Taking my already succesful online business to the next level.. Multi channel manager?

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Brief description of my business

I currently have:

  • 2 active Bigcommerce sites(small niche) sales approx $80-100k+/month combined
  • 1 Inactive Bigcommerce site(due to profitability because of lack of automation)
  • 1 Ebay store(Broad niche including things from all 3 bigcommerce sites and much more) sales approx $100k/month
  • 1 small brick and mortar location
  • Amazon store(pending)

I currently need:

  • Inventory management - if possible, linked to my small warehouse and my many vendors that drop ship. Synced between all sites and marketplaces.
  • Automated drop ship orders to vendors? (possible?)
  • single POS system? i currently place each order through the website that the call comes from.. if its ebay I just tell them to buy on ebay.

I have been doing research on "Multi-channel managers" if thats what you would call them. Companies such as Channel Advisor, Solid Commerce and Shopping Cart Elite.. They all make big promises and seem to have great sales pitches, but I simply dont know any other small business using something like it.

Im at a point where it would be very hard to add more products or more marketplaces (amazon) because managing inventory and pricing and orders would be insane. Do i need automation? Do I just hire more people? My head is going to explode

Any help is greatly appreciated
#business #channel #level #manager #multi #online #succesful #taking
  • Profile picture of the author tbk125
    wow sounds like you have quite the operation. Do you currently run all this by yourself? I am very interested to hear your findings as I am running a BigCommerce and eBay store as well. What do you currently use as a inventory system for your brick and mortar location?
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    • Profile picture of the author nuwavenick
      Originally Posted by tbk125 View Post

      wow sounds like you have quite the operation. Do you currently run all this by yourself? I am very interested to hear your findings as I am running a BigCommerce and eBay store as well. What do you currently use as a inventory system for your brick and mortar location?
      Hi, its me my dad and a shipping guy. We dont track any in store inventory at all haha... its a mess.. I only fully stock 2 manufacturers..(maybe 30 items) i just reorder what we are low on at the end of the month.
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      • Profile picture of the author OnlineStoreHelp
        Please take all of this with a grain of salt but a few things to consider.

        ecommhub for multichannel
        ordero for multichannel

        If you want to stick with hosted ecommerce, take a look at Americommerce. They allow for multistore out of the box and its cheap, like an extra $39 a month per store. I can't remember if they integrate with the above. But, they allow for phone orders but do not have a POS system. You can actually detail what warehouse product sits in and I can't remember if you can automate emails out.

        I love BigCommerce and put lots of clients on it but I have been impressed with the sheer amount of functionality in Americommerce. It is not perfect, a tad slow but they just redesigned their entire interface and it is supposed to be faster and easier.

        If you go the opensource route, Magento and Opencart (I think prestashop too) supports multistore out of the box as well.
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        • Profile picture of the author kjamesnv
          You need a sophisticated system to deal with inventory, POS and drop ships.

          Let me recommend 2 systems.

          MultiChannel Order Manager (dydacomp.com )- This is a strong and robust system. We have used it for years and are very familiar with it. There are 3-4 different versions including a new hosted versions but the powerful versions require a dedicated server. MOM can easily process 1000+ orders per day and prices start at around $6-10K.

          Stone Edge (www.stoneedge.com/)- Very similar to MOM but a bit less powerful.
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    • Profile picture of the author nuwavenick
      Originally Posted by tbk125 View Post

      wow sounds like you have quite the operation. Do you currently run all this by yourself? I am very interested to hear your findings as I am running a BigCommerce and eBay store as well. What do you currently use as a inventory system for your brick and mortar location?
      Hey, we dont stock much here and its more of a warehouse set up than a "retail" kind of deal. we just look at what we have at the end of the week and order what is needed.

      before coming up with my crazy idea to automate EVERYTHING, I looked into Ordoro. They seem to have a great thing going and it works well with bigcommerce and ebay.
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      • Profile picture of the author desertwander
        Originally Posted by nuwavenick View Post

        before coming up with my crazy idea to automate EVERYTHING, I looked into Ordoro. They seem to have a great thing going and it works well with bigcommerce and ebay.
        Ordoro will sync inventory, and do labels. Not much else. You may be better off with one of these:
        www.shipworks.com
        www.shipstation.com
        www.linnworks.com
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        • Profile picture of the author nuwavenick
          Originally Posted by desertwander View Post

          Ordoro will sync inventory, and do labels. Not much else. You may be better off with one of these:
          www.shipworks.com
          www.shipstation.com
          www.linnworks.com
          Thanks , i really like linnworks, im trying out Shoppingcarelite. similar features to linnworks, but its more all in 1 with the website and all built right in.
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          • Profile picture of the author Kiboko
            Hey Nuwavenick,

            do please come over and update us.

            I am seriously considering Shopping Cart Elite. How is the going?

            chrs!


            Originally Posted by nuwavenick View Post

            Thanks , i really like linnworks, im trying out Shoppingcarelite. similar features to linnworks, but its more all in 1 with the website and all built right in.
            Signature

            Hungry for leads to your business?
            Yes, without proper traffic, its zero leads, its zero sales. This is the Number 1 Problem that stops 97% of marketers dead in their tracks - lack of TRAFFIC.

            Guaranteed quality service here - http://tinyurl.com/qat77hu

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            • Profile picture of the author nuwavenick
              Guys I decided not to go with shopping cart elite... I decided not to go with any company that wanted money up front. im trying out a company called Edapt-it , they are working on developing everything for me at no cost, then my monthly fee will be a small percentage of sales.. I will probably end up paying a little more monthly, but i like their concept because the more money I make the more money they make... so they want me to succeed. SCE kept asking me for money before anything was even done, big turn off.
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              • Profile picture of the author Kiboko
                Good thinking & thanks for the update. Checking out this brother -

                XSellco Software - Sell Profitably on ebay & amazon with comprehensive inventory, sales orders, CRM & reporting tools !!!!



                Originally Posted by nuwavenick View Post

                Guys I decided not to go with shopping cart elite... I decided not to go with any company that wanted money up front. im trying out a company called Edapt-it , they are working on developing everything for me at no cost, then my monthly fee will be a small percentage of sales.. I will probably end up paying a little more monthly, but i like their concept because the more money I make the more money they make... so they want me to succeed. SCE kept asking me for money before anything was even done, big turn off.
                Signature

                Hungry for leads to your business?
                Yes, without proper traffic, its zero leads, its zero sales. This is the Number 1 Problem that stops 97% of marketers dead in their tracks - lack of TRAFFIC.

                Guaranteed quality service here - http://tinyurl.com/qat77hu

                {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8874458].message }}
              • Profile picture of the author skuta
                Originally Posted by nuwavenick View Post

                Guys I decided not to go with shopping cart elite... I decided not to go with any company that wanted money up front. im trying out a company called Edapt-it , they are working on developing everything for me at no cost, then my monthly fee will be a small percentage of sales.. I will probably end up paying a little more monthly, but i like their concept because the more money I make the more money they make... so they want me to succeed. SCE kept asking me for money before anything was even done, big turn off.
                That sounds like a great idea, having a known percentage as cost of sales, and like you said, it gives your vendor the incentive to get it right and keep you and your business happy.
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              • Profile picture of the author paulkemp
                Originally Posted by nuwavenick View Post

                Guys I decided not to go with shopping cart elite... I decided not to go with any company that wanted money up front. im trying out a company called Edapt-it , they are working on developing everything for me at no cost, then my monthly fee will be a small percentage of sales.. I will probably end up paying a little more monthly, but i like their concept because the more money I make the more money they make... so they want me to succeed. SCE kept asking me for money before anything was even done, big turn off.
                Any updates on how it's working out for you, sir?
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  • Profile picture of the author rleejr
    Order Management Software | Stock Control System | Linnworks is another company that you may want to contact
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    "Learn How These "Gurus" Are Making Thousands Of
    Dollars With Their Fan Pages By Using This 1 Little
    Trick That All The BIG Companies Are Using!"
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  • Profile picture of the author AliPali
    Wow your my inspiration, one day when I grow up get big and strong I want to be just like you
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  • Profile picture of the author nuwavenick
    UPDATE. Thanks very much for all of the info! I researched all of the companies and have decided to give "shopping cart elite" a shot. they are putting together a trial for me now. They really seem to offer every little thing that i need. Once they prove themselves to me I will write and post a full review.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ryce
      Originally Posted by nuwavenick View Post

      UPDATE. Thanks very much for all of the info! I researched all of the companies and have decided to give "shopping cart elite" a shot. they are putting together a trial for me now. They really seem to offer every little thing that i need. Once they prove themselves to me I will write and post a full review.

      Any updates on that?
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  • Profile picture of the author Johnwill82
    I also face to the same problem.Thank you for sharing this.It really help me a lot.
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  • Profile picture of the author travelsoulja
    Can you tell us your strategy?

    I would a) reinvest some of your earnings in automation software, analytics, and CRM. b) outsource some of your non core processes to Philippines
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    • Profile picture of the author nuwavenick
      Originally Posted by travelsoulja View Post

      Can you tell us your strategy?

      I would a) reinvest some of your earnings in automation software, analytics, and CRM. b) outsource some of your non core processes to Philippines
      I started 5 years ago with 0 knowledge about my products or ecommerce.. kinda fell into it and i have just been teaching myself as I go.. I wouldnt even say i have had a strategy until now. I found my little niche and im going to expand around it and try to find more good little areas to specialize in.. it all started with ebay though.
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    • Profile picture of the author desertwander
      Originally Posted by travelsoulja View Post

      Can you tell us your strategy?

      outsource some of your non core processes to Philippines
      We use BigCommerce for our website. We're going to switch to 3dcart because they have a better shipping calculator for large and unusual items.

      We use Linnworks to handle, marketplaces (Amazon, eBay, Buy.com, Sears.com), dropshipping and inventory.

      We have someone in the Philippines that does a bunch of daily tasks.
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  • Profile picture of the author Solid Commerce
    Hi there! Sean from Solid Commerce here.

    I'd really love to have a conversation with you about how we can help you out with your operation.

    If you'd like, you can PM me to talk a little further...or you can just call me directly at 800.750.7617. You seem to have done your research, so I won't waste time pitching you!

    I will say this -- we're an agile group of folks, so if we can't do something exactly the way you want it done...there's a good chance we'll be able to build something that does what you need.

    Hope this helps!

    _ Sean
    Signature

    _ Sean B.
    Solid Commerce

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  • Profile picture of the author tonydbaker
    I've gone through the same growing pains. Ultimately we switched to WooCommerce for Wordpress because just about anything we could think up, could be programmed or found as a premium plugin.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ryce
      Originally Posted by tonydbaker View Post

      I've gone through the same growing pains. Ultimately we switched to WooCommerce for Wordpress because just about anything we could think up, could be programmed or found as a premium plugin.
      how many items you have on your site for sell Tony?
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  • Profile picture of the author Kevin Purchase
    Just to share a little bit of advice/experience, I used to run a large combat sports retailer in the UK, and we ran literally everything through Magento.

    We used 2 different storeviews running from 1 Magento CMS install, all products had unique descriptions on both sites, etc.

    For marketplaces, there's a plugin called M2E, which allows you to post your items on Ebay and Amazon (again, with unique descriptions). This Magento plugin really was the secret sauce. Bloody fantastic.

    We also had a stock updater module which picked up an XML file from a server and update all stock levels vs the SKU id.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ryce
      Originally Posted by Kevin Purchase View Post

      Just to share a little bit of advice/experience, I used to run a large combat sports retailer in the UK, and we ran literally everything through Magento.

      We used 2 different storeviews running from 1 Magento CMS install, all products had unique descriptions on both sites, etc.

      For marketplaces, there's a plugin called M2E, which allows you to post your items on Ebay and Amazon (again, with unique descriptions). This Magento plugin really was the secret sauce. Bloody fantastic.

      We also had a stock updater module which picked up an XML file from a server and update all stock levels vs the SKU id.
      M2E is subsided by Google who bought Magento and is willing to give more traction to the platform. Awesome for a free plugin as other solutions usually cost on the hundreds per month.

      Are you still on the MMA business Kevin?
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      • Profile picture of the author Kevin Purchase
        Originally Posted by Ryce View Post

        M2E is subsided by Google who bought Magento and is willing to give more traction to the platform. Awesome for a free plugin as other solutions usually cost on the hundreds per month.

        Are you still on the MMA business Kevin?
        Sorry it took me so long to reply - I added you on Skype as you requested over my website!

        I am no longer in the MMA business unfortunately. It's a shame - I loved it. Still keep up-to-date with a couple of brands in the business and enjoy watching UFC.
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  • Profile picture of the author scraigwake
    We have 2 webstores, sell on eBay and on Amazon. We were looking for an inventory management system that would work with feeds to upload products and inventory amounts plus take orders. We have been drop shippers carrying no inventory.

    I looked at Linnworks but because they are UK based I thought support might be more of a challenge. I went with Solid Commerce. This has been an OK decision, but each company has its good and bad points. You should create a flow chart and check list of all the things you want a system to do. Solid Commerce has helped but also hindered. It can do much but there is more that I would like it to do. If you already have webstores in place there is more of a challenge in getting all the information into your inventory management system. One of the things I wanted was to be able to find drop shippers with feeds and then load up the inventory to our webstores and other channels as Amazon. There are definitely challenges to do this. Currently we have over 27,000 products on Amazon with the order system completely automated.
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    • Profile picture of the author Solid Commerce
      Glad to hear you're digging Solid Commerce! Definitely reach out and let me know if there's anything I can do to help you out.

      _ Sean
      Signature

      _ Sean B.
      Solid Commerce

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  • Profile picture of the author stretch361
    I've used quite a few different solutions. Here's what I've personally used:

    Stone Edge (along with monsoon commerce)
    Linnworks
    Channel Advisor
    Etail Solutions

    I kept falling back to stone edge, mainly because is it so customizable. The interface is a little behind the times, but if you know someone who can work with SQL and visual basic, you can make it do whatever you want. We ended up having an in house coder write a ton of custom modules for it. It was so customized, that we are able to use tablets in the warehouse to pick and bin, able to ship Amazon FBA orders out (while spitting out labels when necessary), and able to receive products in a custom web interface.

    I'm not a fan of companies that like to take a percentage of sales, which is what most of those companies do.
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  • Profile picture of the author WorldIR
    i am happy for your success n wish my ecommerc biz will make it to the next level.too
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    Looking for Global e-Shopper Partners....
    Join the e-Commerce Revolution here !

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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Gylseth
    These guys: QuickBooks Inventory Management Software By Fishbowl Inventory have received quite a bit of recognition for their solution.

    I admit that I haven't used them nor do I have any particular familiarity with their solution, like if and how they integrate with web stores like Amazon and Ebay. I only thought it would be worth the mention since I've heard a lot of positive feedback from users of their system.
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