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This post was updated to reflect current trends and information.

The trends below are not new or unheard of, but they are gaining in popularity. While some are even becoming ‘must-haves to optimize the supply chain, warehousing management or other business flow. The 5 trends below are exactly what you need in 2023.

1. EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) Integration

EDI Integration

EDI Communication is gaining in popularity. Many companies are being forced to use EDI to do business with retailers and suppliers. The longer they wait, the more difficult it will be for companies to endure without any formal processes, such as EDI. It’s not just about staying compliant with your suppliers; EDI can do miracles for companies:

– improving shipment accuracy

– accelerating the movement of goods to customers

– improving partner relationships

– improving document accuracy (reduction of manual data entry)

– enhancing the flow of communication between a company and their trading partners


Useful reading: Fully managed EDI service VS HTTP Web Service: Which is Better for Your Business?


2. Efficient Enterprise Management

ERP integration

Every company nowadays is on the lookout for ways to increase collaboration internally (between departments/employees). One great way to do this is by embracing full integration of all management systems (or simply implement an upgraded ERP management suite). All departments and employees will have access to one database; they’ll be working with the same real-time data and can communicate and collaborate easily.


Learn more about Enterprise Management here: ErpWizard Suite – the best business management software solution.


3. Systems Integration

System integration

For the effective functioning of the enterprise, it is necessary that all applications and systems such as ERP, CRM, Warehouse Management, EDI, etc. be combined into one common structure. This process is called business systems integration. The goals of integration are to improve the quality and speed of work. Lack of interaction between different systems can lead to non-compliance with deadlines and the payment of fines. This can happen even though each of the enterprise’s business systems individually can perform its functions perfectly.


To learn more about integration read this article: Magic xpi Integration Platform: The Best Fit for Enterprise Data Integration


4. Managed cloud services and hosting

Managed Cloud Service and hosting

Managed cloud services mean outsourcing daily IT management and technical support to Cloud managed Services Provider to effectively monitor and maintain a cloud environment to improve the efficiency of business operations.

Cloud deployment options have allowed smaller companies the opportunity to implement management systems due to their affordable costs. However, this isn’t the only reason why the cloud is popular. This option also allows businesses to reduce responsibilities, risks, infrastructure requirements, additional labor, etc.


Looking to outsource IT infrastructure along with its support to a Service Provider? Request Managed Cloud Services Price here


5. Business Intelligence

BI

No one can get enough of Business Intelligence solutions. These analytics tools allow managers to turn raw business data into useful, strategic information and insight. Companies will be able to improve planning, replenishment, optimize inventory and floor space utilization. It’s about getting the real data for the right people to create balanced supply chains.


 

 

3 reasons for EDI integration with Shopify

This article was taken from our blog, published on our EDI2XML platform.

Shopping cart Icon on smart phone screen over blur mall

Many times, when I meet business owners and executives, the same question comes up during the discussion: why do companies operating eCommerce stores on Shopify or Magento need to have EDI integration? I decided to publish this post, and explain my points, by identifying the top (3) reasons why businesses running on Shopify, need to comply and integrate with EDI.

What is Shopify?

In a quick description, Shopify is one of the leading Canadian eCommerce platforms offered to clients based on monthly subscription fee, where companies and individuals can subscribe, put up their own items on the eCommerce platform, and start selling to the public. For more information about Shopify, you can visit their website, it has tons of information about how things are done.

Who uses Shopify?

Individuals or companies of all sizes, who want to sell products online to their clients and B2C consumers, are mostly the users of a platform such as Shopify. With less than 100 $ a month, they can start selling products and ship it to their clients.

A word about Drop-Shipping

One important thing to emphasize here is that with the emergence of the online retail and eCommerce over the internet, companies selling products online on platforms such as Shopify, are not necessarily carrying inventory of the products they are selling.

They do receive the order from the consumer online into the Shopify platform (or store), and than they transfer this order to the manufacturing business partner(s) for shipping and delivery, while “white labelling” the packaging delivery. This concept is called “Drop-Ship” (or Drop shipping) in the retail and eCommerce world. The store owner will receive the order from the consumer, who gets paid for the merchandise upfront. The Store owner forward the order to the maker for shipment and direct delivery to the consumer.

What EDI has to do in this context of eCommerce?

As a reminder about EDI (Electronic Data Interchange), it is a set of standards and processes to exchange documents of business nature electronically between business partners. What I mean by business documents is Purchase Order, Invoice. This data exchange can happen in both direction (in and out).

In the context of online sales over the internet on a platform such as Shopify and drop-shipping orders, the EDI comes into play for several reasons:

  • Most manufacturing an major distribution will require a system-to-system integration through some sort of EDI
  • Shipping companies require also integration via EDI
  • Consumer today is very well educated and require to be informed on the status of their orders at every step of the way during the shipping process.

As you notice, all the above requires system-to-system integration between so many heterogenous systems and platforms. All major companies and retailers are well equipped with EDI platforms and standards that they have been investing in developing for years now, so it is the right moment for them to pay off all their investments.

Top (3) reasons why you need EDI integration with Shopify

As you might have noticed from the previous sections, the reasons are very obvious, to have an EDI integration with your Shopify store:

  • If you are in the Drop-Ship business and you are selling online, chances are that your suppliers will impose on you to go on EDI.
  • When you are selling online on Shopify, and you have a high volume of clients, that require to be informed of their orders at any given moment, this is another reason why you need to have EID integrated with your Shopify store

  • In case you are dealing with shipping companies (FedEx, Purolator, UPS…) and you have high volume of shipments daily, you need to integrate your systems and Shopify with EDI

The above are the main reasons for such a need, still more reasons are out there, just wanted to share the most important ones.

But can we integrate Shopify with EDI?

Certainly, it is feasible, we do this every day. With the right team of integrators, that have years of expertise in integrating EDI to any system, there is no going wrong.

If you are interested to learn more about this topic or any other issue related to EDI integration projects, please click on the image below and I will be more than happy to contact you for a FREE consultation.

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Definition of business and tech term

We compiled a short list of business technology terms that are useful to keep on hand when looking for software solutions for your business or when speaking with an IT Service Provider. Because, sometimes a short and simple definition is all you need, and that’s exactly what we have here.

‘BUSINESS CONTINUITY’ Terms

Business Continuity: Set of activities to ensure an organization can respond to a crisis or disaster in a timely manner in order to continue business operations as usual
Business Continuity Solution: A software solution implemented at an organization to ensure continuous, secure data backup as well as quick restoration of data (to its former state) if a disaster or crisis strikes
Disaster/Crisis: Any event that has the power to disrupt an organization’s activities
Downtime: A period of time that a company’s system is unavailable (or has failed to perform its normal functions)
Data Backup: The process of taking a secure copy of a person or company’s data files and storing it on an external medium or device for future use in case of disaster
Off-site Backup: The backing up and storing of data to a place a distance away from a company’s physical location
VM: Virtual Machine; an imitation of a physical computer; basically, a VM allows you to run other operating systems within your current OS

 

Virtualization = The creation of a virtual version of an operating system, network, server, storage, device, etc.

Restoration: The process of returning a company to its normal operations by repairing hardware & recovering data from the business’ backup methods;

 

File Restore = recovery of specific files] [Bare Metal Restore = restoration of complete VM from “bare metal” (without previously installed software or OS)]

RTO: Recovery Time Objective; a parameter in disaster recovery used to calculate the duration of time within which a business must be restored back to normal before the disruption seriously impedes business operations
RPO: Recovery Point Objective; a parameter in disaster recovery used to calculate the point in time that can pass during a disruption before the quantity of data lost during that period is greater than the company’s max allowable threshold

‘CLOUD’ Terms

Cloud Computing: A means of storing & processing a company’s data. Rather than housing the data on a customer’s servers (on-site), it is housed in a network of servers in a secure Data Centre; therefore the data is accessed remotely (over the Internet)

 

Knowing the difference between ‘SaaS’ and ‘Cloud Computing’

Public Cloud: Multi-tenant environment; this form of cloud computing relies entirely on a Service Provider; all services (servers, data storage and applications) are delivered via the Internet
Private Cloud: Single-tenant environment or “cloud computing at home”; it is a cloud computing platform that is implemented within the company’s firewall, giving them greater control over the data and its security; has same features as a public cloud
Hybrid Cloud: An integrated cloud service (combination of private and public clouds) where some applications or resources are provided and managed on-premises and others externally (in a public cloud)
On-Premise: Traditional way of delivering IT services; when a company chooses to have their own server room to host all their IT equipment, that is typically managed by their own in-house IT staff (can also be managed by an outsourced IT team)
Off-Premise: (Or off-premise hosting environment); delivering IT services off-site, where IT services are managed by a Third Party Provider and servers and hardware is leased by this provider
Data Centre: A secure facility that houses servers and telecommunications equipment. When speaking about “cloud hosting”, these Data Centers are the homes of these cloud services
SaaS: Software as a Service; This is a software distribution model where an application is provided to a customer on a subscription basis, as the software is hosted by the Service Provider and is not owned by the customer. Typically, the software application is provided over a network (Internet)
Managed Hosting: When a Service Provider leases servers and required associated hardware to a customer. It is monitored and maintained by the Service Provider and all hardware is at the provider’s facility
Application Hosting: When a business moves their software to an off-premise hosting environment (usually to the cloud)

If you have any terms you’d like us to add to the list, simply leave us a comment in the section below!

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Role of EDI Integration in The Global E-commerce Trends 2023

This post was updated to reflect current trends and information.

We get a lot of questions about the relationship between our EDI Services and e-commerce; So, we have decided to close this year by predicting the global e-commerce trends for 2023, and the role of EDI Integration in e-commerce. In this article, you will learn how our popular EDI2XML Fully Managed Services can help increase your e-commerce success in 2023.

The Global E-commerce Trends 2023

EDI Intergation and e-commerce

2023 is around the corner it’s time to plan your actions. E-commerce continues to show rapid growth, but competition is growing faster than the market itself. This means that it will be not so easy to “win hearts” of buyers, and you can lose them more easily. Customers will be more and more capricious about delivering goods and prices.

2023 will be the year when competition in e-commerce will reach a new level. More and more young companies are appearing in the online marketplace. The big, strong brands are heavily promoting their online offerings on the Internet. They are looking to occupy a significant part of the e-commerce market, because consumers are increasingly going online.

According to Statista  in 2022, e-retail sales surpassed 5.7 billion U.S. dollars worldwide.

E-commerce in the United States of America

Since the dawn of e-commerce, the main driver for the growth of this market was the United States. Online trading has become a global phenomenon, but the US remained one of the most important markets for e-commerce.

The annual increase in sales via the Internet has led to an explosive growth in e-commerce in the United States over the past 15 years.


According to Digital Commerce 360 US eCommerce grows 7.3% in Q2 2022


Although growth rates remain active, the US market is not so far from saturation point. We can expect that sales to stop growing at such a rapid pace.

The American e-commerce market gave way to China

The situation in the Asian markets is directly opposed, especially in China. According to forecasts, the rapid growth of e-commerce will continue in China. The growth of Chinese online sales is taking a huge share of the global e-commerce market.

Despite the large volume of sales in America, the world record set by the Chinese online giant Alibaba that records $56bn in first post-virus Singles’ Day sales, beating 2019 high.

According to John Caplan, head of North American B2B, Alibaba Group, More than 150,000 brands and merchants doing business on Alibaba’s online platforms.

Revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate of 13.9 % resulting in a market volume of US$956,488 m in 2022.

China e-commerce market

Source: Statista

The growth of e-commerce in Asian countries has serious consequences for companies engaged in online business. To benefit from the new trend, they need to enter the international market with their proposals.

EDI – unlimited possibilities to sell across the globe

The advantage of online trading is that you do not need a physical store in order to start selling in a new country. International delivery of goods is becoming more and more accessible.


Read: Must-Have BigCommerce Integrations


However, you should always keep in mind that it is practically impossible to carry out online business, without full integration of systems between your eCommerce platform and your vendors, including Electronic data interchange (EDI); especially we are now in the international trade and transactions are becoming very “time-sensitive”.

EDI and systems Integration, play a major role in e-commerce. To be a supplier of companies such as Amazon, Wal-Mart, Cabela’s, Bed Bath & Beyond, Costco, and other important retailers, you need to be able to send and receive documents electronically.

EDI has proved its reliability and importance for businesses. Processing orders in digital format automatically increase the speed, accuracy and efficiency of any business.

Fully Managed EDI Service for E-commerce

EDI2XML Managed Services is the perfect option for businesses looking to simplify their entire EDI and integration process with their Trading Partners. This service is ideal for businesses of all sizes, from various industries.

EDI2XML is a full-service offering. Our team of EDI and IT integration experts handle a company’s entire EDI project from start to end. All conversions of EDI files are done at our end, leaving customers with no on-site installation of software or hardware. Their EDI project is on time and within budget.

Keep learning about EDI integration and the MANY benefits it has for your online business by visiting our website EDI2XML.com or contacting us directly today!

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