Product Sharing vs. Product Syndication

Intershop Commerce Management provides two mechanisms for distributing products across channels: product sharing and product syndication.

CAUTION: Product sharing and product syndication cannot be used in parallel in the same channel. If sharing is enabled for a channel, products cannot be syndicated to this channel. If, in turn, products are syndicated to a channel, products cannot be shared with this channel.
  • Product Sharing

    With product sharing, sales or partner organizations can distribute large numbers of master products to sales channels ("outbound product sharing"). The products are not copied to the target channels but remain in the parent organization's master repository.

    Generally, all deriving channels share the master data, regardless of their hierarchy. Channels can, however, choose to activate all or only a selected set of the shared master products ("inbound product sharing").

    Channels that share master products can still add new products or change attributes of a master product by overriding the entire product. When changing a master product attribute, a new channel product is created with a reference to the master product (which serves as a look-up fallback). Note, however, that shared product variations, bundles and retail sets cannot be modified. For details, see Product Sharing Management: Concepts.

    Note: Intershop recommends to use product sharing for distributing large numbers of products, assuming only little changes to the data in the channels.
  • Product Syndication

    With product syndication, sales channels can derive master products from parent sales or partner organizations. In a mass data operation, the master products are actually copied to the channel repositories.

    Product syndication requires the mapping of attributes (standard product attributes, catalog assignments, prices, etc.) of the original source product into attributes of a target product (offer). Specific rules control how attributes of the original (source) product are mapped into attributes of the target product. Upon syndicating, hence, attributes can be changed. For details, see Product Syndication.

    Note: Intershop recommends to use product syndication for distributing products across channels if the product data is expected to be changed in the channels.

Which product distribution mechanism to apply depends on the intended business scenario, with particular respect to the number of products and their attributes, the channel structure, the expected channel-specific data changes, etc. In the context of a sizing estimation, for example, Intershop can evaluate this question and, consequently, recommend either sharing or syndication.