Considering a Magento Epicor® Commerce Connect™
Prophet 21 Integration?
Is Magento (ECC) the right solution for distributors?
Wouldn't an e-commerce solution made for distribution be more effective?
What's best for your business?
When you are considering the future of your business, can you trust your distributorship to a general purpose online selling tool such as Magento or will your customers be served more effectively by an e-commerce platform that was designed for distribution?
A Brief P21 E-Commerce History
For many years, B2B Seller was the system created by Epicor® that was integrated with P21.
For a variety of reasons, many distributors found it was inadequate in many ways for their e-commerce needs.
Recently, Epicor decided to refocus efforts away from a system created with distributors in mind and instead decided to promote the usage of a general purpose e-commerce system (Magento) via Epicor Commerce Connect.
Why Is Magento A Challenge For Distribution?
It wasn't made for distributors
Magento was made to fit the needs of shops selling a relatively small number of products online. This
Magento was not created with distributors in mind. While distribution has some relationship to retail e-commerce, the customer base is usually significantly different with different expectations. Ideas such as custom part numbers, alternate part numbers, complex customer specific pricing, ship-
Magento is a very popular e-commerce platform... however, with popularity comes risk. As an open source product, the code of Magento is publically available. Any ill-intentioned person or group can review the code and find flaws to exploit. This means that constant upgrades are required in order to maintain a secure site. When Magento is integrated, upgrades require that you first make sure the new version is compatible with the customizations to enable the upgrade... if they aren't, you either risk breaking the Prophet21 integration or you have to wait to upgrade risking the security of your site and users.
One of the arguments for Magento is the plugin
oudated Magento versions?
The square peg, round hole problem plagues a Magento integration. To make it do things it wasn't initially conceived to do (e.g. invoices, statements, most integrated customer service functions) requires customizing Magento. While this might seem great at first, the problem is every time a new Magento version is released, this integration must be reworked. If the Magento change is large, the integration work will be significant and take time. That's like constantly aiming at a moving target. Will you be forced to use a Magento version that is old and outdated, potentially with security flaws that cannot be patched because updating would break the P21 integration?
Linux and MySql
Neither Linux or MySql are negative. However, as a
Given these systems drive a website, security must be a consideration. Do you have the skills to manage these systems and keep your website, customers, and related data secure? Most distributors find that managing servers is not a core competency and they are better served with systems that use Windows and databases they are already familiar with.
Magento largely focuses on e-commerce retail sales and as such is not a powerful content management system. Having a single source of updating both marketing and e-commerce data is extremely valuable to most distributors as it allows them to focus on tasks that drive profits rather than learning multiple systems.
No Single Source Customer Service
A final challenge for most distributors is that Magento lacks a single source you can contact for your Prophet 21 commerce connect integration. You may use one group to do design, another to do integration, yet another for hosting, and then hope that a final group will offer support. A single source provider is a powerful force for the modern distributor. Having a single source for all your website needs means you can turn to someone who knows your business, cares about your
Why Does Epicor Recommend Magento for Prophet21?
That's a question we cannot answer. Our opinion is that the
Why Is WebAlliance A Better Choice?
We will leave that evaluation up to you, the reader.
- Our integrated e-commerce platform was created specifically for distribution by experts from the industry.
- We offer a single source solution with values that are not often found in the IT industry.
- Our solution is cost effective and
supported fromour US headquarters.
- Our customer experience team is friendly, helpful, and interested in serving our customers with quick response times and solid answers.
- WebAlliance is SEO friendly. You can easily be found on Google and other search engines using our platform.
The features of the WebAlliance e-commerce system are unmatched
- Many things 'just work' reducing
timespent by the distributor
- Our e-commerce search is powerful and allows customers to quickly find the products they want
- We have very tight integration to P21 allowing for customer specific pricing, inventory, customer info, invoices, statements, and much much more
- WebAlliance was created with the mindset that, as a distributor, you have specific needs (different from a retailer) and we want to help meet those needs for you and your customers
Our market is distribution.
Unlike 'job shops' that will do whatever work will pay for a given job, our company is focused on the distribution industry and specifically making distributors
Since distribution is what we do daily, we understand the needs and challenges unique to the industry and continually improve the WebAlliance E-Commerce platform to help meet those needs.
If you are a little unsure about these questions, you are not alone.
Many clients have turned to Aldrich Web Solutions because e-commerce solutions integrated to P21 is what we do.Click here to see some of our work
Spend your time doing what you do best
Serving customers, making deals, and building relationships.
Not worrying about security, patching servers, and dealing with hassles.
- Our e-commerce platform (WebAlliance) was built from the ground up to help distributors
- WebAlliance was designed to be integrated with your ERP
- Grow your business and serve your customers via an online sales channel
- Design, Implementation, Integration, Hosting, and Support are all available under one roof
- We know P21
erpsoftware and we know distribution
If this doesn't sound like your current e-commerce platform, you should check out how we can help you make that a reality.
Click below for more info about our Integrated e-Commerce Platform, WebAllianceLearn More