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What is INRIVER?

Inriver's “digital-first” PIM solution offers a composable architecture, so you don’t have to worry about integrating your preferred tech stack or service into your system. With impressive features such as Digital Shelf Analytics (DSA) and Inriver syndicate, you are sure to get your money’s worth with this platform.

Written By: Chisom Uma
Website:
www.inriver.com
Founded:
2007
Customer base:
700+ customers across over 1600 brands.
Company size:
300+ employees
Last updated: July 25, 2023

What is Inriver?

Inriver is a Gartner-recognized composable PIM solution. The cloud-based platform's composable nature makes it stand out among competitors. Inriver is a “digital-first” PIM with comprehensive solutions that include enhanced media functionalities, support for any digital assets format, content delivery via CDN, and more. Inriver has over 1600 B2B and B2C organizations that depend on the platform to help achieve commerce success. With Inriver, brands can deliver revenue-driven product information across multiple channels.

What is Inriver used for?

Inriver, like most PIM systems, helps brands store, manage, edit, and distribute high-quality product information across multiple touchpoints. However, the stand-out features of Inriver include its API-based syndication, built-in product data syndication (PDS) solution, digital-shelf analytics, and built-in media management capabilities like Media Suite.

Inriver is an easy-to-use platform, and its data analytics capabilities make it stand out from competitors. 

Who uses Inriver PIM?

As discussed earlier, Inriver has helped over 700 customers across 1600 brands worldwide to achieve their goal of quality product data. Let's take a quick look at some of these brands:

  • Bugaboo: Bugaboo is a world-renowned brand that sells designs for the stroller industry. With Inriver, the company gained a future-proof solution. Inriver was used to host the company's product information and improve data quality.

  • Hamelin: Hamelin is a French-owned family business and a global market leader in manufacturing school and office products. Hamelin has 2400+ employees in 19 countries, with products sold in 19+ countries. Hamelin needed complete and reliable data distributed to customers. Out of 10 possible solutions, Hamelin decided to work with Inriver because of its user-friendly nature, adaptability, and faster time-to-market. Laurence Teuma, the international Key Accountant Manager at Hamelin, highlighted that Inriver has helped the company achieve information delivery to customers 8 times faster.

  • Boretti: Boretti is an Italian culinary lifestyle brand that designs and sells high-end culinary products like ovens, stoves, and more. Boretti used Inriver to manage, syndicate, and enhance product information automatically. Inriver enabled them (Boretti) to centralize all the product information and reduce lead time to onboard and manage the product information.

Read More on Inriver Customers.

Why Is Inriver a Good Choice for Brands?

Inriver is a top choice for many global brands. But why is that?

Unique Onboarding Process

An effective onboarding process for your content can significantly improve the accuracy and quality of the information. It eliminates the need to access multiple disjointed systems by consolidating everything in one location, providing reliable and consistent data. Inriver lets you source product data from suppliers easily. Your suppliers can maintain the accuracy of their digital shelves with the choice of validation and automatic updates. Inriver provides REST APIs that allow you to integrate and extend your PIM solutions with any data source system. The built-in integrations in Inriver make the import and export of data easier.

Some of Inriver's out-of-the-box integrations include:

  • Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) Assets Adapter

  • Adobe Magento Commerce Adapter

  • Inriver Optimizely B2C Commerce Adapter 

  • Salesforce B2C Commerce Adapter

  • SAP Commerce Cloud Adapter

Seamless Creation Process

Inriver lets you improve the quality of your product data through useful marketing texts, images, 3D drawings, instruction manuals, and more. Localization in Inriver is seamless, as the platform supports over 258 ISO languages. Inriver’s built-in image recognition technology automatically creates product attributes (colours, descriptions, and tagging). You can develop detailed images of your products, for instance, interactive 3D environmental images. The platform API lets you integrate easily with your pre-existing DAM solutions to utilize its visual assets across every channel. Inriver has a built-in Gantt chart functionality, so you are able to plan the publishing activities of your team over time.

Smooth Distribution Process

Inriver has a set of tools that helps with its distribution processes, such as Inriver syndication and Inriver print. Inriver product data syndication, or “Inriver Syndicate,” enables brands to deliver accurate, consistent product information across multiple touchpoints such as data pools, online retailers, distribution partners, and more. 

You don't have to create separate product information or connect with an external product syndication platform using inriver Syndicate. All the necessary tools are available to you on the platform. Your resellers can also access a self-service portal that provides easy search, access, and approved product information.

Screenshot 2023-04-25 101906

Inriver Print, on the other hand, is a SaaS solution that enables you to connect with Adobe InDesign using the 65-bit EasyCatalog plugin to provide your design team access to the latest product information.

Insights

Inriver has an outstanding evaluation process. One of Inriver's major benefits is its Digital Shelf Analytics(DSA) feature. This feature allows brands to monitor products on the shelf using smart analytics. You get real-time insights into how customers behave and how products perform. The DSA solutions include Inriver Channel Insights and Inriver Evaluation.

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Built-in image recognition technology
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Built-in Syndication module
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Easier configuration of Content Store functionality, which was previously difficult to configure.
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A dedicated customer success team, ready for regular calls and answering questions quickly.
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Highly customizable and flexible data model
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Offers composable architecture for increased flexibility with a REST-based architecture/part of the MACH-alliance
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Accelerators for certain industries, such as construction
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Ready-made integrations with e-commerce platforms like Salesforce and Bigcommerce.
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While InRiver does provide a basic feature for "tasks," it doesn't offer a comprehensive workflow tool.
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Configuration in Inriver can be difficult since it's complex software.
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Not easy to understand the syndication module for a non-technical user.
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There isn't much you can do “out-of-the-box.” with Inriver. Workflows, for example, are done with custom code.
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Third-party implementation from experts is required.
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Slower response when uploading assets from Inriver to a web page or library.
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Iriver, offer much flexibility. This can lead to users implementing the software incorrectly, especially for larger projects.
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Inriver is very complicated for internal users

List of Features

Inriver has many incredible features worth examining. Let's take a look at some of its features in this section.

Inriver Core Functionality

Inriver is made up of three core functionality:

  • Inriver Dashboard

  • Inriver Enrich

  • Inriver Plan & Release

Inriver Web Portal & Dashboard

Inriver

  Source

The inriver Web Portal and Dashboard offer a central location to access all the tools required to participate in every stage of the PIM process. This involves managing and monitoring data from an inbound, enrichment, and outbound viewpoint. The Web Portal's primary view is customized to the user's role, enabling them to select the best tools to assist them.

Read more on Inriver Web Portal and Dashboard.

Inriver Enrich

enrich

Source

Inriver Enrich was created to help brands construct compelling stories about their products. The features in Enrich support every aspect of your product storytelling process and make the search and selection of products that require improvement easier before release. Inriver Enrich features a Query Editor, a quick search for entities, and many more features.

Read More about Inriver Enrich

Inriver Plan & Release

Plan & release - overview

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Plan & Release offers a comprehensive summary of your external channels and releases. This feature allows you to generate and oversee channel nodes and publication entities. And get important updates on ongoing events.

The dashboard comes with the following nav menus:

  • Edit

  • Star entity

  • Open in new tab

  • Open in enrich

  • Unpublish

  • Delete

Inriver Syndicate

Like most PIM systems in the market, Inriver offers a powerful product syndication solution. The Inriver Syndicate streamlines the sharing of product information with various channels, such as online retailers, third-party marketplaces, and channel partners. Its user-friendly mapping interface allows for efficient data transformation, which is delivered through different means like FTP, SFTP, FTPS, Azure blob, or HTTP Post, and standard formats such as JSON, XML, CSV, advanced XLS, or customized extensions. Creating and editing a mapping in Inriver is a simple drag-and-drop feature.

The Inriver Syndicate platform makes it easier to improve the quality of your product information, to meet the different requirements of each channel. Standard functionalities such as concatenations, value mapping, language selection, and string manipulation are part of Inriver syndication. A collection of useful code snippets is also available for creating customized functions if needed.

Inriver Print

Integrating Inriver Print and Adobe InDesign enables the seamless creation of printed materials. Moreover, inriver Print provides the necessary tools for streamlining and managing the production process. It utilizes a single source of truth for all images, texts, and product attributes in the Inriver repository.  This ensures consistency and version control of information throughout the process. Use cases of Inriver print include:

  • Semi-automation production: Inriver print uses a semi-automation approach, but configuration to produce catalogs is possible. 

Semi-automated production using Adobe InDesign involves accessing all product information through InDesign or InDesign Server. Once incorporated into a publication, it will remain connected to the inriver repository. This implies that any modifications made to the product information in the source (Inriver) will be immediately reflected in the InDesign document.

Digital Shelf Analytics (DSA)

Inriver DSA is an outstanding feature of Inriver among competitors. Inriver Digital shelf analytics (DSA) is a technology that employs intelligent automation to constantly monitor products displayed on the digital shelf, providing useful, recent knowledge about customer actions, product efficacy, and competition among channels. This data allows you to address concerns with your product listings, such as adding missing images or correcting inaccurate text. The feedback from Inriver DSA guarantees that your product detail pages are always optimized for your customers, your brand, and the channel.

DSA technology generally uses " spiders " software to crawl the digital shelf. These spiders do this to garner important information from multiple channels, such as marketplaces and reseller channels. However, some DSA solutions use “high-frequency spiders” capable of trawling a site many times daily. This can slow down a website. To solve this problem, Inriver DSA uses “high-quality ethical spiders.” The spiders are customized specifically for each of your online platforms. They are programmed to visit only during periods of low traffic to prevent any negative effects on the speed or success of your website.

As discussed earlier, Inriver comes with two complementary DSA solutions. 

  • Inriver Channel Insights: Using Inriver Channel Insights, you can utilize digital shelf analytics directly from your Inriver dashboard. You can swiftly access information about how selected products, including those of your competitors, are faring on various e-commerce websites at the category level. This information lets you improve and modify your content, marketing efforts, and syndication strategy. Channel insights let you track SKUs and channels from a pre-defined pool.

  • Inriver Evaluate: Inriver evaluate is an AI-powered smart search technology that utilizes bots to give you data-driven insights about the performance of your product across multiple touchpoints.

Support

Screenshot 2023-04-20 102535

Inriver has an impressive support page with all the resources you need to get started. The overview section on the left side of the page tells you everything you need to know about the PIM system. 

A G2 reviewer had this to say about Inriver PIM support,

“the platform's customer support is highly regarded, with users reporting prompt and helpful assistance whenever they encounter any issues or questions.”

Inriver support includes a profound community, knowledge base, developer docs, and a news and update page.

Pricing

Like many other PIM systems, you have to contact Inriver to get a pricing quote.

A G2 user had this to say about Inriver pricing:

“The pricing is a bit steep, and getting external 3rd party vendor support to help setup the environment is quite expensive."

WHAT DO USERS SAY?

We have had a great experience with Inriver since our launch earlier this year. It is easy to work with, very flexible - meaning if we have a change in our business or product lifecycle, it's easy for admins to change the model or other data types without IT help for the most part. Integrating with other systems has been simple.
Samantha. S,
VP Ecommerce, Jensen Precast.
InRiver has helped our organization significantly increase our productivity and speed to market. By gathering all of our product-related data into one streamlined location, for the first time in our history, we know what information we have, what we need, and who we're sharing it with. The value of our investment has been fantastic, and the InRiver team has been quite helpful in assisting us in leveraging the platform. Syndicate has been a key addition to the portfolio since we adopted InRiver, and is integral to our continued success. It takes my team out of copy and paste pergatory, and allows us to spend more time with our customers, critically analyzing opportunities for growth. It's also allowed us to significantly expand the number of customers we can serve!
Lauren. C,
Customer Success Manager-Data Syndication, Zurn Industries.

COMPARE INRIVER WITH

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