Advanced Features - Product Relations
What are Product Relations?
Product relations in their simplest form are a means of associating a product in the PIM with other products. The PIM will recognize that two products are connected in a particular manner that you determine. That relationship information is available as part of the product JSON accessible via the API or as part of the sync to your ecommerce platforms. Combine this with front-end development to construct complex product detail pages, product wizards, bundles, service SKUs and nearly anything that you can think of that hinges on the relation of products to one another. This is one of the most powerful features of Jasper PIM and is available on every subscription plan.
Creating a Product Relation Type
The product relation type menu from the left side navigation allows you to create relation types and if applicable set cardinality and attribute sets for those relations.
The product relation type is a labeling system for you to create custom relations. Because the relation itself is an association between products, the nature of that relationship comes down to the label and the cardinality you assign. To create a relation type:
- Go to Configuration > Product Relation Types from the main PIM menu on the left hand side
- Click Create Product Relation Type from the upper right hand corner
- From the Product Relation Type edit page fill in the following
- Slug - this is autogenerate if left blank NOTE: The "slug" is the URL-friendly version of the name. It is usually all lowercase and contains only letters, numbers and hyphens.
- Description (optional) - internally define the nature/purpose of the relation
- Parent Label (Optional) - label when related product is a parent
- Child Label (optional - label when related product is a child
- Cardinality - see below
Assigning a Cardinality
Product relations can have one of three distinct cardinalities or direction types.
- One to one - is a direct relation from one product to another.
- Bi-directional - you can associate product A with product B and then manually associate product B with product A if you wish. A use case would be if you sell guitar amplifiers and want to associate an amp head with its matching cabinet and vice versa.
- Once you have related a product using one-to-one you cannot use that relation type on that product to relate more products.
- One-to-one is primarily used for product substitutions, matched pairs of products (as described above), when items are end of life, or when creating a 1:1 upsell opportunity for customers.
- One to many - allows you to relate one product to many products.
- Uni-directional - you can associate product A with products B and C but you cannot then associate either B or C with A using the same relation type
- You can use one-to-many relations to create traditional upsell relationships where you would want to encourage a customer to trade up from the basic model to something of higher quality/price but you would not then want to display the inverse.
- You can also use this for a "works with" type of relationship or an end of life substitution with multiple options. For example, if you sold LED bulbs and one was discontinued you may wish to display alternative options to customers using a one-to-many relation. However, the newer products stand on their own and do not need to be explicitly related back to the end of life product.
- Many to many - is the most common relation type used for free association of products.
- Bi-directional - you can associate product A to products B and C and then product B to products A and C and product C to products A and B
- This is the most common method for product relations and is the one most used for controlling the Related Products sections in certain ecommerce platforms. If supported you can configure your Main Product Relation on the Channel Configuration menu to draw products from your product relation
Adding Attributes* (Available on Plus and Enterprise PIM Subscription Plans)
The nature of product relations is an association between two items. Occasionally that association has further variables that need to be taken into account. To do this, the PIM allows you to assign an attribute set onto a product relation to further describe and refine the nature of the relationship between products. Some of the ways you can use attributes on relations are:
- To add quantity to bundle SKUs (bundle consists of 2 of x and 1 of y)
- When bundling using multiple parent child products use an attribute to denote the specific bundle SKU for a given configuration
- For multi-parent child products use attributes in place of the option values
What Can I Do With Product Relations?
Product Relations in the PIM are capable of being used for a large variety of use cases and scenarios. The customizable Relation Type gives you complete control over the nature of the relationship.
- Related Products (not all platforms support a direct control of their related products via API)
- Services and Intangible Products
- Product Builders (contingent bundles)
- Multi-Parent Child Products
- Product Substitutions
- Cross Sell and Upsell products
- ...and more
NOTE: Keep in mind most ecommerce platforms only support one product relation type for the "Related Products" field. You must set the preferred product relation type on your Channel so that your store's platform knows which one to pull.