If you have a shopping cart and use Quickbooks, and perform shipping operations, the amount of repetitive typing, copying and pasting of name, address, email and phone information for Quickbooks order tracking and inventory along with still more of the same for then creating shipping labels has likely worn you out more times than you’d like to count – especially as your business grows and these operations begin to eat up the majority of your day!
Recently I helped a friend install a new computer (Windows 7, 64-bit) and an updated Quickbooks (from Retail Premium 2007 to Retail Premium 2011) and a piece of software by Atandra called “T-Hub” that impressed me so much, I decided to become an affiliate … and offer better training than they do as my bonus sweetening my offer! You are going to benefit from my thinking and progress towards creating that training by receiving it free via multiple blog posts here, in the new category of “Shopping Cart Integration”.
My friend is using OSCommerce for her store (http://plussizeplum.com – a plus size lingerie online store that has earned a high place in people’s hearts – and in Google’s rankings after only 4 years!) Though much of what I discuss in coming weeks will apply specifically to OSCommerce, the T-Hub integration software works with many, many other shopping carts, including Ebay and Amazon stores. The principles will be the same across several stores. Over time, I will add specifics targeted at shopping cart software other than OSCommerce, but this is a good place to start (and applies to the OSCommerce spin-off “Zen-Cart” as well!)
We have set up Endicia’s Dazzle software to handle USPS shipping for Priority Mail, Express Mail, and International First Class among other USPS offerings. Due to glitches in the T-Hub software’s integration with the FedEx Ship Center software in Windows 7, 64-bit (having to do with the lack of 32-bit ODBC drivers in Win7 64-bit), we are performing all FedEx via Quickbooks’ own built-in FedEx shipping integration. UPS shipping can also be performed via both T-Hub and Quickbooks. The biggest deal here was the Endicia/Dazzle integration for generating shipping labels for USPS shipping.
The potential here is amazing for saving time and putting an end to mistakes that happen from mistyping and general confusion. The frustrated customer can be a thing of the past, the missed shipping labels and inventory mistakes also gone for good. From Webstore to Shipping Labels to Quickbooks financial and inventory updates – all quick and automated, shaving hours off of your day that are better spent performing marketing and customer service! Follow me over the next couple of weeks as I put together the best training I can, and give me input and suggestions – please! Everybody benefits this way.
The following features beyond the Standard version were important to us for this implementation, so we went with the Pro version:
|Print packing list from T-HUB||Yes|
|Export orders to UPS WorldShip, Stamps.com (USPS), Endicia Dazzle (USPS). FedEx||Yes|
|Update order status and tracking number in online store shopping cart||Yes|
|Import of Tracking information from QuickBooks||Yes|
|Update tracking number in QuickBooks||Yes|
|Scheduler – Hands off automation|
|Automated Order download from website every few minutes||Yes|
|Automated Shipping status update to website every few minutes||Yes|
|Automated posting of online orders to QuickBooks every few minutes||Yes|
|Automated import of tracking information from QuickBooks every few minutes||Yes|
|Credit Card payment processing for offline phone orders (Authorize.Net or QuickBooks ECommerce Merchant Service)||Yes|
|Enter phone or mail orders directly into T-HUB using items/inventory in QuickBooks/QuickBooks POS||Yes|
|Post Drop-Ship Items to QuickBooks as Sales Order and Purchase Orders for preferred vendors.||Yes|
The Standard features are a rich feature set by themselves:
|Online Order download|
|On-demand order download||Yes|
|Combine orders from multiple stores||Yes|
|Manually review/edit order details||Yes|
|Posting to QuickBooks|
|Create customers and items on the fly||Yes|
|Flexible customer naming||Yes|
|Choice of sales receipt, invoice or sales order in QuickBooks||Yes|
|Record shipping charges||Yes|
|Flexibility in handling taxes||Yes|
|Assign class in QuickBooks||Yes|
|Map items between website and QuickBooks||Yes|
For those requiring the additional features of the Advanced version, it has these very powerful extra features to offer:
|Sync QuickBooks and online store|
|Inventory updates from QuickBooks/QuickBooks POS to online store shopping cart*||Yes|
|Upload new items from QuickBooks to online store shopping cart*||Yes|
|Scheduler – Hands off automation|
|Automated inventory price/quantity update from QuickBooks to website every few minutes||Yes|
So, stay tuned in and follow my progress as these posts evolve! I will be sending these out to my email newsletter subscribers, so if you want to be “in the loop” and not miss a single one of these posts, please do sign-up for my newsletters in the space provided on the right side of this blog. I’ll make it worth your while!