Understanding Products and Product Variants

When managing your e-commerce store, it's important to grasp the distinction between products and product variants. This guide will clarify their definitions and help you effectively categorize and present your inventory to customers.


A product represents a general item or entity that you offer for sale. It can be seen as the main category or concept under which specific variations or options exist. For example, if you sell clothing, a product could be a T-shirt or a specific model of a smartphone in the electronics category.

Product Variants

Product variants are specific versions or variations of a product. These variants are different options available within a product category, typically distinguished by attributes like size, color, material, or other defining features. For instance, within the T-shirt product category, product variants can include different sizes (small, medium, large) or colors (red, blue, green).

☝️Product Variants have SKUs

In Koi, it is the product variants that are assigned SKUs.

In ecommerce platforms like Koi, a SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) is a unique identifier or code assigned to specific product variants, not the entire product. SKUs are used to track inventory levels, identify products, and facilitate efficient stock control. Each product variant in Koi is assigned its own SKU for effective inventory management.

Benefits of Using Product Variants

  • Enhanced customer choice: By offering product variants, you provide customers with the ability to select specific attributes that meet their preferences or requirements.
  • Streamlined inventory management: Managing product variants allows you to track stock levels and variations more efficiently, ensuring accurate inventory control.
  • Improved customer experience: Clear presentation of product variants enables customers to easily find and select the desired options, leading to a smoother shopping experience.

How does Koi manage Products and their Variants?

☝️Every product has at least one Variant

In Koi, like other well-known ecommerce sites, every item has a minimum of one product variant.

When you create a product in Koi, a product variant will be automatically created for it. Even if the product only has one variant, this helps with scalability and provides flexibility for the future. It keeps the platform's structure consistent, making it simpler to manage and add more variants when needed.

If don't assign a SKU to your product variant, Koi will generate one for you.

Best Practices

  • Clearly define product attributes: Identify the key attributes that differentiate your product variants, such as size, color, or material. This will help you organize and present your inventory effectively.
  • Consistent naming and organization: Use clear and consistent naming conventions for your product variants to avoid confusion. Maintain a logical structure and categorization that aligns with customer expectations.
  • Detailed and accurate product information: Provide comprehensive and accurate details for each product variant, including specific attributes, images, and descriptions. This helps customers make informed purchase decisions.


Understanding the distinction between products and product variants is crucial for managing your e-commerce store effectively. By categorizing and presenting your inventory correctly, you can offer customers a wide range of choices and deliver a seamless shopping experience.

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