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Post last updated: March 2019
At Sana, we believe that your ERP system should be the foundation of your B2B e-commerce solution for three core reasons: pricing complexity, ordering conditions and order history.
Let’s dive into how your ERP can be a game-changer for your business:
B2B businesses typically have complex pricing structures. In our experience, most businesses have negotiated pricing with individual customers, resulting in discounts per product, or per product group. Combine thousands of products with thousands of customers and it results in a sprawling and intricate pricing matrix.
Not to mention all the order discounts, order line discounts, tier pricing and possible promotions. Are you keeping up?
Pricing complexity and details are typically handled by your ERP system. It’s exactly what these systems are designed for. Take advantage of the investment you already made and leverage the power of your ERP when you are setting up your B2B sales portal.
Our advice: Do not replicate this complex pricing matrix in your web store.
All these calculations are already performed in your ERP software, so there’s no need to redo them in your e-commerce solution. Choose a web store that integrates with your ERP system and leverages its strengths. Your customers will be delighted to see that they get the exact same price calculations online as they would when ordering by phone or email.
Can a certain B2B client buy on an account? If yes, up to what amount? Which shipping conditions apply to the client’s shipping address? What is the expected delivery time based on their shipping address and shipping method? In short: What are the specific ordering conditions for this customer?
Again, the ERP stores all this information, including complex business rules. By making your ERP software the foundation of your B2B web store, you will benefit from the systems that you’ve already invested in without having to rebuild the ERP’s powerful functionality.
You can show all customer-specific ordering conditions to your client, depending on the details of the order in real-time. All ordering conditions will be displayed in your web store using an out-of-the-box solution with no need for customizations. This e-commerce solution will truly empower your customers. They will be able to see exactly what they can expect from you regarding their order in terms of payment terms, delivery time, delivery costs, etc.
Businesses often place orders with their suppliers on a regular basis. In many cases, these orders contain the same products, which are continuously replenished. That makes the order history a far more important piece of information for businesses than for consumers, because this overview allows them to easily look up what they ordered last time or simply complete a reorder based on their order history.
ERP-powered e-commerce helps you grant your customers insight into all their past orders, including those placed offline. This complete order history is always stored in your ERP system. If you set up your ERP-integrated B2B web store, it will display all orders placed offline and online, without any extra work or database synchronization. Combine this with reorder functionality and you will have a solution your clients will love.
Visualize this integration (and how it enhances your web store) in our 2019 E-Commerce Integration Infographic.
All three ERP foundation points boil down to one word: efficiency. The efficiency of your B2B e-commerce set-up process, efficiency for your sales team to focus on gaining new business instead of spending all their time answering client questions, and efficiency for your customers who are looking to routinely place repeat orders.
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