08Contributed by Dan Scheffler, eCC
Starting an online business involves setting up many eCommerce and business management systems, including: (1) a website with a shopping cart interface (2) a merchant account with a secure payment processor (3) shipping via one or more shipping carriers, and (4) an accounting management system. These systems are dynamic and require individual setup. Some reside on the Internet, while others are installed onto your local computer.
One of the most popular accounting management systems for small- and medium-sized online businesses is QuickBooks, particularly the desktop editions. Depending on your business needs, QuickBooks offers a wide variety of accounting management applications, from Simple Start to Enterprise to Point of Sales. However, because QuickBooks and your web-store are two separate entities, managing your sales, order fulfillment and inventory can be challenging. You’ll need to transcribe all your online store transactions (sales, taxes, shipping, etc.) into QuickBooks; and store inventory and product information (description, SKU, etc.) would also need to be updated and synchronized between QuickBooks and your web-store. This entire process is tedious and involves many hours of manual work, which could lead to data entry errors.
Fortunately, there are integration software that can connect all these moving parts, making it easier for you to manage your online business. However, do your due-diligence when making your selection: (1) make sure that the software is compatible with all your systems, (2) test the application’s performance and user interface, and (3) review the company’s product features and customer service. As a Gold Certified QuickBooks integration application, eCommerceConnector (eCC, a desktop application of Webgility) integrates your web-store with QuickBooks, payment processors and shipping processors, so you can monitor each order status, process shipping, and record orders into QuickBooks from within one platform. You don’t need to log into multiple applications and re-enter information to process an order. Inventory management is also simplified, as eCC automatically identifies mismatched items and synchronizes your inventory between your web-store and QuickBooks.
The challenges of managing your own online business can be reduced if you employ the right integration software to streamline your operations. There is a wide range of eCommerce software available, so you should do your research to find the right one. Consult with an expert, like your web designer, and test the applications before committing to one. Most companies offer a free trial period and tutorial resources to guide you through the process. Eliminate the unnecessary costs and time so you can focus on growing your online business.