Category: Morse Data News and Events

Tips for Selecting the Perfect ERP System

Evaluating ERP Systems

Once you make your selection, think about implementation. For help with this, download our white paper Ten Tips for a Successful ERP Implementation.

 

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4 Helpful Articles for Your Business

InOrder ERP Blue Duck Logo

If your business is concerned about PCI-DSS Compliance, read this article from the PCI Security Council, discussing the future of PCI-DSS.

If you sell products online that may be subject to California’s amendments to Prop 65 safety warnings, read this article, by F. Curtiss Barry & Company, with information on the amendments.

E-commerce sales tax – what’s next? Avalara provides details about the supreme court’s recent decision about sales taxes for online purchases, including reasons for the decision and what to possibly expect in the future.

This article examines how eCommerce is changing logistics.

 

 

 

 

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5 Reasons Your Warehouse Needs an ERP System

Your products, your services, your location, your tools, and of course, your employees. All of these help your business succeed. If they’re not working together efficiently, it will impact your customer satisfaction and your bottom line. Here are five ways your ERP system can help.

5 Ways Infographic

If your ERP system doesn’t provide these functions to
improve your warehouse efficiency (and more),
contact us for a demo of InOrder.

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Clear Communication Between Departments Can Avoid Problems with Your ERP System

Have you ever read the stories about implementations gone wrong, or how a company upgraded an existing system without A) checking with anyone beforehand or B) telling everyone afterward?

One example is that an upgrade is completed without informing everyone in the office until the next morning, when something isn’t working properly. Another example would be someone from a Marketing Department advertising that they’re running a promotion for a product, but perhaps the promotion wasn’t added to the ERP system, resulting in an emergency fire to put out. With clear communication, marketing would send messages to to the appropriate personnel to help prevent unplanned work and avoid unhappy customers.

Communication can even help you avoid security problems, such as these. One process that might help is to appoint a team that reviews and approves any changes before they are made. This team discusses the change, its implications, and any other aspects of the business to prepare for or delay it. Another helpful tool is IT monitoring software, which alerts critical personnel, whether internal staff or an external IT service, when there is a concern.

ERP Implementation TipsWhen planning a significant system change, it’s also important that you work hand-in-hand with your vendor’s Implementation Team (if applicable) to keep those lines of communication open to help ensure success. Our white paper, 10 Steps to a Successful Implementation, has great advice for clearly communicating change to everyone involved, as well as everyone who will be affected by the change. This advice can easily be tailored to large projects or small.

Remember to notify everyone of the change, and provide training and technical support as appropriate. This will help make sure the system is in the hands of qualified users.

Change doesn’t have to be painful, especially when it’s needed to help improve your system. Keeping sight of priorities, staying organized, and clear communication are key elements for successfully growing your business.  We’d enjoy hearing any additional suggestions that you’ve found to be successful. Please leave your comments below.

 

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8 eCommerce Design Features that Make Purchase Decisions Easy

Make sure your eCommerce store is designed so it is easy for shoppers to use, find what they want, and checkout quickly. Here are 8 features that will help you and your shoppers.

•    Image/product carousel – images are important to customers, and carousels are great ways to display them. Use them to show wish list items, cross sell items, sale items, related items, accessories, and even generate items that rank as best sellers. Instead of just one, you can even use multiple product carousels to display items in groups. Your groups may include items related to customers’ previous purchases, loyalty awards, special searches, and more.

cross-sell-1
•    Searching & Filtering –  When shoppers search for something specific, it means they know what they want, and they don’t want to work too hard to find it. One way to help is to use Facet filtering, which is a powerful capability that helps customers fine tune their search results. It enables shoppers to make additional selections within search results based on their individual interests, eliminating the need to sift through many search results. Setup is minimal, and shoppers expect it. These features provide shoppers with faster and more accurate search results, adding to our commitment to help our customers improve the shopping experience they deliver, while lowering costs and increasing sales.

•    Fraud scoring – To decrease fraudulent orders from being processed, use your ERP system to assess them as they are received based on a variety of criteria known to indicate fraudulent purchases.

•    Feedback / Reviews – Reviews can increase sales by steering and bolstering confidence as shoppers are considering their purchases. With the right ERP system, you can even create your own form of social media, providing online forums or Q&A sections that allow customers to contribute.

•    Videos – These useful shopping tools can show shoppers how to use a product, it’s purpose, and why they want it.

•    Wish list – This is a basic feature that stores provide to allow customers buy when they’re ready, and makes ordering and re-ordering easy. It allows customers to build a list of products they would like to purchase in the future.  With a great ERP system, you can allow customers to convert their wish lists into active shopping carts, and move items between shopping carts and wish lists. You can even display wish lists on a carousel on your home page.

Mobile Friendly – Make sure your site is compatible with all devices. Using Google’s recommended Responsive Design Plan, your mobile store will automatically adjust to the sizes of all devices customers are using to provide optimal presentation. The design has the added bonus of a single cart, so multiple web sites are no long required. Good for your customers, good for you!

•    Easy Checkout – If the checkout process requires customers to create an account, or if there are unexpected fees or high shipping amounts, shoppers might not complete the checkout process. Keep the checkout process simple and quick. Reveal all fees up front and show your shoppers the checkout flow to let them know what to expect. Keep it efficient with as few steps as possible. Giving customers an up-front shipping estimate, or the option to bypass registration (when appropriate) can eliminate some of the breakdown at checkout.

Contact us for a free demo to see how InOrder can help you increase your sales.

 

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Time to Check Your Passwords?

It’s been a quiet couple of weeks – I haven’t heard anything in the news about security breaches. But that doesn’t mean it’s OK to let your guard down! According to the PCI Security Standards Council, 81% of hacking related breaches used stolen or weak passwords. So what does this mean for you?  It means that now is a good time to think about updating passwords and making sure you and your employees are all following best practices for them. This includes changing them regularly, never sharing them, and making them hard to hack and steal.

Here is a simple list of Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to passwords.

Do

  • Change your passwords often – at least every 90 days.
  • Use strong/complex passwords, with a minimum length of at least seven characters, using both numeric and alphabetic characters.
  • Use a different password for each account.
  • Use two-step authentication to sign in to your accounts. Using this method, a code is sent to your phone. Then you enter the code before you can sign in – even with the correct password.
  • Use a password manager or vault that encrypts your passwords. This helps you to easily keep track of many passwords, while keeping them safe from intruders.

Don’t

  • Don’t use the same password for multiple accounts.
  • Don’t share your password.
  • Don’t use group, shared, or generic accounts and passwords.
  • Don’t use default passwords from vendors. This may include
  • Don’t use a password that is the same as any of the last four passwords you have used.

One more thing – Stop and look before you enter that PIN or password, whether it’s on your phone or at the register, and don’t enter your credit card where someone else can see your screen. If you do, you’re not being paranoid – you’re protecting yourself.

 

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Helpful Articles for Your Business

InOrder ERP Blue Duck LogoPacking materials can educate your customers, advertise your brand, and represent your business. How you pack your products and what you pack them in can be very important to your customers. Check out these 10 award-winning packages.

Speaking of packing materials, why not add your brand to them? Don’t let those unmarked boxes be missed opportunities.

Your products, your services, your location, your tools, and of course, your employees. All of these help your business succeed. This article discusses the power of employee participation in your marketing efforts.

There are many reasons to have a security process and train your employees on it. This article discusses educating your employees, why it is important, and more.

 

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5 Things eCommerce Customers Don’t Want to Happen When They Shop

InOrder ERP Blue Duck LogoExceptional customer service is critical for your eCommerce business, and it can determine whether you get sales or good references. Customers appreciate when a website is helpful and gives them information they’re looking for – and that’s where they’ll shop. As you know, not all web stores are created equal, so make sure these 5 things don’t happen with your eCommerce business.

  • No option to buy online and pick up in store. I often look for this option, and sometimes I’m disappointed when it’s not available. This option is becoming more common, and is often expected for larger retailers. If you offer this option, make it easy, efficient, and fast.
  • Not  knowing about your product. It’s very important that your customer service reps can answer any questions customers ask about the products you sell.
  • No Reviews. It’s well-known that consumers research businesses and products before they buy. How else can customers make an informed purchase decision?After a customer’s order is delivered, send a series of Email messages that thank the customer and ask for a review. Be sure to provide links that are as convenient as possible, and format your review page so it is quick to submit. And remember – if your customers take the time to send their valuable opinions, make sure to review and display them as soon as possible!
  • No contact information available – or it’s hard to find. Too often, online businesses use Email as the only means of contact, or a phone number is not easy to find. If shoppers have a question about your business or products, or a problem navigating your site, make sure you can help without making them wait. Customer Service should always be at your customers’ fingertips. Make sure your customers can reach you immediately with any questions. Display your phone number where it can be easily and quickly seen. If shoppers have questions or problems navigating your site, make sure you can help without making them wait.
  • Not listening to your customers. Word of mouth can be the best form of reference. It can also be the worst. Whether someone is asking neighbors if they know a good plumber or roofer or telling neighbors about their plumber or roofer, personal experiences spread fast. Respond to your customers when they reach out to you. If your customers are on social media (or if you want to attract customers who are on social media), your business must be there too.

Contact us for more information about eCommerce solutions with InOrder.

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Get Your ERP Costing Methods InOrder

Generate Income With Your ERP System

Costing methods might not be the most exciting topics in the warehouse, but they are very important to your ERP system because they determine the value of inventory. InOrder supports four inventory costing methods: FIFO, LIFO, Average, and Standard.

This allows InOrder to determine the costing method of your inventory, storing the current and future costs for each inventory item.

While each method may result in profit and tax implications that must be carefully considered, here is a glance at each costing method that is used with InOrder. (Note that vendor costs from purchase orders are used as unit costs.)

The FIFO costing method means “First-In, First-Out.” FIFO costing supports unlimited cost buckets per SKU per storage facility per hold code. With this method, the oldest items are used first, and the oldest unit cost is used when allocating stock. This costing method is common for perishable items, or for items that quickly change styles or quickly become obsolete.

The LIFO costing method means “Last-In, First-Out.” LIFO costing supports unlimited cost buckets per SKU per storage facility per hold code. With this method, the newest items are used first (which may result in aging stock), and the newest unit cost is used when allocating stock. This method may be useful for business that sell items that do not expire or become obsolete (such as gravel).

The Average costing method calculates the value of inventory based on the average purchase cost of all inventory. With this method, the average cost is used when allocating stock. Average costing stores averages by SKU by storage facility by hold code. Re-averaging occurs whenever new inventory is received. If rounding occurred during re-averaging, an inventory cost adjustment transaction is generated to recording the rounding error. While this method is inexpensive to maintain, it also means that expensive items are sold for the same price as less expensive items. This method may be useful for a business that sells items with similar prices.

Standard costs are used as a close approximation to actual costs, which may be useful when it is too time-consuming to collect actual costs. With this method, InOrder uses the current unit cost when allocating stock.

InOrder also allows you to suppress costs to use $0 when allocating stock.

Contact us for a demo of how InOrder can manage your inventory.

 

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Use InOrder ERP Promotions and Special Prices to Stand Out From Your Competitors

InOrder ERP Blue Duck LogoPrices have a big enough influence that consumers will use them to plan what they buy, where they will buy it, and when. Shoppers will personally seek out promotions from websites, mobile apps, printed coupons, emails you send them, and they will follow you on social media to get them.  Promotions can increase the number of new customers and significantly increase the average order amount.

Combining promotions with special prices is a great way to attract new customers and encourage them to complete their orders or add items to their carts. It can make the difference between sales order completion or cart abandonment, referrals, and winning new customers.

With InOrder ERP, you can easily tailor promotional prices to your business. Create a Special Price List based on a promotional code. Once you send out the promotion (via mail or email) the Special Price List is turned on for phone and web sales. Promotional codes, which are uniquely connected to mailing lists used in promotions, may be used with Google click-tracking. You can use this to track the links clicked by your customers from Email messages you send to them.

You can even specify a Special Price List for a specific customer, so he or she will always receive the prices in that list. You can set up as many Special Price lists as you want. For example, you can have one for each of the following customer types:

  • Retail
  • Jobber
  • Wholesale
  • Canada
  • Level 1
  • Level 2
  • Level 3

Each of these example customers could have different prices for the same items – whichever list you associate with a customer will determine the prices on that customer’s invoice. A Special Price List is also where you would build any sales. Here is an example of how easy it is to use:

  • Define a price list with discounts (Example Price List “SAVE 10%”)
  • Define a promotion “SAVE” to reflect all the discounted prices within that Special Price List.
  • Set the Start Date and End date to control when the list is active and when it ends.
  • Optionally, you can also set a special discount based on an existing price list. This discount may be controlled at the line item level, item group level, or for the order.

InOrder allows you to manage a wide spectrum of marketing programs, from loyalty points, to email marketing, and even special price lists. With the Marketing Management features of InOrder, you can easily create subsets of your client or prospect lists for personalized promotions and on-target messaging.

Contact us for a free demo to see how InOrder can improve your business.

 

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