Fashion ecommerce is fiercely competitive and Prima Integration gives fashion businesses the tools they need to stand out from the crowd.

Prima Solutions started out in 1991, so the business has a long-standing track record for providing software and solutions to the clothing, footwear and accessories market.

Prima integration for fashion retailers

Prima Solutions have many long-standing clients and their software has evolved over the years help customers become multi-channel organizations.

They are the UK’s largest industry-specific software specialists, known for challenging existing business processes and assumptions to create more effective and efficient ways of working. Their extensive industry knowledge means they can create agile, scalable solutions tailored to each fashion business’s needs. 

The team has delivered enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions to leading fashion, workwear and corporate clothing brands. They provide business process management software to integrate financial information, supply chain, warehouse and operations, online sales, sales order processing, customer relationship management (CRM), reporting and HR activities.

PrimaNet is specifically designed to handle the business system demands of the clothing and apparel sector. It can meet the requirements of short seasons and continuity products and operates well for wholesalers, retailers, concessions, e-tailers, multi-channel and omni-channel businesses.

The Prima Wholesale Web Portal module provides an online sales tool for wholesale customers and sales teams, enhancing the customer buying experience.

Sector-specific features include variable product requirements, a product development module to support and control new ranges, and order management and stock control process with automated allocation and despatch.

The challenges of fashion retail

Fashion shoppers want fantastic pictures from all angles and engaging zoom features, as well as clear and informative content. Fashion retailers increasingly want to have an emotional connection with their customers, so website design, usability, content, and customization must all enhance their brand and deliver a rich, immersive and intuitive online experience.

Product life cycles are short, so creating pre-order options, capsule collections, end-of-season ranges, and out-of-season sales must all be fast and effective. Marketing and automation tools can help to balance customer interest and the inventory levels.

In 2019, two thirds of traffic to retail sites came from mobile devices so pages need to look brilliant in narrower and longer formats that are easier to browse on a mobile phone or tablet, as well as looking impressive on desktop screens.

The power of integration

Systems integration is the way ambitious fashion retailers are stepping up to these challenges. It provides a single source of reliable information, streamlining processes and providing a unified real-time view of online and in-store sales, with connection to electronic point of sale (EPOS) tills, warehouse information, stock control, distribution and operational systems.

Conversion rate optimization - conversion rates in fashion range from 1.85% to 2.4%. They will be affected by product complexity, value, ease of checkout, and your particular market niche. 

Improving your conversion rate is a long-term process and you will need in-depth knowledge of buying journeys. This is where effective integration with your ERP systems can really make a difference. 

Reducing return rates - return rates of 20% to 40% are common for online fashion retailers, most often because of poor fit. While free returns can incentivize customers, they increase your costs and the complexity of your business. With a fully integrated approach you can personalize your customer’s experience based on their previous purchases. Innovative product visualization tools like virtual fitting rooms and fit guides with recommendations based on body weight and shape can reduce returns by up to 50%.

Buying decisions - shoppers expectations increase all the time, so to make sure they choose to buy, your integrated fashion business needs to have:

  • well-defined product categories and descriptions and ideally the option for visual product searches
  • details about fabrics, treatments, fits and related accessories
  • high-resolution product images
  • purchase histories to support customization
  • innovative and dynamically changing marketing messages
  • cross-selling product suggestions
  • secure payment 
  • streamlined checkout

Essential tools for fashion retailers

To increase sales there are some essential tools that fashion retailers need, including:

  • purchase analytics and segmentation
  • personalization
  • marketing automation and evaluation
  • customer loyalty programs
  • lookbooks and product videos
  • intelligent promotions.

Magento Commerce is a popular choice for fashion retailers because it supports customizable and professional ecommerce stores and integrates well with third party systems like Prima. It has an open source framework and a large extension ecosystem to help fashion retailers meet the expectations of their challenging sector.

Responsive designs and custom themes for Magento meet the demand for mobile shopping and segmentation allows you to deliver personalized offers and incentives based on consumer demographics, location, and their purchase history.

You can create ‘shop-the-look’ and ‘complete-the-look’, upselling and cross-selling offers using sophisticated sales algorithms, with easy drag-and-drop functionality.

The straightforward user interface means building and testing custom landing pages and lookbooks, with high quality images and videos, can all be achieved without additional IT support. 

Prima and Magento

Integrating Prima and Magento allows data to be exchanged in real time. You can achieve the optimum combination of systems to streamline your processes. 

Administrators don’t need to import and populate information manually which saves time and minimises errors. As long as your ERP data is well maintained it can all be synchronized so that accurate, up to date information to be displayed on your website, enhancing your customers’ experiences.

At Williams Commerce we follow a 10-step process to deliver elegant, seamless Prima and Magento integration. 

  1. Project aims and requirements - every integration project starts with a discovery stage so that we can fully understand the aims of Prima and Magento integration and identify the overall benefits. 
  2. Feasibility - it’s essential to establish whether the data needed for integration exists and is accessible across both Prima and Magento, so we make this an early priority.
  3. Testing - if not already in place, we will set up a Prima test environment including the latest data in an exact copy of the Prima live environment.
  4. Demonstration - sample data is used to create a mapping document to establish data formatting between data in Prima and Magento.
  5. Magento fields - the fields to be synchronized from Prima need to be populated in Magento to allow the application programming interface (API) to showcase it as text, dropdown details, or multi-select options, for example.
  6. Connection - this is where integration truly begins, as both systems are connected via the API.
  7. Synchronization - test data is synchronized across Prima to Magento to confirm that the integration is working as planned.
  8. Full data test - nothing can be left to chance, so this step ensures all the data synchronizes with the correct fields, delivering the right level and quality of integration.
  9. Go-live planning - making the final checks will ensure go-live takes place smoothly. Connection is established with Prima to synchronize the live data.
  10. Deployment - when everything is ready and approved the integration is deployed on the live website.

Prima Integration for a fashion business in practice

John Smedley Outlet offers beautiful discounted knitwear and apparel. Their website ran on an earlier version of Magento and used multiple modules. Customers had to register before they could view and purchase items, which was inefficient and was affecting conversion rates.

They decided to work with Williams Commerce to create a new ecommerce solution to match their vision and future business needs. Their new website features a fresh look created by Williams Commerce’s web design team. It now has more visual impact and navigation is easier and more streamlined.

Customers can view products, and only have to register when they are ready to go to checkout. There’s a clean set of modules, with limited external additions, providing extra levels of efficiency. 

The goal is to improve customers’ understanding of the John Smedley Outlet range before having to commit to registering for an account, increasing conversion rates.

Integrated with Prima software, this multi-channel service is delivered through PrimaNet to provide accurate information about the status of the stock, prices, and promotions, as well as simplifying the creation of customer accounts.

Contact us if you would like to know more about Prima integration for your fashion business.