5 Key Digital Asset Management Software Features and Top Products That Offer Them

By: Preksha Buttan on March 6, 2024
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Messaging teammates to get access to a document or searching for it in your inbox can be time-consuming and frustrating. Digital asset management (DAM) software simplifies this process by centralizing your digital assets, allowing quick search, and empowering you to control access rights.

Besides saving time otherwise spent searching files, digital asset management tools prevent unauthorized data access and maintain business data’s confidentiality. Yet, finding the right tool can be a confusing process. We suggest you start by learning about digital asset management features.

To help you with your search, this article highlights five key digital asset management software features based on the ratings given by verified software users. We also include the highest-rated digital asset management system for each feature. Read more.

Graphic showing the importance of key digital asset management software features: 84% asset library; 84% search/filter; 82% document storage; 78% asset sharing; 76% access controls/permissions.

1. Asset library

The asset library feature in digital asset management software is a centralized repository to store, organize, and manage digital assets, including images, videos, documents, and audio files. You can organize the assets by tagging and dividing them into various categories and folders, ensuring easy access and retrieval when needed. This efficient organization enhances productivity, facilitating asset utilization across different projects and teams.

84% of digital asset management software reviewers identify asset library as a highly important feature.

What business problem does asset library solve?

The asset library feature centralizes all the digital assets scattered across different locations, such as individual hard drives or cloud storage services. This keeps the assets organized and ensures easy accessibility, reducing the time spent searching for them. Besides, the asset library helps maintain brand consistency by providing a common source of truth for all brand-related digital assets. 

Ideal users of the asset library feature

Marketing teams rely on various digital assets for campaigns, social media, and content marketing. They can benefit from the asset library feature to organize, find, and reuse assets, ensuring brand consistency across all marketing channels. The corporate communications team can also leverage this feature of DAM tool to store and manage corporate documents, presentations, and multimedia assets, ensuring consistent messaging.

Top 3 products with the highest ratings for asset library

Analysis performed February 2024*

Paperflite

Paperflite

4.95 out of 5 stars

96 reviews

Asset library feature rating: 4.9/5

Dash

Dash

4.83 out of 5 stars

60 reviews

Asset library feature rating: 4.7/5

Canva

Canva

4.72 out of 5 stars

11785 reviews

Asset library feature rating: 4.6/5

2. Search/filter

The search/filter feature in digital asset management solutions allows you to quickly locate specific digital assets within a vast library using various search criteria and filters. You can search for assets by keywords, metadata (such as tags, descriptions, or file names), creation dates, and more. It supports dynamic searching, enabling you to refine your searches with multiple filters for precise results.

84% of digital asset management software reviewers identify search/filter as a highly important feature.

What business problem does search/filter solve?

The search/filter feature enhances the efficiency of locating specific digital assets within a vast collection. Without effective search capabilities, you might spend much time manually browsing through poorly organized folders. A DAM tool's search/filter functionality solves this by allowing you to apply keywords, tags, metadata, and other criteria to pinpoint the exact assets needed, thereby boosting productivity quickly.

Ideal users of the search/filter feature

IT and digital asset managers are typically responsible for the overall management of digital assets, including organizing and ensuring easy access. The search/filter feature allows them to manage large datasets effectively, ensuring assets are easy to locate and use.

Top 3 products with the highest ratings for search/filter

Analysis performed February 2024*

Paperflite

Paperflite

4.95 out of 5 stars

96 reviews

Search/filter feature rating: 4.8/5

Dash

Dash

4.83 out of 5 stars

60 reviews

Search/filter feature rating: 4.7/5

CELUM

CELUM

4.69 out of 5 stars

94 reviews

Search/filter feature rating: 4.7/5

3. Document storage

The document storage feature in a DAM system provides a secure and organized space to store various types of documents, including PDFs, Word files, presentations, and spreadsheets. This feature allows you to centralize all digital documents in one accessible location. It facilitates easy upload, categorization, and management of documents, ensuring they are safely stored and readily available for use.

82% of digital asset management software reviewers identify document storage as a highly important feature.

What business problem does document storage solve?

The document storage feature supports compliance with legal and regulatory requirements. It systematically organizes documents, making it easier to manage data, adhere to retention policies, and access necessary documents during audits. It also helps manage different versions of documents, ensuring that everyone is working on the latest version and that historical versions are preserved for compliance purposes.

Ideal users of the document storage feature

Corporate executives and managers often need quick access to performance reports, strategic plans, and other critical documents. The document storage feature enables them to manage and retrieve these documents to make informed decisions efficiently. Besides, IT and system administrators can leverage this feature to create data backup and ensure the security of important digital assets.

Top 3 products with the highest ratings for document storage

Analysis performed February 2024*

Dash

Dash

4.83 out of 5 stars

60 reviews

Document storage feature rating: 4.8/5

OneDrive

OneDrive

4.47 out of 5 stars

11939 reviews
Box

Box

4.39 out of 5 stars

5315 reviews

Document storage feature rating: 4.7/5

4. Asset sharing

The asset sharing feature in a DAM solution enables you to share digital assets, such as images, videos, documents, and audio files, with internal and external stakeholders. This functionality simplifies sending large files or collections of assets by providing secure links, embedding options, or direct integration with social media and other platforms. It ensures that recipients receive the correct version of an asset, enhancing collaboration and efficiency.

78% of digital asset management software reviewers identify asset sharing as a highly important feature.

What business problem does asset sharing solve?

The asset sharing feature eliminates traditional file-sharing methods such as email attachments, unreliable third-party services, and physical storage devices. This feature allows for direct sharing of files via the digital asset management tool. It also ensures that the recent file versions are shared, maintaining consistency and accuracy.

Ideal users of the asset sharing feature

Marketing teams often share a lot of marketing assets, such as campaign materials and brand assets, with external partners, media outlets, and internal departments. Asset sharing simplifies these processes, ensuring everyone can access the latest, brand-compliant materials. Similarly, creative teams regularly share their creative asset for review, feedback, or collaboration. This feature in DAM software allows for easy and secure sharing of large files without needing third-party services.

Top 3 products with the highest ratings for asset sharing

Analysis performed February 2024*

Paperflite

Paperflite

4.95 out of 5 stars

96 reviews

Asset sharing feature rating: 5/5

Dash

Dash

4.83 out of 5 stars

60 reviews

Asset sharing feature rating: 4.7/5

Canva

Canva

4.72 out of 5 stars

11785 reviews

Asset sharing feature rating: 4.6/5

5. Access controls/permissions

The access controls/permissions feature allows you to specify and manage who can view, edit, download, or share specific digital assets within the DAM system. This feature enables the creation of customized access levels for different users or user groups, ensuring that sensitive information and proprietary assets are only accessible to authorized personnel. It enhances security by preventing unauthorized access and potential misuse of digital content.

76% of digital asset management software reviewers identify access controls/permissions as a highly important feature.

What business problem does access controls/permissions solve?

Controlling who can view, edit, or share digital files prevents unauthorized individuals from accessing sensitive or proprietary digital assets. This process enhances overall data security, reducing the risk of data breaches and ensuring compliance with data protection regulations. It also helps maintain brand consistency by ensuring only the latest, approved digital media files are used in communications and marketing materials, preventing outdated or off-brand content from being distributed.

Ideal users of the access controls/permissions feature

IT and security teams responsible for maintaining the security and integrity of digital media can leverage this feature of DAM software. They can implement strict access controls to protect sensitive information against unauthorized access or breaches. Business leaders can also use this rights management functionality to control access to confidential or strategic business documents.

Top 3 products with the highest ratings for access controls/permissions

Analysis performed February 2024*

Paperflite

Paperflite

4.95 out of 5 stars

96 reviews

Access controls/permissions feature rating: 4.9/5

OneDrive

OneDrive

4.47 out of 5 stars

11939 reviews

Access controls/permissions feature rating: 4.5/5

Canva

Canva

4.72 out of 5 stars

11785 reviews

Access controls/permissions feature rating: 4.5/5


Methodology

Key features: To identify the key features of this article, we asked users to rate, on a scale of “low importance” to “critical,” how important different features are for digital asset management software. The features showcased are those that the highest percentage of reviewers rated as “highly important” or “critical” over the past two years (as of Feb. 20, 2024).

Feature eligibility: To be included in the set of features considered, a given feature had to have at least 200 user ratings within the past two years (as of Feb. 20, 2024), of which at least 20% must indicate the feature is “critical.” Eligible features were determined from two sources: 

  1. Our research team’s review of public information about digital asset management software usage, definitions, and associated features.

  2. Reviewers’ indication of the features they use for digital asset management.

Product selection: To identify the top-rated products per feature, we evaluated user ratings for products that offer each feature. For a given product, reviewers rate each feature on a scale of one to five stars. A given product had to have at least 20 user ratings (between February 2022-24) for the feature in question to be considered.

*We selected products for this article based on their average ratings between February 2022 - February 2024, which may differ from their current overall average ratings.