How to Organize Digital Asset Management for E-Commerce

By Globaledit
Mar 17, 2022

Let’s start with the jaw-dropper. Businesswire reported in 2021 that the global digital asset management (DAM) market reached a value of $ 3.88 Billion in 2020. The surge of DAM demand signals the growing importance of visual content—particularly for offline retail pivoting to online.

Smarter digital asset management for e-commerce newcomers is about getting DAM right from day-one, before it all goes DAM wrong with snowballing chaos and complexity.

For e-commerce veterans, it’s about maximizing digital asset management efficiency; to keep vast asset libraries workable, navigable and easily deployable with as few moving parts as possible.

Whether you’re starting out or have been online as long as Amazon, it’s about scaling up meaningful e-commerce experiences while scaling down the cost, time and all-out headache of legacy approaches to digital asset management.

Here are some of the ways to organize e-commerce digital assets. But first, the challenges smarter DAM solves for e-commerce brands.

“Where’s that DAM File?”: Digital Asset Management Challenges e-commerce Loves to Hate

Managing e-commerce digital assets is so dauntingly complex, studies have been done pin down the top challenges that are:

  1. Finding global assets
  2. Granting collaborator access 
  3. Granting partner access
  4. Repurposing digital assets
  5. Version control

Sound familiar?

Generally speaking? All of that can be summed up in three words: chaos and disorder. The more e-commerce content you create, the more chaos and disorder snowballs, the more collaboration falls apart.

What Does Your e-commerce Digital Asset Management Process Look Like Right Now?

The antidote to DAM chaos is to get organized.

You’re probably already doing things like product information management (PIM) or using some of these best-practice methods for managing digital e-commerce assets.

Using folder management to organize and find digital assets

If you’re already using a date-based folder system as one of a number of ways of maximizing digital asset management efficiency, how is it working out? Honestly? What would you change? Or what do you wish was easier?

Date-based folder names

For example, you could be using a year-month-day naming convention—and why not? It’s intuitive and structured.

For smaller-scale e-commerce stores, this approach works just fine. Once your asset library and/or your asset-management team grows, date-based folder management can reach its limits.

At a certain point, simply navigating folders becomes a time-consuming task all of its own. Over a year, imagine how many hours you’ve lost.

Descriptive file names

The non-numeric approach to organizing e-commerce digital assets is to be descriptive. That way you can just search stuff, right? You can even add image width.

For example:

Product name + image width:

womens-yoga-mat-2-960

This can actually be an effective approach to organizing folders and files, but it’s a best-practice technique that relies on further best practice of ensuring all collaborators actually stick to the naming format.

At even medium-sized e-commerce content teams, manual error and variations can creep in, causing needle-in-a-haystack situations.

Mirroring your website to organize e-commerce assets

A common alternative to date-based digital media asset management is to mirror your asset folders in-line with website product categories and subcategories.

This approach seems intuitive, though it doesn’t work for all e-commerce stores. What if, for example, your online store has 100s of products that include countless more sub-variants? That’s a lot of visual assets to store, organize and find.

Getting Smarter About e-commerce Digital Asset Management

To wrap up, remember the challenges we covered?

Finding assets
Version control
Collaborator and partner access
Repurposing assets

You’ll hit hard limits with all of them when trying to organize and scale DAM workflows using even the most sensible traditional methods.

Even if you keep tight best-practice rules, all the moving parts means constant effort, uploads, downloads, access admin and delays. Everything exists in different layers and locations.

What does smarter e-commerce DAM look like?

Whether you’re the e-commerce team trying to scale content and increase DAM ROI, or an external digital asset partner collaborating with them, Globaledit brings all the smarts.

Imagine one visually-intuitive asset library. One multi-stakeholder comms and collaboration in a single, integrated space complete with user-comments.

Discover how you can create e-commerce collections with custom metadata tags and more—all while collaborating securely and seamlessly outside of your emails and WhatsApp.

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