What should the BOM look like?
The simpler the better. We describe the accepted format below. Although there is some tolerance, we recommend to follow the rules to obtain optimal results.
The first row contains a header with a name for each column. The other rows contain data about parts. Required columns are marked with *. The BOM also has to contain at least one of the columns marked with **.
- Item #Your identification number. We will keep this one to facilitate communication between us. Can be simple sequence 1, 2, 3, ...
- Ref DesThe reference designators used by the parts on the PCB silk screen. All of the same part number should be in the same spreadsheet cell: i.e., "R3, R4, R5, R6". You can also indicate a contiguous range with a dash: "R3-R6" or "R3-R6, R10, R15."
- Distributor PN **If you know the distributor part number of the part you want, you can specify it in this field and it will take precedence in the search. Note that when you provide only the distributor part number (i.e. leave the Manufacturer part number empty), our search might be limited only to that particular distributor.
- DistributorThe name of the distributor, e.g. Digi-Key or Mouser. It is best to specify distributor part number along with particular distributor to avoid confusion.
- Manufacturer PN **A unique identifier set by the product's manufacturer to differentiate it from similar parts and counterfeits. It helps manufacturers and sellers identify and manage stock levels and it puts buyers' minds at ease because they know that they are getting the right component.
- ManufacturerThe name of the component manufacturer. It's best to spell out the full name, e.g., "Texas Instruments", but common abbreviations such as "TI" generally work too. The less ambiguity, the better.
- Quantity *How many of this specific part you need per board.
- DescriptionArbitrary description of yours. This should serve you to know which part is which without the need of looking up its part number.
- AlternateIf you want to specify that the part is an alternate to the preceding row (meaning the two consecutive rows are interchangeable for you), you can fill the Alternate column with "True" value, leave the column blank otherwise.
- Manufacturer 2, Manufacturer PN 2, Distributor PN 2Same as Manufacturer, Manufacturer PN, and Distributor PN resp. They give you the option to specify alternate part on the same row (meaning the two parts are interchangeable for you).
- Manufacturer 3, Manufacturer PN 3, Distributor PN 3Analogous to Manufacturer 2, Manufacturer PN 2, and Distributor PN 2.