Pimcore vs. Akeneo which works best for enterprise?

 

Pimcore and Akeneo are two of the most popular, powerful and versatile PIM tools out there. If you are not sure which would work better for your enterprise business, this article will talk you through the pros and cons of each.


 

 

PIM vs MDM

If you’re thinking about acquiring a PIM system, there are heaps of options to choose from in this space.

Each of the main options will have different features, functionality and capabilities. You’ve probably done some research by now and honed in on Akeneo and Pimcore as the most reliable, consistent PIM systems around. Both of these platforms will help you manage your product data.

Pimcore is classified as a Master Data Management (MDM) tool. It brings together traditionally separate data systems in a cohesive way. All of your critical data:

  • Product records and counts
  • Assets like images
  • Pdfs
  • Customer interactions and records   

It can bring together information from previously separate systems so you can be sure that you have access to all of the relevant files you need. It can also enable access to external parties, with set conditions. It is a cohesive framework across your organisations’ knowledge base.

Akeneo is classified as a PIM system; a subset of MDM. It handles information related to your products; catalogue information, product images and their descriptions. Its main objective is to enrich your product information, attract and engage customers and build your online shopping service. If you want a quick solution to improve product records and information, Akeneo will be sufficient

 

Pimcore and Akeneo reviews

Respondents in this Gartner comparison rated Pimcore 4.7 out of 5 stars and Akeneo 4.4 out of 5 stars. 100% of users reported they would recommend Pimcore, while 80% of Akeneo users would recommend the product to others. In this G2 comparison, Pimcore’s PIM component was compared to Akeneo. Akeneo received 4.5 out of 5 stars from 111 reviews while Pimcore rated 4.4 out of 5 stars from 39 reviews.

 

Pimcore Pros and cons

When it comes to breaking down data silos and consolidating information, Pimcore has greater capabilities. The main pros for Pimcore are the way it ensures security, accuracy, data integration and data enrichment. Other pros of Pimcore are

  • A beautiful shopping experience, shopping catalogues and style resources
  • Digital asset management features that allow you to give detailed product offerings
  • Ecommerce automation – flexibility for managing campaigns, sales and offers
  • An integration of customer data with product records and receipts
  • W2P (Web To Print) capability
  • Great sales analytics
  • Scalable and flexible to be able to keep pace with the requirements of an expanding company

Pimcore will help you:

  • Centralise information
  • Manage version control and data integrity
  • Get rid of duplicate, superseded or damaged files
  • Provide files to external parties in a controlled way
  • Roll out product updates and edits across all channels

Pimcore users also report that it does take time to become familiar with the product and it is common to need some assistance to customise and extend the system to full capability.

 

Akeneo Pross and cons

Akeneo’s primary purpose is managing your products, and it does this task well. Pros of Akeneo are that it provides:

  • Quality insights to customer behaviours
  • Data reporting such as error logs
  • Pleasant shopping experiences
  • Support for teamwork and internal communication between relevant staff and departments

Akeneo will help you:

  • Get consistency across product ranges
  • Consolidate product catalogues
  • Connect with new customers
  • Convert views to sales
  • Create brand loyalty
  • Decrease time to market

Users have also reported that Akeneo is:

  • Difficult to scale
  • Might not deliver a digital transformation change if that is what you require
  • Has been reported to be a bit ‘buggy’

 

Pimcore enterprise vs Akeneo enterprise

Both Pimcore and Akeneo have community versions. If you need to consider budget, then Pimcore should be your go to.

It is available as an open-source system and is free from licensing costs.

Of course, if you want to extend capabilities beyond the original offering, there will be costs. But they are still reasonable and will open up other options and services.

Akeneo Enterprise has some features which really do enhance the community edition. The top Akeneo Enterprise features on their site are listed as:

  • Advanced Rights Management
  • Versioning and Publication
  • Rule Based Automated Field Population
  • Validation Workflows
  • Product Asset Manager
  • Teamwork Assistant
  • Reference Entities
  • Single Sign-On
  • Franklin Insights (AI)

The Pimcore Enterprise offers a Pimcore subscription which will give you a commercial license plus onsite and cloud deployment options. Other features include:

  • Service Level Agreement (SLA)
  • Long Term Support (LTS)
  • Enterprise Extensions
  • Consulting & Business Success
  • Pimcore Exclusive Training

 

Developer resources required for Pimcore and Akeneo (more coding for one over the other generally needed?)

Pimcore has greater capabilities because it is a different tool than Akeneo. Pimcore integrates multiple systems and data sources. It improves how information is organised and mobilised between teams which does more for your overall business strategy. In this way, Pimcore is a more advanced. Pimcore customisations might require more development. This investment will pay off in the long term. By committing to Pimcore, you are providing a holistic data solution for your business, focussing on data in the immediate timeframe but also anticipating future use and requirements

 

Akeneo is more of a handy quick fix. It is a ready to roll PIM system that will sort out and improve your ecommerce store. There are a number of add-ons and integration options available, with extensions for markets, mobile, catalogues and so on. It also comes with some ready-made connectors. Setting up Akeneo for your enterprise business is likely to be able to be achieved in a shorter time frame, because the system’s main concern are your products.

If you are working with developers on the acquisition of either system, it would make sense to talk through your overall business objectives and marketing strategy. If your developers have a clear idea of your current and future needs, you will reduce the need for alterations or other supports down the track.

 

Akeneo PIM and what it cannot offer

Although there are suitable extensions available, at the end of the day Akeneo is a tool for management of products. If your business is about to undergo a digital transformation process, you will need something that will meet your data needs well into the future. Lots of enterprise companies run into trouble because of the complexity of data that is being stored in disparate systems. For example, customer names could be stored in a marketing platform and addresses might be stored in an ordering system. Akeneo cannot really help you with your overall data management model or framework.

 

Using Pimcore and Akeneo for marketing

When considering using Pimcore or Akeneo for marketing, again this comes down to your objective. PIM systems like Akeneo are really designed to serve marketing purposes - products displayed, selected and sold.

PIM systems are used by your product and customer services teams, and your marketing people will probably be charged with keeping an eye on the overall marketing messages. Copywriters and data or business analysts would be requiring input into product descriptions and search capability. Akeneo helps marketing efforts by focusing on customer experience and investment through sales targets.

MDM projects are typically undertaken by large enterprise companies that want to refine all internal data processes. Implementing MDM systems like Pimcore takes up a lot of resources and can develop into a complex project.

 

Pimcore has capacity way beyond the shopfront

It will help you manage and centralise campaigns, across all channels and with localised and specific variations when required. Pimcore will improve overall brand management through the presentation of sophisticated, integrated information.

 

B2B capabilities

If your business focuses on B2B or does both B2B and B2C, you might be interested to learn how Pimcore and Akeneo can support these exchanges. Just because businesses are viewing your products for their own business, it doesn’t mean they don’t want to have pleasant shopping experiences. They might not be buying for emotional reasons, but they need to be engaged and informed about products before they purchase.

 

B2B customers might need more factual information and more technical specifications. They might need access to product guides, instruction manuals, and warranty information before they buy. B2B customers are more likely to need to access files in different formats such as diagrams, video explanations or pdfs. Pimcore can handle the associations between these files and the products really well. Photographs need to be clear; descriptions need to be relevant, accurate and detailed and Pimcore enables this extra level of data to be accessible.

 

Pimcore demo and Akeneo demo

If you are finding it hard to imagine what all these capabilities look like in relation to your own existing ecommerce platform, there are plenty of support resources available.

 

This Pimcore video covers PIM and MDM capabilities, shown on an actual commerce site. It shows you how to model data, import data, manage data and export data. This Akeneo video covers the basics of product management, with narration.

 

The bottom line:

Pimcore will equip you with a single data source for all of your businesses’ critical information. It is a tool to help with long-term data requirements. Akeneo works with your product data and improves it to create pleasant shopping experiences for customers. It is a tool for your marketing people while Pimcore is a much larger enterprise-wide deployment. If you need a quick product fix, go Akeneo. if you want to meet the changing expectations of customers and future proof your data, go Pimcore.