Features of an Effective Online Order Management System

order_management_system_3.jpgAs a manufacturer or wholesaler, your company likely deals with a large number of orders for many products.  It is important that you are able to find an excellent online order management system that will fit right in with your current systems. Finding software that is built specifically for wholesalers and manufacturers will not only help your back office, but will also give your sales reps and customers the ability to order online and gain access to their account information.  This simple addition will keep your business running smoothly and orders shipping efficiently.

QuickBooks Integration

QuickBooks is the go-to software for small and medium sized companies.  If you are using QuickBooks, having an order management system that connects directly with QuickBooks will go far in making your job easier. It will allow information to flow seamlessly through the two pieces of software. This helps eliminate lots of time that would normally be spent doing data entry to ensure all data ends up in the right program.

When a customer or sales rep inputs an order into the order management interface, the order will be automatically entered into QuickBooks without any extra data entry.  This eliminates the need for the office to touch the order, keeping errors to a minimum.

Customer Management 

The online order management system that you choose should provide your customers with a simple, effective and custom online sales process that helps them easily order items from your company. Then, have the ability to track the status of those orders all the way to delivery.

By giving customers access to their information, you will bypass any need for them to contact your sales staff with simple questions they can answer themselves.

Some of the features that you should be looking for in your customer management software include:

  • Customized Order Forms
    • A customized order form that allows your customers to find the products they normally order quickly.
  • Order information and history
    • Let your customers check on the status of their orders and provide them with additional order information to limit support queries. Additionally, let your customers check out previous orders that they have made with your company.
  • Stock information
    • As a wholesaler, you spend a lot of time informing customers about the stock on hand for a variety of items. Allow them to gain access to real time stock information directly on your website.
  • Shipping information
    • Let your customers check out their shipping details as soon as an order is shipped.
  • 24/7 Availability
    • Give customers access to their account information 24 hours a day from wherever they are. 

Sales Rep Management

It is imperative that your employees are able to quickly find information that they need, and deliver that information quickly to customers as needed. Order fulfillment is a time consuming process and the best step that you can take is to ensure that you give your sales reps the necessary tools to perform their job quickly and efficiently. Some of the features you should look for regarding sales reps from your online order management platform include:

  • B2B online order forms
    • Make it easy for your sales team to place customer orders online from wherever they are.  The home office will no longer have to decipher sales reps orders or input them in again into QuickBooks because it will all be automatic.
  • Customer specific pricing
    • As a wholesaler, you may have different pricing structures based on a variety of conditions like order size and customer type.  With access to this data, sales reps will be able to make deals on the spot.
  • Track and access customer information
    • Your sales reps should be able to quickly access customer information to provide a better sales experience.

Warehouse Integration

For these new systems to run smoothly, you should consider warehouse integration. Simple features like integration with current information, electronic transmission of orders for shipment, and availability of shipping information can help to simplify logistics and help ensure you are accurately fulfilling each order that is placed into your system.

There are many things that need to be taken into account when researching the right order management system for your business. The right system will have features aimed at helping customers, sales reps and logistics.

order management system