How ERP Integration for Ecommerce Helps Your Business10 March 2023
Enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems are well known for their ability to streamline business functions. According to a recent survey, 96.4% of companies saw business process improvements after ERP integration.
For an ERP system to perform its role of managing all aspects of your business efficiently, it needs to work seamlessly with the various systems you use for your daily operations. We’ll cover why this ERP system integration process is so important and the challenges you need to be aware of when integrating systems with your ERP.
Here’s what we’ll cover:
- What Is ERP Integration?
- Why Is ERP Integration Important?
- What Are the Benefits of ERP Integration?
- ERP Integration Challenges
- Final Thoughts: How ERP Integrated Ecommerce Helps Your Business
What Is ERP Integration?
ERP Integration means connecting your enterprise resource planning solution with other systems that you use for your business. The purpose of integration is to facilitate the transfer of business information between both systems.
For example, a business that runs an online store can use an ecommerce solution that integrates with its ERP platform to allow sharing of data about customers, product orders, inventory, and order fulfillment between the two systems.
Other systems that can integrate with your ERP include business intelligence, customer relationship management (CRM), human resources (HR), accounting, supply chain management, procurement, and project management.
Why Is ERP Integration Important?
Most companies use software applications for various parts of their daily activities. Continuing with our example of an online store business, they can use the following tools as part of their operations:
- An ecommerce platform like k-ecommerce to run the online store
- A CRM tool to make their customer relationships
- A human resource management software for staff management
- A payment solution to receive payments and manage finances
Keeping track of information between all these systems can become tedious and risks errors, especially when you have to manually transfer information from one system to another, like reconciling sales information from your ecommerce platform with the records in your accounting software.
ERP platforms are designed to be the hub for all these disparate systems and eliminate data silos. Once ERP software is integrated into the various workflows of your business operations, it ensures proper communication between your existing systems.
Your ecommerce application can provide payment updates to your accounting system as they happen and new customer information to your CRM. And your HR management platform can automatically report wage payments to the accounting system. Best of all, ERP integration makes all this happen with minimum additional effort on your part.
What Are the Benefits of ERP Integration?
ERP integration offers benefits that save time and money, and reduce staffing needs by eliminating redundancies and streamlining processes. Integrating your ERP with the systems you use for your business can have the following advantages:
Automates Repetitive Tasks
Routine business processes like data entry, data analysis, and report generation can be automated once the relevant systems are integrated with your ERP. This automation reduces the risk of human error and boosts productivity for your team.
For an ecommerce integration, Once a customer places an order, records are automatically created and sent to your ERP, while payment details and sent to your accounting system, and a receipt is generated and emailed to the customer.
Most of this would have to be done manually without integrating these systems.
Eliminates Data Silos
ERP integration ensures that all your important business information is accessible across systems rather than held separately by systems that don’t communicate.
Without integration, customer information would be split across three different systems; your ecommerce solution, your CRM, and your accounting system. Making changes on any of these systems would require manually updating the others.
However, ERP integration harmonizes data flow between these sources and eliminates inconsistencies. Your ERP becomes the single source of truth for all your connected business applications.
Improves the Decision-Making Process
ERP integration makes it possible to have real-time data from the different parts of your business. Combining all this information in one place to review and analyze can give you a high-level overview of your operations, making it easier to draw insights that can influence your decisions about your business.
For example, optimizing your inventory quantities based on shopping trends for products from your ecommerce store or designing engagement campaigns for specific customers based on past spending.
Simplifies Operations and Improves Customer Experience
ERP integration can enhance your operational efficiency by improving access to information from a centralized hub. It also makes team collaboration easier.
This improved operational efficiency can also lead to an improved customer experience. For example, an ERP-integrated ecommerce solution can allow you to automatically transfer product orders to your fulfillment systems, reducing the time between order placement and delivery.
ERP Integration Challenges
Integrations can be a tricky process. Here are some of the things that can impact your ERP system integrations.
Facilitating communications between two different systems can be complicated. This complexity may come from legacy systems, differing data formats, or the need for more technical capacity to implement the integrations.
Solving this means choosing an integration solution that emphasizes its customer support and provides technical assistance to ensure success. With k-ecommerce, you get an ecommerce solution that offers tight ERP integration as one of its key features and a live support team to help resolve any integration issues.
Implementation Pricing and Timelines
The process of ERP integration can be cost-intensive and lengthy, with benefits that take time to realize. There are costs involved with implementing and maintaining the integrations, training staff to utilize them, and troubleshooting.
With k-ecommerce, you can enjoy a cost structure that is predictable and transparent. This comprehensive solution covers all aspects, including maintenance, updates, and a turnkey approach, ensuring that you won’t encounter any unexpected surprises. You can also implement your integration within weeks so you can benefit from the integration as soon as possible.
Its integration costs also include customer support for one year, staff training, maintenance, and updates.
If the connection between your ERP and business systems is unsecured, your business is vulnerable to cybersecurity attacks from malicious actors. This is a serious issue for organizations that use integrations from ecommerce systems to share financial and customer data.
As an ERP-integrated ecommerce platform, k-ecommerce offers PCI Level 1 certified infrastructure, which guarantees the highest level of protection for financial information.
Final Thoughts: How ERP Integrated Ecommerce Helps Your Business
The key to reaping the benefits of any ERP system implementation is ensuring that they integrate seamlessly with all your business’s software systems.
With a strong ERP integration partner to ensure data integrity and security, your business can improve its operational efficiency, automate its operations, and receive the insights it needs to make smart decisions about its future.
With k-ecommerce, you have access to PCI security compliance, embedded payment gateways, and integration with online marketplaces like Amazon and eBay. Get in touch to learn more about our solutions for your business.