We are working on a way to optimize our work flow for making product sell sheets and catalogs. For this we have begun using data merge in inDesign.
We have figured out the basics of data merging with multiple record per page. But our number 1 issue is that we wish to be able to make product tags like tags you would see on a webpage. We can easily input them with blank fields and such, but we would like some graphical background like a button on the product tag.
But the graphics is "duplicated"/data merged no matter if the tag field is blank.
Furthermore i would like to hear what the possibilities is regarding to customizing the layout throughout the catalog.
You'll need to use a commercial plug-in that can do conditional merges. They are readily available at a cost. Depending upon your needs, InData from Em Software may work well (I use it for a whole lot of merges) at the lower price range, or InCatalog or Easy Catalog at the higher end of cost.
The products from Em Software (InData / InCatalog) are the only products above I have used.