PIM vs. MDM: Which Is The Right Platform? Why PIM Is Better For Enterprises Depending on Product Data?
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By: Sagar Sharma

PIM vs. MDM: Which Is The Right Platform? Why PIM Is Better For Enterprises Depending on Product Data?

Looking for crystal clear aspects of Product Information Management (PIM) and Master Data Management (MDM) for choosing the right solution for your enterprise?

Well, you are in the right place. Here, we briefed PIM and MDM in detail and what to look for before picking the right one for your enterprise.

Both PIM and MDM play an important role in the growth of an organization. MDM helps businesses or enterprises to improve their operation by eliminating all data inconsistencies. Similarly, the centralized storage of product data provided by the PIM system allows enterprises or businesses to improve productivity and allows them to access product data at the right moment.

However, many enterprises prefer PIM because of its ease and cost-effective implementation of the ambitious MDM system.

Let’s take a deep look in-depth!

What is Product Information Management (PIM)?

Product Information Management (PIM) is a tool that allows an enterprise or an organization to collect and manage all data/information related to products in a centralized database. In simple words, a PIM system acts as a Single Source of Truth (SSOT) for all product data. PIM allows an enterprise to enrich and distribute accurate product data to a multichannel marketing environment.

To get better insights about the different aspects of product information management, don’t miss to read the post What is PIM? – An Ultimate Guide for Product Information Management.

Core Capabilities of a PIM System

  • Centralized database for storing/managing product data
  • Seamless Integrating with multiple systems/database/tools
  • Structured and logical type of managing product data/information
  • Get rid of the data duplication problem
  • Effective product data management and sharing

Who Can Choose a PIM System?

A PIM system helps to enrich their product data quality and also for conducting better omnichannel marketing. The goals of the enterprises fall in the below-listed categories means you can surely go for a PIM solution.

  • An enterprise that looks to organize and refine its product data is suitable for conducting a better marketing campaign.
  • Enterprise collaborating product data/information with the marketing promotional data for covering customers can go for a PIM solution.
  • An enterprise that looks to enrich product data quality for achieving optimal workflow. And to empower the functions of the marketing team can opt for a PIM tool.
  • Businesses that depend upon commerce operation, experience management, and managing product standards can prefer PIM.

What is Master Data Management MDM?

Master Data Management (MDM) offers a solution to manage all critical data in a single platform with optimal security. The MDM platform manages all that data related to each other and helps an organization to drive business operations smoothly and efficiently.

To learn more about Master Data Management, visit What is Master Data Management & How Can It Benefit Your Business?

Core Capabilities of an MDM System

  • Correcting improper/error data
  • Effective data governance
  • Relating products through data matching
  • Managing business hierarchy effectively
  • Easy reporting and monitoring data quality
  • Prevents data obfuscation
  • Offers organized data structure for relationship analysis

Who Can Choose an MDM system?

MDM system helps an organization or an enterprise to conduct an excellent back-end operation. The goals of the enterprises fall in the below-listed categories means you can surely go for the MDM solution.

  • An enterprise that mainly depends upon its data by pulling all its elements together can go for an MDM solution.
  • An enterprise looks to refine its master data for developing an accurate and updated version of it from multiple sources.
  • An enterprise looks to empower its operation by building relationships within its master data.

What To Choose: PIM Or MDM for Your Enterprise?

It doesn’t matter what type of business you run, each business has its own set of high-value information/data that plays a key role in making vital decisions and transactions. Both Master Data Management (MDM) and Product Information Management (PIM) systems are essential tools to manage data effectively.

If you are in a situation of picking either a PIM or MDM tool for managing and handling your enterprise data then this section will be helpful to identify the key differences between them.

PIM & MDM

Master Data Management (MDM) is designed to address issues-oriented with analytical and operational requirements of an enterprise. Here the term analytical refers to business analysis, business insight, and predicting the future of business based on its performance. And the term operational requirement refers to the technology stack that an organization requires to improve its overall function and process.

Product Information Management (PIM) system is a data management platform that allows an enterprise or an organization to collect, manage, and enrich the product information/data in such a way as to improve product sales. In simple words, the PIM solution will help organizations or enterprises to address the needs of the marketing or sales team by providing enriched product data/information.

Having both systems will add extra benefits to organizations or enterprises by accessing the features of MDM and PIM solutions. PIM solution consolidates all your product information/data and distributes it to all channels accurately. On the other hand, having an MDM system helps an organization to establish the relationship between products, end-users, and suppliers/vendors.

Here are the questionnaires you need to ask yourself before picking PIM or MDM systems for your enterprise.

1. Do you need a tool for management or promoting your product?

MDM system plays a key role in offering better data management. However, the PIM system allows an enterprise to manage and enrich product information suitable for doing exceptional promotional/marketing campaigns.

2. To address what type of problems you seek data management tools?

In today’s market, it is essential to make necessary changes in product data to address the expectation of modern customers. MDM systems handle those data changes pretty effectively within internal systems/departments. The PIM system helps enterprises to enrich product data according to both internal and external systems/departments.

3. Platform/Channel Supportability

An MDM system offers limited support to channels or platforms. PIM system allows enterprises to connect with numerous channels/platforms and deliver content/data accordingly.

Understanding both systems in depth becomes essential before picking the right one from these for your enterprise. Determining the goals of your enterprise is key to deciding on choosing the right data management solution.

To get exclusive insights about the difference between PIM and MDM, you must read PIM vs. MDM: A Detailed Comparison that Leaves You with No Confusion.

Why PIM is Considered Better than MDM For Enterprises Depending on Product Data?

Picking the right data management tool for your enterprise is always going to be a headache. Especially, if you ended with these two at the end PIM or MDM. The above-illustrated definitions and differences of these two data management solutions might give you a clear thought on the features, functions, and capabilities.

In this section, we have briefed about why many enterprises prefer PIM to MDM. On what basis do they judge the PIM tool is better than MDM. MDM solution could be more appealing when it comes to managing all information of your enterprise, however, if you are planning to manage product information then you should prefer using the PIM solution.

Here are the key factors that make the PIM solution far better than the MDM solution.

1. Built-in Connectivity for Handling Multiple Channels

Unlike the old days, where manufacturers or retailers used a single printed catalog for handling merchant’s sales channels, now they are forced to meet the customer from different channels. In recent years, the number of channels used to handle B2C and B2B customers are increasing in a significant manner.

Based on the recent study, it is found that an average potential buyer/customer uses a minimum of 6 different channels to buy a product and the majority of those prefer the digital mode of shopping. So, the enterprise would require using a tool that has built-in connectivity features.

Considering those facts, many top enterprises prefer PIM solutions for managing their product information to utilize a wide range of channels to cover potential buyers/customers. PIM tool offers an excellent solution to manage and deliver product information on an accurate, complete, and consistent basis.

With its built-in connectivity, PIM delivers appropriate product information to relevant channels to attract potential customers. Apart from that, PIM gives the enterprise complete control over their product information by storing it in a centralized database.

On the other hand, MDM doesn’t have the capabilities of PIM solutions to manipulate the product information and deliver according to an eCommerce store needs. Moreover, it simply provides you with common data records which can be effective for carrying internal operations and analytical systems.

2. Strengths of Supporting Product Attributes

New age customers seek more from the manufacturers/enterprise to make sure they are purchasing the right product for their needs. So, apart from just using multiple channels to buy a product, they seek more product information like specifications, size, color, materials used to manufacture, and so on. A recent study shows, around 90% of buyers prefer to do online research on products before making a purchase decision.

This indicates the importance of having the right solution for managing multiple attributes of a product. Well, when it comes to managing multiple product attributes PIM stands tall by beating all other tools.

PIM can handle a huge number of product attributes like technical data, usage details, enriched product description, product image, size, specification, and so. In addition, all that information can be manipulated easily in such a way to deliver according to the demands of the local market/channels.

On the other hand, the MDM tool is designed to handle not more than a dozen product attributes that too needed an SKU for easy identification. PIM is the best when it comes to delivering an excellent product experience and making sure customers get what they want.

3. Ability to Handle Product’s Digital Asset

Though product attributes are vital for convincing buyers to make positive purchase decisions, you still need to deliver appealing effects to your products for making customers look into your product in this omnichannel age. To drive customers’ attention towards your product you need to ensure your products are in action through its digital assets. Here product digital assets are photos and videos.

No other solution will offer better asset management capabilities than PIM. PIM offers a superior solution when it comes to digital asset management. PIM tool is specifically designed to assist the developing team or production team to manage digital assets of a product along with its product information.

On the other hand, MDM systems fail to provide better asset management capabilities just like PIM. A PIM system has the upper hand with this high flexibility, because of that enterprises can easily manage, organize and manipulate their product digital assets according to their needs of different channels.

4. Data Onboarding and Management

Managing product information isn’t about gathering, storing, and enriching product data/information from the internal system/department of an enterprise. The data management solution needs to collect and manage the data/information from the external systems/departments like distributors or suppliers as well.

For your information, managing product information/data from external systems like distributors or suppliers could be a time-consuming process, it doesn’t matter whether it’s a new supplier or existing suppliers it always consumes a lot of time to collect and manage data from external sources.

A PIM solution offers an easy and effective onboarding and managing of data from the supplier end. It allows suppliers to onboard product data directly to the manufacturer or supplier; this eliminates the painful and time-consuming factor of managing or handling product data from external systems.

On the other hand, an MDM system lacks the ability of handling product information/data from the external systems as the PIM tool provides. PIM tools help enterprises to collaborate with external departments like distributors or suppliers to provide better product experiences to a customer and make sure products reach markets faster.

Conclusion

Both PIM and MDM offer a complementary solution when it comes to handling and managing product data or information. However, determining the goals of the enterprise is very important to pick the right data management solution in-between PIM and MDM systems.

If you need a system to deliver a business-centric marketing solution, by collaborating with the marketing and merchandising team to increase sales and a better product experience along with better management of digital assets, then you should prefer PIM.

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