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5 trends disrupting the traditional wholesale distribution model

Multichannel Distribution Specialists

Integrating Wholesale Distribution alongside In-Store, Online and Machine-to-Machine to let today's multichannel businesses increase efficiency and reduce costs while achieving flexible and agile control of the supply chain.

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Category Archives: Blog Articles

 News from BlueBridge One

Black Friday and Christmas multichannel season off to a flying start over August Bank Holiday weekend

The Christmas multichannel sales season kicked off over the August Bank Holiday weekend with major mid-market chains such as Tesco and those at the top of the market, such as John Lewis, featuring instore and online festive themes.

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Black Friday and Christmas multichannel season off to a flying start over August Bank Holiday weekend

The Christmas multichannel sales season kicked off over the August Bank Holiday weekend with major mid-market chains such as Tesco and those at the top of the market, such as John Lewis, featuring instore and online festive themes.

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New TCO calculator enables companies considering switching to Oracle NetSuite see how the numbers play out

If there’s one thing that might seem more challenging than migration to an ERP system for the first time, it’s changing from one ERP vendor to another.

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5 ways for multichannel distributors to improve service inspired by Amazon

Amazon offers a lot of services, however, this is no accident and the internet giant is no accidental empire. Amazon was not a tech triumph that came about because some geek got lucky in his dad’s garage!

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5 ways for multichannel distributors to improve service inspired by Amazon

Amazon offers a lot of services, however, this is no accident and the internet giant is no accidental empire. Amazon was not a tech triumph that came about because some geek got lucky in his dad’s garage!

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9 trends and 3 strategic considerations showing the way forward in distribution and multichannel

Keynote speaker R “Ray” Wang, Principal Analyst and CEO of Constellation Research at SuiteWorld 17 earlier this year provided some interesting insights. They highlight the need for wholesale distributors and multichannel businesses to make sure they keep up with new technology and continually review what they do and how they are doing it.

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New BlueBridge One guide looks at tough questions to help wholesale distributors be more resilient in the face of disruptive change

BlueBridge One has released a new guide, ‘Disrupted trading relationships: Gain competitive advantage from disruptive change’. This is aimed at helping wholesale distribution firms to navigate the choppy waters that are brought about by disruptive events.

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Lesson from Amazon: Never stop seeking opportunities to disrupt

Love it or hate it, Amazon is a company which you just can’t afford ignore. From its simple beginning of selling books online in 1994, to today’s global domination of online product sales, and massive compute capacity supporting its data centre web services offer, the story of Amazon is truly compelling. Never more so than if you are an entrepreneur and owner, or the manager of a product distribution business.

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Don’t be reactive and get distracted by the tide of chaos and uncertainty - think and act strategically

Chaos and uncertainty seem to be dominating current events. One of the symptoms is that macroeconomics is taking a bit of a hit. The delicate balance of keeping inflation in check and pitching the bank base at the right level are all part of the mix. There’s less consumer confidence which is driving down sales.

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BlueBridge One guide - Disrupted trading relationships: Gain competitive advantage from disruptive change

Disruptive change has the capability to provide major shocks. What such changes may mean for individual markets and the businesses which contest them depends on the nature of change. They often upset the status quo and bring opportunity.

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Uncertain times call for flexible technology

Uncertainty creates indecision. Indecision causes delay. Indecision leads to paralysis. Paralysis can be the death-knell of a business. For much of the last decade, uncertainty over the future has been very widespread, and it continues to be so. Indeed, it’s not unrealistic to speculate that we may now have just as much certainty as we are going to get ever again.

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Uncertain times call for flexible technology

Uncertainty creates indecision. Indecision causes delay. Indecision leads to paralysis. Paralysis can be the death-knell of a business. For much of the last decade, uncertainty over the future has been very widespread, and it continues to be so. Indeed, it’s not unrealistic to speculate that we may now have just as much certainty as we are going to get ever again.

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Meet BlueBridge One at IT Showcase Wembley on the 23rd May

Join BlueBridge One as we attend IT Showcase this month in the capital.

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Big data in wholesale distribution

In the digital age of distribution, data is everywhere. But it’s how wholesale distributors analyse and use this data that matters when it comes to optimising processes and best serving customers. As we continue to produce and gather more and more information than ever before, there’s one thing that companies like yours need to know: data is going big.

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BlueBridge One at an IT Showcase near you

Join BlueBridge One as we attend IT Showcase this month in Birmingham.

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BlueBridge One named 5 Star NetSuite Solution Provider for third year in a row

Whether you’re just considering beginning your Oracle NetSuite journey or you’re one of our long-standing BlueBridge One customers, you can be sure that your business success is paramount to our success. We understand that finding an experienced Solution Provider with a successful track record is key to your business success. So we are pleased to announce that BlueBridge One has once again been recognised for customer successes by being awarded 5-Star status.

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AI and emerging technologies for wholesale distribution

As the world of wholesale distribution continues to change and progress rapidly, it’s important not to be left behind. One way in which the wholesale distribution and retail landscape is constantly evolving is through the ongoing development, advancement and adoption of artificial intelligence – and if your business is yet to know about, research or even invest in the following emerging technologies, you may find yourself distributing in the dark ages.

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5 ways to increase conversions in your eCommerce store

So you’ve dipped your toe into the digital waters, and launched an eCommerce site to support and expand your wholesale distribution business. At this point, hopefully you’re seeing a steady stream of traffic as a result of promotional and marketing activities - but are those visitors converting into tangible sales? If you’re getting the hits, but not seeing completed transactions, here are 5 tips for reducing that bounce rate and improving conversion rates.

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3 Ways to make the customer the heart of your multi-channel business

2017 looks set to be the year when wholesale distribution businesses will have to work harder than ever to retain existing clients and win new custom. This is due to disruptive competitors emerging into the marketplace, customer expectations being raised by revolutionary new formats for shopping and delivery, and political and economic uncertainty affecting consumer confidence. With so much choice, and the ability to shop around the clock from any device, attracting and holding on to increasingly unpredictable customers is an uphill struggle.

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The outlook for Wholesale Distribution in 2017

Wholesale Distribution is changing. In 2017, disruptors to the marketplace, emerging technology and rapidly changing customer expectations will continue to shake up the way that we do business – but is your wholesale distribution company built on solid enough foundations to withstand the movement?

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The multi-channel resolution: become even more connected in 2017

As your wholesale distribution business looks forward to the upcoming year ahead, you may have your sights on a more multi-channel approach to selling. In response to the ever-changing ways that customers are consuming information from brands, and the digital demand for buying online, distributors need to be more switched on than ever before. In 2017, you’ll need to keep up with a shopping culture that never sleeps, and ensure that your products are available around the clock, across a range of devices, and that your business is providing engaging content on a multitude of platforms.

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Speed shopping: The wholesale distributors’ guide to competing with Amazon Go

Today, wholesale distributors are having to get to grips with an increased pace of trading, with next day shopping services such as Amazon Prime, and the ever growing array of same day or within the hour delivery and package tracking options ensuring that customers are receiving their goods faster than ever – and going elsewhere if expectations can’t be met. Providing a digital solution for browsing and ordering products to arrive as soon as possible is now essential for keeping up with speed-savvy consumers, who want the quickest possible turnaround from tapping the keys of their mobile device, to holding the item within their hands.

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The multi-channel distributors’ guide to surviving Christmas

T’was the night before Christmas, and all through the warehouse, not a creature was stirring, not even a worker mouse… [...]

How to make your business a multi-channel success story

Every business has a story to tell. In fact, if you’re a wholesale distributor looking to gain new customers, explore different sales outlets and expand into other territories, you might just be ready to start a new chapter. But how can you scale your operations to a multi-channel level?

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Point of sale features to improve your in-store experience

With so many distractions surrounding us all, retailers are having to work harder and smarter to keep customers engaged in-store. Whether we have our heads down browsing our smart phone while in the queue, or we’re skipping the crowds altogether to order online from the comfort of our sofa, retail outlets find themselves facing the challenge of how to make the in-store experience more inviting, more efficient, and more cohesive.

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The journey from wholesale distributor to multi-channel business: how is it done?

For modern brands, keeping up with the demands of digitally connected and commercially aware consumers is a priority. Those beginning life as wholesale distributors are ultimately looking to operate as multi-channel businesses in order to fulfil customer needs both online and in-store.

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From wholesale to multi-channel: the new white paper from BlueBridge One

In a booming digital economy, it’s becoming more important than ever for businesses to adopt a multi-channel approach to selling. But when you’re starting out as a pure-play distributor, the path towards eventually selling your own goods through various different outlets, expanding your warehouse space and staffing levels or moving into retail premises can seem like a tough one.

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Appy to help: the increasing use of mobile and tablet devices within retail, B2B and service locations

For many of us, a day is unlikely to pass when we’re not interacting with a smart phone or tablet device. In fact, today’s digitally savvy consumers will spend a large proportion of their time experiencing the world through a screen.

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What are you doing on October 11th?

This October, we’re giving you the opportunity to connect with BlueBridge One at not one, but two professional events across the UK occurring on the 11th. Our team will be heading to both SuiteConnect in the capital, and IT Showcase, giving you two chances to meet with our expert teams whether you’re North or South of the country.

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How can businesses respond flexibly to customer demand?

Recent research by IMRG shows that online-only companies are tending to grow quicker than non-eCommerce businesses, because the nature of eCommerce makes it easy to change and adapt quickly, in line with shopper expectations

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5 consumer behaviours your business needs to know about

How to meet the needs of the modern shopper with 5 consumer behaviours you and your business needs to know

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7 Questions to ask before selecting your ERP Vendor

7 Questions you should ask before you make the decision on which ERP Vendor you should choose

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Is legacy technology constricting your business growth?

Every business experiences growing pains, and one of the most common is legacy technology. All too often, companies find the systems that once empowered them are now constraining their capabilities, which in turn is inhibiting their overall growth.

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6 retail & wholesale trends from the first six months of 2016

Here are six key trends that have hallmarked the first six months of 2016.

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Is UK commerce really ready for mobile shoppers?

Two thirds of online traffic now comes from mobile devices.

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How the Google effect is disrupting the wholesale distribution model

Find out how the Google effect is disrupting the wholesale distribution model

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How Cryptocurrency is disrupting the wholesale distribution model

Our recently published white paper: 5 trends disrupting the wholesale distribution model explores how to create a leaner, more profitable wholesale operation.

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Great online customer experiences are no longer just B2C’s domain

Ultimately, eCommerce can prove a more lucrative channel for B2B businesses, as a good website enables clients to manage their transactions independently. This way, personnel only need to deal with processing and fulfilling the order, rather than having to manage communications with the customer.

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Multichannel shopping is now a way of life

Serving the customer anywhere means being able to see them everywhere – and respond to the demands they are making in the context of their wider activity. Any disconnection between online and offline operations makes it virtually impossible to gain a 360 degree overview of shopper activity, and to ensure all channels are working together harmoniously, in order to profitably meet customer needs.

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How multiple-channel convenience is disrupting the wholesale distribution model

Our recently published white paper: 5 trends disrupting the wholesale distribution model explores how to create a leaner, more profitable wholesale operation.

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5 trends disrupting the traditional wholesale distribution model

Slideshare: the 5 trends disrupting the traditional wholesale distribution wholesale

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How Third Party Logistics (3PL) is disrupting the wholesale distribution model

Our recently published white paper: 5 trends disrupting the wholesale distribution model explores how to create a leaner, more profitable wholesale operation.

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7 essential ERP trends for 2016

The 7 most important industry trends that technology must develop in order to enable retail and wholesale businesses to grow.

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How will Amazon Business impact multichannel wholesale expectations in 2016?

Amazon Business will shape the wholesale market in more ways than one and BlueBridge One is there to support businesses to take advantage of evolving trends in this sector.

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How to impress multichannel shoppers in 2016

2016 is just around the corner, and with it fresh opportunities for multichannel retail and wholesale businesses. But with market competition tougher than ever, and customer expectations exceptionally high, how can companies maximise their growth plans for the year ahead?

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How can your business avoid Christmas click-and-collect chaos?

Find out how we can help you make multi-channel more efficient, and improve the customer experience this Christmas.

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Could Black Friday and Cyber Monday come back to haunt multichannel businesses?

The Black Friday and Cyber Monday bar keeps rising but have the retail and wholesale industries stopped to consider the impact of huge commerce spikes on pre-Christmas sales overall?

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Black Friday 2015: Lessons for multichannel businesses

Black Friday is just about the most arduous challenge that could be designed to test the multichannel capabilities of a business. Thankfully, most businesses in the mid-market won’t have to deal with the volumes seen by big brands and national chains. However, multichannel operations of mid-market businesses still need to link up properly.

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Free guide: Creating B2C multichannel e-commerce experiences for business customers

This guide discusses some key technology capabilities that support SME wholesale distribution businesses in delivering the e-commerce experiences expected by all customers.

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Disruptive entrepreneurs wanted: NetSuite Cloud Event, London, 6 October 2015

Disruptive and entrepreneurially minded business leaders are invited to attend a knowledge sharing and networking event at the Emirates Stadium, London where NetSuite CEO and Zach Nelson and Co-Founder, CTO & Chairman Evan Goldberg are the lead speakers.

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M2M: A relative of smart machines and Artificial Intelligence

BlueBridge One is an expert in delivering the benefits of M2M technology. We are able to integrate M2M as part of a total NetSuite solution for our wholesale distribution customers.

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Do you understand your customers well enough to maximise lifetime value?

Does your business understand its customers well enough to maximise lifetime customer value across its multichannel operations? Understanding customers isn’t all about how they undertake purchasing activity. It also covers their messaging preferences.

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Is your wholesale distribution business agile enough to be competitive?

8 steps to help re-invent your wholesale distribution business helps businesses to better understand some of the key factors that determine success in the multichannel age.

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Free guide: 8 steps to help re-invent your wholesale distribution business

8 steps to help re-invent your wholesale distribution business helps businesses to better understand some of the key factors that determine success in the multichannel age.

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5-Star Award identifies BlueBridge One as leading UK NetSuite solutions provider

BlueBridge One is proud to announce it was recognised at the SuiteWorld 2015 conference for outstanding performance with a NetSuite 5-Star Award. [...]

Quality of BlueBridge One solutions underscored by commitment to NetSuite consultant certification

BlueBridge One, the first UK based NetSuite Solution Provider to sign-up continues to show leadership and a commitment to delivering outstanding value to customers. Consultants at the solution provider have successfully completed 6 certifications.

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7 smart ideas to drive growth in your multichannel distribution business

The guide helps wholesale distribution companies to gain a better understanding of the range of options open to them to improve business operations and achieve growth. Multichannel is more than a buzzword. It’s a new business model, and it continues to evolve. Not everyone really understands how the elements fit together and work together efficiently.

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Wholesale distribution: Is M2M in your multichannel plans for 2015?

If you are in wholesale distribution, whatever plans you have in the pipeline for 2015, make sure M2M is near the top of your development agenda. For true multichannel businesses the real benefit of M2M is upstream and downstream where it is going to be highly influential in shaping the efficiency of supply chain operations.

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Maximising the benefits of M2M in multichannel distribution

M2M in today's multichannel is about more than connected cabinets. M2M is set to play an ever increasing role in shaping the efficiency and success of multichannel businesses. [...]

Join us at SuiteConnect

Join us at SuiteConnect, NetSuite's inaugural UK User event on 10 November at the London Hilton on Park Lane. Entrance is free and open to all Customers and prospective customers who wish to attend. Follow this link to REGISTER

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All live on 2014.2

The phased roleout of Version 2014.2 is now complete. There are some new features announced as part of 2014.2 which are still in the process of being rolled out. Read about these.

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How finance teams can get a better view of Business Intelligence

This article looks at how finance teams can get a better view of Business Intelligence. [...]

Slideshare - 10 ways an effective financial management system facilitates growth

This Slideshare shows 10 ways an effective financial management system facilitates growth. [...]

[Infographic] 10 ways an effective financial management solution facilitates growth

This infographic shows 10 ways an effective financial management solution facilitates growth and is a companion to our white paper of the same name.

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Our new guide helps finance teams keep in step with growth

The guide '10 Ways an Effective Financial Management Solution Facilitates Growth' provides a detailed discussion on the factors that influence the ability of the finance function to keep in step with growth. [...]

Developing economies outstanding opportunities for wholesale distributors with NetSuite cloud-based ERP and online stores powered by SuiteCommerce

As the global economy climbs out of recession, we look to where this wave of prosperity is due to hit next? NetSuite provides wholesale distributors with the competitive advantage to meet demand from the growing middle-classes across the world. [...]

The roll-out of NetSuite 2014.2 has started

The roll-out of NetSuite release 2014.2 has started. All customers are expected to be live on the new version by mid-September. Over the next few months we will look at the new features applicable to product and service companies as well as the general features applicable to all Users. Release 2014 [...]

EU VAT Changes 2015

European Union VAT As can be seen in the diagram below most countries around the world have some form of VAT (Value Added Tax) system in place. In the EU all 28 member states act as a single market and share one common VAT system. If you trade in the EU then you should to be aware of some of the [...]

Gartner: ERP is a buyers’ market in 2014 and NetSuite is one of the fastest growing

NetSuite rated #1 fastest growing A Gartner report ‘Market Share: All Software Markets, Worldwide, 2013, published on March 28, 2014 rated NetSuite the fastest growing financial management system (FMS) within the top 10 by market share and the only pure cloud software provider among the top 20 FMS [...]

NetSuite takes ERP to the next level by letting you execute an omnichannel supply chain strategy

NetSuite is a cloud-based ERP solution that takes traditional ERP to the next level. As a cloud-based solution NetSuite redefines the cost and brings ERP within the reach of businesses that think it is beyond their budgets [...]

Beyond ERP: Leverage the cloud and execute a multi-channel strategy with NetSuite

NetSuite enables wholesale distributors to have a truly integrated approach to the multi-channel by providing a true omnichannel experience for Customers.

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Using the new NetSuite StickyNotes

Sharing relevant, urgent or important reminders within the context of transactions and records used by your employees is now easier than ever with the introduction of the new StickyNotes feature in NetSuite. Read how you can conveniently share relevant and important information across your organisation.

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Using NetSuite Memorised Transactions for Recurring Transactions

Having NetSuite automatically create recurring transactions for certain revenue or expense items such as monthly rental can often save users wasted time re-entering the same transaction over and over again. Read all about this useful feature...

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NetSuite Version 2014.1 - New features available to all customers

NetSuite Version 2014.1 - find out here about the new features available to all Netsuite customers...

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Sports & leisure distribution and merchandising benefit from integrating CRM, ERP and e-commerce

Sports & leisure distribution and merchandising benefit from integrating CRM, ERP and e-commerce - find out how here. [...]

3 Key Analytics that determine the growth of your e-commerce site

Ashkan Parsa looks at the 3 Key Analytics that determine the growth of your e-commerce site [...]

Is 2014 the year to focus on tablets?

BlueBridge One looks at tablets and their expected growth in business in 2014 [...]

Making effective use of NetSuite Global Search

The effective use of NetSuite Global Search is an important element in the day to day use of NetSuite. Most Users know how to use the Global Search function and use it on a daily basis. However most are not aware of some of the special characters that they could be using to help them. Learn about some special characters you can use to make searching easier.

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NetSuite Version 2014.1 - New features for Service Companies

Here we look at some of the new features in NetSuite Version 2014.1 that are specifically applicable to service companies [...]

Understanding omnichannel and making it work for wholesale distribution

What is omnichannel and how to adapt to it as a wholesaler [...]

NetSuite Version 2014.1 rolls out

The rollout of NetSuite Version 2014.1 has started. All customers are expected to be on the new version by mid-April. Read a quick summary of some of the new features being released with 2014.1 that are specifically applicable to product companies. [...]

What are the pros and cons of responsive design?

Should you build a responsive website and if so what are the pros, cons and alternatives [...]

Setting up Custom KPIs with Comparatives

Setting up a NetSuite custom dashboard KPI is reasonably easy as a user but it can be quite challenging getting comparative time range data to display. Read what setup is essential in order to display Custom KPI comparative date ranges. [...]

Expanding the sales potential of Wholesale Distribution businesses

Find out the channels Wholesale Distribution businesses operate to grow sales. [...]

Processing a VAT Refund in NetSuite

Have you ever found yourself in the situation where you find yourself having to refund the VAT/Tax element of a Sales Transaction only?

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Version 2 of the NetSuite iPhone application is here

For those who used Version 1 of the NetSuite iPhone application you will no doubt recall that the app substantially provided "view only" access to records. The fact that users were unable to create or edit transactions or cases limited the usefulness of the application. This has all changed with the new Version 2. Read more and also find out how to enable it for an Administator role. 

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What are the options for mobile enabling my website

If you are thinking of expanding your online sales channels  beyond a desktop website, then you need to be thinking about mobile enabling  your website. Before you do so it’s worth asking some questions: Is the cost of  a mobile website justifiable? And if yes then what are the options?

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Automating AR Statements

Being on top of your AR collections is important. To help with this process customers often ask how to create an automated process for emailing out AR Statements on a regular basis. Read how you can effectively automate the AR process in NetSuite. 

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BlueBridge One marks 10 year milestone

This year marks the 10th anniversary of BlueBridge One as a company. Reaching this milestone, we reflect back on the highlights since starting off back in July 2003. During this period we have seen significant growth on the back our successful implementations and the success of NetSuite as a leading cloud-based business management suite.

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4 ways for achieving user-centred design

In my previous post I explained the importance of user experience and mentioned a few examples on how central it has been to the success of many leading online retailers. But what if you are a small company or a start-up? Does it have to be a very costly and resource intensive to involve the users in every stage of the design process? Find 4 effective methods for capturing user feedback that can lead to actionable insights for a better user experience. You will also see that it doesn’t have to cost a fortune to capture user feedback.

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Why is user experience critical for eCommerce success

User Experience and User Centred Design are by no means new phenomenon. CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, has a famous company mantra: “Starting with the customer and working backwards”. It is said that Bezos periodically leaves one seat open at a conference table and informs all attendees that they should consider that seat occupied by their customer, “the most important person in the room.”

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International Expansion – Smaller companies are becoming more competitive

As companies seek new markets the lure of international expansion often becomes a major consideration in driving sales growth. Until recently, the costs and risks of establishing and managing such an environment have created a barrier to entry for small and mid-size companies. Over the last while this has changed and smaller companies have become more competitive.

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Shopping cart abandonment facts and how to avoid it

What are the statistics and what are the steps you can take to lower cart abandonment on your web shop? Shopping cart abandonment statistics Shopping card abandonment means that a buyer adds products to their shopping cart but doesn’t complete the purchase. There are various abandonment statistics [...]

NetSuite Manufacturing Gets An Upgrade

NetSuite beefed up manufacturing support in the latest and one-before releases with the addition of enhanced assemblies and work orders coupled with new routing and work centre features.  You'll want to keep up to date with these new features if you use assemblies in any way in case your business can benefit.  Here's a quick trip through the changes to manufacturing.

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Is NetSuite shifting up a gear?

After spending much time in the shadows of some of the more well know on-premise ERP vendors such as Sage, SAP and Microsoft, NetSuite at last appears to be emerging as a distinguishable player in the ERP market sector.  The momentum shift seems to be coming from a number of different sources. While the likes of Sage can undoubtedly still claim to have a significant edge in terms of market reach and customer install base it’s fast becoming evident that NetSuite is gaining ground and on their once dominant positions.

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5 ways to enhance your NetSuite web store

If you use NetSuite for your webstore and want to improve the customer experience and convert more visitors to buyers, this article outlines 5 useful add-on’s that will enhance your Netsuite webstore. The add-on’s mentioned below are called Suite Extenders and have been developed by BlueBridge One. Suite Extenders are customisation bundles developed following requests from customers over the past few years. 

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What are the best SEO practices in 2013?

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is a term that has different meanings for different people. What’s certain is that the way Google ranks pages in its search results has changed dramatically in the past two years, following major updates, referred to as Panda and Penguin!

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What's new in NetSuite 2013.1 release?

A look at the some lesser known features in NetSuite's release 2013.1

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NetSuite named as one of America’s most trustworthy companies

Assessing Accounting and Governance Risk Independent US research firm GMI Ratings has named NetSuite among the 100 most trustworthy American companies. The highly respected firm focuses on corporate governance, director/executive compensation and forensic accounting. GMI Ratings maintains broad [...]

NetSuite named as one of America’s most trustworthy companies

Assessing Accounting and Governance Risk Independent US research firm GMI Ratings has named NetSuite among the 100 most trustworthy American companies. The highly respected firm focuses on corporate governance, director/executive compensation and forensic accounting. GMI Ratings maintains broad [...]

Cloud-based e-commerce and ERP from NetSuite offers wholesale distribution great direct sales opportunities

Mixed signs of recovery and UK High Street remains challenging There continue to be mixed signs of recovery. While stock markets boom on both sides of the Atlantic, the UK has recently reported record numbers in employment as the US reported a 4 year low in unemployment. Supply chain economics have [...]

NetSuite Buyers Guide to Financial Management Software - making the case for cloud-based e-commerce and ERP

Successful companies break the ‘spreadsheet mentality’ The one thing that successful companies in all sectors and niches are almost certain to have in common is a solid financial footing. Often this means that they have made the essential break from the ‘spreadsheet mentality’, which is error prone [...]

Cloud-based e-commerce and ERP ideal for developing overseas markets like Brazil

Brazil’s annual party shuts down the country for five days This weekend saw the climax of Brazil’s carnival celebrations with millions of locals and international visitors and celebrities flocking to the annual five day party, a national holiday which shuts down the country for five days. The [...]

Climate changing the economics of the supply chain

Climate change driving extreme weather Wild fires sweeping New South Wales in temperatures of 50 degrees centigrade; the worst storm in 20 years bringing snow to the Middle East; one of the wettest years on record in the UK, climate change is throwing global weather patterns into turmoil. One of [...]

‘Made in America’ campaign shows how ‘Made in Britain’ can drive economic growth and reshape supply chains

One third prospering…but what about the rest? We’re familiar with many of the factors that have contributed to the recession in the UK. The inciting incident is the credit crunch, which sent the entire global economy into a tail spin. This in turn revealed the UK economy’s over-exposure to a financial [...]

Iconic British model maker Hornby brings Humbrol paint manufacturing back home

Enamel paints to be produced in North West London Somewhat less popular today than it used to be, it is a matter of some nostalgia that generations of Britain’s youngsters have grown up making plastic model kits. In the age before computer gaming and dawn-to-dusk children’s TV channels, a staple [...]

What can I expect from SuiteCommerce?

I often get asked about StuiteCommerce so I thought I put together a short summary of the information available so far. SuiteCommerce is the new NetSuite edition with many enhancements on the eCommerce side of the NetSuite platform. There will be a new SuiteCommerce enterprise edition at the same [...]

Local manufacturing is the clear route to reviving the UK economy

Frilly knickers reviving flagging UK economy!? Central to the issues of reviving the UK economy and job creation is the need to repatriate manufacturing activity to the UK. In macroeconomic speak, we need to increase economic output. And we need something to output. Would you believe frilly knickers [...]

NetSuite Wholesale Distribution Edition is the only cloud-based integrated business suite that focuses on your needs

Everything for wholesale and distribution in one application NetSuite Wholesale Distribution Edition packages all the tools that wholesale distributors need into one convenient integrated application. Quite simply no other ERP solution provides such comprehensive support for the business processes [...]

Outcome of US election 2012 strongly influenced by jobs and supply chain issue

US has 25% of China’s population but double the GDP Despite the rapid growth of BRIC countries and the shift of economic power to the Far East, the US is still an important player in the global economy. Behind China and India the US remains the world’s third most populous nation, even if it does [...]

Team GB Adidas Olympic kit stumbles at supply chain CSR hurdle

Hot on the heels of the story about poor conditions for workers in the Apple-Foxconn manufacturing partnership comes news that the Team GB Olympic kit designed by Stella McCartney is being manufactured under sweatshop conditions in Indonesia. This attracts bad press for the 2012 London Olympics, and reputational damage for Adidas as it emerges that the brand expects to make around £100 million from its Olympic lines made by Indonesian workers that earn as little as 34p per hour.

For the Olympic Movement there is an embarrassing sub-text in the form of a double standard:

Athletes from all nations may compete on a level playing field but workers across the broader Olympic supply chain do not.

Once again this demonstrates that it is perilous to ignore CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) issues across the supply chain. We may accept that there are significant differentials in earnings, lifestyles, costs and standards of living between workers in developing compared to developed nations; however, what is unacceptable are practices such as physical and verbal abuse, forced overtime working and punishment for failing to reach targets.

Unfortunately it also suggests that there is a yawning gap between what some manufactured goods cost to produce compared to the premium price to buyers; ultimately such a perception makes the brand look exploitative. But is this perception correct?

This story was uncovered by The Independent. Although it is a quality newspaper, its reporters or editors cannot understand the business reality of being an international sportswear brand. The only one that truly understands Adidas’ business is… Adidas. If your business needed to defend itself against such allegations, how could you go about it?

One way to mount a credible defence in a case like this would be to present complete calculations of supply chain costs. Elements such as design, materials, manufacturing, labour, shipping, import and local sales taxes are critical to understanding margin calculations and proving that retail prices are reasonable.

A NetSuite cloud-based ERP solution provides you with a costs audit trail that would enable your wholesale distribution business to defend a position like this. For the foreseeable future, organisations operating in the global market are likely to face business challenges that require complete visibility of the supply chain; on top of that they need systems that offer unrivalled efficiency, flexibility and ease of access.

NetSuite provides supply chain clarity while avoiding the need to purchase hardware and software, and the steady ongoing drip of upgrades, maintenance and administration costs. It offers 24/7 access anywhere in the world connected to the internet. To gain accreditation as a UK NetSuite 3 Star Award solution provider BlueBridge One has demonstrated that it takes the time to understand the needs of mid-market customers before custom fitting NetSuite ERP. If you want your supply chain to be better able to help meet your business challenges, click here and register with BlueBridge One for a 14-day FREE trial of NetSuite.

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Apple-Foxconn manufacturing partnership puts supply chain in the CSR spotlight

As we noted on the blog recently, Apple manufacturing partner Foxconn recently raised salaries 25% for some Chinese workers as part of a move to improve conditions. Apple is unfortunate in that its success puts it in the spotlight, but it is unfair to single it out; there can be little doubt that similar issues affect workers in supply chains across China’s manufacturing sector.

It is easy to look at the supply chain through a lens that focuses on efficiency and margin. However, the Apple-Foxconn story tells us is that there is a human dimension to cost across the supply chain that it is perilous to ignore. From the perspective of corporate social responsibility (CSR) it is simply unacceptable that the health & safety of workers is compromised in delivering products to meet consumer demand.

Apple products carry a premium price tag, and much cachet is attached to the product slogan “Designed by Apple in California”. But if we expand this to include the hidden sub-text, “Designed by Apple in California by the worlds most valuable corporation, built in China by workers whose welfare is of little consequence”, it starts to lose its attraction.

Raising workers salaries and improving conditions creates implications for Apple’s pricing model and the relationship with Foxconn:

  • Does it raise consumer prices to maintain margin?
  • Or does it reduce its margin expectations by swallowing the increased manufacturing costs that result from paying workers more?
If you faced this dilemma in your wholesale distribution business you would need to be certain that you have the latest real time data across your supply chain, coupled to the analytical and reporting tools to enable you to interpret the information.

NetSuite’s cloud-based ERP solution lets you get control of the supply chain and enables mid-market wholesale distributors to better understand and deal with business issues. BlueBridge One is a UK NetSuite 3 Star Award solution provider that focuses on integrating NetSuite ERP to meet the specific needs of customers.

Low cost manufacturing may be pivotal for delivering products at the best cost point to price sensitive consumer markets, but the ethical and CSR issues raised by this strategy may force many managing supply chains in a global market to deal with dilemmas similar to Apple.

If you want access to real time business intelligence from across your supply chain that helps you deal with the dilemmas that face your business, click here and register with BlueBridge One for a 14-day FREE trial of NetSuite. [...]

NetSuite ERP cloud-based solution gets you ready for tomorrow’s challenges today

The word ‘chain’ implies linearity, but the supply chain of today is more interconnected than this; in a globalised environment characterised by commoditisation, wholesale distribution is much more likely to resemble a net. It is generally accepted that networked supply offers greater resilience, leaving wholesale distributors less susceptible to supply side risk.

It is not, however, without downside. Globalisation spreads the net far and wide, inviting risks in many forms. Extreme weather in Thailand; a volcano in Iceland; a tsunami in Japan; geopolitical upheaval across the Middle East; threats with the potential to destabilise supply may appear suddenly and unpredictably. Who knows what tomorrow may bring?

A networked infrastructure invites complexity and undermines the ability to manage suppliers through simple processes. Complexity is further increased by sustainability, compliance and the demands of fast moving markets.

Ultimately managing suppliers with simple processes and legacy systems is inadequate and inefficient. In the worst cases it creates a sluggish business that is unable to respond quick enough to keep in step with change. Yesterday’s supply chain software systems may force customer organisations into technology ownership, leaving you stuck with a computing model that is inefficient and delivers poor value.

NetSuite ERP is cloud-based and lets today’s growing and midsize businesses exploit the cost efficiency and service flexibility provided by online solutions. With CRM and eCommerce ready to plug in, NetSuite provides the flexibility to provide the functionality required to implement a multi-channel eCommerce strategy.

NetSuite provides the end-to-end capability and business agility that wholesale distribution needs to stay on top of an increasingly challenging operational environment. NetSuite connects up customers, workforces, suppliers and partners to create scalable and highly mobile business operations that are quick to react to any change in domestic or global markets. Get better prepared today for tomorrows’ challenges with NetSuite cloud-based ERP.

Start getting ready for tomorrow today. Register with 3 Star NetSuite solution provider BlueBridge One for a free trial. It’s online so there is nothing to download or install. Click here to register for the 14-day FREE trial.

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Why juggle with your supply chain when you can manage it in NetSuite

Increasingly, devastated high streets up and down the UK are populated with those best able to tough it out - the big brands, or those with deep pockets or the clout to negotiate debt restructuring. Many smaller chains, independents and family run businesses that have been clinging on by their fingernails just do not have the economy of scale to compete. Call it what you will - ‘low consumer confidence’ or ‘a lack of spending power’ - what ever the euphemism, it equates to one thing - there is just not a lot of cash to go round.

The business cannot afford to underperform because it is handicapped by uninformed or reactionary decision making. For instance, you cannot correctly price and protect margin if you are unable to factor in all the elements of the landed costs of a product. Similarly if you cannot control the ability of sales people to discount then margins inevitably slide.

For many businesses the core issue is efficiency, the ability to do more with less. In wholesale distribution the need is for insight into what is happening across the supply chain. It is the need for visibility, agility and centralised management control.

BlueBridge One’s NetSuite solutions enable wholesale distribution businesses to effectively manage the supply chain rather than just juggle it. NetSuite lets you get a handle on the business from end-to-end and includes supply chain and inventory management, order management, shipping and fulfilment, revenue management, employee time and expense management.

Most importantly, NetSuite provides seamless integration of financial data across all departments, giving you access to enterprise-wide real-time business intelligence - allowing you to rapidly make better and more informed decisions.

It does all this without making any demands on capital investment - it does not need to be bought, installed and maintained on-premise. BlueBridge One custom implements NetSuite cloud based ERP to wrap the solution you need with a compelling value proposition.

If you need to make sure that your margin is not eroded by the inability to make informed decisions because you cannot see what is clearly happening, click here and register for a 14-day FREE trial.

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BlueBridge One is a NetSuite Star Awards Winner 2011

Every year NetSuite recognises the achievements of its top performing solution providers internationally. Announced every year, the NetSuite Star Awards cover the business performance by partners during the previous calendar year.

BlueBridge One’s performance during 2011 has been recognised with a NetSuite 3 Star Award. We are one of only two partners (out of a total of 46 EMEA partners) that achieved this status in 2011. This is the first time that 3 Star Awards have been achieved by EMEA or UK NetSuite Solution Providers.

We were pipped to the top spot this time, but that is just going to make BlueBridge One work even harder to deliver added value to our NetSuite’s cloud-based ERP solution customers this coming year.

Roll on the NetSuite Star Awards 2012 announcements…

If you want to test drive NetSuite’s cloud-based enterprise software solution, click here and register for a 14-day FREE trial.

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BlueBridge One and NetSuite makes perfect sense

Traditionally the big players in the enterprise software market have provided on-premise solutions that require upfront capital outlays and repeating costs for upgrades and maintenance. In addition to this customers face the cost of maintaining their own IT infrastructures.

However, in a period of economic uncertainty, its time for everyone to examine the value proposition of this model. For businesses that depend on enterprise software, this has never been more important consideration. With fast moving world events shifting markets and the business environment in an instant state of flux, many businesses more than ever need flexibility and systems that provide a real-time end-to-end view of their business.

If we examine the traditional approach we can easily unpick the ‘value’ of the big players; proprietary databases; escalating on-premise overheads such as footprint, energy and infrastructure costs. And then there’s the ‘software wagging the business’ - the tendency for the software to force your organisation to conform to the way it wants things done.

NetSuite’s cloud-based delivery model blows the lid off the traditional approach by removing direct footprint, energy and infrastructure costs, with customers paying for usage not ownership.

BlueBridge One is experienced in tailoring NetSuite’s enterprise software platform to provide vertical solutions for growing and mid-size businesses, allowing customers to focus on their business, not on their software.

Click here for more about why BlueBridge One makes perfect sense for those looking to enjoy the same levels of efficiency and flexibility as NetSuite’s other 10,000 customers worldwide.

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