A PIM is usually used for the management of product information. Specifically for products that are sold in eCommerce. For example, a company sells "B2C" ("Business to Customer") clothing through multiple channels. One channel could be the store, another the online store. The central management of product information from which all these channels draw is the PIM. This is where the "truth" is located, the source of all information. Thus, using a PIM system can ensure consistently high quality and consistency of product data.
But the ability to manage information is not only interesting for classic eCommerce retailers. The possibilities offered by a PIM can also be used for other cases, for example in the real estate industry. We were able to convert OctoPIM for the management of real estate information with little effort. The structures offered by a PIM can be used for this without much effort:
1. Families, which we use in eCommerce as templates for products, are "object types" in our example. One such object type is "house", another type could be "property", or "business". Products then become "objects".
2. We call the attributes collected in them "descriptions" and collect in them all relevant properties of the object types - such as location and surroundings, price information or equipment features.
3. Assets, i.e. images and descriptions play a major role in eCommerce, as they may be the only way for buyers to familiarize themselves with the product before making a purchase decision. Assets are also essential when describing real estate or properties. Interested parties want to get as accurate an impression as possible before viewing the property. A PIM makes exactly this possible: managing assets centrally.
A PIM is suitable for sales via diverse channels (omni-channel). These channels can be just as present in the real estate industry. Houses and apartments can be offered on various channels on the internet as well as in a print catalog or a site of a real estate agency.
Both examples - eCommerce and real estate management - are about centralized management of information.
It is clear that these use cases are definitely comparable. A PIM can be used in a variety of ways and is by no means limited to just one use case.