SAP Business One E-commerce – which SAP Business One E-commerce solution is right for my business?01 Jul 2013 | by Natalie
If you are currently using SAP Business One and you are looking to integrate your SAP Business One system to an e-commerce platform this article is for you. The team at Leverage Technologies gets a phone call every week from SAP Business One users who want to start trading on-line (business to business or consumer to business). Let’s look at the options available to you:
Broadly speaking there are two key categories of requirement for e-commerce integration to SAP Business One –
- Business to Business E-commerce for SAP Business One (you are trading with other businesses – very common for wholesale / distribution). You want to provide your existing and potential customers with access to new orders, pricing, stock availability and other related information on-line and integrated to SAP Business One.
- Consumer to Business E-commerce for SAP Business One (you want to trade directly with the end customer – allowing the placement of on-line orders, integration to payment gateways and freight management solutions). Once again – fully integrated to SAP Business One.
Within these two categories of requirement there are two major options for e-commerce integration to SAP Business One –
- Tailored solution (e-commerce for SAP Business One) – a solution tailored to your companies specific requirements. This is the “tell us what you want” and we will build it approach. Most e-commerce providers will have a library of functional sets that can be used to build you exactly what you want from a set of “building blocks”.
- Template solution (e-commerce for SAP Business One) – the “out the box” template design. You get to choose from several template designs and minimal customisation is advisable.
So, which SAP Business One e-commerce solution is right for your business – the good news is that there is no right or wrong answer. Let’s consider 10 questions that you should ask yourself (which will have an impact on your choice of a tailored or template solution for SAP Business One E-commerce):
- Budget – the template solutions usually sell for less than the tailored solution. A template solution usually costs $12,500 – $20,000 whereas a tailored solution usually starts at $30,000.
- Business model – is your business model entirely web based or is your foray into e-commerce simply a low cost alternative to see if you can get an additional line of business up and running at a low cost? Alternatively do you want to improve customer service by offering on-line information to existing customers?
- Customer expectations – what user experience are your customers expecting? In a business to business environment you might be offering basic login rights for your customers who can access current open invoices and statements in SAP Business One. This is a very different requirement from a full consumer to business website looking to sell on the web including functional search engine optimisation and graphically rich images with payment gateways.
- Order volumes – are you expecting a few orders a day on a business to business SAP e-commerce site or thousands of orders per day?
- Integration requirements to SAP Business One – do you want e-commerce users to have access to stock availability, customer specific pricing, special discounts, freights costs etc. from SAP Business One?
- Is a payment gateway required – if you operate only in a business to business environment with existing account paying customers you might not require payment gateway integration for automatic receipting and matching of payments? If you operate in a consumer to business e-commerce environment for SAP Business One you will require payment gateway integration.
- New customers or existing customers only – is your SAP Business One e-commerce gateway only open to existing account based customers or will you be opening up the e-commerce portal to anybody that wants to browse your products and place an order?
- Website design and content management – do you need a basic website design or are you looking for a full end to end solution with regular product updates, blogs, technical specifications of your products and integrated content management?
- Product browsing – is it a critical component of your SAP Business One e-commerce solution for customers to have the ability to refine search criteria to find the right product from the web? In a business to business environment very often customers know exactly what product they want to purchase – sometimes even having the product code available. In a consumer to business environment the customer starts by doing a product search.
- Potential for growth – how much potential is there for rapid growth in your SAP Business One E-commerce requirements?
Your answers to these questions will have an impact on your choice of e-commerce integration to SAP Business One. The great news is that SAP and SAP Partners provide several choices for your SAP Business One E-commerce integration – business to business or consumer to business and tailored solutions or template solutions – we can help you decide which the best option for your business is.