For many years I recommended, almost exclusively one specific, ECommerce integration product for use with QuickBooks and QuickBooks Point-of-sale. At the time I thought it was among the very best, and it was fairly economical and provided sound customer support. While a few of my clients experienced a limited number of issues with the product, it worked as advertised and provided sufficiently flexible a feature set that met almost every clients’ requirements.
Then something happened, the people who offered that product decided that they could ‘raise their prices’ beyond reason (in my opinion) for the SMB market. Many small retailers who need an ECommerce integration solution simply can’t afford my ‘old reliable’, even if they do sell 5000 orders per month. As a result I started reviewing some other products, and the following is my first ‘product review’ for other offerings I will be recommending to my clients on a case-by-case basis. Please take note that the order in which these products will be published have no ‘implication’ of preference.
SuperManager is a multi-channel ECommerce order processing application that provides integration with Yahoo! Store and Yahoo! Merchant Solutions, Amazon, ShopSite, Shopify, BigCommerce, Volusion, PrestaShop, XCart, Zen Cart, Americart, GrabCart and ClaimTheWeb. It also acts as the ‘go between’ hub connecting your eCommerce store(s) with either QuickBooks or QuickBooks Point-of-sale. While it has been around, for some time, I didn’t’ find a lot of my QuickBooks ProAdvisor associates including it in their arsenal of product offerings, in fact several had never heard of the product.
With SuperManager you can easily download orders from any of the sales channels the product supports, automatically verify addresses and send dropship requests. SuperManager allows you to print receipts, packing slips, pick lists and reports. You can export your orders to QuickBooks, capture authorized transactions in batches, print shipping labels for USPS, UPS, and FedEx, and even create and process orders ‘off-line’ from your sales channel.
Products like SuperManager are not just ‘connectivity tools’, they are designed to be much more. In reality they should be thought of as the central point of control that not only integrates but orchestrates the ensemble of eCommerce channels, inventory verification, order fulfillment, shipping coordination, and accounting interface.
ECommerce Channel Support
At present, SuperManager supports 15 ECommerce channels including Amazon, Americart, Big Commerce, Claim the Web, GrabCart, Magento, osCommerce, PrestaShop, Shopify, ShopSite, Volusion, XCart, Yahoo! Store, Yahoo! Merchant Solutions, and ZenCart. After properly configuring SuperManager to work with your eCommerce channel(s), you can download orders with the click of a button.
After downloading your orders, it is easy to automatically verify order addresses against the US Postal Services address database. You can also configure SuperManager to highlight orders that FAIL your established fraud screening criteria.
If you process orders via drop-shipments from suppliers or order fulfillment centers you can automatically send orders for fulfillment.
SuperManager can be configured to check orders against inventory and initiate back-order fulfillment when sufficient quantities on hand don’t exist.
Unclear about the details of a specific item appearing in an order? You can get the specifics of any item with a click of a button, as shown below. Here you can modify the Price, Quantity, Taxable Status or number on Back-order or shipment number for any item.
When you are satisfied with an order, you can initiate the shipment/delivery process just as simply. Create a new order shipment, and add additional shipments to any order as needed. SuperManager works with USPS, UPS, and FedEx, via interfaces with DAZzle, Stamps.com, FedEx and WorldShip.
Payment information processed in your shopping cart can be downloaded into SuperManager for most carts. Even PayPal IPN service payments received from outside of the shopping cart can be downloaded using SuperManager. You can even add manual ‘events’ to record payments made via other methods into SuperManager, such as checks or cash.
Once you have completed order processing, SuperManager moves the orders from the Open Order tab to the Closed Order tab to reduce clutter among Open Orders.
SuperManager can export orders to either QuickBooks (desktop) or QuickBooks Point-of-sale (desktop) using the SDK interface, this assures maximum two-way communications between the two applications. You decide if you want to export orders from SuperManager as individual orders, and if you want those orders posted in QuickBooks as sales receipts, sales orders, or invoices; you can even option to lump all of any selected group of orders together and have them post as a summary transaction in QuickBooks When posting to QuickBooks Point-of-sale, SuperManager posts individual orders as sales receipts. There is a lot of flexibility here folks.
But what if you don’t need all the flexibility that SuperManager offers because you want to continue to process your orders and shipping using QuickBooks? Well there is a special ‘lite’ version of SuperManager that provides a feature set that is geared toward doing just that, it downloads your eCommerce orders and exports them to QuickBooks so that you can then process those orders using your familiar QuickBooks-based-workflow, giving you the best of both worlds.
QuickBooks Configuration in SuperManager
We are not going to go through the many steps needed to properly configure every aspect of how SuperManager interacts with QuickBooks; however, here are a few of the ‘options’ that you can configure using SuperManager that maximize its use with QuickBooks and/or QuickBooks Point-of-sale. As you can easily see just from these few, there are a lot of possible alternatives available that permit you to stream the data from SuperManager into QuickBooks (or QBPOS) just the way you want it to appear.
- Classes - SuperManager can apply classes on the line item and/or transaction level. You can option to base classes upon store settings variables or order variables when exporting orders and batch variables when exporting batches, if you so choose.
- Forms Templates – SuperManager can be configured to use different QuickBooks forms templates for different purposes, you determine which template fits your specific needs.
- Group Items - SuperManager supports linking to QuickBooks item groups. This is a good way to handle situations where you are tracking inventory in QuickBooks and certain items you sell in your online store require multiple inventoried items being sent to the customer.
- Order Numbering – SuperManager can post ‘store’ order numbers (or other identifiers) to the posted transactions in QuickBooks, or permit QuickBooks to continue using the default sequential transaction numbering, in such cases store order numbers can be posted to transactions in alternative fields.
- Product Variants – SuperManager has an option that allows it to create new variants for your items (products) and to limit the number of variants if you so choose. Variants store alternative product codes that can be used to give QuickBooks or QuickBooks POS item names if they do not match the default SuperManager Item names (i.e. product_code:variant_name). They may also used for storing inventory levels and setting up dropship automation. In QuickBooks POS, variants may correspond to ‘style-grid’ based products, in QuickBooks variants might indicate ‘informational changes’ (like printing of a specific name on an item for embroidery.)
- QBPOS Look-up Options - SuperManager can reference or lookup items by any of the descriptors used in QuickBooks POS including Item Number, ALU, Desciption1, Description2 and SKU fields in POS.
- Sales Tax Compatibility – SuperManager can apply sales taxes according to the specific sales tax items and tax locations used in either QuickBooks or QuickBooks POS.
Exporting Orders to QuickBooks
After everything has been configured properly, exporting orders, either on an individual basis, or in a batch, is simple. Let’s look at sending individual orders to QuickBooks. As seen in the following illustration simply select the order(s) you want to export, right click and choose ‘XML Exchange’, the drop-down menu will display ‘QuickBooks’ (or ‘QuickBooks POS’.
Select the ‘QuickBooks’ option and your order(s) will be exported. After the export, SuperManager will display a log reporting the status of the export process.
While the process of sending ‘batch’ orders to QuickBooks is similar, there are some additional preliminary steps you must follow in order to insure the ‘integrity’ of the entire batch of individual orders are properly posted as a single transaction in QuickBooks.
SuperManager is an economical solution for ECommerce integration with QuickBooks, it also offers a variety of features that enables it to become your order processing engine that not only interfaces with your eCommerce store(s), but also with your shipping solutions. If you operate an 'in house' warehouse, it maybe just what you are looking for to process orders without requiring your 'order fulfillment personnel' to be logged-in to QuickBooks.
On the other hand, if you want to maintain your existing QuickBooks centered workflow, but just need a way to get your ECommerce orders downloaded into QuickBooks (the way you want them), SuperManager offers an even more economical option for that.
While SuperManager may not be the ‘slickest’ ECommerce integration solution on the market; in terms of cost-benefit it must certainly be considered, one of the best 'bangs for the bucks'. You can check it out for yourself by downloading their free frial.