NetSuite is the #1 cloud ERP system for small to mid-sized businesses. NetSuite SuiteCommerce is a platform specifically for e-commerce. SuiteCommerce combines CRM, financials, advanced reporting, warehouse management, global business management (ideal for international taxes), human resource management, and more! It’s a complete package for growing organizations that need infrastructure to scale their business.
As more business is moving to e-commerce, it has become a growing platform as the basis for e-commerce organizations. It allows for fluid flow of sales data from a website, to live inventory management, to customer centers (ideal for B2B wholesale and B2C customers), to transparency into all of your financials.
Ecommerce businesses need more than a website.
They require a foundation that supports both e-commerce and their business operations in a single location otherwise your essential data won’t be unified.
NetSuite Ecommerce Platform
NetSuite as an e-commerce platform is more powerful than a majority of standalone e-commerce solutions since it provides a full business solution. It is not only used to manage the data for an e-commerce website, but it can be used as the source of integrations to other e-commerce companies like Amazon, eBay, Overstock, Sears, Walmart, and other e-commerce powerhouses. These other e-commerce platforms allow for drop shipping, fulfillment, and other services to help you reach more customers. Even though these platforms take a piece of the pie, you will likely want to utilize your own e-commerce website to provide your customers with more flexibility while helping your organization achieve higher margins.
NetSuite can help manage the financials, inventory, pricing, payments, customers, tax planning, billing, vendors, and more by providing a firm infrastructure foundation that lets your data flow efficiently through your business processes. It takes investment to build out the optimized infrastructure, but once it is in place, your business will outperform your competition in a world that is dramatically moving towards e-commerce.
eCommerce Needs Integrated Data Systems
Keeping data systems separate is a major problem. There are a couple of major challenges to having your ERP and e-commerce platform separate. The first is that the product and inventory information will be stored in two separate locations. Some e-commerce platforms are having orders process every 10 seconds while others are just a handful a day. Not having accurate inventory levels will cause you to lose sales. Customers might not be able to order something that is shown Out of Stock online but you may have just received it seconds earlier in the warehouse. Those are just the real-time data reasons why they should be integrated. Come tax season, if these systems are not precisely maintained, you may have a mess on your hands.
It’s clear that integrating e-commerce to NetSuite is the ideal scenario. There are no scenarios that commonly come up as exceptions to this. If you are a growing business, you have a lot of data that needs to be effectively automated specific to your business processes. NetSuite does this better than nearly any other software due to its high flexibility to allow for customization. Very few businesses are cookie-cutter business models that don’t necessitate software flexibility. A single place to manage inventory, pricing, customers, reporting, accounting, financials, and other major pieces to your business is necessary for scaling.
Organizations that invest in their NetSuite and e-commerce platforms are outperforming their competition simply by positioning themselves to scale using solidified software infrastructure.
NetSuite Add-Ons and Apps
Using existing solutions that can be added to your NetSuite ERP or SuiteCommerce environment can help make data management easier.
There are some new initiatives by SuiteMarkets which is a 3rd party app platform that allows you to purchase SuiteCommerce and NetSuite ERP apps/features. It’s a great way to find existing solutions for NetSuite ERP or SuiteCommerce. It’s something to keep in mind as the platform continues to grow and more features get listed. Since it is free to list solutions, there are smaller applications being listed such as order tracking, blogs, custom themes, customer center add-ons, in addition to software companies.
There is also NetSuite’s app platform which is primarily used to inform NetSuite customers of software that integrates into the platform. Shopify has something similar including applications that help them integrate into the NetSuite platform. More and more customers are utilizing NetSuite as an e-commerce platform in addition to its reporting, warehouse management, HR, and other ERP features. This expands beyond your traditional e-commerce website and includes integrations to popular e-commerce solutions including Amazon, eBay, and Overstock.
More software companies are noticing high volumes of customers utilizing NetSuite which means they are making integrations that seamlessly connect. This is great news for NetSuite customers since it opens up many more doors to solving unique business problems. Being able to utilize Niche software specific to your business needs makes things easier to successfully implement.
Managing Your Inventory and Financial Data
A steady stream of data needs to be controlled to ensure quality data for tax season!
Everything from sales, inventory, vendors, and fulfillment to accounts receivable needs to be taken into account. NetSuite has some native features such as permissions, workflows, and hidden fields that help keep the integrity of the data.
There are many other methods to ensure data integrity, but one of the best ways is permissions…
What are NetSuite Roles and Permissions?
NetSuite allows you to assign your users a specific role (i.e., sales, accountant, administrator, bookkeeper, warehouse), which has unique permissions to access pieces of data in the ERP system.
For instance, you may want to only allow a sales representative to have access to the customer record, NetSuite CRM, and sales orders. You can even specify the level of access for each of these roles. Let’s say your customer support center is not allowed to enter a new order but is only able to view previous order history. You can do this through permission and limit a role to have permission that views sales orders.
If a particular person has multiple roles, they can toggle between them too. Each role often will have a slightly different layout to help them access the data specific to them more quickly.
Roles and permissions will be crucial to help ensure data integrity.
Why Should You Use Workflows and SuiteScript?
Just giving someone permission to edit data doesn’t mean that they will consistently enter the required data. Required fields are one method to ensure this, but you may want to automate the flow of the data.
For instance, if you know that one field gets filled with ‘x’ information when ‘y’ occurs, this should be automated. Eliminating data entry waste will not only save your employees time but ensure your data remains accurate.
Workflows and Scripts help resolve this issue.
If you do not accurately maintain the essential data, you may have inaccurate reports, dashboards, and financials. Learn more about the services our firm offers by pressing the discovery button below and scheduling a no-cost and no-obligation call with our team today.
About The Author:
Caleb is a NetSuite developer and SuiteCommerce specialist at Anchor Group NetSuite Consultants. He works side-by-side with his brother, Ben, building out complex customizations to NetSuite clients across the United States. Caleb received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Benedictine College and completed his MBA from Indiana Tech. During his free time, he enjoys mountain biking, writing books, and playing rugby. He finds that one of his bigger accomplishes was hiking 500 miles across Spain on the Camino de Santiago