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Glossary

Find definitions and explanations of common terms and abbreviations used in product information management, marketing technology, e-commerce, and more.

A
ADM
Application Data Management (ADM) is a technology that supports the collaboration between business and IT, ensuring accuracy, consistency, governance and accountability for the data used within a business application, for example, the ERP system. See ERP.
AI
Artificial intelligence (AI) and its underlying technology, machine learning (ML), are used in product data management for automatic classification, image pattern recognition, discrepancy detection, etc. In addition, only accurate, correct, complete and up-to-date product information provides the required data quality that is essential for the successful implementation of AI and ML.
Analytics
Analytics in a data context means discovering unprocessed sources of information in order to try and find trends, metrics and relevant patterns in data. Companies use analytics to optimize processes and make more accurate decisions.
API
An Application Programming Interface (API) is a set of programming codes that allow two software programs to communicate with each other.
Asset
An asset is any resource of value, tangible or intangible, that is owned by an individual, corporation or government, with the expectation that it will provide a future benefit.
Attribute
An attribute is a data field that describes a product. Each product is usually composed of different attributes including an identification number, a name, a description, a color, a price, etc.
B
BI
Business intelligence (BI) leverages software and services to transform data into actionable insights that inform an organization’s strategic business decisions. A BI system analyzes current and historical data and presents findings in user-friendly visual formats such as dashboards, graphs and charts that can be shared across the company.
BIM
Building Information Modeling (BIM) is an intelligent 3D model-based process that enables architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) professionals to collaborate, create and manage building and infrastructure projects such as buildings, bridges, highways or tunnels in a faster, more economical and environment-friendly manner. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/ebooks-and-whitepapers/pim-and-building-information-modeling-bim)
Bulk editing
Bulk editing enables users to modify different assets at once while ensuring consistency across a large number of entities.
Business rules
Business rules are directives that define or constrain business activities by integrating the required conditional logic into an organization’s workflow. These rules set expectations, guide decision-making, monitor compliance and support organizations in automating operations. 
Buy-side
The buy-side refers to institutional investors, such as mutual funds, hedge funds, pension funds and insurance companies. A buy-side entity typically purchases securities for their own accounts or for investors with the goal of generating a return.
C
Cara
Contentserv Artificial Recommendation Agent (Cara) is a module that combines modern AI-driven technologies with the collected and centralized results of all onboarding activities. It brings notifications from across the Cloud Service into the CS notification center.
Classes
Classes define base configurations for products. Each class that is given to a product allows that product to have a more precise definition. There are multiple levels of classes that can be used in conjunction (e.g., product, single article.)
Classification
Classification is the assignment of an object (e.g., article or product) to a hierarchical system of categories and sub-categories.
Cleansing
Cleansing refers to the process of detecting and amending inaccurate, irrelevant or corrupt data points from a data set, table or database. These are modified, replaced, merged or deleted.
CloudStreams
A CloudStream is a packaged part of a Contentserv project that can be transported between two projects or downloaded from the Contentserv Marketplace. (https://marketplace.contentserv.com/) The transport is fully encrypted and executed via the Contentserv cloud.
CMS
A Content Management System (CMS) is a software application or a set of tools and capabilities that allows multiple contributors to create, edit, publish and manage content via digital channels. Content in a CMS is usually stored in a database and displayed in a presentation layer based on a set of templates such as a website.
Connector
A connector is a software module that performs the API connection between two or more systems, hiding the complexity within the connector.
Content personalization
Content personalization is the process of creating and delivering content that is relevant, unique and customized for the target audience, based on their purchase intent, relevancy and individualized needs. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/content-personalization)
Contextual
Contextual is a general term that refers to the context of something. Software is reliant on the concepts of contextualization and personalization, which anchor a tailored, seamless and adaptive digital experience. See also Personalization.
CRM
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) refers to a software system used to build and manage customer relationships. CRM helps organizations streamline processes, build customer relationships, increase sales and improve customer service.
D
DAM
Digital Asset Management (DAM) offers a solution for enterprises to efficiently store, organize, access, manage and share approved digital content and rich media. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/digital-asset-management)
Dashboard
A dashboard is a user interface that provides a centralized, interactive and visual way to monitor, analyze and extract relevant information from different datasets.
Data
Data is unprocessed information; a set of values of qualitative or quantitative variables about one or more objects.
Data consolidation
Data consolidation is the process of gathering, cleaning and verifying data from multiple sources and storing it in a single location, typically a database. This process enables companies to effectively plan and execute business processes and make informed decisions. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/data-onboarding-and-consolidation) See also Data onboarding.
Data governance
Data governance is an approach to managing a company’s data assets. It defines who is accountable for various aspects of an organization’s data and how the data is used, structured and stored. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/data-quality-and-governance)
Data hub
A data hub is a database populated with data from one or more defined sources and from which data is taken to one or more applications. A product data hub is an example of a data hub.
Data lake
A data lake stores data in its raw and natural format, structured and unstructured data, until it’s needed and processed. See also Data pool.
Data model
A data model defines the base data structure for products in a system. It identifies products from the highest level of classification, down to individual attributes and properties.
Data onboarding
Data onboarding is the technical process of uploading offline customer data to the online environment for marketing needs. The data is then combined and used for analysis purposes. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/data-onboarding-and-consolidation)
Data pool
A data pool is a centralized repository of data where trading partners (e.g., distributors, retailers or suppliers) can access, manage and exchange information about products in a standard format. See also Data lake.
Data steward
A data steward refers to the lead role in a data governance project, with responsibility for ensuring that data policies and standards turn into practice within the steward’s domain. See also Data stewardship.
Data stewardship
Data stewardship is the management and supervision of an organization’s data assets to help provide users with easily accessible, consistent and high-quality data. See also Data Steward and Data Governance.
Data syndication
Data syndication is a method that helps optimize an organization’s product data flow and ensure that the right data is delivered to the right customer touchpoint, at the right time.
Data warehouse
A data warehouse is a central repository for information and data from operational systems and external data sources. The data is used to generate insights and to perform analytics. Whereas a data lake stores raw data, a data warehouse typically works with structured predefined data. See also Data lake.
Deduplication
Deduplication is a process that eliminates excessive copies of data, reduces the impact of redundant information and decreases storage capacity requirements. 
Digital asset
A digital asset is any material that is stored digitally and comes with the right to use. Examples of digital assets include videos, logos, animations, GIFs, audio files, presentations and spreadsheets. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/digital-asset-management)
Digital transformation
Digital transformation is the strategic integration of digital technologies to create new or modify existing business processes to meet market requirements. It represents the intersection of various constantly evolving sectors, from data analytics to cloud computing. 
DQ
Data quality (DQ) refers to the measure of how well-suited and reliable a data set is to serve the end user’s defined purpose. It’s a relevant criterion to ensure that data-driven decisions are made as accurately as possible. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/data-quality-and-governance)
E
EAM
Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) refers to a combination of systems, software and services that help organizations manage and get an overview of their assets and infrastructure.
EClass
EClass is established as the only ISO/IEC-compliant industry standard and the international reference-data standard for the classification and unambiguous description of product master data.
ECM
An Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solution helps organizations store, manage and distribute unstructured business-critical documents, such as word documents, PDFs, invoices and account statements.
Endpoint
An endpoint is a device that serves as a terminal or gateway in a network, e.g., computers, laptops, mobile phones, Internet of things (IoT) devices and servers. 
Enrichment
Enrichment is a general term that refers to the process of integrating updates and information to an organization's existing database to improve accuracy. It’s a fundamental component to the success of a business operating in the modern data-centric world. 
ERP
An Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is a comprehensive merchandise planning and control system used to efficiently manage resources such as capital, personnel, materials, supplies, logistics, systems, IT and goods.
ETIM
European Technical Information Model (ETIM) is a classification model used worldwide to classify, store and share technical product information in the same format for manufacturers, contractors and wholesalers.
ETL
ETL is the acronym for Extract, Transform, Load. It’s a three-phase process that allows companies to gather data from multiple data sources to a data warehouse or other unified data repository.
G
GDSN
Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN) consists of an internet-based network of interoperable data pools governed by GS1 standards. GDSN data pools enable collaborators to operate based on standards that support live data sharing and trading updates.
Golden record
A golden record is a single, well-defined version of a data entity in an organization, generated based on a unique identifier. It encompasses all the data in every system of record (SOR) within an organization.
Governance
Governance is a general term that refers to an approach to managing a company’s data assets. See also Data governance.
GPC
Global Product Classification (GPC) is a worldwide classification system that enables customers, suppliers and trading partners to group and classify products in a standardized way. 
H
Headless CMS
A headless Content Management System or headless CMS, is a backend-only content management system that allows businesses to upload, edit and publish content via an API. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/headless-cms-integration) See also Application Programming Interface.
Headless commerce
Headless commerce is an approach to ecommerce that allows organizations to decouple the frontend of an online store from the backend. With a headless store, these two separate sides work independently of each other and communicate via APIs. See also Application Programmer Interface.
Hierarchy
Hierarchy is a system in which items are ranked according to levels of importance. Types of hierarchies include category hierarchies and organization hierarchies.
I
Internationalization management
Internationalization management is the process of localizing data for attributes and rich content including units of measure and currencies.
ISO 27001
ISO 27001 is an international security standard on how information security is managed and serves as the benchmark for determining the quality, breadth and depth of an organization’s security controls. ISO-27001 is part of a set of standards developed to handle information security: the ISO/IEC 27000 series. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/blog/iso-27001-certification)
L
Localization
Localization is the process of adapting a product, service or offering to meet the needs of a particular market, locale or culture. It’s often beneficial for companies selling abroad, be it in physical locations or through an online store. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/global-translation-and-localization)
M
MACH
The acronym stands for Microservices-based, API-first, Cloud-native, and Headless. It’s a set of principles behind futureproof best-of-breed software that helps businesses implement a digital commerce strategy faster, more cost-effectively and without compromises.
MAM

Media asset management (MAM) refers to the process and software that allows the structured management, organization and distribution of digital assets such as graphic, video, picture and audio components. See also Digital Asset Management.

Marketplace
A marketplace is an ecommerce platform that connects customers with third-party sellers. In return for allowing a seller to list goods, the marketplace takes a fee, either a percentage of the sale and/or a subscription-style fee.
Mass editing
Mass editing enables users to change multiple objects simultaneously and ensures consistency across a large number of entities.
Match and merge
The match and merge process detects duplicates and consolidates them into a single golden record. See Matching.
Matching
Matching refers to efforts to compare two sets of collected data. This can be done across databases to ensure matching data is aligned.
MDM
Master Data Management (MDM) enables organizations to master their data across the entire information supply chain for intelligent decision–making using high–quality data. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/master-data-management)
Metadata Management
Metadata Management is the discipline that establishes policies and procedures that allow organizations to derive maximum business value from their digital assets. Examples of basic metadata are date, author, file size and keywords. 
ML
Machine learning (ML) is a branch of artificial intelligence (AI) and computer science that uses algorithms to provide computers with the ability to identify patterns from mass data and to make predictions. This learning method allows machines to perform specific tasks without the need to be programmed. See also Artificial intelligence.
Modeling
Modeling refers to the representation, often mathematical, of a process or operation of a system, often implemented by a computer program. For example, data modeling is the process of creating visual representations and diagramming data flows.
Multichannel publishing
Multichannel publishing is the simultaneous publication of content on multiple online and offline channels and platforms such as websites, ecommerce stores, digital signage, digital publications, printed catalogs and flyers. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/multichannel-publishing)
N
NPD
New product development (NPD) refers to all stages involved in developing a product, from being a concept or idea to reaching the market. The stages are often sequential but may in some cases occur simultaneously.
O
Omnichannel
Omnichannel, also spelled omni-channel, refers to a lead nurturing and user engagement approach that provides a seamless and integrated customer experience across multiple channels, whether online or offline. (e.g., mobile apps, social media, email, brick-and-mortar stores, etc.) Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/blog/omnichannel-is-evolved)
Onboarding
Onboarding refers to the process of converting data to digital form. When discussing PIM systems, ‘onboarding’ means importing and consolidating product data from various sources into a PIM system. See also Data onboarding.
Online catalog
An online catalog, also known as a digital catalog, is a list of a company’s products or services available to the buyer, presented online. Unlike paper catalogs, online catalogs enable companies to showcase their entire product library and make it accessible with robust search technology, shopping features and online content. 
P
PDM
Product Data Management (PDM) is a centralized system that stores product-related information and engineering processes. PDM incorporates tools and techniques to centrally store all the data associated with a product’s lifecycle and enable companies to manage the entire product development process. See also Product Information Management. 
Personalization
Personalization is a marketing strategy that involves tailoring a service or a product to accommodate a specific individual or group. Personalized experiences should reflect users' needs, desires and behavior, thereby creating more engaged customers and conversions. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/content-personalization)
PIM
Product Information Management (PIM) is a data management solution that allows businesses to easily and quickly onboard, validate, manage and publish the product information needed to successfully market and sell on and off the shelf. It offers a range of benefits including the ability to build enhanced customer experiences, optimize internal processes and strengthen partner network relations. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/product-information-management)
PIM Admin Studio
The PIM Admin Studio enables users to configure Contentserv in an intuitive user interface. With the PIM Admin Studio, users can define all kinds of object types such as products, SKUs, variants, etc. and configure and administer classes, attributes, value lists, product hierarchies/taxonomies and more.
PLM
Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is the strategic process of managing all data relating to a product’s lifecycle: design, production, maturity/stability, support and ultimate disposal of manufactured goods. Comprehensive Enterprise Resource Planning software (ERP) is a key component of PLM. See also Enterprise Resource Planning.
PMDM
Product Master Data Management (PMDM) is a system that enables organizations to create a single, centralized version of the truth for product data (e.g., price, category, description, key features, etc.) and share it with customers and partners. See also Product Information Management.
Product content enrichment
Product content enrichment employs product information and digital assets to help businesses improve data quality, increase product awareness and achieve a 360-degree view that includes product descriptions, digital assets, rich media, product bundles, kits, upsells and more. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/product-content-enrichment)
Product content syndication
Product content syndication refers to the distribution of product data across multiple marketplaces and ecommerce platforms while complying with each of their different requirements. It allows companies to expand globally and increase revenue through seamless data synchronization. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/product-content-syndication)
Product data
Product data is all the information about a product (e.g., title, image, category, description, etc.) that can be read, measured and structured into a specific format. See also Product Data Management.
Product Experience
Product Experience (PX) is a subset of the entire user experience that refers to what a user or customer experiences when using a product and how well it delivers on their expectations, desires, needs, thoughts and emotions. In the software industry, PX represents the portion of the customer journey that takes place within the application.
Product Experience Cloud
Contentserv’s Product Experience Cloud offers a combination of multiple data management solutions that allow users to control the product experience and provide customers with rich, relevant and emotional content across touchpoints in real-time. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/product-experience-cloud)
PXC
Contentserv’s Product Experience Community (PXC) gives our customers and partners the opportunity to attend our virtual or in-person events, benefit from our successful network and learn first-hand about new releases, features and solutions. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/events)
PXM
Product Experience Management (PXM) transforms traditional PIM systems into a personalized product experience engine that delivers product content in context and personalized based on the channel, locale and needs of customers to facilitate an emotional connection. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/product-experience-management) See also Product Information Management.
R
RTIM
Real-Time Interaction Management (RTIM) is an in-the-moment decision engine that employs machine learning and predictive modeling to provide users with consistent and personalized marketing messages across different touchpoints. Find more information here. https://www.contentserv.com/blog/3-ways-real-time-interaction-management-rtim-helps-with-customer-retention
Reference data
Reference data defines values relevant to cross-functional organizational transactions (e.g., units of measurements, fixed conversion rates and calendar structures). Reference data management aims to define data fields and "translate" them into a common language to categorize data consistently and ensure data quality.
REST
Introduced by computer scientist Roy Fielding, Representational State Transfer (REST) is a method of exchanging data between two applications using HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol). REST is also a widely accepted set of guidelines for creating stateless, reliable web APIs.
ROX
Return On Experience (ROX) is a metric that allows marketers to assess how customers interact with their brand and measure how their investments in customer experience are impacting their bottom line.
S
SaaS
Software as a Service (SaaS) is a software distribution model that allows data to be accessed from any device with an internet connection and a web browser.
Scalability
Scalability describes the ability of a process, software, network, database or organization to grow and manage under an increased load when resources are added. A business or technology that is described as scalable has an advantage because it’s more adaptable to the changing needs or demands of its users or clients.
SDK
A software development kit (SDK) is a set of tools developers use to build applications for specific operating systems. It includes libraries, sample code, relevant documentation and APIs that make it easier to create a particular module within an app. See also Application Programming Interface.
Sell-side
The sell-side refers to the side of the financial industry that is involved with the creation, promotion and sale of financial instruments (e.g., stocks, bonds, foreign exchange, etc.) to the public market. See also Buy-side.
Shoppable Content
Shoppable content refers to digital assets such as images, videos, articles, etc. that provide a direct purchasing opportunity and allow buyers to add items to the cart directly or get referred to a product page. Shoppable content appeals to customers and helps brands drive traffic and conversion. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/blog/is-your-content-shoppable)
Silos
Silos refers to crucial data or information held by only one group (department or business unit) and not easily or fully accessible by other groups in the same organization. Data silos mean a lack of transparency, efficiency, accuracy and trust.
SKU
Stock-keeping unit (SKU) refers to a distinct number usually consisting of letters and numbers and containing product attributes such as size and color. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/blog/how-should-companies-best-create-stock-keeping-units-skus)
SSOT
A single source of truth (SSOT) is a concept used to ensure that data from different systems within an organization is aggregated into a single location. A Product Information Management (PIM) solution acts as a single source of truth for product information that guarantees the ability to onboard, validate, manage and publish product information within a single platform. See also Product Information Management.
Stack
A software or technology stack is a collection of components that ideally work together to support an application. It typically consists of two equally important elements: the front-end (client-side) and backend (server-side).
Supplier data
Supplier data refers to any data provided by the data supplier. A data supplier is an organization that provides data for use of consumption by third parties. PIM acts as a tool that businesses can depend on to easily manage and enrich supplier data. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/master-data-management)
Synchronization
Synchronization refers to the operation of two or more things at the same time. Data synchronization enables data consistency between two or more databases or data storage systems.
Syndication
Syndication is a general term that refers to the ongoing feed of product information to all sales channels and touchpoints. Syndication platforms enable organizations to publish a unified and consistent product experience across channels. See also Data syndication.
T
Tags
A tag is a multi-valued characteristic or property of a product component that can have multiple values at a time. With data tagging, users can organize information more efficiently by associating pieces of information with tags. A user can select one or more options for the value that will then be attached to a product. When a property can have one or more options as its value, it can be defined as a tag in the system.
Taxonomy
Taxonomy is a method of classifying an organization’s products in a systematic manner. Aside from being useful for creating a consistent structure, it can also be used to categorize large volumes of data in a readable and identifiable form. 
Time-to-market
Time to market (TTM) refers to the period of time between the conception of a product and its availability for sales in the market. This concept is one of the key product development metrics, so it’s a priority for any business selling goods.
Time-to-value
Time-to-value (TTV) measures the effectiveness of an investment, specifically the time it takes from when a purchase has been made to when it starts deriving value. 
Translation Management System
A Translation Management System (TSM) is software that automates part of the translation process, optimizes the localization workflow and maximizes translator efficiency. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/global-translation-and-localization)
Translation Memory System
A Translation Memory System (TSM) refers to a database of previously translated content. It enables organizations to reuse previous translations and improve consistency across a project. Find more information here. (https://www.contentserv.com/global-translation-and-localization)
U
UI
User interface (UI) is any method by which the end-user of a product interacts with a digital product, software or hardware device. In a software solution, UI design should make the interaction between the user and the product as effortless as possible.
Upselling
Upselling is a sales technique with the goal of encouraging customers to spend more by buying a premium or upgraded version of what’s being purchased. With the right product information, at the right time and at the right touchpoint, companies can encourage their potential customers to buy a higher-end product. 
User
A user is a person utilizing a network service or software. A user usually has a user account and a username.
UX
The User Experience (UX) includes all aspects of the end-user's interaction with a company: its services, promotion, people, products and how other buyers evaluate it.
V
Variant
Variants are variations of the same item in a catalog. PIM objects defined in a PIM data model (regarding structure and properties) include products also known as variants, articles, known as SKUs, assisting objects and channel objects.
Versioning
Versioning is the creation and management of different versions of a dataset to generate a seamless audit trail for traceability and compliance.
W
Workflow
Workflow is a sequence of processes that a piece of work progresses through until completion. In Contentserv’s solution, the piece of work is normally a product. The product's status is also managed through the workflow such as Active, Published and Inactive.
X
XML
XML is a markup language maintained by the W3C for describing data using embedded tags. It’s similar to HTML, but without predefined tags to use and it allows users to define their own markup languages.