The Mail Order Wizard User’s Guide: Frequently Asked Questions About Converting to Commerce Management System

The following frequently asked questions are provided here with answers to help you understand just what’s involved when converting from the Mail Order Wizard to NewHaven Software’s Commerce Management System (CMS).

While these questions and answers address some of the more frequently-asked questions about Wizard and CMS conversions, you may have some of your own questions that aren’t listed here. Please don’t hesitate to call us at (425) 861-7120 and ask about anything you’re unsure of. We’re here to help!

Why do I need to upgrade?
•  You may not need to upgrade immediately. But the Wizard is based on the DOS operating system, and each day fewer computer hardware manufacturers provide machines that will run DOS-based software. In addition, Microsoft gets farther away from DOS in each subsequent release of Windows® – which means it will become increasingly more difficult to run Wizard or connect to peripherals, such as modems and printers. Sooner or later, your old equipment will need upgrading or replacing, and the likelihood of running Wizard successfully on the new equipment is slim.  It has become so difficult in fact that NHS decided to discontinue support for the Wizard at the end of 2003. There are many other compelling reasons for upgrading from Wizard to CMS as well. You gain a number of features never available in the Wizard, plus powerful access to your customer data that was never before possible. You’ve never experienced software that is as intuitive, fast or flexible as CMS!

One very compelling reason to upgrade to CMS sooner rather than later is to achieve compliance with the always-changing Payment Card Industry (PCI) regulations. CMS has been compliant with these regulations since June of 2004. The Wizard is not compliant with these new security regulations, which went into effect June 30, 2005. For full details on the new CISP regulations, go to the Visa Website.

What are the differences between Wizard and CMS?
•  Aside from the obvious differences between DOS and Windows®, there is a world of differences. All of the familiar features, ease of use and powerful marketing and mail list management features of the Wizard are there in CMS, but they have been taken to the next level. For example, it is now possible to view all the products a customer has previously purchased with the click of a single button – while in an order! You can also filter your customer list on virtually any criteria, including geographic and demographic data, ad/source codes and all products purchased. These are only a few of literally hundreds of improvements that CMS offers over the Wizard. To learn more, schedule an online demonstration of CMS and see for yourself just how powerful CMS is and what it can do for your company beginning the day you go live.

Will all my data from the Mail Order Wizard convert to CMS?
•  Yes (depending on the integrity of your Wizard database). Assuming your data is in good shape, you can convert your company information, products, customer/mail list and potentially even orders/order history. You can choose to convert as little or as much as you want – and once your data has been converted, it becomes searchable in ways never before possible in Wizard. Now pinpoint targeted marketing is a snap – and all of your customers’ purchase history can be viewed (and used) in a variety of ways.

What does it take to convert?
• Time and effort are usually required to clean up your existing data and prepare it for conversion. Once you have purchased, installed and configured CMS and prepared your Mail Order Wizard data, the Wizard Importing and Conversion Tool can be used to convert and import as little or as much of your historical Wizard data as you choose. How fast your data converts into CMS will depend on how much data you have in your Wizard files, and also the speed of the computer you’re doing the conversion on. Most users find that company information, product list and mail lists all convert in a few minutes; orders take somewhat longer because of the amount of data involved and the complexity of the conversion process.

What should I do to prepare my Wizard data?
•  The first step is to go through your data and eliminate bad data and duplicate customer entries. You can use the Mail List Monarch to merge and purge duplicate customer records – if you don’t have a copy of the Monarch, we’ll supply it free to you when you buy CMS. It’s also a good idea to process your data for National Change of Address (NCOA) updating and address standardization, ZIP+4, etc. before converting. Remember the old computer axiom: Garbage in, garbage out. This is an ideal time to clean up your historical Wizard data. Our Implementation Guide will step you through this and other processes leading up to conversion and go-live, and help is just a call or an email away.

Will my existing equipment work with CMS?
•  Maybe. Because CMS is a 32-bit Windows®-based software solution, it requires considerably more computer “horsepower” than the old DOS-based Wizard.  Depending on the version you choose, you’ll need more memory, hard drive space and perhaps processor performance than your current machines have. Most printers will work with CMS, and in many cases, they will offer enhanced performance in a Windows®-based networking environment. Some older dot-matrix printers may not work because of the lack of availability of suitable Windows® drivers. For full details on minimum and recommended system requirements, see our CMS System Requirements.

I heard I can save money on credit card processing when I convert.  Is that true?
•  Yes, in many cases it is. Because the Wizard had very few choices of which processor you could use, the rates for Wizard users were often higher. Because CMS utilizes the power and flexibility of multiple payment gateways that connect direct to the credit card processing networks, you have literally dozens of networks to choose from, so you gain the advantage competition brings – and can save money as a result. Many companies who have switched to CMS have found that their credit card processing savings alone will pay for CMS in one or two years. You also can process credit cards using an internet connection instead of a modem, which is not only faster, but is virtually trouble-free! Also, because CMS meets or exceeds PCI and PA-DSS security standards, you may qualify for lower processing fees and rates.

Are there advantages in buying now instead of later?
•  Yes! Quite a few, actually. CMS allows your business to operate more efficiently and process more orders from more sources than is possible with the Mail Order Wizard.  Your valuable business data is more secure, and CMS meets or exceeds all PCI/PA-DSS standards.  Every day you continue to use the Mail Order Wizard you operate your business on borrowed time – a security breach, a computer failure, or simply the need to integrate your order processing system with your website – can all cost you money and time, not to mention the potential loss in business.

What else is included with my purchase of CMS?
•  When you purchase the CMS software and CMS support, you have the option of purchasing the Wizard Importing and Conversion Tool, at $1495. You may also elect to receive a comprehensive implementation planning guide and up to 10 hours of implementation support to help you install, configure, convert and go-live (average cost $2500). Our Implementation Specialists have literally thousands of hours experience helping companies convert from the Wizard and other programs into CMS, and utilize a wide variety of high-tech tools, including online conferencing and support tools. With these tools, we can show you exactly what to do – or even do it for you on your own computer – right over the internet! Once you go live, your Implementation Specialist introduces you to our Support Team, who is there to answer any questions or take care of any problems you might have after going live.

Sounds good! What do I have to do to purchase CMS?
•  Simply call NewHaven Software at (425) 861-7120 and talk to one of our upgrade specialists. They will determine your exact needs and prepare a quote for you so you know exactly what it will cost to convert. They can also provide some recommendations on equipment upgrades, and can also help you save money on computer equipment purchases and credit card processing through their various affiliate relationships. They can also provide you with information regarding financing for your software and/or hardware purchases.