A catalog holds any number of other catalogs (for custom catalogs) or categories, and represents the entirety of what users see in your online store. If you have ATG Consumer Commerce with standard catalogs, you have only one catalog, so this layer is not available through the ATG Control Center. If you have ATG Business Commerce, or have ATG Consumer Commerce but are using custom catalogs, this layer is available to you. For more information on custom catalogs, see the Using Custom Catalogs chapter in the ATG Commerce Programming Guide.

A category can be either the child of one or more other categories or a root category. A root category is a starting point in the navigational structure of the catalog.

A product is a navigational end-point in the catalog. However, customers actually purchase the SKUs associated with the product, not the product itself. A product can have several associated SKUs, representing different varieties, sizes, and colors.

Note: Every time you make changes to the product catalog on your staging server, you must run GenerateAncestorService before copying your changes to the live version. Depending on which type of catalog you have, see either Using Custom Catalogs chapter or Catalog Navigation and Searching chapter in the ATG Commerce Programming Guide.

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