I'll try to not make this redundant!
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United States United States
akamomo
Kudos: 25
Joined: Dec 15, 2007
I'll try to not make this redundant!
15 Dec 2007
Ok, so we've been spending about two weeks researching management systems.

We:

Are new. First month on eBay, worrying about a lot of things (distracted), but still have $8.5k sales for the last 30 days, half of that in the last week, +70% sell through.

Are taking a break - we decided to not get more inventory until mid Jan. when we are putting it through the system we hope to select by then.

Are currently using a PC-based listing package that is simple (puts it up w/ our template), and ShipWorks to get it out the door via FedEx ground & USPS for smaller things + int'l.

Sell unique items that are heavy: ie, I get six of something, require individual pics because items are used and in varying condition, plus they are (I guess) relatively high value - average sale is about $110 right now, avg weight maybe 50-60 lbs (electronics).

We have started looking at a few mid and high end systems. So far we've found that even capable "mid" tools such as ShipWorks seem limiting. If we're gonna push $25k through the doors a month we want more capabilites via integration. We're now focusing completely on "total" solutions - ChannelAdvisor, Laris, eSellerPro, etc.

With the above, we've done web-based 1-hour walk-throughs and have a demo login for one system. They are all clearly capable, all do what we need (mostly). It's about the company providing service for how our business is (as is each business) 10% unique and needs that 10% addressed / integrated / solved, with / for us.

We don't expect any answers ("get this") and are doing the legwork (as we should) ourselves - calling companies, trying software, trying to get a feel for the service or climate of each provider, etc.

So... WHO ARE WE MISSING? Here's who we've spoken with and done a presentation with:

Laris
eSellerPro
ChannelAdvisor Merchant

Here's who we think we might want to talk to:

Infopia
Zoovy
NetSuite -- ( are they integrating CA??)

My feelings thus-far are:

Laris is great, can't stand using active-x and being married to WIN/IE for it to work 100%. It takes many screens to get stuff done. Insanely capable (best I've seen). Like barcoding.

eSellerPro also nice, seems a bit less capable but they seem very keen to "we'll do the tweaking" as they are small company. Not sure that's so good as they wanted $1k for a FedEx API integration... They came down (a little) but only after I pointed out it takes 30 sec in Laris to get a meter # and be shipping FedEx with one's account. Initial setup seems high and they quoted the highest monthly. Not sure if they follow through on the service - we think they might but also wish they would be a bit more flexible on the starting up fees. LOVE that it is Java based on front-end. They also have a "tighter pitch" to pages than most, less pages (lots of info/page), great interface.

CA Merchant seems least innovative. The company is clearly large and one can feel that in terms of the support we think we might get (not much). But the worst for us is that we are quoted a 12 month contract requirement - that killed it for us.

Our reasoning for some of above (contract length, etc) is we are new venture and we will be either (a) doing great and not caring as much about some of these fees or (b) done and gone in a few months. We can accept a cost of failure (for just the software) of a couple of grand maybe, above that is a bit uncomfortable. We are less concerned in ongoing cost as for us to stay in this business we should be able to support some of the higher price structures. We sell a product that most likely will keep us totally using only eBay and one or two small b2b marketplaces that we'll need a custom bridge to eventually.

Help is needed please for some experts to point out a system that they like that we're missing. We'll be able to decide but want to know we've talked with them all. Thank you greatly in advance!
Supplier
United States United States
ChannelMAX
Kudos: 256
Joined: May 21, 2006
Re: I'll try to not make this redundant!
17 Dec 2007
Please feel free to check our service .. www.ChannelMAX.Net.

Thanks
Paul
Herts, England United Kingdom
Andy
Kudos: 11,622
Joined: Jan 1, 2001
Re: I'll try to not make this redundant!
31 Dec 2007
Hi akamomo, thanks for the very detailed post - I'm sure others will find it helpful

Your approach is thorough and I don't think you are missing anything crucial, but I have a couple of small points to make:

  • Laris and Kyozou are built on the same platform. Laris is for small and medium-size sellers and Kyozou is for larger sellers, so you may want to look at Kyozou as well as or instead of Laris.
  • Netsuite is a BIG "does everything" business application which has its own eCommerce and eBay integration features. Both ChannelAdvisor and Marketworks (recently acquired by CA) can integrate with Netsuite - so they can share customer, accounting, and inventory data.

  • Have you decided on a solution provider yet?
    Andy Geldman, Web Retailer
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    Hoboken, NJ United States
    redstage networks
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    Joined: Sep 21, 2006
    Re: I'll try to not make this redundant!
    31 Dec 2007
    Hi Andy,

    We've been serving the larger clients as well for a while now, ever since we acquired some great e-commerce business minds and world class designers. This makes us the perfect partner to grow your medium or large business into an enterprise.

    Akamomo,

    Give us a call when you get a chance so we can discuss how to optimize your process. Your workflow can follow many paths in the software, and we can help figure out the best approach.

    [Last edited: 31 Dec 2007]
    Redstage Internet Marketing Solutions
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    California United States
    proshopp.com
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    Joined: Aug 14, 2006
    Re: I'll try to not make this redundant!
    8 Feb 2008
    Hi akamomo ,

    Have you tried Vendio.com , they have recently bought another auction mangement provider Andale.com which was one of the largest auction management company .Call us for demo of the software we could definately help you with the solutions you are looking for.

    Reagrds
    Steve
    www.Vendio.com

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