Catalog Management Software: Overview and Best Platforms
Since 2003, ScienceSoft has been applying solid expertise in platform-based and custom software development to help retail businesses transform their daily operations.
The essence of catalog management software
Catalog management software enables product syndication – the centralization of product data from multiple sources and its automated distribution through sales channels and touchpoints. Businesses use dedicated software for cataloging product media and information centrally, and thus handle large product volumes effectively.
Up to 80%
of previously manual activities of your product management team are automated
At least 10%
in product return reduction due to improved product presentation online
~ 80% faster
new products are delivered to the market through streamlined product enrichment processes
Planning catalog structure
- Unlimited number of product catalogs.
- Catalog tree structure with categories and subcategories.
- Product families sharing the same set of attributes.
- Products with variations.
- Product grouping and bundling.
- A possibility to associate products with multiple categories.
Managing diverse types of product data
- Digital assets: product images, video, logos, presentations.
- Meta data: meta titles and descriptions.
- Technical data: product specifications, how-to manuals, ingredient lists.
- Emotional data: product stories, customer stories.
Enriching product data
- Unlimited number of product attributes.
- Multi-select and editable product attributes.
- A drag-and-drop interface for media asset management.
- Bulk product editing and publishing.
- Media asset grouping into collections.
- A possibility to create product description versions adapted to distribution channel specifics.
Navigating high-volume product catalogs
- Product search by SKU.
- Product filtering by information completeness status, creation date, product family, etc.
- Configurable product grid.
Onboarding product information from suppliers
- A separate environment and category-wise templates for self-directed upload of product information by suppliers.
- A user-friendly workflow for the admin approval of uploaded products.
- Mass-approval of new products from trusted suppliers.
- User roles and permissions.
- The history of changes made to product information: an author, time, and product versions.
- A possibility to restore a previous product version.
- A possibility to comment on a product to facilitate collaboration between team members.
- Quick product information export.
Assisting in product data quality
- AI-powered insights into potential product data improvements.
- AI-powered category structure suggestions.
- Automated tracking of product description completeness.
Managing international distribution channels
- Localized copies of product information for different markets.
- Integrators for translation tools.
- Universal and localizable product attributes.
- A possibility to compare product information for different locales.
Designing a cohesive business environment where online catalog software is integrated with product information sources and distribution channels is important for the success of your catalog management initiative. The core benefit of the integration is time-effective data entry and publishing.
Online catalog software + product information sources
Results in less manual work for product data entry and more effective collaboration between your product data contributors.
Note: not all product information sources allow for automated integration.
Online catalog software + distribution channels
Accelerates time to market for new products across multiple customer touchpoints, international locations, and languages.
Web catalog software will be owned by the team managing a product catalog. Therefore, your merchandizers and product managers must be deeply involved at the stage of business analysis and investigation to shed light on the challenges they face (e.g., the most time-consuming and error-prone workflows) and convenience improvements they expect.
Cleanse historical product data before the implementation of catalog software to remove duplicates and outdated records, and make it a single source of accurate and up-to-date product information.
An intuitive and interactive UI is one of the factors to keep in mind when choosing a platform to build your digital catalog solution on. The faster and easier your team adopts a new technology, the sooner it starts returning on the investment.
Build a web portal with a simplified interface or use a dedicated onboarding solution (if provided by your catalog software vendor) to let suppliers upload product information directly.
Factors affecting the implementation cost
- License cost of web catalog software and number of users to work with it (for per-user licensing).
- Number of products, product attributes and product families.
- Number of business systems for integration.
- Number of distribution channels.
- The need for digital asset management.
50K+ is a starting cost of catalog management software implementation for a mid-sized business.
Business gains driving ROI
- Higher efficiency of product management team and faster publishing of new products.
- Global sales with localized product presentation.
- Improved product experience resulting in increased conversions and reduced product returns.
50% is monthly productivity gain for a catalog management team resulting from technology-powered processes.
Best for: companies using a standalone CMS
- Leader among Product Information Management software by IDC.
- Recognized among the best product experience management vendors by Ventana Research, G2, FeaturedCustomers, and Digital.com.
- More than 60,000 installations worldwide.
- A global network of solution partners (100+) offering professional implementation services.
- A wide range of ready extensions for the integration with ecommerce, online marketplaces, and printing tools.
- Akeneo Onboarder provided with the Enterprise edition to collect product information from suppliers.
- Akeneo Community edition – free.
- Akeneo Enterprise edition – depends on the number of channels needed. Request implementation cost.
Best for: companies looking for PIM and CMS in a single platform
- A set of applications for digital commerce and end-to-end management of product data, marketing content, and digital assets.
- More than 100,000 installations worldwide.
- Enterprise-grade and Fortune 500 companies among clients.
- Native integrations with translation tools to power international sales.
- Extensible for specific business needs through plugins and widgets.
- Pimcore Community edition – free.
- Pimcore Enterprise Subscription and Unlimited Subscription – request pricing.
- Analysis of your business processes and requirements.
- Interviewing your product management team to understand their habits and improvements they expect.
- Technology consulting for catalog management purposes.
- Planning software configuration and customization scope to meet business requirements.
- Business analysis.
- End-to-end implementation of catalog management software in line with your requirements.
- Integration of catalog management software with business systems sourcing the product information and product distribution channels.
- User training.
ScienceSoft is a reliable provider of consulting and software development services for retail businesses. Since 2003, our team has been driving technology-powered transformation of in-store and digital customer experience.