ChannelEngine: categorization

About this document

This document describes the categorization process on ChannelEngine, how to do it, and more.

Table of contents

Introduction

Categories vs. product types

Category mapping

Rules for categorization

Introduction

Categorization is the process of 'translating' your categories to the specific categories or product types on each marketplace. In some cases your own categories can be matched directly, but sometimes the level of detail does not match. E.g.: your categories are too specific in relation to the marketplace's product type, not specific enough, written in a different language, etc.

Categorization is mandatory on certain channels, such as eBay and Spartoo, and can be used to create or update product information on channels such as Amazon and Bol.com.

Categories vs. product types

The first level of categorization is often based on the product type, and not on the detailed subcategory you see on the marketplace itself. Amazon and Bol.com are examples of this practice. First you map your own category to the relevant product type and, based on that, either Amazon's recommend browse node or Bol.com's type of product become available later in the content mapping.

While you may map a shoulder bag to the generic 'bags' first, but in the content mapping stage you can map it to the specific type, such as 'shoulder bag' or 'backpack'.

Category mapping

If your products already have categories, you can start mapping them. Bol.com is used in the example below, but the principle is the same for most channels – with the exception of API, custom, and affiliate channels, which in most cases do not have a categorization option.

Select the channel you want to start mapping for on ChannelEngine you want to start mapping, then select Categorization.

  • On the left-hand side, you see your own categories. Next to these categories, you see numbers indicating how many products have this same category. If your products do not have categories, this list is empty, but you can still use Rules for categorization.
  • On the right-hand side, you see empty bars, where you have to fill in the channel's categories. The idea is that you link your own categories to the categories of the channel. If you look up your category in the bar, you get a dropdown with the categories that contain the keywords. To limit the number of results, they are loaded and displayed as soon as the third character is entered.
  • There is an option to get an overview of all categories of the marketplace. Select Browse at the bottom of the screen to see this overview. Note that most marketplaces have a long list of categories, so it can take a few seconds to load.
  • The Map automatically is also available. When you select it, all of your categories are checked for a matching category based on their names. Keep in mind that this is a suggestion, so it is important to check if the right category has been mapped. This feature only works for categories in English or in Dutch.

ChannelEngine back-end: category mappings

Rules for categorization

If your category is not specific enough and you want to split it up, you can do so by creating a rule. Rules can help you split 'bags' into 'shoulder bags' and 'backpacks', for instance.

To apply a rule, go to the category you want to split and hover the mouse pointer over it until the option  + Rule appears. You can also create a rule by selecting + Rule above the category tree.

ChannelEngine back-end: category rules

You can then see the rule, as shown in the image above, with the category pre-listed. Apply it based on one or more attributes, so all complying products are included.

E.g.: if the title of the product states it is a shoulder bag, you can create a rule such as "IF [name] CONTAINS [shoulder bag] USE [category shoulder bag]".

NB: rules override regular categorization. Make sure that your rules do not include products that might be mapped to the wrong category due to a rule.
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