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Kadro Solutions Recognized as a 2021 Top B2B Company and the Leading eCommerce Developer in North Carolina

2021 Clutch Awards for Kadro Solutions - top eCommerce and B2B company in North Carolina

Kadro Solutions Garners Dual Recognition from Clutch as a 2021 Top B2B Company and as the Leading eCommerce Developer in North Carolina

eCommerce continues to accelerate at a rapid pace driven by diverse business, technological, health and social factors. It is one of the most efficient and practical means to keep business going and growing despite ongoing global adversities. That’s why the demand for eCommerce development has skyrocketed, especially since the beginning of 2020.

During the prestigious Clutch 2021 Leaders Awards, Kadro received two distinct honors. First, as one of the Top B2B Companies in North Carolina and second, as the highest-ranking eCommerce Developer in North Carolina!

We’re honored to recognize North Carolina’s best B2B companies for 2021,” said Clutch’s Customer Operations Representative Austin Ellis. “These providers excelled in their respective fields and have shown that they can provide high-quality services to their clients.”

Kadro is no stranger to such recognition. The company was also recognized by Clutch in 2020 as one of North Carolina’s top e-commerce developers. But for 2021, we grabbed the top spot.

We are honored and pleased to be recognized by Clutch for the 2nd consecutive year as a leading B2B company in North Carolina and this year we also grabbed the top spot as highest-ranking eCommerce Developer in North Carolina. Since Kadro's founding in 2001, we have worked diligently to build a company founded on technical expertise, responsiveness to changes in the eCommerce market, outstanding customer service, and superior project outcomes. Accolades such as this and the positive recognition from many satisfied Kadro customers serve as testament to the success of our ongoing efforts. Learning more about our diverse clients by visiting the Kadro Client Portfolio page.

Thank you to everyone, especially to our clients who generously reviewed our services on Clutch. We take this opportunity to encourage you to visit our Clutch profile to learn more about what our clients are saying >> Kadro Client Reviews | Clutch.co

ABOUT KADRO SOLUTIONS:

Founded in 2001 and located in Raleigh, North Carolina, KADRO Solutions is a top-tier software engineering firm that drives business growth through an array of available eCommerce services and solutions using popular platforms like Adobe Commerce (Magento), BigCommerce and Ultra Commerce. At Kadro, our experienced U.S.-based team is exactly what you need to help launch your eCommerce endeavors. We really do make a company’s vision for selling online a reality. Contact our sales team at (877) 435-3453.

ABOUT CLUTCH:

Clutch is an established B2B review and rating platform dedicated to the design, development, marketing, and business services industries. Every year, the site’s team goes through a meticulous evaluation process to determine firms that embodied excellence and growth. Top performing firms receive a Clutch Leaders Award.

Kadro eCommerce Insights Newsletter July 2021 Issue

July 2021 Edition

News, insights and information from the rapidly changing world of eCommerce designed for the online merchant!

OPENING THOUGHTS

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As July comes to a close, many retailers and B2B suppliers turn their attention to back-to-school. Yes it's back-to-school (BTS) time again. Retailers across the country are rolling out their BTS online and in-store programs. According to one source (a KPMG study), back-to-school spending should rise 9% this year. Popular BTS product categories like apparel, footwear and school supplies will again see increased traffic. BTS is a great opportunity for a wide array of product retailers to accelerate their sales and revenue in advance of the 2021 holiday season. Given their online presence in a popular BTS category, in this month's newsletter it's fitting that we feature one of our footwear clients, Houser Shoes.
     

CLIENT SPOTLIGHT

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Kadro has been providing eCommerce development services to Houser Shoes (https://www.housershoes.com/) since 2014.  With their upgrade to Adobe Commerce over a year ago, Kadro developed a solution that easily allows third-party EDI-based drop-ship vendors to integrate with their eCommerce system.
 
Over the past 12-months, Houser Shoes has significantly grown its revenue and profit by adding over a dozen dropship vendors to their online product catalog.  This has allowed them to increase the total SKUs in their product catalog by over 15%, without having to take physical inventory.
 
This expansion of their product offering has enabled Houser Shoes to offer a larger selection of brands, styles, and "edge-sizes" of popular shoes to their customers.  Brands onboarded using this process have included Dockers, Dansko, HH Brown, Wolverine, Clarks, Alegria, Timberland, New Balance, Reebok, Circus, Bernie Mey, Spring, Georgia Boot, Carolina Boot, Lamo, and Jambu. 
 
Kadro has made the product onboarding, inventory management, order management, and fulfillment process of the additional dropship vendors easy by building a facility in Adobe Commerce to provide various file transfer types and protocols including EDI file formats for inventory (846), purchase order (850), acknowledgments (997), and shipment notification (856) with admin-configurable support for varying EDI segment structures.  As a result of these tools, the effort to onboard each new drop-ship vendor can be completed in less than two days of labor.
 
By expanding their product catalog with these dropship vendors, Houser Shoes can leverage their customer loyalty rewards program to offer the expanded product selection at great prices.
 
Overall, by adding a dropship marketplace to their existing eCommerce business, Houser Shoes has significantly grown their business.

Read more about the Houser Shoes/Kadro relationship on the Houser Shoes Portfolio page.

     

TECHNOLOGY SPOTLIGHT

mabl

Mabl is the leading intelligent test automation platform built for Agile teams. It’s the only SaaS solution that tightly integrates automated end-to-end testing into the entire development lifecycle. With mabl, it’s easy to create, execute, and maintain reliable tests, allowing software teams to increase test coverage, speed up development and improve application quality.

 

At Kadro, we believe in automated testing as a means to improve test coverage while decreasing the overall amount of project time dedicated to QA. Mabl and the mabl trainer have provided a SaaS platform that enables our QA team to effectively automate their existing test cases.

 

Leading ecommerce brands like Ritual, FIGS, and Dollar Shave Club rely on mabl for automated UI testing that ensures a seamless customer experience. Download mabl’s 2021 State of Testing in DevOps survey to learn: 

  • How testing impacts the customer experience
  • What types of software tests are being automated
  • How leading organizations are adopting DevOps
     
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START SELLING ONLINE SOONER!

This service is designed for those looking to start selling online faster with a powerful, feature-rich, custom Adobe Commerce (formerly called Magento Commerce) website. It's a scalable solution that can grow as your business does delivering lower initial project costs and higher value.

Learn more. Visit our Accelerated Magento Website Development page.

     
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MAGENTO PROJECT GONE WRONG?

KADRO PROJECT RESCUE SERVICES CAN HELP! 

 

eCommerce projects don’t always go as planned. This can occur for many reasons. No matter what the reason, Kadro can help. We offer a comprehensive array of website project rescue and support services tailored to each client’s needs.

 

Visit our Magento Project Rescue Services page to learn more.

     
MEET OUR NEWEST TECHNOLOGY PARTNERS
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UC1

Founded in 2009, BigCommerce’s mission is to help merchants sell more at every stage of growth, from small startups, to mid-market businesses, to large enterprises. As a leading Open SaaS solution, BigCommerce empowers merchants to build, innovate and grow their businesses online. More than 60,000 merchants worldwide rely on BigCommerce to help fuel their online business success.  STAY TUNED FOR A FUTURE ANNOUNCEMENT AND UPDATES.

Ultra Commerce is an enterprise eCommerce platform for B2B, B2C and Marketplaces. Its fully integrated platform features built-in OMS, CMS and PIM, providing a seamless end to end customer experience and helping customers grow their online business. Ultra Commerce boasts a truly global network of teams and partners to best service their international clientele – offering more than just a platform but a technology partner for them as they grow.  READ THE ANNOUNCEMENT 

Visit our PARTNERS page to learn more about our extensive array of technology partners.

     
ARE YOU READY TO MOVE TO ADOBE COMMERCE
(formerly known as Magento Commerce) 
OR UPGRADE TO THE LATEST VERSION?
Let Us Know
     
2021 Midyear tax changes - Avalara

FREE SALES TAX CHANGES UPDATE NOW AVAILABLE!

Commerce, whether online or omni-channel, is complex and ever-changing. One area that seems particularly fluid is tax compliance. Our partner, Avalara is sharing their 2021 sales tax changes midyear update to help you navigate the complicated world of tax compliance and prepare for the future. As state and local governments reopen after last year’s COVID-19 outbreak, it’s more important than ever to stay informed about legislative changes and emerging trends. Review the update to learn about new tax exemption considerations by state, details about obligations from increased marketplace sales, effects on the international market, and more.

 

Get your copy today! 

     

EMPLOYEE SPOTLIGHT

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Meet 
Lara Wasilkoff
Software Engineer  

What do you do at Kadro and how long have you been with the company: I am a full-stack software developer who builds custom functionality for Magento sites. Recently, I’ve also taken on a few additional responsibilities, including spearheading our new automated testing efforts with Mabl, as well as leading backend training for new hires and co-ops. I have been with Kadro for about two years.

 

If you could do anything you want right now, what would it be: Travel the world! I absolutely love exploring new places and experiencing new cultures, and I have been cooped up for far too long.

 

What’s your favorite food: My favorite go-to food, without a doubt, is tacos, but I also love sushi, scallops, or really any type of seafood.

 

Have any pets: No pets, but I do have a lot of plants!

 

What do you dislike or dislike doing: Mondays, am I right? Seriously though, I tend to put a positive spin on everything so nothing is ever that unpleasant. Oh except for karaoke, that is. Karaoke is definitely a dislike.

 

Favorite karaoke song: I cannot stand karaoke. Music in general though is a huge part of my life. Attending concerts, whether they be small local shows or large-scale festivals, is probably my favorite way to spend my down time.

 

What gets you out of bed in the morning (motivates you): The sun, primarily. Rainy days are always a struggle. 

 

Biggest recent professional accomplishment: I recently got certified as a Magento Commerce Business Practitioner.

 

Most interesting recent experience: I went ziplining for the first time a few weeks ago and it was exhilarating! I was up in the mountains near Asheville, and it was the perfect way to both appreciate the beauty of nature and get the adrenaline flowing.

 

What is one unique thing about you that few people know? I love to cook. I’m a big fan of clean eating too so I’m always trying out new recipes that are healthy, without sacrificing on flavor. One of my more notable dishes recently was chimichurri-marinated tuna steaks with avocado and spinach.

     

NEW ARRIVALS

Welcome the newest addition to the Kadro family!

Justin-Irene

Justin Irene (the one in the cap) 

Full Stack Software Engineer

 

Raleigh-native Justin Irene is a 2019 graduate of NC State with a BS in Computer Science. This is actually Justin’s 2nd tour with Kadro as he originally was brought in via Kadro’s participation in the Cooperative Education Program at NC State and worked at the company from 2018-2019 .

 

After graduation in 2019, he and his girlfriend (who also graduated from NC State) moved to Chicago for two years until career opportunities brought them back to the East Coast and a reunion with Kadro.

 

Welcome back to the Kadro family Justin!

     
Featured Kadro Blog content:
  1. Bridging The Gap Between Customer Expectations And Reality , an informative article from a Kadro tech partner, Annex Cloud.     
  2. Oh no, I’m about to lose my cookies! , with new restrictions on the horizon that will impact online marketing and advertising, what’s a retailer to do? 
  3. Business License Compliance Framework, a look at business licensing with our partner Avalara. 
  4. Setting up Google Tag Manager for Adobe Commerce, an informative article by Kadro's Senior Business Solutions Analyst - James Bruner
  5. Deciphering a Magento Website's Delivery Times Dilemma - an interesting article about overcoming technical challenges for a client written by one of Kadro's Senior Software Engineers - Logan Wilkerson.
     
Posted in Magento Thought Leadership, Kadro Newsletter and eCommerce Trends

Customer Expectations Versus Reality - bridging the gap

Know what your customer's want

Delivering what customers want. It’s a top-of-mind concern for businesses of all types. But how do you know what customers want? How do you think your business is doing in delivering? A gap exists between how businesses perceive they are doing and how the customer sees it. To succeed, businesses need to find effective ways to close this gap in order to strengthen the brand/customer connection, improve retention, and increase brand loyalty.

Learn more by reading the informative article - Bridging The Gap Between Customer Expectations And Reality - from one of our technology partners, Annex Cloud.

2021 Sales Tax Changes Midyear Update Report

Avalara 2021 Sales Tax Changes Midyear Update Report

A lot of changes happened during the first half of 2021. This informative mid-year update to the 2021 sales tax changes report from Avalara delves into those changes and much more. The report goes beyond sales and uses tax compliance and will highlight key developments in a number of focal industries. Review the update to learn about new tax exemption considerations by state; details about obligations from increased marketplace sales; effects on the international market and so much more.  

Learn more and download the report here >>>>> https://avlr.co/3yJ31cZ

Kadro eCommerce Insights Newsletter June 2021 Issue

June 2021 Edition

News, insights and information from the rapidly changing world of eCommerce designed for the online merchant!

eCommerce Puzzle Pieces
OPENING THOUGHTS 
 
To paraphrase words from an old popular song - It's been a long time coming, but I know a change gonna come! And yes that change is on the way and will have an impact on retailers of all types, but especially online retailers. I'm of course speaking of what has been termed "cookiepocolypse."  It's the loss of availability and access to data currently made available via cookies and other 3rd party tracking which will soon be things of the past.  You can read more about this and its impact on your retail operation here....READ IT NOW!
     

CLIENT SPOTLIGHT

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Founded 98 years ago, the J.G. Edelen Company was founded by James G. Edelen Sr. and is still family-owned today. The company manufactures, imports, and distributes an ever-growing amount of quality hardware products for the furniture and related industries.

In early 2020 J.G. Edelen reached out to Kadro during their search for a new solutions partner. This turned out not to be your typical Adobe Commerce (formally known as Magento Commerce) rescue project.

Read all about it on the J.G. Edelen Portfolio page.

     
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June 29th (Tuesday) is Adobe's Experience Makers | Reimagine Commerce virtual event

Register here >>>>  https://adobe.ly/3cwaP97 

 

It’s time to reimagine the commerce experiences of today and tomorrow. This virtual event features tracks covering innovations in the B2B, B2C, hybrid, and direct-to-consumer sectors. Kadro, in conjunction with technology partner dotdigital and our client Boss PetEdge, has an informative session at 3 pm EDT – Migrating your Legacy eCommerce Platform to Adobe Commerce. 

     
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NEW SERVICE OFFERING FROM KADRO...

This new service is designed for those looking to start selling online faster with a powerful, feature-rich, custom Adobe Commerce (formerly called Magento Commerce) website. It's a scalable solution that can grow as your business does delivering lower initial project costs and higher value.

Learn more. Visit our Accelerated Magento Website Development page.

     
rescue-page-banner2

MAGENTO PROJECT GONE WRONG?

KADRO CAN HELP WITH OUR PROJECT RESCUE SERVICES

 

eCommerce projects don’t always go as planned. This can occur for many reasons. No matter what the reason, Kadro can help. We offer a comprehensive array of website project rescue and support services tailored to each client’s needs.

 

Visit our Magento Project Rescue Services page to learn more.

     
TECHNOLOGY PARTNER SPOTLIGHT
quadpaylogo

Quadpay, a Zip Company, is a global “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) payments provider that offers an effective alternative payments solution to help you grow your online sales.

 

Merchants who integrate Quadpay's installment payments solution have seen a huge boost in customer acquisition, higher AOV and conversion, and more repeat purchases. Customers split their payment into 4 equal installments while merchants receive immediate payment with zero risk.  

 

How does this BNPL solution help your business grow?

  • You can accept payment wherever your customers shop: online, in-store, and all marketplaces.
  • We consistently deliver innovative marketing campaigns to showcase your brand across the app and owned channels guaranteed to drive new customer acquisition and loyalty.
  • We offer a consumer-facing mobile app and browser extension compatible with all eCommerce marketplaces.

For a limited time, Quadpay/Zip Co. is offering a deeply discounted rate upon activation exclusively for Kadro's customers. Contact your Kadro Project Team or sales@kadro.com

 

*Offer expires on July 6th

 

Visit the Quadpay website

Visit the Zip website

     
ARE YOU READY TO MOVE TO ADOBE COMMERCE
(formerly Magento Commerce) 
OR UPGRADE TO THE LATEST VERSION?
Let Us Know
     

EMPLOYEE SPOTLIGHT

CD - Headshot
 
Meet 
Chris Dutra
Senior Project Manager  

What do you do at Kadro? 
I’m a Senior Project Manager and have been with Kadro since April 2019.

 

If you could do anything you want right now, what would it be?
I’d move to the UK and spend my time watching football, starting at Goodison Park.

 

What’s your favorite food?
Starfish and coffee.

 

What about family: 
I have one. They tolerate me.

 

Have any pets: 
A 100-lb Golden Doodle named Rooney.

 

Favorite karaoke song: 
Nope.

 

What gets you out of bed in the morning: 
Habit.

 

Biggest recent professional accomplishment: 
Maintaining sanity during the pandemic.

 

Biggest recent or not recent personal accomplishment: 
Maintaining sanity during the pandemic.

 

What is one unique thing about you that few people know?  
I used to be a competitive gymnast.

     

New Arrivals

Meet the newest additions to the Kadro family!

Badge photo

Jeremy Brofft

Senior Talent Acquisitions Specialist

 

Jeremy joins Kadro with nearly 15 years of experience in recruitment. He received his Bachelor's degree from Virginia Tech and also has a Masters degree in Public Administration. He moved to Durham last year from his hometown of Virginia Beach, VA. Jeremy and his fiancé have a crazy 3-year-old Labradoodle named Sebastian and a very chill rabbit named Gus Gus. Jeremy has been practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for a few years now and enjoys rock climbing as well. During quarantine, he developed an interest in golf, but would like to stress that he remains very unskilled at the sport.

 

Welcome to the Kadro family Jeremy!

     

Jonathan Fisher

Software Engineer

 

Jonathan is a freshly-minted graduate from NC State's Computer Science Program, and is very excited to begin his software development career with Kadro. In his free time, Jonathan loves playing sports such as basketball, football, and frisbee, and can also commonly be found playing board games and card games with friends. Additionally, he is getting married this July, and will be moving to Wake Forest with his wife, Carolyn.

 

Happy to have you with us Jonathan!

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Featured Kadro Blog content of the month:
  1. The Ultimate Guide to Exemptions Certificates for Sales Tax Compliance, an  article from one of our technology partners Avalara. 
  2. Business License Compliance Framework, a look at business licensing with our partner Avalara. 
  3. Setting up Google Tag Manager for Adobe Commerce, an informative article by Kadro's Senior Business Solutions Analyst - James Bruner
  4. Deciphering a Magento Website's Delivery Times Dilemma - an interesting article about overcoming technical challenges for a client written by one of Kadro's Senior Software Engineers - Logan Wilkerson.
  5. What’s the One Thing Businesses Need in 2021 - an informative article by Kadro and Annex Cloud

Oh no, I’m about to lose my cookies!

Cookies are getting dumped in the trash

With new restrictions on the horizon that will impact online marketing and advertising, what’s a retailer to do?

One thing we can count on in digital commerce as marketers is the change that is frequently driven by technology and the ever changing rules and regulations associated with the access to and the use of personal information.

One potent ally in our arsenal of tools to construct and execute online marketing and digital advertising will soon depart. I am of course talking about third-party HTTP cookies and tracking pixels.

The winds of change are being fueled by planned third-party cookie blocking announced by tech giants like Google and Apple. Firefox and Apple Safari already enforce blocking of third-party cookies with Google Chrome having announced their ban starting in 2022.

It’s a storm that retailers and marketers will need to understand and prepare for in order to minimize “storm damage” to their businesses and marketing efforts.

When these changes take place, retailers will no longer be able to use third-party cookies and similar information as the primary basis for targeting and personalization. While we have become comfortable being able to provide levels of personalization across devices and platforms used in retail commerce, as this type of tracking technology changes we may now see a splintering of our view of customers and our ability to personalize our messaging and offers. This is also likely to trigger a reevaluation by retailers of things like privacy policies, data collection and usage strategies as well as marketing tactics as they prepare for the near term business impacts sans tracking cookies will cause.

How do retailers maintain focus on creating exceptional and personalized customer experiences?

Example of modern retail technology

Over the 18 months or so, driven by COVID-19’s impact on businesses of all types, we have seen major upticks in eCommerce sales and a shifting to digital environments and tactics to gain and retain business. But in a cookie-less age, how do retailers maintain focus on creating exceptional and personalized customer experiences supported by their marketing initiatives via the data available to them? It’s a data acquisition and usage challenge with customer privacy ramifications that needs to be met head-on and dealt with creatively.

The challenge is rooted in technology and also at least in part addressable by technology as CDPs (customer data platforms), advanced customer analytics and similar tech become more prominent. Investments to shore up data tools and to support data strategies in a cookie-less world may very well be needed.

OR

Fundamental precepts still apply

It boils down to some fundamental precepts – know your customer, understand the path or paths they take to a purchase, know what information they may need along that path to make informed decisions and do what is feasible to earn and keep their trust. These concepts have not changed for decades, but without cookies they will become harder to recognize, understand and respond to.

Collaboration is key to aligning data strategies and policies

Customer data touches numerous facets of a retail business. As such, there are a number of groups that may be involved in its collections, categorization, usage and governance. In preparation for a third-party cookie-less age, retailers need to seek the collaborative and collective counsel of an array of internal disciplines like marketing, sales, customer service, IT and more as they work to realign their data strategies and policies. More emphasis will need to be placed on building an engaging experience for customers where it's not just about offering great products, but also great information for their buying decision and perhaps value-add online services, community of like-minded customers, or an engaging online experience. By making the experience visiting and shopping in your online store a first-person experience, the need for third-party anonymous tracking is no longer required.

It’s a matter of trust

Turn up the dial on Trust

“Trust is the glue of life. It's the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It's the foundational principle that holds all relationships.” Stephen Covey

I mentioned trust a couple of paragraphs back. It’s a crucial element in gaining and retaining customers. It’s common sense that we will do business with organizations and people we believe we can trust. So focusing effort on the privacy side of consumer data collection and use is important as a cornerstone for building customer trust.

Getting customers to share their information with a retailer is not a new challenge. We all face it when we ask a customer for personal information. It can be hard to obtain information like phone numbers and email addresses as customers, and even simply website visitors, may be unclear as to how, when and why it will be used. Requiring a customer to login before shopping is often a proven barrier for conversion. Therefore, utilizing first-party cookies, which are still allowed, to establish a trusted user session with the customer can help make sure a personal and user-specific engagement is achieved. It’s critical for retailers to be as transparent as possible with customers about such matters. This is how trust is built. And without trust, the chances of obtaining and having permission to utilize customer data are greatly diminished. Data privacy remains an increasingly significant flashpoint with consumers with regulations like GDPR and CCPA being passed to help address it.

Pay attention to your data

I find it interesting, based on personal observations in a variety of companies, how often companies fail to clearly map out and acquire a deep understanding of the data they are collecting. Often this data is allowed to age without refreshing or to exist incomplete so that a holistic and accurate view of the customer universe is not possible and thus the data collected cannot be effectively used to make business decisions going forward. This is only likely to intensify in a third-party cookie-less environment.

In closing

In the coming cosmos of lost third-party cookies, retailers may find it necessary to seek out new and unfamiliar sources of data and a greater diversity of data to enable them to still glean sufficient levels of consumer insight to drive their marketing and overall business strategies.

So as we prepare to empty our marketing shelves of third-party cookies, remember there will always be something sweet to take their place. Let’s start baking.

Business License Compliance Framework

Avalara Business License Compliance Framework banner

Does your business have lots of physical locations? Are you looking at adding even more?

Acquiring and managing hundreds or thousands of business/professional licenses and permits across a large business doesn't have to be a manual compliance nightmare. Read this paper to gain a better understanding of the framework for managing business licenses, permits, and tax registrations, and learn how Avalara can help you manage it all through a single application.

Read the Business License Compliance paper »

Business License Compliance

Licensing your business for operation is generally not a one-time, one-stop activity and, if you are selling online, the number of licenses you’ll need increases because you are selling cross-border.  You can try to maintain current licenses manually but why not automate so you are notified when:

  • licenses need to be renewed
  • a new product or tax jurisdiction is added
  • municipalities update their regulations without notification

An automated business license compliance solution does the research for you and will provide an efficient workflow, custom reports, task management tools, and dynamic calendars to keep you tax compliant.

Read the Business License Compliance paper »

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