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Why we use Microsoft Azure for data integration?
Integration can be done different ways. In the old days, when we didn't have all those easy to use cloud platforms, usually systems would be connected directly, in a one-on-one setup. In other words, a programmer would just plug your Magento directly into your NAV system. Today this set-up may sound a bit scary if you think about security and scalability, but you'll be surprised to see that a few of our competitors still use this approach.
Why this is a bad setup? Lets list a few reasons.
- Security! You never want to open up your ERP to the outside world. Not even to some know IP address of web hosting company XYZ.
- Performance! Your shop(s) start to attract more and more visitors, but at the same time your employees complain that NAV is getting slower and slower.. Wonder why that is?
- Scalability! Your shop start to attract even more visitors, and the whole thing is becoming that slow, and you are already on the most expensive hosting contract.
Lets move to Microsoft Azure!
To be honest, we used to do integration just as described above. Because we didn't know better. Because we were too busy implementing new customers, and because we simply didn't have the time to rethink and rebuild. Until the end of 2015. We took all our old plans and designs, a clean drawing board and all information on what services were available on MS Azure, and we re-engineered the whole thing from scratch. Our main goals were:
- And, to have a platform for more integrations, and even more integrations :)
Since mid 2016 all versions of NAVcommerce run completely on our Azure hosted integration services, and we see that this does just what we expected. The software runs much smoother. Magento runs super smooth. And implementation times are lower than ever.
One of most the important reasons to move integrations to a hosted platform is the ability to create additional integrations. Our idea is that you don't just have an ERP system that you want to connect to a webstore (one-on-one). Instead you should be able to take that e-commerce data anywhere. Online marketplaces, apps, customer ERP systems and satellite shops are all part of your modern e-commerce landscape, and you should be able to connect with them without the need for huge custom projects.