5 Reasons all B2C Companies Need ERP Integration
The ecommerce boom has opened new doors for retailers selling goods and services online, where business to consumer (B2C) buyers are shopping for everything from clothing to groceries to electronics, and everything in between. The trend took off during the early stages of the pandemic and hasn’t waned at all.
According to Mastercard SpendingPulse, 2022 kicked off with gains across nearly all retail sectors. In January, U.S. retail sales increased by 7.2% year-over-year (YOY), with online sales growing 10.4% (compared to January 2021).
“Despite the shadow of Omicron and elevated inflation, consumer spending was buoyed by pent-up savings, wage growth and the continued re-opening of the ‘experience economy,’” Mastercard reports. “Beneficiaries included department stores, apparel and luxury, which all saw double-digit growth.”
To harness this double-digit growth, B2C companies need robust, unified technology systems that can effectively manage their multifaceted, omni-channel operations. Factor in the persistent labor shortage, supply chain disruptions and changing consumer preferences, and the need for a modern, cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform becomes even greater for B2C firms.
5 ERP Integration “Wins” for B2C Companies
Here are five more “wins” that B2C companies get when they work with CEBA Solutions to implement NetSuite Cloud ERP:
1) An excellent customer experience. Customers aren’t just clicking and buying; they want a shopping experience that emulates—or, surpasses—what they’d get in person at a retail store. Using NetSuite’s SuiteCommerce, companies can deliver engaging, relevant online experiences for their customers. They can also drive more traffic to their websites, convert shoppers into paying customers and grow their online revenues.
2) No more disparate systems. Trying to work across multiple different legacy systems, disparate applications and spreadsheets is a failed approach for today’s B2C companies, which need a centralized data repository and single source of truth that all associates can rely on. NetSuite unifies ecommerce, point of sale (POS), inventory and order management, marketing, customer service and financials on a single platform that everyone can work from.
3) Centralized sales data. A key benefit of ERP integration for companies is the centralization of sales information from different areas of the business. “Omnichannel functionality is a key aspect to consider when looking for a solution,” SelectHub points out, “especially if your company conducts sales in multiple locations (e.g., brick and mortar stores, online, catalogs, etc.). “It can be difficult to keep sales information organized, especially when it comes from several disparate platforms. That’s why ERPs consolidate the information to make insight development more efficient.”
4) Real-time operational visibility. With an ERP in place, B2C companies can consolidate fragmented data sources into a single repository that powers informed, timely business decisions. Instead of “guessing” at what items are in stock and available to ship, firms have a solid grasp of what’s on hand and what needs to be ordered. This helps them avoid both stockouts and overstocks and ensures a reliable source of supply when customers ask for it.
5) Fewer data errors and better productivity. ERP can help increase operational productivity by connecting various workflows and automating the exchange of information. It also automates bank reconciliations, the distribution of shipping notifications and other tasks that would otherwise require manual intervention. “By boosting productivity, businesses can conduct more operations in the same amount of time and increase output,” SelectHub states. “[They] can also optimize workflows through automation capabilities, which can lead to less time wasted correcting human errors or spot-checking documents.”
With the total market share of online retail sales now higher than that of general merchandise, the need for ERP integration in the B2C sector will only increase. Global ecommerce sales are on track to reach nearly $5.55 trillion by the end of 2022—up from $1.3 trillion in 2014. There’s no better time for B2C companies to explore their ERP options and find a scalable, adaptable platform that will grow right along with them.
CEBA Solutions is a long-time Oracle NetSuite Solution Partner that can help your company select, implement and optimize its ERP system and other solutions. We’ll provide as much—or, as little—guidance as you require throughout the process, post go-live and throughout the life of your ERP.