Integrating Your Online Shop to QuickBooks
If you are running a website that includes an eCommerce solution with an online shopping cart, one of the major challenges you may face is transferring your online transaction data from your website eCommerce application to your office accounting software and vise versa. Manually getting this information from your website and re-keying it into your accounting software may not only be tedious but also time consuming. Same case if you need to transfer changes to your inventory and products from your accounting software to your online shopping carts. The good news is that you are not alone. Companies offering web hosting and domain registration services have to deal with such questions all the time even where they might not have the products or expertise to offer a solution.
Even better news though is that there are solutions to the problem. One of the world’s leading accounting applications, QuickBooks, has an interface that can integrate with your website’s shopping cart. The application can be installed and customized to feed into your eCommerce platform and thus allow for the automatic or triggered upload and download of product and transaction data. The amount of information exchanged is almost any information of common interest to both your eCommerce front end and your accounting software. This means client details such as names and contacts, product prices, inventory data, transaction information, relevant tax calculation etcetera. But that is not all. QuickBooks internet-readiness is further demonstrated by the ability to execute sales orders from right within the application.
For businesses this is of great importance. Consider that many businesses today that sell a product online also have other channels through which they allow their product to be purchased such as paying an actual visit to their product store. Also, unless the product sold is something that is then downloaded over the internet such as eBooks, software and music, the sale online is only the first part of the transaction. Once the product is purchased, arrangements then have to be made to deliver the product to the customer. QuickBooks is an accounting application that seeks to bring all these objectives together onto one interface. Your mail handling data as well as credit/debit card processing information is all housed within the application allowing for easy retrieval and efficient, centralized monitoring. Vendor plug ins for QuickBooks play an important role in this. For instance the Stamps.com plug in allows you to print USPS shipping labels directly from within your QuickBooks software.
Benefits of Integrating with QuickBooks
Integrating your shopping cart or merchant account with QuickBooks has several benefits. First, it means that you can monitor your stock inventories at real time. This allows you to re-order at the optimal time and avoid both over stocking or running out of stock. The ability to have business data immediately means key management reports such as overall sales reports, particular client data and trend monitoring allow for the making of fast and yet accurate decisions.
There is also the savings in manpower costs that would otherwise be incurred if you were to get someone to rekey the data from the accounting software to the eCommerce platform and vise versa. Also, since the transactions are automatically handled from one system to another, you have more reassurance on the integrity of data that lies on either system than you would were there to be more human intervention. This reduces chances of insider fraud.
Automatic updating of transactions from the eCommerce platform to your accounting software also reduces the cycle time in delivering goods to your clients. You can quickly generate delivery notes, shipping labels and other required documents since QuickBooks is updated immediately the client places an order. This in turn improves your customer satisfaction rating giving you a stronger competitive edge.
How to Integrate Your Online Shopping Cart With QuickBooks
Integrating your shopping cart and merchant account will require the full cooperation of your web hosting and sometimes domain registration service provider. There are two ways that you may use to integrate your shopping cart and merchant account to your QuickBooks application. If your eCommerce platform is already compatible to QuickBooks and already has the ability to directly integrate with the accounting software, then all you need to do is provide a few parameters within QuickBooks for it to link into your to your shopping cart. Your web hosting service and domain registration details will be some of the data you will require. On the other hand, if the shopping cart is not compatible with QuickBooks, you will need to either buy off the shelf or have someone develop an intermediary application to link your shopping cart to QuickBooks.
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Article By: Marcus Lim