2 min read

Index your product catalogue

For your product catalogue to be available in your commerce store, you need to index your products in the search engine. The process of indexing your product catalogue can be summarized as follows: uploading, transforming, processing, and storing the product data in a way that the Search microservice can quickly find and retrieve reconizable and usable product information. Basically, indexing represents the input point for a successful search and discovery experiences. However, product data indexing has implications on multiple levels, as by feeding your product information to the search engine, you’re also designing your store’s basic structure and navigation.

What is indexing

To help yourself design your shoppers' search and discovery experiences aligned with your product catalogue, you start by defining your commerce store's extensive data model. Then, you use it as a guideline to create a feed file, a structured inventory of your product information. When the feed file is ready, you can start the indexing process by sending it to the Index microservice. The Index microservice processes the feed file and transforms its information into an index, or rather, a product’s data collection stored in the search engine.

During the search and discovery experience, the Search microservice accesses the product information to retrieve at query time relevant products to the query.

To get started with the indexing process, you need to:

  1. Prepare the data model
  2. Prepare the feed
  3. Upload the feed

Prepare the data model

Before your products catalogue is indexed, you define which data you need for your search and discovery experiences, and which purposes it serves. To do so, you create your commerce store data model, where you define the fields and its related attributes and specify how the search features (or any other related Empathy Platform tools), will use them classifying them as searchable, filterable, facetable, etc.

To help you prepare your data model, check the guidelines about the fields to map in your data model.

Prepare the feed

Once you have your data model ready, you polish and organize your product catalogue in a feed file according to the definition made. In the feed file, your catalogue is represented as a list of documents, where each document identifies one product and describes its properties. In the feed file, mandatory fields are the ones that identify the product (id, name, description, etc.), while optional fields add commercial information that guides the search experience (price, size, brand, stock, etc.).

To learn more about the feed file and general guidelines, see Prepare your feed file.

Upload the feed

Once you have your feed ready, you can upload the feed directly with the Empathy Platform Index API using different methods available post a feed (Postman, cURL, etc.) or using the Instance Management Console of the Empathy Platform Playboard. When you upload a feed, it's internally validated to ensure the indexing process can be performed successfully by the Index microservice.


Explore the Index API endpoints in the Index API reference and learn more about how to manage your product catalogue indexing.