Image Relay vs Dash: Which is better for your brand?

Amy Burchill
9
minute read
Written By
Amy Burchill
July 19, 2023

If you work for a growing ecommerce brand, you know how important your visual content is. So making sure you implement a digital asset management (DAM) system that will help you make the most of that content should be a top priority.

Both Dash (that’s us) and Image Relay focus on helping ecommerce businesses grow. They both provide a single source of truth for your content and have features and functionality that marketers like you need to find, share and deploy your product assets.

But which DAM has the edge? 👀

This side-by-side comparison of both digital asset management software tools will explore Image Relay’s pros and cons. We’ll also compare features with Dash and look at other alternative DAM tools. At the end of this article, we hope you’ll be able to pick the tool that’s best for your brand. ✨

Image Relay: Pros and cons

First up, let’s take a look at some of Image Relay’s pros and cons for ecommerce marketers—ideal if you don’t have much time to read through the full comparison further down the article.

Image Relay Pros

     
  • Link product information with your assets: Image Relay prides itself on its integrated product information system (PIM). This is a biggie for large ecommerce brands with thousands of products and marketplaces.

    Image Relay’s PIM software is part of their Marketing Delivery platform which is separate from their DAM offering. Whilst PIM is a fantastic feature for big brands, it’s unclear how much extra you’ll need to pay on top of the standard digital asset management platform.

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  • Creating marketing templates: Image Relay has a simple, built-in templating feature for you to create marketing collateral— ideal for sharing with partners and retailers. You can select from a series of document sizes and create content like posters, leaflets and website banners. We’ll be honest, Dash doesn't offer this feature. But Image Relay's templating tool is pretty limited and there’s not a lot of room for creativity and creative control. You and your team will probably want to continue using tools like Canva for content creation.

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  • Serves lots of industries: Whilst Image Relay puts ecommerce brands front and centre, they also serve a host of other industries. These include Industrial Supplies and Machinery, Manufacturing, Tourism and Hospitality. Dash also has clients in these industries but builds features and integrations with ecommerce in mind. Vendors who try and build features for every industry will most likely charge you more—which isn’t fair if you’re only after a few specific features for your brand.

Image Relay Cons

     
  • Expensive and confusing pricing: Like many DAMs we see on the market, Image Relay’s pricing is expensive and—quite frankly—confusing. The company has two products: Marketing Delivery and Asset Library, both with different price plans. At a glance, it’ll cost you a minimum of $300 a month for a basic DAM package with a maximum of 50 users. In comparison, Dash starts at $109 a month and you get all features and unlimited users. Scoot down this article to learn more about the nitty-gritty of the different tiers.

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  • The interface is clunky: On Image Relay’s G2 profile—a comparison site where customers can rate software tools—you can view screenshots of their product. These screenshots show an interface that’s clunky and uninspiring.

    Take Collections, for example. This feature lets you share images and videos with your retail partners and agencies. According to their screenshots, Image Relay’s Collections look clunky, grey and lacking inspiration. This won’t do your visuals justice and it might have a negative impact on your brand.

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  • Designed on a folder-based system: Judging by their website, it seems Image Relay is designed around folder structures. And whilst folders are important in helping you and your team organise groups of assets, they can quickly become difficult to navigate and restrict searchability. That’s because you end up duplicating assets to sit across multiple folders, and it’s easy to get lost in a labyrinth of subfolders.

    Dash, on the other hand, encourages you to use tags and fields to create a better and more user-friendly search experience, meaning you’ll find assets much quicker. You can read more about folders vs fields in Charlie’s article.

Image Relay alternatives

If you’re here because you’d like to check out some of the different DAMs on the market, you’ve come to the right place. Here are some Image Relay alternatives for you to consider.

Dash - for growing ecommerce brands

If you’re a growing ecommerce brand, Dash (that’s us) is a very worthy contender. For starters, our pricing tiers are ideal for teams on a budget. For £79/$109 per month, you’ll get access to all features, including our Shopify and Canva integrations. You can also have as many users as you like at no extra charge. Take a read of our article that explains how Dash has been built for ecommerce brands, like yours. 💫

Brandfolder - for enterprise companies

As a market leader, Brandfolder stands as one of the best DAMs for enterprise companies. It’s got loads of features and integrations and serves some of the biggest companies in the world. It has a slick interface and offers lots of complex functionality— ideal if you’re a massive brand with teams all over the world. Pricing however starts from around $1600 per month (yes, you read that right 🤯) so it might not be the best choice if you’re a smaller company. Read our article about Brandfolder alternatives for a deeper dive.

Canto - for middle-market businesses

Canto is probably the closest alternative to Image Relay on this list (aside from Dash, of course). It’s for middle-market companies—so it’s not for small businesses or massive corporations. It’s got a decent range of features and serves lots of different industries. One downside, however, is that the interface is a bit outdated and the system will set you back about $600 per month. You can read more about it in our article about Canto alternatives.

Bynder - another option for large organisations

Possibly the most well-known DAM on our list is Bynder. It’s been around since 2013 and has established itself as a market leader. With thousands of big names on its client list, it’s clear Bynder is a popular choice amongst enterprise companies. But, as with most digital asset management software vendors, it comes with a hefty price tag. You’ll be looking at around $450 for the most basic DAM package. And Bynder charges per user (as one of our customers who left Bynder for Dash, Fwip, discovered). So if you’re a growing brand you’ll quickly see the monthly costs rack up. Read more in our article that delves into Bynder’s pros and cons.

How Dash compares to Image Relay for ecommerce brands

This is the part where we really dig into what Image Relay can do and how it compares with our own digital asset management solution, Dash. As both tools cater for ecommerce brands, we’ll pay particular attention to the features and functionality that’ll help you grow your online store. But do check out our full list of digital asset management features to get the entire picture.

Image Relay vs Dash: Features

Image Relay and Dash are pretty neck-and-neck when it comes to the features they offer. Both include features like AI tagging, bulk uploading and downloading and customisable user permissions.
There are a few differences, however. Let’s break them down:

Image Relay features

The main feature that separates the two tools is Image Relay’s Marketing Delivery platform. This is geared towards ecommerce brands who want a PIM platform and is often used by companies with hundreds of thousands of products and SKU codes. As we’ve mentioned, it’s unclear how much extra you’ll need to pay on top of the standard digital asset management system. But it’s certainly worth checking out if you’ve got the budget to spare.

Dash features

Dash, on the other hand, has other features that ecommerce brands will find helpful which Image Relay doesn’t support. Most notably, Portals and Guest Uploads:

Portals: This feature takes collections one step further. With Portals, you can create a Public version of your Dash. This is ideal if you want to share marketing content with your resellers, agencies or freelancers, but don’t want to hand out user logins. Resellers can search, filter and download assets just like they would in a regular Dash account. But they can’t edit or delete assets, or share the portal with anybody else. Here’s a glimpse of a Portal used by one of Dash’s ecommerce customers, Haws.

Haws portals in Dash

Guest uploading: Another feature that’s super handy for ecommerce brands is Dash’s Guest Upload. If you work with content creators or you collect user-generated content (UGC), it’s really easy to set up a Guest Upload link where customers and creators can go to upload digital content. They won’t need to be a user and you’ll be able to approve or reject images before they go live in Dash. You can read more about this feature in Barney’s article about getting UGC into Dash.

Image Relay vs Dash: Pricing

When it comes to affordable pricing, Dash takes the crown. Depending on the size of your brand, you can pick from a selection of four tiers. The cheapest is the startup plan which costs just £79/$109 per month, but you get all features and unlimited users on every tier. Unlike most DAMs, Dash charges you based on how many assets you have and how often you download them. In other words, you only pay for what you use—so you can quickly see your return on investment. 🤑

Take a look at our pricing page to get the full picture.

Image Relay’s pricing, on the other hand, is a little more complicated. For a basic asset library—that only includes the essential DAM features— you’re looking at a minimum of $300 per month. For advanced functionality like AI tagging and branded portals, it’ll cost you $750 per month. What’s more, if you want to purchase the Marketing Delivery platform that includes Image Relay’s PIM offering, you’ll need to book a demo with a member of the team first.

Image Relay vs Dash: Integrations

We won’t lie, Image Relay trumps Dash when it comes to the number of integrations on offer. At last count, Image Relay had 43 tools that you can connect your account with. Dash, on the other hand, has 19.

Having said that, Image Relay and Dash have a lot of integrations in common including Shopify, WordPress, Hootsuite, Google Drive, Dropbox, Box and Slack.

Dash also has some additional integrations that are particularly suited to ecommerce teams. These include Canva, and Shopify. You can check out our full list of integrations to see how Dash fits into your tech stack.

Image Relay vs Dash: User interface and user experienc

We know that growing your online business is time-consuming. That’s why Dash’s user interface is super-slick and easy to use —meaning there are minimal learning curves for your users.

Your visual assets are displayed in big, bold thumbnails. And it’s really easy to browse through tags and fields to whittle down your keyword search. Here’s what it looks like to search in Dash.

Search for assets in Dash-1

What’s more, the admin area is simple to navigate and free of clutter. So you can easily adjust permissions and user groups on the fly.

Set user permissions in Dash

Image Relay also gets some pretty good reviews when it comes to its user interface. Customers report that it’s easy to navigate and “visually simple”.

Let’s compare the two by looking at an asset view in both tools. This is where you’ll spend a lot of your time—viewing details of your images and organising them using tags and fields.

Here’s what a side-by-side comparison of an asset view in Image Relay and Dash looks like.

Image Relay vs Dash asset view (5) (1)

We’ll let you decide which one you prefer. 😇

Image Relay vs Dash: Customer support

As a small team, we know how important good customer service is. You’ll be using your digital asset management tool every day—so having customer support that solves problems quickly means you won’t get held up if an issue arises.

Both Dash and Image Relay get great feedback from customers when it comes to customer support. But—according to a G2 report—Dash does slightly better with an overall rating of 9.6/10 (compared with Image Relay’s rating of 9.3/10). Just take it from one of our customers who says our customer service and support is “amazing”. 🥰

Picking the right DAM for your brand

So now you’ve weighed up both DAM tools, how do you know what to pick?
Both Dash and Image Relay are great options for ecommerce brands. Both offer features, integrations and support that’ll help your business grow. 🚀 So to help you make a decision, here are some things to consider:

     
  • Decide what features are most important to you
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  • See which DAM can integrate with your current tech stack
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  • Make sure your digital asset management is easy-to-use so your team can get started quickly
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  • Consider the quality of customer support
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  • Finally—determine how much budget you have to spend every month

If you’re still not decided, make sure to download our comparison worksheet to help weigh up your options. 👇

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If you want to try Dash (and we hope you do), you can set up a 14-day free trial, no strings attached. And if you want to speak to a member of our team, simply book a quick demo and we’ll show you around the system.

Amy Burchill

Amy Burchill is the SEO and Content Manager for Dash. She works with ecommerce experts to create articles for DTC brands wanting to improve their campaigns.

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Amy Burchill

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