Just a few years ago, electronic commerce opened up a world of possibilities that was previously unimaginable. Suddenly, we no longer needed a physical shop window to display our products; instead we could resolve customers' queries however far away they were. This virtual method of working also created major management problems however. It's necessary to be able to centralise the 1,001 operations of any digital enterprise. An ERPfor online stores is one of the best solutions that we have for this.
Let's imagine that you have a bricks and mortar shoe shop and a customer asks you for a shoe on display in the window but it turns out that there are none left in the stockroom. In all likelihood we've lost that customer for ever. Something similar occurs in eCommerce: if we don't have a management system in place, we can find that we announce a product on our website for which it turns out we don't have any stock. Nothing good can come of this.
What exactly is an ERP system and what function does it serve?
But this ERP thing - what is it? Well, as you'll have noticed, its a bunch of initials. They stand for Enterprise Resourcing Planning. It's as simple and as complex as that. In other words, an ERP for online stores is the computer system capable of integrating and managing your business's resources.
This type of software makes our work much easier, because they bring together all the information related to logistics, human resources, financial aspects and even, in some cases, the creation of the product itself. So an ERP for an online retailer has the possibility of ordering and managing everything on an eCommerce site. Preventing us, in short, from going crazy.
Thus it is a complex computer program that makes our day-to-day lives much, much easier. And how does an ERP work? It works as a programming platformthat takes our databases, manages them jointly and enables us to integrate the various departments of our eCommerce business.
Different types of ERP system for online stores
When you decide to work with this software in your company it's very important you know what types of ERP system there are for online stores. Depending on your interests you can choose one or another. Let's take a look at some of the ERP systems available.
Standard ERP. Its design is based on standardised modules and they are usually scalable, so that if the conditions of the company change they're easily adaptable.
Personalised ERP. More expensive, but totally adapted to the needs of your business. An ERP for online stores that's designed totally for you and can be modified in accordance with your needs.
Adapted to the sector. A blend of the above. It's not designed exclusively for you but it is designed for the sector in which you operate, so that it will have many benefits that will facilitate working within your sector.
Pros and cons of ERP systems for online stores.
It's clear that an ERP system for online stores can do much to facilitate your work and resolve complex situations that can have adverse effects on the business. However, if we delve deeper into them, it becomes evident that there are pros and cons of ERP systems. Let's see what they are.
Advantages of ERP systems
Better customer service. It's clear that centralising everything in a computer program streamlines all the processes, which will have an impact on user satisfaction rates because of enhanced quality of service.
They facilitate employees' most routine tasks. Updating databases tends to be a hassle for workers, even more so when they need to be linked to a range of concepts. An ERP for online stores takes care of all these chores, meaning that employees can focus on other tasks.
All tools integrated into a single platform. This type of software does away with having to open 1,001 programs to do our job. Everything is integrated into just one program.
Security. Unifying all the company's data into one single program, which also has highly sophisticated protection measures, is a good way to ensure corporate security.
Total control of the situation. Thanks to your ERP system you'll have more comprehensive control and knowledge of what the status of your business is in real time. Control of stock, personnel, order deliveries, etc.
Disadvantages of ERP systems
The price. Clearly, software as complex as an ERP system for online stores is going to represent a major outlay. Smaller eCommerce sites may face problems in assimilating the cost before they get a chance to grow.
Difficult to use. Everything can be resolved with practice. But the fact is that they're not easy systems and it can take time to work comfortably with them.
An ERP is an intelligent way of improving and growing your business. Another way of achieving this is to introduce into your business, whether physical or online, payment facilities so that your customers can make their purchases in the easiest and most convenient way possible. At SeQura we have various payment methods for retailers that can be of great help to you. Give your customers the chance to spread their payments or make them in convenient instalments. Without incurring headaches for you or your business.