Create an Import Integration between the ERP System and E-Commerce

Aug 14, 2013 5:00:00 AM

Create an Import Integration between the ERP System and E-Commerce

In a previous blog post, we introduced ACME Metal Stairs. The company uses our Business Integration Solutions for Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013. Today we show you how ACME Metal Stairs uses Connectivity Studio to realize the import of data from its web shop. We will also describe how ACME handles the importing of sales orders which are created on its website.

Web Shop Import Integration Needs

ACME has built an e-commerce resource to sell its metal stairs to existing resellers over the web. In this web shop, the product catalog is filled and updated with items from the Microsoft Dynamics NAV database. For website visitors, it is very easy to select desired items and order them. When a reseller posts a sales order on the website, an XML file with all the required information is automatically generated and stored on the website’s FTP server. Because the administrator of Business Integration Solutions and Microsoft Dynamics NAV is responsible for the successful e-commerce integration, the administrator needs a solution which can import the XML file from the FTP server into the Microsoft Dynamics NAV database.

Creating and Monitoring Connections

The administrator uses the Role Center in Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Business Integration Solutions. Using the Role Center makes it easy to create and monitor connections. To set up an import integration, the administrator starts by defining the document definitions to be used in the integration. First, the administrator defines an external document definition, which indicates how the external data is delivered in terms of nodes, hierarchy, and data types. For defining this external document, the administrator uses the ‘Create Document from Sample File’ button, which saves much time. After this external document definition, the administrator defines the internal document, which is a representation of the Microsoft Dynamics NAV table structure. It includes tables, fields, and relationships. This internal document defines how the external data is to be processed into the Microsoft Dynamics NAV Database.

After defining the documents, it’s time to add elements to the connections and configure the elements. Once the elements are configured, the administrator can define the pipeline.

The administrator enables the ‘Trace Log’ functionality on the Record Generator properties card, so it is now possible to see in detail which records are generated or modified by Business Integration Solutions.

All sales orders posted on the FTP server are now imported properly. The original files are deleted from the FTP server, so it will never run out of space. Once the sales orders are imported into the Microsoft Dynamics NAV Database, a sales associate takes over responsibility and makes sure that the reseller receives the ordered products in time.

Next week, we’ll round out our series on Connectivity Studio, and show how ACME Metal Stairs can send sales order confirmations to customers by email. If you’d like to learn more about Connectivity Studio, send me a message on here.

This blog post is based on real-life customer experiences. 'ACME Metal Stairs' is a fictional name that we use for the sake of privacy and simplicity in story-telling.

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About Author
Martien van Dam

Martien van Dam

Having started his career with To-Increase, Martien has honed and contributed his expertise across multiple roles and domains for 15 years now. Besides Microsoft, he’s also worked closely with all kinds of stakeholders in the ecosystem—including software vendors, CFOs, Accounts Payable (AP) clerks/managers, logistics managers—and is cognizant of their challenges and needs. Therefore, as a Sales Specialist for our Business Productivity and Accounts Payable domains, Martien brings a balanced mix of different market perspectives from various global associates to the table. On the personal front, Martien enjoys meeting people and experiencing cultures, and has visited around 75 countries. He's passionately involved in voluntary work and loves spending time with his three kids in the great outdoors. Martien holds a Bachelor of Commerce in International Marketing Management and Business Process and Project Management.

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