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Is there a multi-channel solution for Apple Mac?

By Chris Dawson May 11, 2011 - 11:31 pm

I was asked an interesting question today – as a retailer grows “What’s the best single system for generating invoices from eBay, Amazon and your own website?” Rather than process orders on three separate platforms the company are looking for a system to handle all orders to be in one central point and have the same look invoice across marketplaces.

There are a ton of products on the market able to fulfil this, including 247TopSeller, ChannelAdvisor, ChannelGrabber, eSellerPro and Linnworks, but all of these are much more than just invoicing systems. They’re full blown channel management platforms which will handle your inventory, launch products onto multiple platforms and some will even handle Comparison Shopping Engine feeds and paid search campaigns (such as Google Adwords).

A simpler solution would be a utility such as (my personal favourite) Packing Partner from Aimco which will collect sales from a wide selection of marketplaces and websites and generate VAT (or non VAT) invoices as well as picking and packing lists.

If accounting as well as invoicing is a key requirement then Tradebox which integrates with Sage is an obvious choice. Although there’s a steep learning curve for companies not familiar with Sage, the long term advantages of a rigorous accounting system and reporting far outweigh the short term costs.

However the fly in the ointment is that this particular company operate on the Apple Mac platform. Whilst GarageSale is undoubtedly one of the best and most comprehensive Mac management platforms for eBay it’s not a cross platform tool. Whilst some of the management tools available have web based consoles available, others rely on Microsoft Windows so mandate the use of PCs.

My advice (maybe wrongly) was to migrate or add at least one Microsoft based PC for the business to supplement the Apple machines. Whilst this isn’t an ideal solution it’s probably the simplest solution to gain access to a wide range of multi-channel invoicing and management tools to suit all budgets.

If you use Apple Macs in your business what software do you use, or do you use a blend of both Apple and PCs to manage your sales? What advice would you give to a company who are purely Mac based and want to add multi-channel productivity tools?

If you work for a manufacturer of multi-channel productivity software is your solution supported on Apple computers?

  • Steve Harman
    10 years ago

    This feels like a hurriedly Google’d article.

    Not a mention of iSale – another great Mac based eBay management tool and why nothing about running WIndows applications on a Mac in Parallels or VMWare Fusion – both costing around $49 / £40, instead of adding a PC?.

    Frankly the dominant days of WInddows or any other desktop operating system are coming to an end…Web-based, run-on-any-device and access-from-anywhere are here to stay.

    Steve

    • 10 years ago

      Ohh, does iSale now support Amazon and websites?

  • 10 years ago

    Hey Chris,

    Channelgrabber is most certainly supported on ANY of the larger operating systems.

    As it is browser based, there isn’t a restriction on what operating system you can use with it.

    I won’t comment on the other solutions.

    Regards,

    Daniel

    • 10 years ago

      I don’t think there was any doubt that it works with any major OS. I think the point was that you guys do more than just invoicing. For someone that wants just invoicing who do they use?

      I definitely recommend using some sort of web-based solution if one exists. Then OS compatibility becomes a non-issue.

Featured in this article from the Tamebay Guide – companies that can help you grow and manage your business.

ChannelAdvisor

ChannelAdvisor is a leading provider of cloud-based e-commerce solutions that enable retailers and branded manufacturers to integrate, manage and optimise their merchandise sales across hundreds of online channels

ChannelGrabber

Multichannel ecommerce software for retail product content optimization, listings, inventory, order, shipping, invoice and messaging.

Tradebox

Accounts integration software offering financial control for online retailers

Linnworks

Linnworks is an eCommerce platform that enables online sellers to automate key processes, reduce costs, and grow their revenue. Order and inventory management software with 150+ marketplace and courier integrations

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