In this post & video we introduce the concepts of characteristics and Characteristics Profile which is an important functionality to create variant articles. E.g Let us take a standard example of a Shirt. In the apparel store shelf, you can find the shirt in different sizes (S,M,L) and colours. Technically speaking it is the same article (shirt) but differs only in the attributes - Size and/or Colour. These attributes are called as Characteristics in SAP IS-Retail. The advantage is that you need not create individual articles for each "variant". You can create a Generic article and the system will automatically create the variants based on the characteristics.