What Is an eCommerce PIM?
by Lumavate | Last Updated: Jan 18, 2024
by Lumavate | Last Updated: Jan 18, 2024
Electronic commerce, or eCommerce, is a way to sell goods and services electronically, digitally, and/or over the internet. eCommerce companies operate in different types of markets than traditional businesses. Business in an eCommerce format is done on smartphones, computers, tablets, and other internet-connected devices. Just about any product imaginable and even some services are now available for purchase in some form via an eCommerce company. While it can be a substitute for brick-and-mortar stores, in many cases, businesses choose to operate in both settings to appeal to an even larger customer base.
PIM, which stands for Product Information Management or PIM solution, is a software solution that centralizes the storage of a company’s product data. Product information is obviously key when explaining to customers what the product looks like, describing its features and benefits, and anything else that might be applicable to a buyer. PIM is relevant to all product data, including key information like product benefits, features, pricing, dimensions, product descriptions, etc.
When a PIM also includes a built-in DAM or Digital Asset Management system, then it goes even further than surface-level information, allowing you to store all sorts of product-related digital assets like owners' manuals, product images, installation videos, tech spec sheets, and more. Therefore, a PIM software solution gives you a way to share important information easily with potential buyers, current customers and even your own employees. A PIM solution is utilized by many manufacturers and businesses to manage, oversee, and access important product data. The following are a few examples of product information:
Product name, image, and description
Product instructions or user manuals
Onboarding or assembly instructions
Regulatory approvals and disclosures
As you can see, this product data goes well beyond a product’s specifications and price. Instead, it includes an abundance of data that can get overwhelming for a marketing team to stay on top of, without the use of a PIM solution.
There are many companies that claim to offer some form of PIM solution or product experience management (PXM) platform with more robust functionality. Some of these competitors that claim to fall into this category include Akeneo, Inriver PIM, Pimcore, Salsify PIM, Catsy, and Plytix. While these PIM software examples or PIM software companies do offer a type of comprehensive Product Information Management or PIM service, in addition to offering Digital Asset Management or DAM features and functionality, they do not have the all-encompassing capabilities of the Lumavate platform.
Lumavate is a comprehensive platform that is among the best PIM software solutions available. Lumavate is a product experience management (PXM) platform offering comprehensive services, including the ability to centralize the management of product data, utilize and manage digital assets, build forms, create digital experiences, create and send highly targeted text messages, and more.
No other platform provides the full range of capabilities that are offered by Lumavate. To add even more to its impressive offerings, Lumavate is also usually more cost-effective than other solutions, typically being 75 percent more cost-effective while driving products 8.5 times faster to market. In addition, you can be successfully onboarded within the span of a single day, and no technical resources are required to implement or use Lumavate.
An eCommerce solution is purposefully designed to sell products online, while a PIM solution is designed to effectively manage product data that is used both offline and online about product experiences. In most cases, this means that an eCommerce solution will integrate with a PIM solution, pulling product data from the PIM solution into the eCommerce side of things to utilize both sides, creating eCommerce PIM software.
Overall, a PIM solution is much more robust than an eCommerce solution as it also stores information like those including product information and sales resources, events, and more data that wouldn’t necessarily be relevant to store within an eCommerce solution. Lumavate incorporates the PIM aspect into their broader service, effectively providing any eCommerce business with the PIM system eCommerce businesses need to operate most efficiently.
To put it simply, no, Shopify is not a PIM or Product Information Management system. However, it is an eCommerce solution that usually contains product information data, such as pricing, descriptions, images, etc. Overall, though, the product information that it contains is formulated primarily for eCommerce purposes and is not utilized by an entire organization. Conversely, a PIM solution provides more comprehensive product data along with digital product assets that are often utilized by multiple teams within the business. This will include information that simply is not applicable for eCommerce purposes. Any company that is considering using Shopify as their primary eCommerce solution should also invest in a PIM solution to manage and effectively store their product data. They can then integrate that broader solution into Shopify in order to manage any eCommerce-related product information.
While Shopify itself isn’t a comprehensive PIM solution, Lumavate is an all-encompassing digital asset management system that also features a PIM solution. Lumavate offers ultimate customization for how your products are categorized. Brands can create an unlimited number of product types and an unlimited number of product records within each product type.
Lumavate can also be utilized by unlimited users, meaning that multiple authorized users within your business can create and manage digital assets and help manage product data. You can track product records when changes are made by any users, which ensures that corrections or changes are carried over throughout the business and the information doesn’t have to be entered again and again. This is extremely efficient and frees up time.
While eCommerce companies might already have some sort of data management, such as those outlined above, a true PIM system will go beyond the eCommerce side of things and include all sorts of data that can be used by your entire business. Therefore, for any eCommerce business that wants to operate more effectively and stay on top of changes, product information, and more, a good PIM solution with an overall DAM or digital asset management system is a great idea. A well-configured and user-friendly PIM will help increase internal productivity, increase ROI, reduce internal friction in many cases, reduce inaccuracies about products, increase the speed of products going to market, designate user permissions, centralize product information, and much, much more.