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I'm making a Publishing site, and part of this site will display information about company products. We have a number of products, and each one should have its own description page. The description of each will be fairly standardised, with each Product having a standard set of properties, e.g. Name, Description, Image.

If I was doing this in a standard web app, I might have a Product table in a DB and automatically generate the pages from each of the rows in that table.

I'm not sure how to go about this in SharePoint however. Would I have a product Content Type, and then maybe a Product list, and perhaps a Product Page Layout from which the page for each product is completed? Or something totally different? I'm a bit clueless as to how to go about this, so thanks for any pointers.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

You are spot on, but don't expect any of the more advanced database capabilities such as referential integrity and joins.

Have a look at this discussion as well: using SharePoint as a database.

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As a note to this, I've just come across the page "Using SharePoint Lists vs. Database Tables" ( which provides good guidance on when to use a database as opposed to a list, and vice versa. – ngm Jun 16 '10 at 10:31

I will sugest your second option to define a product content type with the fields you need and then a Product Page Layout based on this contant type. In my opinion this is the best approch for publishing site.

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Also remember that Business Data Catalog (BDC) also can be used to integrate your productdata in the pages using business data meta data field.

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