During the 2020-21 pandemic we saw an increase in online buying. Along with making purchases to enhance safety, businesses and consumers alike have been quick to realise the added convenience and security this buying method offers them. Regardless of whether you sell business to business (B2B), business to consumer (B2C) or direct to the customer (D2C), the increased use of e-commerce makes it an even more important element of your enterprise sales strategies than ever before.
However, fully integrating your e-commerce platform with the enterprise resource planning (ERP) system you currently use is essential to maximising its potential. By linking online orders with your individual teams for operations, manufacturing, and production, your business will enjoy increased efficiency. Optimising your business management process alongside your ERP process flows, will offer you greater levels of seamless order management.
Read on as we explore why an integrated e-commerce distribution business system with an application programming interface (API) is a go-to solution, and how it can help your organisation stay flexible and effective.
What is e-commerce and how does it work?
Put simply, e-commerce describes commercial transactions that are carried out electronically online. Selling platforms display goods for purchase, offer product details and sometimes even reviews. They also offer consumers swift and secure ways to pay. These attributes make e-commerce a quick and efficient way to buy and sell goods, with transactions completed in just a few simple mouse clicks.
Why is an ERP system integration with your e-commerce platforms important?
Using an API that integrates your e-commerce distribution systems, that is, your selling platforms to you ERP system, allows you to create direct links. This can provide better processes control and enhanced business insight. The flow of communication and information from your sales channels then automatically feeds into your business management solutions, meaning that sales orders, production planning and scheduling, manufacturing, stock control and shipping can be managed in on place, through your ERP.
ERP integration via an API works to make that connection from your e-commerce data directly to your ERP system. This ensures that selling a product to distributing it, every step in the process is synchronised and informed by one another.
How can using integrated e-commerce and ERP systems benefit you?
This approach connects every department from accounts, sales, customer relations (CRM), to inventory, packing, distribution and logistics. Offering you a greater overview of your operations and up-to-date information on selling trends, which can also inform stock ordering, and future planning decisions. In addition to this, it provides a smoother buyer experience, helping you monitor and grow your customer base, as well as improving your professional reputation.
Using a fully integrated solution gives you a more efficient way of working, saving time and money. Actioning updates to product information or adding brand-new product ranges is made much more flexible and quicker when you connect all of your sales channels to flow into your e-commerce web shops.
Is it time to update your business system with an integrated approach?
As you grow, it’s natural that you will adopt different types of business processes and will require a software solution that can wrap around your business, to handle different areas including workflows that fit around your internal work instructions or information systems. When working with lots of systems or those that cannot effectively capture your data, unlocking that next level of business growth can be a challenge. By integrating all areas and linking them together under one business management solution, which ERP systems offer, you can enjoy the many benefits mentioned above.
Experts in ERP
If you work in the manufacturing sector and your enterprise is selling inventory online, and you now need to incorporate your e-commerce platform with a suitable ERP system, we can help. WinMan specialises in creating tailored ERP solutions to suit your specific requirements, experienced in assisting enterprises to remain at the forefront of their field.
Click to download the Sil-Mid case study to explore a live user of WinMan ERP offering you insight into a long-term success story
For expert advice and support, or to discuss how, when and why you should update your current system, get in touch with our expert team of consultants today.