Options for real-time price and stock integration

Tourist
5 0 2

Hi,

 

I work for a web agency in Denmark, and we have several large customers who are interested in joining Shopify's platform. However, these are customers coming from enterprise-level solutions and one of their requirements is to be able to utilize near real-time integrations for prices and stock. This would generally mean having the E-commerce platform able to send requests (for ex. SKU number, purchase quantity, optionally customer's identifier) to a predefined external service or services to retrieve prices and/or stock whenever price or stock needs to be shown or be utilized for calculations/processing on the e-commerce platform. 

 

What options does Shopify provide for creating real-time price/stock integrations? In short, we're looking for ways to implement the following, however, I haven't had much like finding a solution for this in forums. 

  1. Shopify's catalog and order flow should make requests to a specified endpoint to retrieve prices and stock on-the-fly
  2. These requests should include customer identifier, in order to return customer-specific information (such as personalized prices)

Best regards,

Evaldas

1 Like
Highlighted
Tourist
5 0 2

The closest example of what we want is fulfillment services, but for prices. Currently Shopify allows developers to create their own Fulfillment Services ( https://help.shopify.com/en/api/reference/shipping-and-fulfillment/fulfillmentservice ) via the API. The fulfillment service then has to support a method "fetch_stock", which Shopify requests every hour or when a new SKU number is created.

 

We would like to be able to create a Price service in similar manner. Where we could provide Shopify with a "callback_url", which Shopify should request whenever it needs to know a price for a given SKU number in combination with quantity and a customer identifier. Ideally, Shopify should not send a request to this "callback_url" on schedule (like Fulfillment services do), but either real-time or on much shorter schedule (or, optionally, when customer logs in).

 

Draft of technical requirements for New Shopify API

  • Price service API - allows developers to register a custom web API as Price service by provided a "calback_url", which Shopify would then use to poll prices on regular intervals (much like fulfillment service), in real-time (whenever a price needs to be calculated) or for the given customer when he/she logs into the shop.
  • Requests sent from Shopify to a registered price service should at minimum include:
    • Item's SKU number(s)
    • Requested quantity per SKU number (such that quantity-specific prices can be provided)
    • Customer identifier (for example email address)

Example request sent from Shopify to a registered Price service could be: { "skus": [ { "sku": "123", "quantity": 5 }, { "sku": "589", "quantity": 1 } ], "customer": "evr@novicell.dk" }

Example response from Price service to Shopify could be: [ { "sku": "123", "quantity": 5, "amount": 150.00 }, { "sku": "589", "quantity": 1, "amount": 300.00 } ]

0 Likes
Shopify Partner
8 1 3

I actually  just set something up like this for a fairly large distributor here in Canada, where we do essentially a live sync of inventory (across multiple locations) in addition to pricing status. There's a couple pieces here that are valuable to keep in mind, and that I've learned through the process.

 

1) API limits are going to be a real problem here. If you can get your clients on Plus, this will help the potential roadblock immensely. There are some other methodologies on the actual programmatic pieces that will keep API calls down as well (GraphQL as an example, but its doable with REST too).

 

2) We had to address a few different pieces, including how to pull the data from the customer's internal database, given that their ERP does _not_ have an open API. I'm happy to discuss this solution with anyone interested (The ERP is called Adagio, for reference, and is pretty legacy but does a great job for the client internally).

 

Let me know if you want to go over this a bit more - happy to do so via PM.

Altair Consulting
Shopify Partner - Developer, Designer, Strategist

Reasonable Rates for Your Next Project or Customization!
1 Like
Tourist
5 0 2

Hi Altair,

 

Interesting :) I suppose we are looking have to Shopify query a custom service for prices, rather than pushing prices to Shopify ourselves. As you say, API rate limits are among top issues. Do you also have to deal with customer specific pricing? Pushing generic prices to Shopify of course can be done, but when we're talking about thousands of customers, thousands of SKU numbers and have to take customer specific prices into account - I can't quite wrap my head around various latency issues (mostly due to API rate limit, again).

 

I not concerned much about pulling data out of an ERP system, since that can be addressed in various ways, depending on the ERP system itself.

 

I'll send you a PM :) 

0 Likes