04 Apr ERP for eCommerce. Shopify and Magento integration.
In today’s hyper-competitive business world eCommerce has become a must for every modern-thinking company.
Whether operating Business-to-Business or Business-to-Consumer, a real edge can be found in not only accelerating delivery to the customer but by inventing new ways to continuously improve the customer experience.
Over the last few years, the Internet has overseen the rapid growth of small and medium-size businesses globally. With the proliferation of cloud, small and medium-size companies can ‘punch above their weight’ and operate on a par with large players. Consumers now expect the same service levels from small e-retailers as they experience with the major players such as Amazon and eBay. This service includes lightning quick, sometimes, same day delivery, no quibble returns, real-time stock visibility and more. This new era of competition forces e-retailers to constantly evolve and find modern and effective ERP systems that offer integration with eCommerce platforms.
Key benefits of ERP for eCommerce:
An ERP system that fully integrates with most eCommerce platforms streamlines transference of order data reducing manual or separate process flows, which otherwise would not scale up to desired business volumes. ERP integrated with eCommerce solutions ensures that data such as the product catalog is managed in one single place with resulting benefits of improved accuracy and efficiency.
Better decision making
The eCommerce back office traditionally provides;- Accounting, Procurement/Inventory Management, Vendor/Warehouse Management, Shipping Systems, Payment Processing, and CRM to support a business. Typically, the company has various software solutions to address all these areas, and each area can function independently. Without very strict control through integrated processes (most of which would be manual), companies risk taking decisions based on inaccurate data potentially leading to dissatisfied customers. Modern, cloud-based ERP systems typically include applications for all of these areas, ensuring that each business area is the sole ‘source of truth’ yielding better and faster decision making.
Understanding sales trends allows for better inventory projection by accurately identifying resource needs, which leads to better customer satisfaction and a release of capital alternatively tied up in inventory.
Most eCommerce companies will look to raise funds for growth or just want to enjoy smooth financial audits. A good ERP ensures that all financial statements comply with modern Accounting Principles and Reporting Standards. This will often entail complex currency management and challenging tax reporting. Often, the justification for ERP is raised by the accounts team whose responsibilities would be otherwise compounded with growing transaction volumes and variables in reporting as the business seeks new markets and types of customer.
Whichever online platforms you operate, or if you are an online marketer and run your own website and listing on Amazon or eBay, you need to be able to manage inventory in multiple locations and channels to improve the customer experience. An ERP integrated with your store, as well as points of sale, market places, etc. will significantly improve delivery performance and increase the chance of happy, returning customers.
Studies show that customer experience is beginning to transcend price and product and will be the key factor in brand differentiation by 2020.
In this, it’s vital that you can track customer interactions, respond to customer queries quickly and monitor your performance in all case escalation. It is also important to have end to end visibility of all transactions with your business, regardless of the type of channel.
Popular eCommerce platforms: Shopify and Magento
Selecting the most suitable eCommerce platform to create, manage and maintain an online store is critical as it will inevitably determine the success of your business. This is evermore important for small and medium-sized businesses as natural financial constraints will be present and competitive forces place inherent pressure on profit and therefore scope to reinvest in IT and operations.
Shopify and Magento are two of the most popular eCommerce platforms on the market today. Shopify is well-known as a SaaS offering providing tools for both online and physical sales. With Shopify, users can set up online stores with pre-designed themes. They can also take payment from a variety of sources and use the ensuing analytics to monitor sales trends. This can better help the understanding of where the sales focus and marketing effort should be applied.
Magento is an open-source cloud eCommerce platform enabling brands to; create a more engaging shopping experience, drive revenue growth and operate efficiently. Magento exists in 3 versions: the Community Edition, Enterprise Edition, and Enterprise Cloud Edition. The ‘starter’ edition can be downloaded for free, the other two billed annually.
Shopify and Magento integration
Due to the omni-channel retail model, it becomes a necessity to achieve a modern structure. Companies turn to solutions like Acumatica in order to consolidate their systems management. Moreover, through Arcus Universe, you can achieve integration with Acumatica and modern eCommerce platforms.
This eCommerce technology from Arcus provides coincidence of data between Acumatica and the eCommerce platform. Such integration can save inordinate levels of resource, data entry inaccuracies and, simply put, is the secret to unconstrained growth.
Shopify ERP integration
Your business can enjoy a bi-directional flow of data between Acumatica Cloud ERP and Shopify. With this integration, you can feed data into one platform (Acumatica or Shopify) and the other will be automatically populated. This eliminates time and the errors normally associated with repeat manual entry.
Magento ERP integration
Create a two-way flow between Magento Commerce and Acumatica Cloud ERP to share customer, product and fulfilment data across functions. With this integration, you will see data updating in a real time and unprompted manner.
As we can see, it’s impossible to stress enough the importance of making the right choice in the eCommerce platform and its ability to work directly with ERP. The right mix will pay endless dividends in the future success of your business. New technology brings flexibility and agility, in turn, that flexibility gives you ‘choice’. The choice to diversify your products, scale your business and move into new geographic markets. All this is achievable with less effort and diminishing marginal investment.