The Green Sheet Online Edition
September 27, 2010 • Issue 10:09:02
Easy inventory management
Sometimes being innovative requires not creating or building on something, but distilling an existing product into a finer or simplified form. That is what gateway and software development firm eProcessing Network LLC is attempting to do with its new inventory and reporting product for merchants.
The product, ePNInventory, is intended for small merchants who want a relatively inexpensive and simple way to maintain a back-end inventory system that operates in real time, according to Brett Mansdorf, Director of Business Development for eProcessing Network.
"It's a simplified way for merchants to utilize bar codes with an over-the-counter bar code scanner and maintain a perpetual inventory with a full suite of reporting without the cost of $1,000-, $2,000-priced products out there today that need to be customized in a lot of cases and end up requiring that merchants front a lot of money," Mansdorf said. "The big kicker with this product is the price point."
Making what's round 'rounder'
With ePNInventory, eProcessing is not "trying to reinvent the wheel," Mandsdorf said; it is streamlining a longstanding product so that it becomes easier to use and less cost prohibitive. He stated that merchants can set up the software in minutes, and from there they have a computerized way to track in real time any changes to inventory - be they product acquisitions or sales.
Both brick-and-mortar and e-commerce sales are part of the tracking system, Mandsdorf added. Brick-and-mortar sales and product acquisitions are recorded through bar code scanning, while merchant e-commerce portals can be connected to the system through a processing back-end.
The program is accessed through eProcessing's online portal and comes with a host of other services that are accessible within the same website, including gift and loyalty services, an e-commerce shopping cart, recurring payment and collection tools, and accounting services. All of these services, including ePNInventory, are sold exclusively through ISO resellers, Mandsdorf noted.
"There are some add-ons like the shipping, the calculators, the check [processing], gift cards, and everything else," he said. "It all ties into one master database for that merchant. ... Then there are different sections of the website when they log in that deal with the different pieces, whether it's the shopping cart or e-commerce stuff or the gift cards or the inventory or the mobile for that matter."
Making smart 'smarter'
Mandsdorf said merchants can also track inventory through a smart phone, which, like its desktop counterpart, hooks into the system for real-time recording of inventory changes by downloading a single application.
"A merchant can go out to a flea market and be on a cell phone and process all this stuff," he said. "Then when he goes back to his hotel at night he can log into the ePN website and see everything that went through in real time."
He added that, for merchants who do have technical difficulties, a support line is manned by people with specific knowledge of the product.
"It's homogenous, so when you pick up the phone and call our support desk because you have a problem with the inventory system, you're actually talking to people who support it, as well as designed it and implemented it, and that gives us a bit of a lead on the rest of the marketplace," he said.
"And the guys that designed all our other software also designed the inventory system; our personnel know everything through and through - and how it all interacts."
eProcessing Network LLC
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