The image bank challenge of Bol.com

Everyone knows Bol.com. The webshop was founded in 1999 and was the first online bookshop in the Netherlands. Bol.com grew rapidly and currently serves 6.5 million customers in the Netherlands and Belgium. The web store is now the market leader in the online sale of books, entertainment, electrical appliances and toys.

Assortment: 14.5 million items

Bol.com has about 14.5 million articles in its range. Just try to imagine the number of articles that fly over the virtual counter at Bol.com every day… Good images of all those articles have to be collected and put online. That doesn’t happen automatically!

Images: up to 200,000 per day

Stores such as Bol.com have a huge task in managing their image bank. Every day, the web store receives up to 200,000 images from the various suppliers of their range. All those images have to be indexed and stored, of course with the correct and effective metadata. And then the most suitable images have to be selected for the online shop window, in other words to put on the website.

Files: up to 1 billion in total

To process and manage such a huge bulk of files, you need a robust image bank. Qonqord has helped Bol.com to find such an image bank. Bol.com set a number of requirements: the image bank had to 1) can handle a huge number of files, 2) have a user-friendly interface in combination with an open architecture, and 3) include a well-documented API (development interface). It became WoodWing’s image bank, Woodwing Assets , in which up to 1 billion files can be managed.

How? API and PIM come to the rescue

Bol.com was able to create scripts via the API with which automatic selections of the images can be made based on the metadata linked to the images. These scripts incorporate predefined criteria with which the images are filtered. This greatly simplifies the selection process for the product managers. An integration between WoodWing Studio and the Product Information Management system – we wrote about this in a previous blog – ensures that data and files can be worked in real time.

Infinite room for growth!

Result: the processing and publication process has been simplified and made more flexible, and is now no longer a bottleneck for the growth and ambitions of Bol.com.

Are you an online store that also needs a robust database to properly manage all your images and enable growth? Come and talk to us, we are happy to advise you!

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