Commerce Categories

This information refers to SuiteCommerce or the Vinson release of SuiteCommerce Advanced or later.

Commerce Categories enable you to create a hierarchical structure of product categories, subcategories, and products. At the top level of this hierarchy is the catalog. Each site can have one catalog, and all categories are assigned to that catalog. A well-planned and organized catalog lets you present items on your website to your shoppers in a structured fashion. The catalog’s category hierarchy can be general purpose in nature to present all items that you sell. Alternatively, the catalog might be based on occasion such as season. For example, you may have a spring theme that highlights spring related apparel and accessories, or a back to school organization that emphasizes back to school specials.

Since you can assign the same item to multiple categories, your category structure can even be a combination of both types. An example of this would be a larger multi-purpose category organization with subcategories that highlight spring fashions and accessories in addition to the more common categories of Men’s, Women’s, or Children’s, with each of these containing multiple subcategories.

Category organization can be simple with one level of categories and products assigned to those categories. More likely, the category organization and structure is sophisticated with multiple category levels that result in a well-organized, intuitive grouping of products. Consider the following sample category hierarchy for an apparel site.


To manage Commerce Category records pages, you must have the appropriate permission.


This category structure contains 4 levels. The root level category is Men. This category is further organized by two levels of subcategories. Items are assigned to the lowest level subcategory. It is important to note that items do not have to be assigned to only the lowest level in the category hierarchy. You may have some levels that have both categories and items assigned to it.


SuiteCommerce can support a total of 9,999 categories and subcategories combined. In this image, there are 7 total categories and subcategories. Additionally, SuiteCommerce can support a total of 10,000 items per category.


Do not confuse Commerce Categories with Merchandise Hierarchy. Commerce Categories let you define the organization of items in your web store. Merchandise Hierarchy lets you efficiently group and manage products or inventory items across your enterprise. Merchandise Hierarchy can help you with planning, purchasing, and tracking your product inventory. For more information, see Merchandise Hierarchy.

Category URLs

When you create a category you specify the URL fragment for that category. The URL fragment is used for accessing that category page. URL fragments for categories and subcategories are concatenated together and prepended with the domain to form the full URL for a category page. For example the URL fragment for the category Camping is camping and the URL fragment for the category Camping Equipment is equipment. The Camping Equipment category is assigned as a subcategory of Camping. So the full URL becomes

For a subcategory you have the option of specifying a URL fragment override which is substituted for that subcategory when it is accessed as a subcategory of that parent category. This enables you to use one URL fragment when the subcategory is accessed through one parent category and a different URL fragment when it is accessed through a different parent category. For more information about subcategories see Create Subcategories for a Commerce Category.

Categories in Site Management Tools

In addition to creating and managing categories in NetSuite, you can also manage categories in Site Management Tools. Any changes you make to categories in SMT are reflected in NetSuite. Any category management you perform in NetSuite is reflected in SMT. Category management in Site Management Tools is always in a published state on your site. See Commerce Categories in SMT for more information about managing categories in Site Management Tools.

Related Topics

Item Grouping Methods
Set Up NetSuite
Configure Commerce Categories Properties

General Notices