Fully Integrating Netsuite with Magento: What to Consider

August 29, 2012 by Matthew

Integrating Netsuite with Magento is similar to integrating Magento with any other serious ERP system. There are a variety of end points and scenarios you need to consider when planning for this type of integration.  There are also functionality gaps in Magento’s API that you need to consider when looking at any ERP integration.

Here at Demac Media, we have done a number of Netsuite to Magento integrations. Because of this we know which areas you need to focus on and look into as a part of your planning as well as scoping phase of this tricky integration.

Note: In addition to this blog post there are other things like performance, error roll backs and detailed integration reporting that are all outside the scope of this post but are very important to consider when integrating any ERP system with Magento.

Integrating Your Product Catalog (Merchandising data)

A lot of ERP integrations with Magento fall down at this stage.  Magento has historically had a few gaps in their API to support great product upload capabilities.  The main problems revolve around the rather complicated EAV model that Magento runs.  In other words, the attributes that describe your products are a bit of a pain to work with in the API.

It’s more than just attributes though.  If you are like a lot of the eCommerce merchants we work with then you probably have thousands of products that are constantly turning over.  This means inventory is being incremented/decremented on a regular basis from potentially multiple sales channels (not just your Magento site).

Integrating Your Order Process

When orders get placed on your Magento site, you probably want them to automatically push down into Netsuite so that your warehouse can pick, pack and ship them.  But it’s more than just recording the order, you also want things to go back up to Magento so that customers can be properly notified and/or login to their accounts and see the appropriate status of each order.

Integrating Your Customers

The all important customer data – this includes both your usual customer information, plus things like billing and shipping addresses and possibly some other meta data that you collect from your customers.

If you are primarily in the B2B world of selling then this process can get infinitely more complicated.  Think about all of those customer group pricing models you have. Perhaps you’re one of those crazy businesses who even has customer-specific pricing, making things exponentially more difficult to integrate on the web.

What about the various payment methods associated with each type of customer?

Or better yet, do you offer different levels of shipping services to different types of customers based on their order history and/or some other arbitrary variable that drives your offering?

Accounting & Reporting Implications

Making sure that all of your orders, order line items, payments, invoices, and shipments are being moved properly into and out of Netsuite is of extreme importance.  None of this stuff can fall through the cracks, and if it does, you are in for a world of hurt in the reporting and reconciliation world.

Have you thought through things like promotion rules and coupon codes being pushed into the correct part of Netsuite?  This sometimes changes between each business. In some cases we’ve seen merchants want to record the promotion rule/coupon code on EACH line item of an order so that their reporting on particular promotions can be tracked to the product level, not just the order level.

What Now?

Full integrating Netsuite with Magento can be a bit tricky. If you have any questions or concerns about this type of integration or just want to learn more, contact us at hello@demacmedia.com.

About Matthew

Matthew is the Co-Founder & CEO of Demac Media, a leading digital commerce product and services companies headquartered in Toronto, Ontario.

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