Making a product as tangible to an e-commerce shopper as it is for the brick-and-mortar browser sounds great, but is it realistic? How do you manage so much product information when more products are sold online, and across more channels, than ever before? How do you post this content quickly enough to keep labor costs reasonable and eliminate go-to-market delays?
You could start by adding a product information management (PIM) solution.
What is a PIM?
A PIM system allows you to upload and update data for all of your products across all channels, from one centralized location. With a PIM platform, you can:
- Maintain real-time inventory, avoiding delays in shipping due to product availability
- Organize product photos with zoom capability, as well as videos, associated with each item
- Automate product introduction tagging (i.e., rich alt text) for easy categorization and for SEO benefits
- Keep accurate measurements, sizing charts, and garment care info attached to each item
- Supply brand information that’s intentional and consistent among all products
- Control multi-channel updates from centralized software
What’s the Best PIM Platform for Me?
Many e-commerce customers who benefit from Creative Force would be helped also by a PIM platform, and our platform integrates with all sorts of cloud-based PIM systems, so we’ve taken time to highlight 19 PIM providers that help e-commerce clients. We’re currently not a partner to any PIM providers, so this unbiased list (displayed in alphabetical order) was compiled solely based on our research and without any financial incentive.
Update: why stop at 19? As we identify additional PIM providers who can serve you, we’ll add them to this growing list, so check back as we build up our database.
This fast-growing software company offers an open-source PIM that makes catalog management far easier. Designed for retailers and brands in B2C and B2B,—it’s used by the likes of Fossil and FabFitFun—Akeneo notes the importance of a PIM system for fashion companies.
Relevant customers: Staples, Fossil, FabFitFun
Brandquad, a PIM used by Dior and Estée Lauder, promises to “simplify your work with suppliers and help improve conversion in e-commerce” with a PIM that allows suppliers to upload product data through a Supplier Portal. This system reduces errors, and makes data collection three times faster, Brandquad claims on its website. This PIM comes with e-commerce analytics that help you examine current sales results and search for growth opportunities.
Relevant customers: Dior, Estée Lauder
Along with offering master data management (MDM) and marketing experience management (MXM), Contentserv supplies PIM services to its 300 customers in 89 countries, including its partners in fashion retail.
Relevant customers: Lacoste, Asics, Mizuno, Porsche
DeSL advertises itself as offering web-based solutions for fashion, apparel, textile, and footwear sectors and touts its PIM service as a way to eliminate data silos, save time while maintaining quality, improve customer experience, and integrate a flexible system.
Relevant customers: Nike, Target, L.L. Bean, Old Navy, Under Armour, Nautica, American Eagle
5. inRiver PIM
Describing their service as “adaptive for marketers and structured enough for data governance,” inRiver offers a PIM service that makes omnichannel content management easy. Their client list spans manufacturing and retail, including global brands such as New Balance and Cartier.
Relevant customers: New Balance, Cartier, Bacardi
6. Katana PIM
Want to get your separate stacks of data unified within one system? Katana allows you to upload Excel, XML and CSV files into its clean, user-friendly interface, where you can collect, check, and publish. The system lets you sort and bulk-edit your products by categories, manufacturers or attributes. Need omnichannel capabilities? Katana’s interface lets you publish product information to more than 90 channels.
Are you worried that migrating from a manual process to a PIM will interrupt your day-to-day operations? To that, Katana, on its website, makes a promise: “Our team is here to help you upload and organize all your data within Katana as fast as possible. We're here to assist you 24/7—so that your internal workflow is streamlined and you don't waste your employees' time.”
We know it mainly for its DAM capabilities, but Scandinavian company Kontainer, which counts multiple European fashion brands among its customer base, offers PIM services as well, promising data “easily delivered to resellers and online webshops via integrations, online access or manual export.” Kontainer bundles its DAM services into its PIM packages, so if you need both services, this could be a big plus for you.
Relevant customers: Baum und Pferdgarten, GOSH Copenhagen
8. Lectra Kubix Link
Lectra’s cloud-based product lifestyle management system, Kubix Link, serves as a PIM, DAM, and more. What makes Kubix Link unique among our list is that the entire platform is specific to fashion retailers, manufacturers, and brands. The system’s interface, with a UX hailed by Lectra as “strikingly familiar,” offers powerful navigation and easy integration with Excel, InDesign, and Illustrator, as well as real-time sync with IT platforms.
Relevant customers: Corneliani, Pomellato
9. OMIO by Retail Assist
Another PIM system that targets the fashion industry, OMIO, produced by Retail Assist, leverages the company’s 20-plus years of retail sector know-how into a PIM platform that promises to boost accuracy and improve SEO.
OMIO uses artificial intelligence to save you time when uploading several products. Its AI recognizes similar products and populates data fields for you during mass uploads.
Wonder if it’s worth your time and money? OMIO has an ROI calculator on its website to help you make the call.
Counting fashion brands such as Gant and Shoes.com among clientele that also includes behemoths such as Burger King and Audi, Pimcore is an open-source PIM for mid-sized and large businesses. Populate data to commerce, mobile apps, and even digital signage, all from one platform.
Relevant customers: Gant, Shoes.com, Burger King, Audi, T-Mobile
Boasting a client list that includes multiple UK-based fashion brands and e-commerce platforms, Pimberly offers both PIM and DAM services for retailers, manufacturers, and distributors. At a wide range of pricing models, Pimcore has plans for 50,000, 100,000, 250,000, and unlimited SKUs per year.
Relevant customers: Gill, Bombinate, Arthouse, Meri Meri, Ellis Brigham Mountain Sports
PIMworks is a product experience management software that caters to retail clients, like Gap and Belk. Its ready-to-use templates make it easy to manage content across many channels from one cloud-based service.
Relevant customers: Gap, Belk, Amazon, Sears, eBay, Car Toys, Ace Hardware
Plytix PIM is for brands and manufacturers in any industry, and it’s the service trusted by at least a few footwear brands. With Plytix, you save product filters to generate smart lists and benefit from an AI-backed intelligent filtering search tool.
Branded as a PIM platform for people who aren’t necessarily tech-savvy—their mantra is “designed by content people, for content people”—Plytix offers a clean, easy-to-use interface and a low-risk initiation, with free signup and with pro plans as low as $830 per month.
Relevant customers: Allé Designs, Otter, Birlea Furniture Limited
14. Quable PIM
Counting Champion and Hanes among its client base, Paris-based Quable offers PIM and DAM services independently or within its broader PXM suite. It promises omnichannel information management, real-time acquisition of supplier data, and optimized translations for international audiences.
Relevant customers: Champion, Hanes, Burton of London, Berluti, Wonderbra, Bioderma
Providing both PIM and DAM as part of its PX360 Product Experience Suite, Riversand is used by Burlington, Boden, Ulta, and other large retailers to improve customer experience across all channels from a single platform.
Relevant customers: Boden, Burlington, Ulta, Sony, Guitar Center
16. Sales Layer PIM
This SaaS-based PIM promises simplicity yet sophistication, and the fastest implementation on the market. Sales Layer’s client list of retailers, manufacturers, distributors, and brands includes Reebok, Columbia, and New Era.
Relevant customers: Reebok, New Era, Columbia, Hitachi, Le Coq Sportif
“Leading brands use Salsify's content management platform to power e-commerce growth,” boasts the website of an industry-leading PIM and DAM provider used by Asics, Rawlings, and more. Use this cloud-based, centralized location to manage assets related to your brand, lifestyle, and product. Select among hundreds of built-in tools to customize the platform to your business and its partners.
Relevant customers: Asics, Rawlings, Coca-Cola, L’Oreal, Bosch
18. Stibo Systems
Stibo Systems recognizes how e-commerce customers, such as fashion and apparel companies, “need to dramatically accelerate vendor data onboarding, efficiently expand product assortments, and deliver it all in the form of a consistent, engaging, personalized, transparent, channel-agnostic experience.”
Referring to its service as “PIM, evolved,” Stibo Systems’ Product Master Data Management promises “data-driven insight and growth,” like predefined and custom user-defined attributes; intuitive UI to boost productivity for buyers, merchandising, quality assurance, marketing, imaging, and warehousing; and a self-learning PDS system.
Relevant customers: Adidas, Wyndham, Kellogg’s, Best Buy
According to Syndigo’s website, “Today’s shoppers need product content that replicates an online fitting room experience and realistic expectations of what apparel will look like on their bodies—ultimately empowering better buying decisions.”
Syndigo should know about that fitting room experience. The Chicago-based company that offers store design and floor planograms also provides PIM and e-commerce analytics to help you make your online customer experience as nuanced as your in-store visits.
Express and The Children’s Place are among the brands that trust Unbxd, a supplier of AI-driven PIM, browse, and recommendation services. “Unbxd PIM software relies on smart, self-learning algorithms that accelerate data type matching and attribute mapping to rapidly complete large volume data imports,” the company website reads.
Relevant customers: Express, The Children’s Place
With so many choices, finding a PIM provider that matches your company’s needs should be easy. You won’t be the leader who scrambles frantically because you have no sense of inventory and the one who pushes away would-be customers because of incomplete or inaccurate metadata on any of your channels.
At Creative Force, we’re here to help you organize your studio and content creation workflows, and we’re able to integrate with all sorts of cloud-based DAM, ERP, and PIM systems—keeping it simple for you to have command over your work and data.