Anyone who sells goods is usually not limited to one channel. Whether via the web store, social media or the retail store – Product Information Management systems help to manage the necessary product data centrally in one place and to display it appropriately for the respective channels. We have compared 22 of the so-called PIM systems with each other. You can download a summary of our market overview.
By clicking on the download button, you agree that your company e-mail address and your company name may be used by marketingandtech.com (Digital Diamant GmbH) for advertising purposes, also by e-mail, and for market and opinion research. With your consent, you will also automatically receive the marketingandtech.com newsletter. The declaration can be revoked at any time via a link in every e-mail.
Definition and functionality of a PIM system
Omnichannel requires Product Information Management
The term omnichannel commerce is on everyone’s lips. Companies no longer limit themselves to one sales channel, but rely on a variety of sales channels to reach customers where they want to buy. This brings challenges, even if each channel may be successful or at least promising in its own right. After all, product information, images, descriptions, etc. must be individually tailored for each channel. Different image dimensions apply in the company’s own online store than on Amazon, and product texts must be designed differently on Instagram than in the printed catalog.
Manage data for all channels centrally
Compiling a separate information package for a product for each channel is certainly not a good solution, because it creates data silos that are difficult to keep up to date in their entirety. The solution is Product Information Management software (PIM), which centrally manages all data for an article and makes it available to all sales channels individually. The PIM is used at the interface between the store software and the merchandise management system. PIM systems are an indispensable part of any company that has a certain product range and sells it through multiple channels.
What are the criteria for selecting PIM systems?
The analysis is based on more than 130 criteria, which we have assigned to 15 different categories. The categories present the various solutions in detail, examine the different competencies and offerings, and describe other relevant criteria.
- General information: When selecting a suitable software, the following basic information serves to get to know the companies. How long has it been on the market? Are there several locations? Which references are named? Financial ratios were also asked as part of the market overview, which typically were not answered transparently by all participants.
- Unique Selling Propositions: The unique selling proposition should sum up the service offering. We asked the providers to tell us what makes their solution special.
- Providers’ industry expertise: Which provider already has experience in which industry or even considers itself an industry specialist?
- The range of languages: For internationally oriented companies, the range of languages is important if centralized control is required and separate solutions do not have to be used for each country.
- Basic features: There are very obvious features and questions that people associate with PIM software. We queried these with software providers. Is it a SaaS solution and can it be run on its own servers? Is the solution multishop capable and can I analyze the different sales channels?
- SKU features: Product Information Management is all about the so-called Stock Keeping Unit, or SKU for short. In other words, a unique identifier for each product that is available in the inventory. What options do PIM solutions offer for handling SKUs? Can certificates be stored for each unit? Can unlimited images be associated with it?
- Sales channels: The PIM manages the information for the retailer’s various sales channels. Which channels can each software solution cover, and where might providers see a focus?
- Interfaces: Having your own professional and field-tested software stack can be critical to retail success. How can the PIM solutions be linked to other programs and tools? Therefore, the ability to interface with store systems, ERP solutions and translation management systems was queried.
- Legal criteria: Anyone who installs software in the engine room of their company and entrusts it with existentially critical data also wants to know about legal issues. Is the company sufficiently armed against cybercrime? Is there an escrow agreement in place? And what does it actually look like in terms of DSVGO?
- Additional services offered by providers: With the following information, we questioned the service scope of the providers. Are there additional events and training opportunities offered to customers? What is the response time in the event of a problem?
- Providers’ pricing approach: New software – especially when deployed in such a central location – requires careful and deep integration. This is usually also associated with a more or less high budget. Companies interested in a PIM solution should also look at the quite different pricing models and check which providers are suitable for their own budget framework and ambitions.
Product Information Management Systems in comparison
We have compiled and compared 22 providers for you. The market overview is intended to provide you with a basis for making a possible selection. In addition, you can use the numerous criteria for your decision to determine which features of a solution are particularly important for your company.
USP (according to their own statement): “The 4ALLPORTAL PIM system comes standard with an extensive DAM (cloud or on-premise). So you enrich not only master data with texts, variants and other product info, but also with valuable media such as images, videos and even 3D objects: Manage the Golden Record in 4ALLPORTAL. Use the RESTful API for easy connection to any third-party systems.”
References: CEWE, ProSieben, Bofrost, Bomag, Teapot, Shopware
References: VBH, Eder, Schlösser Armaturen, heinrichschulte, Gutmann
USP (according to their own statement): “Usability, Best of Breed, Open Source, Flexibility, Performance, Future Proof, Market Leader: Akeneo is the easiest to use, most used and fastest evolving PIM in the world.”
References: Liqui Molly, Unilever, Canon, Shop Apotheke, Staples
USP (according to their own statement): “Alterra PIM is suitable for complex products, very customizable and easy to integrate.”
References: Segmüller, Wilkhahn, Team7, Famila, Messer
USP (according to their own statement): “47% faster than other providers, 35% better service than other providers, 35% higher degree of innovation than other providers”
References: Alfi, Fischer Elektronik, Hella, MC Bauchemie
USP (according to their own statement): “Organize and manage product information in an agile way with the first Microservices-based, API-first, Cloud-native, Headless SaaS PIM (MACH architecture).”
References: Wilhelmsen Ships Service, Starboard, Isola, Neumann, Colorline
USP (according to their own statement): “Fully integrated solution with PIM, MAM, e-commerce (ERP connection, API server for data provision to store systems), e-catalogs (BMEcat, ECLASS, ETIM, Excel, BIM & Co.), print engine (InDesign) and media service portal. Flexibly customizable by the customer (data model, layout, data exports). Direct contact with contacts – during and after the project.”
References: Zimmer Group, FLEX-Elektrowerkzeuge GmbH, Günther Spelsberg GmbH & Co. KG, Max Frank GmbH & Co. KG, Coltène/Whaledent AG
USP (according to their own statement): “Super fast headless PIM for rich product storytelling.”
References: Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi Electric, Puma, Aschehoug, Cappelen Damm
USP (according to their own statement): “Individual solutions for interfaces and for the output channels of the PIM data.”
References: Schmitz Cargobull, CLAAS agricultural machinery, Velo de Ville, Schmitz-Werke
USP (according to their own statement): “The Dynamicweb PIM system is particularly attractive in combination with the Dynamicweb E-Commerce Suite. It is also possible to use the system standalone, but it is the seamless integration and having everything (CMS, PIM, e-commerce and marketing) in one solution that makes Dynamicweb stand out.”
References: Euronics, Europcar, Flying Tiger, Hummel, Mann + Hummel, bellissa HAAS
USP (according to their own statement): “We focus our product communication on the full development of product information. With the eggheads suite and the appropriate modules not only standard processes are covered in one tool, but the most important data core processes of different departments are configured at the same time. We support business requirements and adapt to changes.”
References: 1&1, Christ Jewelers, WILO SE, TUI, Steiff
Graph Designer - PIM/PDM
USP (according to their own statement): “Graph-based data management – extreme flexibility, transparency and performance.”
References: Murrelektronik GmbH, Artagis, Boorberg Verlag, Hanning
USP (according to their own statement): “Enterprise PIM, PLM, DAM, CMS, CRM, BI, customer journey, campaign management software. Can be combined with existing solutions as required. Extremely adaptable, self-configurable data models and workflows. Support of diverse standards and interfaces.”
References: FritzBerger, Fressnapf, Messe Frankfurt, Oehlbach, Schockemöhle
USP (according to their own statement): “mediacockpit is a solution for product data and media content that is integrated from the ground up and enables companies to create a unique product content strategy in order to accompany their customers throughout the entire customer journey and create lasting loyalty.”
References: Ravensburger AG, Compo GmbH, Deichmann SE, Krones AG, Assa Abloy Sicherheitstechnik
Online Media Net
USP (according to their own statement): “Maximum automation, cloud out of the box, best user experience – integrated system DAM/PIM/Workflow + AI.”
References: Porsche, IKEA, Westfalia, Hager, Ulla Popken, RUCK, Winkler
USP (according to their own statement): “Low costs, flexible scope, fastest onboarding, no project costs, ready to start immediately.”
References: Albrecht Jung, EIS Association, Pflitsch, Fipa, Krempel
USP (according to their own statement): “Microsoft certification. PIM with ERP as an integrated solution in Microsoft Dynamics – thanks to the Pimics module, all product data can be managed directly in ERP system.”
References: Bito AG, ZIEGLER Metallbearbeitung AG, Framo SA, Friedrich Niemann GmbH & Co. KG
USP (according to their own statement): “We offer instant multichannel syndication”.
References: Benzara, Brame Speciality, Ace Hardware, GAP, Walmart
USP (according to their own statement): “With pirobase, valid product data and emotional marketing content can be linked to effective product campaigns. Even in complex omnichannel campaigns, providers retain full control and gain more clout and speed for their product communication.”
References: STOCKMEIER, Melitta, Siemens Healthineers, Bosch, AXA, Dekabank
USP (according to their own statement): “Making simple things simple and complex things possible”.
References: ifm, Audi, Ratioparts, Indunorm, Neudorff, LR Health
Syndigo Active Content Engine
USP (according to their own statement): “Syndigo’s Active Content Engine offers everything in just one holistic solution: PIM, MDM, DAM, Enhanced Content, Syndication, GDSN & Analytics.”
References: Beiersdorf, Ikea, Kingfisher, Carrefour, Tesa, Zooplus, Nespresso and many more
USP (according to their own statement): “High-quality integrations with specialized OEM components in the areas of MAM, TMS and print, 100% configurable standard in the PIM backend system, industry-specific value-added functions for the lighting and luminaire and SHK industries, “headless” (API first) PIM module for connecting e-commerce systems and developing own websites and APPs.”
References: RZB Rudolf Zimmermann, Bamberg GmbH, TRILUX GmbH & Co. KG, INOTEC Sicherheitstechnik GmbH, S + S Regeltechnik GmbH, SMA Solar Technology AG