PIM – Digital product data­processing made simple

author: Alexander Hölzl

Consistent, easily-processed product information forms the basis of every efficient product data admin system. Websites, shops and apps are joined by an ever-increasing range of output channels - and every channel has different demands in regard of content. If you are now considering implementing a product information system (PIM), we can show you what you need to know.

The right tool for the right job

Many companies use a combination of ERP exports and an Excel list. The marketing department adds content, and the digital agency imports everything into CMS. The disadvantages are obvious:

  • The marketing department is dependant upon IT for exports of completely up-to-date data. These are often immense and confusing files, since mass processing is not possible with CMS. 
  • Such constellations use a wide range of data sources (ERP, Excel and CMS). This can lead to product data inconsistencies.
  • Filtred attribute searches for products are often impossible in CMS. Modern PIM systems like Akeneo, Pimcore and commercetools allow specific, pre-filtred lists for simple searches and easy administration of product data sets. An Elasticsearch conducts complex searches using specified attributes and keywords. The efficient administration of large product catalogues is possible without any problems.

Akeneo – The specialised community or commercial enterprise solution for PIM/PXM.

PIMCORE – The modular platform for PIM, DAM, CMS and e-commerce on an Open-Source basis. More.

commercetools – The cloud-based e-commerce/PIM solution for innovative business models. More.

One single source of truth

PIM as a central data source

Correct, reliable, high-quality product data are essential if they are to be used for various purposes. Achieving this quality requires a central administration system for all product-relevant data for all output channels - be it web, print or e-commerce.

An existing ERP system like SAP can serve as a database and be easily hooked up with commercetools, Pimcore or Akeneo via a standardised API. Enhancing key product details in the ERP with additional marketing content, such as assets, descriptions and SEO texts, ensures PIM is the leading database across all channels.

Step one

Correct product modelling

Correct product modelling is the first step towards the successful implementation of a PIM system in a company. The company works together with pixelart in workshops on the conceptualisation of a product catalogue that is tailored­ to the requirements of the product portfolio. The goal is simple and efficient management of product data to guarantee quality and consistency on all channels of output.

Every product family has its own attributes, so a special data model is designed and constructed for each. Establishing a consistant data source requires consideration of issues such as languages and the capacity to internationalise features and content. This ensures that every output channel - in every language - is fed with correct and relevant data. Intuitive user interfaces and stack­processing simplify a marketing team's task of processing product data.

Defining workflow

Processes, rights & roles

Approval workflow and a role-based rights system make effective workflow possible in large teams. This is particularly relevant for international businesses with teams in several countries. Defining user roles can ensure only relevant data can be processed by the respective teams. Approval workflow is a key means of guaranteeing quality­assurance for product data, and of making sure incorrect data are not released or accidentally leaked.

Best-of-breed vs. single vendor solution?

The introduction of a PIM system is a major step for many businesses. Close cooperation between marketing, product management, IT departments and a digital­agency forms the basis for effective implementation. 

As your specialist partner, we are happy to take the lead and guide you or your departments towards the best possible result.

CMS und Open Source Programme im Überblick


The best of all worlds

A best-of-breed approach is a great solution for expanding an existing system. PIM systems like Akeneo with standardised interfaces offer a simple means of integration into existing components like a website or e-commerce set-up.

commercetools has an intuitive 'Merchant Center' with an ideal combination of PIM and e-commerce for a very good enterprise field solution.



Datencluster wird mit Formen visualisiert

Single vendor solution

One central backend for all services

A complete relaunch of a website or a e-commerce platform can be well served by a Single Vendor (Full Stack) solution like the Open Source Pimcore system. CMS, PIM and e-commerce work in a close-knit single backend environment. Additional output channels, such as a native app or print can be hooked up easily via an API.

Whether your business is best suited to the best-of-breed approach or a single vendor solution, it's important your product data and all the accompanying assets - in all languages - are all in the same place and format, and can be processed efficiently by your teams.

We accompany you throughout the entire implementation phase, from the data conceptualisation­strategy to the end of integration into the company's entire digital ecosystem - for efficient use of your digital product data.

Alexander Hölzl
Lead Web-Developer

Let's work together!

Are you ready for efficient product­data administration?