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E-commerce Infrastructure for Vendor/Manufacturer

Discussion in 'eCommerce' started by mkothari89, Jan 4, 2017.

  1. #1
    Hi - new here to the forum, so please let me know if I am posted in the wrong area.

    I work for a fine jewelry wholesaling and manufacturing company in the US. Over the past 2 years, we've been growing out our e-commerce business, as its been proving to be a viable sales channel for us.

    What we do is simple. We have thousands of SKUs that we stock in our office. We also manufacture new products overseas. These products are then listed on a variety of sites. We sell through Amazon, Amazon FBA, Overstock, Fingerhut, Groupon, Jcpenny, Sears.com, etc...

    Our issue is that our current infrastructure does not support this type of business. We've managed to get by with stop-gap solutions but ultimately our wholesale business operations cannot accommodate the different operational requirements of e-commerce. E.g. Amazon has so many fees and our ERP and accounting software was not built to track and accurately analyze all this. Another example would be our catalog. I've had to build this from scratch using excel, having an intern plug in all the product details possible, but it's getting to the point where I can't efficiently keep track or deploy skus across channels. I've started using Ragic, which so far is doing fine, but haven't fulled tested it out.


    So my question is if you could, how you would build an infrastructure if you could start from scratch for this sort of business?

    I.e. using Xero for accounting, a2x for amazing reconciliation, stitchlabs/channeladvisor for channel management, aws for image link hosting, etc....

    *note: Also have to be cost conscious as I don't have a large budget to work with. Ideally I would like to make my own system, but for now I think I would have to work with adding different tools together.
    SEMrush
    Thanks in advance!
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2017
    mkothari89, Jan 4, 2017 IP
    SEMrush
  2. jestep

    jestep Prominent Member Premium Member

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    #2
    Get a good or a few good inhouse programmers and do it yourself. It's possible something out there exists but honestly, it's going to cost so much to configure it to your needs and to support it, you're probably better off developing this inhouse with everything you need and the ability to expand from the get go. Separate project, but we did the same sort of thing with our CRM. We had the choice of using an off the shelf product or heavily customizing some existing software, but the ability to control and manage as needed was just not obtainable without doing it in house. I'm not saying it's going to be easy, extremely cheap, or quick, but when it all works out with everything you want, and you can support, add, and modify it inhouse, it makes moving forward so much easier. This becomes increasingly important when working on the wholesale / supply side. You may have partners that want an API, or specific reporting, or some feature that is prohibitively difficult to integrate into pre-built platform.

    With that being said, it is absolutely key that whoever develops your system does it in a way that easily allows it to be extended in the future. It's obviously going to be proprietary but should be done with extensibility in mind and must adhere to general best practices and coding standards. Otherwise, you can easily end up in a worse situation with an unmaintainable platform that only the creator can successfully modify. In this scenario, it helps to have a least 2 developers or someone overseeing them to make sure it's being programmed in a way that others can work with in the future.
     
    jestep, Jan 4, 2017 IP
  3. mkothari89

    mkothari89 Peon

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    #3

    Agreed! Ideally I would have liked to do this, but I'm also somewhat resource constrained, and I wouldn't, at this point, be able to undertake this sort of approach.
     
    mkothari89, Jan 4, 2017 IP
  4. AlvinWilliams

    AlvinWilliams Peon

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    #4
    I would suggest you go forward and look for freelancers. Maybe they can help since you have constraint on your resources and budget.
     
    AlvinWilliams, Feb 9, 2017 IP
  5. JazvaSoftware

    JazvaSoftware Peon

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    #5
    I suggest you go with Jazva if I were you. This is an all-in-one ecommerce platform for multi-channel sellers that works with the major marketplaces, like Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Overstock, and others, and also integrates with your web store. Jazva allows managing:
    • listings;
    • inventory;
    • orders;
    • and suppliers.
    It also has inbuilt customizable business intelligence dashboards, which altogether makes pretty much the functionality you described. Jazva has a free demo.
     
    JazvaSoftware, Oct 11, 2018 at 4:07 AM IP