Unify Your Financials with QuickBooks

Now more than ever it is vital for a business to centralize their financials.

As you know, “commerce” now involves both brick-and-mortar stores and selling on multiple channels online. And that’s just the first layer of complexity—this year at QuickBooks Connect, I learned that the average SMB uses approximately 15 applications to manage their business.

Unfortunately, many businesses are still manually entering in much of their sales, inventory, and shipping data into their QuickBooks. But why? This method creates many problems, some of them include:

  • Human error
  • Time wasted
  • Money spent

The good news is, there are several apps out there to move data for you. The bad news is that many of these apps do not communicate with one another. Sure, there is ERP software out there that will take care of it all, but it’s generally designed for the enterprise level business and it’s expensive.Why are so many #ecommerce businesses still manually entering data? There's a better way. #unify Click To Tweet” 

While an ERP may feel like a logical step for a maturing SMB, I would recommend waiting. If you are considering an ERP, it’s likely that you already have many of the necessary tools, but still struggle because those tools are not in sync. When your tools are not in sync, they cause a mess and confusion, which is more manual work. Continue reading

Online Marketplaces in North America

Online Marketplaces in North AmericaAs published in Internet Retailer

This holiday season, some of the biggest online retailers are ready to give Amazon a run for its money. Giants like Wal-Mart, Jet.com, and Costco, along with Facebook Inc. and other social media platforms have created alternative channels for marketplace sellers. These new channels are not only creating more avenues for listing products, amd pushing promotional offerings, but also an expansive marketplace to get more exposure.

“Online sellers should be selling on at least one online marketplace to increase reach,” says Parag Mamnani, CEO of Webgility, a provider of ecommerce automation software for multichannel ecommerce companies. “But in order to compete, merchants really must be selling on several different channels at once.”

According to Mamnani, online retailers are often intimidated by the prospect of selling on these different channels. But he says there are several steps they can take to fully leverage the different channels available to them. First, they should firm up their entire technology stack. “Stress test your operational workflows, make sure you don’t have any break-points in your orders management, inventory tracking, shipping or bookkeeping,” he says.Solid advice for multichannel sellers this holiday season. #ecommerce #unify Click To Tweet

Then, Mamnani recommends, online retailers and their teams should discuss replacing any inefficient tools or processes. “Now’s the time to clean up that inventory spreadsheet and create a better system to organize it,” he adds. “Is someone doing full-on forensic research every time there’s a return or exchange? Examine your return system and do a bit of research on return optimization and automation. I promise, trimming those inefficiencies now will pay off during peak selling season.” Continue reading

HEADS UP: Amazon Pages ending October 31; Amazon Stores launching

HEADS UP: Amazon Pages ending October 31; Amazon Stores launchingWritten by Tara Johnson for CPC Strategy

Amazon Pages is an Amazon Marketing Services (AMS) advertising feature that allows brands to create a customized landing page, giving vendors increased exposure on the Amazon Marketplace.

What Does The End of Amazon Pages Mean?

  • Amazon Pages that are linked to Headline Search Ad campaigns will remain active until December 31, 2017.
  • Amazon is now encouraging vendors to invest in “Amazon Store” to showcase their products and promote their brand. Read more about the end of Amazon Pages

Amazon introduced “Amazon Stores” as a free self-service product that allows brand owners to design and create multipage stores to showcase their brands, products and value proposition on Amazon.

What are Amazon Stores?
These multipage stores provide an enhanced brand-centric shopping experience on Amazon in desktop and mobile platforms.

Shoppers visiting an Amazon Store are able to see a curated collection of a brand’s products in a customized, brand-centric, shopping experience. Read more about Amazon Stores