The development of software for e-commerce is of extreme importance nowadays. With the wave of connectivity, consumers are immersed in the digital world. Therefore, selling over the Internet has become necessary for all businesses.
You can hire ecommerce development services in usa to integrate the right tools into your business. Online stores are another sales channel and are part of the business structure. However, it is common to find companies that do not integrate e-commerce and management software. The disintegrated online store increases operating costs due to customer management from orders, logistics processes, duplicate information, increased manual procedures, and human error.
Software development: The importance of integration in e-commerce
Managing e-commerce involves several activities, for example, registering products, checking sales, monitoring stock, issuing invoices, and delivering goods. However, these are just some of the day-to-day activities at work.
At first, it seems easy to perform all operations manually, but as online sales increase, it gets tough. That’s why many entrepreneurs invest in software.
Each department is managed through a system. These include:
- In management: register users, files and manage access rights, etc.
- In purchases: manage the acquisition of products for resale and the acquisition of support materials.
- In production: companies that produce their own products. Generate production orders and follow-up reports.
- In control: manage company resources, carry out inventory and allocate direct and indirect cost centers.
- In billing: functions such as issuing invoices and checking stock availability.
- In finance: manage accounts payable and accounts receivable, assist in cost management. Like monthly merchandise purchases and setting resale prices.
- In CRM: data management and customer purchase history allow targeted marketing actions and activities.
- In logistics: inventory, cargo transport control, and reverse logistics.
There are several ways to do this integration, but two of them are the most traditional and the most used; APIs and spreadsheets. Let’s look at each item in detail.
The integration of APIs is best suited for e-commerce operations. That is, the main steps for updating information do not depend on human intervention.
To do this, your ERP and webshop need configuration to document the structure of the web service. In other words, both systems get the information from the databases for the software to automatically update the information.
The Web Service documentation serves as a guide for the company responsible for the integration to exchange information between the two environments in an organized manner and respect the standards of each system.
Integration via spreadsheets
Software development for e-commerce occurs as the data from the two environments are updated through spreadsheets. This is done entirely manually, so it’s not recommended.
First, the company exports the information to management software and then imports it to e-commerce. The problem is that the formats of these two spreadsheets will almost never have the same structure, so they need adjustments before importing.
Another unfavorable factor is that this process depends on people to export, process, and import the data. Therefore, it is only indicated when no other form of automation exists.
Software development: Advantages of e-commerce integration with management software
The first advantage of integrating management software in e-commerce is that all organization departments are widely understood in one platform, which helps in decision-making. In addition, execution integration provides:
- An integrated offline and online inventory that allows access to the latest information on the document, thus simplifying purchasing management.
- Price changes, quantities, or promotional discounts are automatically integrated into digital channels.
- Automatically notify processing and order scheduling through order status tracking.
- E-commerce platform reports and convenient digital channels.
- Reduce the cost of logistics partners, optimizing order management;
- Sales are more frequent, without the need for employees to manage orders. Efficient onboarding is equivalent to labor from 1 order to 1,000 orders.
- Automating the concentration of information: greatly reduces human error, repetitive tasks, redundant information, etc.
Exporting e-commerce data for manual input into management software, human intervention, and duplication of information are repetitive, tedious, and fail-prone tasks. Consequently, they directly affect the company’s internal processes and customer satisfaction.
Finally, the integration of management software offers less bureaucracy and speed as well as fewer errors, economy, and organization. This way, your platform has enough scalability to allow the company to grow.
Why integrate with e-commerce platforms?
Before discussing the practice of software integration, understand why it is important, right?
Well, as you already know, the use of management software allows different departments of the company to work in harmony, to optimize and monitor all processes. Integration is no exception. It increases control over operations, improves business efficiency, and reduces costs.
But this is not all! Let’s take a look at more reasons to integrate ecommerce platforms:
- Optimization of error and fault diagnosis.
- Process automation to increase agility.
- Have more confidence in inventory control.
- Order routing and tracking.
- Invoice issuance.
- Improve customer relationships.
- Monitor and analyze KPIs (Key Performance Indicators).
- Optimize product registration.
- Integration with CRM (Customer Relationship Management).
- Remote management (mobility).
What is the best practice in this regard?
Now that you understand the benefits, it’s time to know what you need to do to ensure this integration is successful.
Choosing the e-commerce platform
Several platforms are available in the market, each with its functions, features, and integration methods. Therefore, the ideal is to carefully analyze the possibilities and choose the method that best suits your store’s specific needs. Look for a company offering the required help in all integration phases.
Choosing an ERP management system
ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) is the software responsible for organizing all activities and departments of the company, such as products, payments, orders, scheduling of goods, and issuing invoices.
Pay attention to the flow of operation between systems
Operating procedures between systems deserve special attention to eliminate errors and ensure the integration works. That is, the exchange of data between the platform and the ERP takes place in different processes.
Developing software for e-commerce is one of the most effective ways to grow a business. With software development for e-commerce, communication with suppliers is also improved, and response time to the public is reduced.
In addition, company management eliminates physical barriers through the use of applications. This opens up new possibilities for attracting and retaining customers.