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One-Way VS Two-Way Database Integration


Data integration is a significant series of events that need to occur in order to properly make use of the DotActiv Enterprise and DotActiv Pro versions. Data integration can be split into 2 main sections, the initial one-way integration and then the follow-up two-way integration. It is crucial to understand the differences and benefits of each. In this article, we will compare the differences, and benefits and go into detail about what you can expect from each integration.

Understanding The Different Integrations

To accurately compare and understand the benefits of the different integrations, the main concept needs to be understood. For an in-depth understanding, read through this article to understand what each integration step entails. 

One-Way Integration

The aim of a one-way integration is to import retail data from the client’s data source (Sales Database, ERP, SAP etc) into the DotActiv database structure that is hosted on a SQL server. The data is imported in a specific format based on staging tables. This will then allow users to analyse, report, range, cluster, create floor plans/planograms, and make use of all DotActiv Pro and Enterprises’ features.

Two-Way Integration

A two-way integration includes all of the steps mentioned above, but instead of feeding data back into the DotActiv database, the causal data, with value-added from planogram generation, ranging and clustering, will be scripted back into the database and exported by the use of Export Staging Tables. The information in the Export Staging Tables will then feed into the client’s replenishment cycles. This could include ranging information, product status information, updated or corrected values for any of the feeds, stock information for replenishment engines, or additional values calculated on DotActiv’s side as per the client’s wish.  All these can be exported for the client to receive and ingest into the original systems on the client’s side.

A two-way integration also allows the idea of store communication to be brought into the conversation.

Benefits Of Each Integration

Before moving on to the comparisons, it is vital to understand the benefits of each.

One-Way Integration

  • Allows for a consistent, clean feed of data for the user to work with. Ensures that the produced information from space planning or ranging/clustering is kept up-to-date,  relevant and recent. 
  • Allows for historical comparisons of data, which helps analyse trends and popular products/categories.
  • Allows for ranging and clustering to occur.
  • Allows for optimizations to occur.
  • Less human interaction with the data means a smaller chance of dirty data being imported into the system.
  • Allows for data cubes to be used which allows the user to export custom CSVs that list specific fields from the database.
  • Allows multiple people to work together with one version of the truth.
  • Allows for a seamless flow of information and centralized access to data.
  • Time saver due to less amount of manual work as well as ease of use.
  • Data can be run after-hours which reduces the load on servers resulting in a better user experience
  • Data is available on time and at the right time.  

Two-Way Integration

  • Allows for any database change made to product/market fields to be imported back into the client’s systems (e.g. dimension information, Size/UOM information, geographical information for stores, etc.)
  • Ranging information (active or inactive SKUs) can be communicated back to the client’s ERP system with more ease.
  • Stock information and other space planning data (e.g. facings, capacity, etc…) can be sent back to the client for replenishment engines or merely to track the information. 
  • Any additional calculations made in the DotActiv software can be reported back to the client.
  • Fixture information can also be communicated to the client.
  • Opens up the possibility of store communications. In order to import planogram/floorplan-oriented information back into the database, the files need to be processed by DotActiv’s backend software, the DotActiv Import Utilities. This allows DotActiv to then communicate this information to a client’s Activ8 ProPlan. Their stores can be loaded onto the website and provided with login information where they can then download planogram reports to help stock and implement planograms correctly. This removes the necessity of a middle-man communicating the planogram information manually.
  • Correct stock quantities can be communicated to the client to avoid potential over or under-stocking.
  • Information can be sent back to the client for Business Intelligence reporting.
  • Ensures continuity and profitability of the business by adding value back to the client.
  • Communicates minimum stock orders to replenishment engines.
  • Adds value in terms of using stock and ranging indicators.

Comparison Between The Integrations

One-Way IntegrationTwo-Way Integration
Allows for consistent and clean data to be imported into the client’s DotActiv SQL database and used by the front-end software.Allows for consistent and clean data to be communicated from the DotActiv database back into the client’s systems which allows for product/store information to be kept more up-to-date on their side, and for certain sales/stock data to be implemented and tracked on the client’s side, not just DotActiv’s side.
Planograms can be created using clean data. This is because the data sets have had very little human intervention to be imported into the system as it is performed automatically.Any information that is calculated on DotActiv’s end while space planning can be ingested back into the client’s systems. This includes data like Facings, Capacity, POG information, Supply information, DISC information, etc.
Planograms and their reports have to be manually communicated to the clients and any stores where they need to be implemented.Planogram information can be automatically communicated back to the clients once they pick up the data. Planogram/floor plan reports and visual 2D representations can then also be communicated to the stores without the need for a middleman via Activ8 ProPlan.
DotActiv data can be used for reporting that can be manually presented back to the clients.DotActiv data can be imported into systems that allow for replenishment engines or other engines to automatically ingest the agreed-upon information and proceed with stock/ranging communication.


A one-way integration is a gateway into an automated system that eliminates human intervention when communicating data from the client into the DotActiv database. However, in order for the cycle to be fully automated and completed, a two-way integration is needed. This will essentially ensure that all necessary information is communicated back to the client as simply and efficiently as possible. 

Updated on May 18, 2023

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