T5.3 Enriching the Product Portfolio

Welcome to the third of four tutorials which aim to get you up to speed with Dynamicweb PIM – for an overview of the course look here.

In the previous tutorial, you explored some of the tools which are used to organize the product portfolio and to help control how the product enrichment process; warehouses, groups, workflows, queries and the Combine tool.

In this tutorial, we will explore some of the options available to you when doing product enrichment – adding information to the product portfolio. We will take a look at the following:

  • The different view modes when working with products
  • Editing single products & variants
  • Bulk-editing products & variants
  • Using product versioning with the workflows you created in this tutorial

In more concrete terms, we want to make (parts of) the product portfolio ready for publication – this entails:

  1. Enriching the portfolio with the information we didn’t include in the import – washing instructions, etc.
  2. Writing descriptions & teaser texts for (some of) the products
  3. Localizing the products to Danish
  4. Adding product images

During this process, we will use the workflow we created in the previous tutorial alongside product versioning.

But first we will take a quick look at some of the essential tools you will be working with – View modes and the visible fields selector.

When enriching products with information, you will be working in the content pane to a larger degree than you have been doing so far. The content pane – as elsewhere in Dynamicweb – typically consists of a ribbon bar and an area for rendering data in list or details mode (Figure 2.1).

In Dynamicweb PIM, there are three different lists – view modes – at your disposal:

  • The List view mode
  • The Thumbnails view mode
  • The Multi-edit view mode

There is also a Details view which shows off a single product and its variants in more detail.

Figure 2.1 The content pane

View modes show off only the data you want to see – this is controlled clicking the Visible fields button in the ribbon bar to launch the field selector (Figure 2.2).

It’s generally a good idea to limit the fields shown, as additional fields rendered for many products in the Multi-edit view is taxing on the browser.

Figure 2.2 The Visible Fields selector

Ok, so that’s the basic interface – let’s enrich some products!

We will be using the workflow we created in the previous tutorial to control the process and make sure we don’t forget any steps. Recall the workflow states:

  • None – though technically not a workflow state, we will use it as such to add product category field values to the products
  • Description needed
  • Translation needed
  • Ready for images
  • Ready for publication

We will enrich a subset of the product portfolio only – the products located in the Diamond warehouse group.

When we imported the product data, we left out the data which is best modeled using product category fields:

  • Composition
  • Form
  • Model
  • Washing instructions

We also left out the Color values as they required some data sanitation or scripting in order to be imported correctly. Let’s correct that.

  1. Open the ClothingSimple.xslt file with product data
  2. Go to PIM > Warehouses > PIM Training > Diamond
  3. Click the Diamond Yoku Women Optik Jacket product to open the Details view
  4. Use the Visible fields selector to limit the view to the following product fields:
    • Name
    • Number
    • Clothing – Color
    • Clothing – Form
    • Clothing – Material
    • Clothing – Model
    • Clothing – Washing detail
    • Workflow state

Your content pane should now look like Figure 4.1, showing only the fields relevant to the task at hand.

Figure 4.1 Adding category field values

Reference the excel sheet with product data and:

  1. Select/enter the correct data in the product category fields:
    • Composition > Material
    • Form > Form
    • Model > Model
    • Washing instructions > Washing detail
    • Color > Color
  2. Change the workflow state to Descriptions needed
  3. Save

Repeat the process for the Diamond Yoku Women Symphony Jacket.

Ok, so that was a bit tedious – right? Luckily, you can cut down on the manual work by using bulk-edit – a tool which lets you edit the same fields on any number of products or variants.

Let’s try it out - Open the Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket main product (Figure 4.2). As you can see, the Details view is a bit different when you’re working on products with variants:

  • The main product (1) shows only the most important fields (Name, Number), as well as fields which cannot have different values across variants
  • The variants (2) show the most important fields (Name, Number), and any fields which can have different values across variants

Remember, which fields can vary across variants and languages is controlled using the Field settings introduced in tutorial 1.

Figure 4.2 A product with variants

Now, clicking through each variant and editing it before saving and moving on to the next one is certainly tedious – so:

  1. Click the bulk edit button in the ribbon bar to open the bulk editing interface (Figure 4.3)
  2. Select Danish and English as the languages
  3. Check the Create missing language versions checkbox – this will create the variants in Danish if they don’t exist (and they don’t)
  4. Add the Clothing – Form, Clothing – Material, Clothing – Washing detail, and Workflow state fields
  5. Enter the appropriate values for each field
  6. Set the workflow state to Descriptions needed
  7. Save

The next workflow state is called Descriptions needed, and so this is the task at hand.

Before that, though, we will make a small change to how the description fields are used on the solution, as we don’t want descriptions to differ across variants. To make sure they can’t:

  1. Go to Settings > Ecommerce > Advanced configuration > Fields
  2. Locate the Teaser text and Description fields in the list
  3. Uncheck the Across all variants checkbox for them
  4. Save

This ensures that product descriptions and teaser texts are identical across variants, and only have to be created and maintained on the main product, not for each variant.

Both descriptions and teaser texts could be edited in the same way we edited product category field – but that’s rather inefficient. Instead we will use the multi-edit view mode:

  1. Open the Diamond warehouse group
  2. Switch to the Multi-edit view mode (Figure 5.1)
Figure 5.1 Adding descriptions
  1. Use the Visible fields button to select the following fields:
    • Name
    • Number
    • Description
    • Teaser Text
    • Workflow state
  2. Edit the Description and Teaser Text fields for the products
  3. Change the workflow state to Translation needed
  4. Save

After Descriptions needed, the product moves on to the Translation needed workflow state. As the name implies, this is the state where the products are localized to other languages. In this case, we will localize the products to the only other language used on the solution; Danish. If you don’t know Danish, just use ”Hurdy gurdy gurdy” to imitate the way we speak ;)

Localization is very easy:

  1. Open the Diamond warehouse group
  2. Switch to the Multi-edit view
  3. In the ribbon bar, click the Danish flag to add a second language to the view (Figure 6.1)
Figure 6.1 Localizing products

As you can see, this simply adds a second column to the view mode, with all the same fields listed. Fields which are allowed to differ across languages are editable, those which are not allowed to have different values across languages are greyed out. This is controlled from Settings > Ecommerce > Advanced configuration > Fields, same as for variants.

In our case, we want to localize the text fields which show up in frontend:

  1. Localize the name, description, and teaser text
  2. Change the workflow state to Ready for images
  3. Save

This localizes the main products only – you also want to localize the variants of the Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket product:

  1. Switch back to list view and open the Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket product
  2. Use bulk-edit to apply the translated name, description, and teaser text to the Danish variants by selecting only Danish under Languages.
  3. Save

After Translation needed, the product moves on to the Ready for images workflow state – the phase where you add images to the products. We will be enriching the products in the Diamond warehouse group with different images across variants – orange variants should show an image of an orange product, for instance – but not across languages, where images are assumed to be identical.

First edit the field settings:

  1. Go to Settings > Ecommerce > Advanced configuration > Fields
  2. Locate the Images field on the list
  3. Check the Across all variants and Across all languages checkboxes
  4. Save

Now, let’s add some images to the portfolio – Download the Images.zip file and unpack it somewhere you have easy access to it.

All images are added to a product from the Images product field. One of those images can be marked as the default image, which is typically the first image shown in frontend when a product page is rendered. A default image is inherited by language versions and variants as well, unless another image is specifically set as the default image on that product/variant.

Ok, so let’s add some images:

  1. Open the Diamond Yoku Women Optik Jacket product
  2. Open the Visible Fields selector and select:
    1. Name
    2. Number
    3. Images
    4. Workflow state
  3. If two languages are shown, unselect Danish using the flags in the ribbon bar

You should now see the following (Figure 8.1):

Figure 8.1 Adding an image to a regular product

Let’s add an image and make it the default image:

  1. Click the wrench icon to open the manage assets dialog
  2. In the Images table, click the green plus icon (Figure 8.2)
  3. Upload the 10157011.png image and then select it in the folder
  4. Save and close
  5. Click the Danish flag in the ribbon bar and observe that the image is not inherited by the Danish language version
  6. Click the wrench icon again and select the image as Default (Figure 8.2)
  7. Save
  8. Observe that the image is now inherited by the Danish language version of the product
Figure 8.2 Adding images and making an image the default image

And that’s pretty much it for adding an image and making it the default image. You can add any number of images to a product, but only mark one as the default image.

Repeat the process for the Diamond Yoku Women Symphony Jacket product.

The Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket is a product which exists in 3 colors and 3 sizes, for a total of 9 variants. We don’t want separate product images per size, but we do want the product image to show the correct color.

In our scenario, we have only 2 images for the Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket – for the black and orange variants – but nothing for the blue variant. As we don’t want the blue variant to show no image in the shop we will set the image showing a black jacket as the default image. We will then override the default image on the orange variant.

Here we go:

  1. Open the Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket product
  2. Add the 100620Black.png image to the main product – set it as the default image
  3. Open the Blue variant group and verify that the default image is inherited across languages & variants (Figure 9.1)
Figure 9.1 Images and Variants

So, that’s good – this is the behavior we want; the default image acting as a fallback value if nothing else is defined. But we do have an image for the orange variant:

  1. Fold out the Orange variant group
  2. Upload the 100620Orange.png image and select it as the default image for each the three sizes in the group
  3. Save

Since we don’t have a separate image for the blue variants that is all for now. As soon as a blue image becomes available, it can easily be uploaded and set as the default image where appropriate.

As the final topic for this tutorial, we will be adding lifestyle images to the Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket product and variants – images which show off the product in context, marketing it to a particular market segment. We will do so using a feature called Asset Categories which allows you to create categories and control how images in that category are inherited across variants and languages.

There are three inheritance types:

  • None means images with this tag are not inherited from main products to variants
  • Fallback means that images are inherited from the main product to variants if no image with the category is set explicitly on the variant
  • Merge means that images are inherited from the main product to variants and merged with the existing images

In many cases, lifestyle images are variant-independent; the action-shot of the mountainbiker in mid-jump does a fine job of selling the helmet regardless of the color. In that case, Merge is probably the appropriate inheritance type. At other times it might be crucial that the lamp or sofa marketed has the right color in the shot – in that case, Fallback is probably the appropriate inheritance type.

In our scenario, we have three lifestyle images (Lifestyle1.jpg, Lifestyle2.jpg, and Lifestyle3.jpg) which are context independent, and can be used across all variants. We also have a single image specific to the Orange variants. This makes Merge the appropriate inheritance type.

Create a Lifestyle asset category:

  1. Go to Settings > Ecommerce > Product catalogAsset categories
  2. Click New asset category in the toolbar and configure the category:
    1. Name it Lifestyle
    2. Set the inheritance type to Merge
    3. Select File selector as Control type (should be selected by default)
    4. Select the following file extensions: jpg, jpeg, and png
  3. Save

The lifestyle images can now be added:

  1. Double-click the PIM area to update it
  2. Open the Diamond Yoku Women Whisper Jacket product
  3. On the master product, click the wrench icon, and under Lifestyle add the three general Lifestyle images
  4. Save and close
  5. Open the Orange variant group and add the orange-specific image to all orange variants
  6. Save

As should be immediately apparent, the images in the Lifestyle category are now inherited across both languages and variants, and in the case of the Orange variants, merged with the orange-specific lifestyle image (Figure 10.1). If you have the time, try switching the inheritance type on the Lifestyle asset category to fallback and see how that affects the behavior.

Figure 10.1 Using Image Categories

In this tutorial, you’ve been introduced to the various tools and screens you can use when enriching a product portfolio:

  • Using the Visible fields selector to limit the fields shown to the task at hand
  • Using the bulk-edit functionality to enrich both main products and variants
  • How to add and work with other languages with a single click
  • How to add images, set a default image, and use asset categories to control how images are inherited across languages & variants

In the next tutorial, we will work with publishing the portfolio across different channels – including a Dynamicweb Ecommerce web shop.