be ready to see these updates in the future:
- New features for Strategic Sourcing (FSSSI)
- More photo’s for products
- Increased eBuy functionality
- Market research tools
GSA expects that users of the site will have no trouble in getting used to the new site; however we will be sure to offer our clients with a thorough review of the site and give you the best solutions to be successful.
As part of this roll-out and general competitive comparisons, GSA is requiring that all products be submitted with the original equipment manufacturer’s part number and not the vendors. Unless you are adding to the OEM product to create your own product, all future modifications and offers will be evaluated on OEM part number comparisons.
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