July 30, 2019

Dynamics Business Central or Dynamics NAV
– Which is better for eCommerce

Author Kasyapa Malladi
Category Blog | Integration |

There is a direct relation between innovative transformation and growth of a business. Considering this, some of the biggest names based in the global center of technology often reinvent even their most successful products. And, this is exactly what happened when Microsoft, receiving direct competition from cloud-based products, had to rewrite the Dynamics family line. The recognition of Dynamics series including the latest Business Central for e-commerce portals has been exceptional. Today, a seamless Dynamics integration with an e-commerce platform is considered significant for driving growth and operational efficiency.
Coming back to reinventing technology, the launch of Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, sharing the same codebase as Dynamics NAV, is an example of technology evolution to cater to modern-day requirement. The key equalizer between NAV vs Business Central comparison is that both share a similar codebase. And the major differentiator between the two Enterprise Resource Planning systems is that the former is on-premise and the latter is hosted on the cloud. However, there are other aspects of Business Central that makes it a suitable ERP for e-commerce operations. Let us try to comprehend this better.

Dynamics 365 Business Central – Benefits for E-Commerce

After the last release by Microsoft in April 2018, Business Central is available in three different deployment options including cloud, on-premises, and hybrid. The ERP system by Microsoft provides multiple features to streamline financials, sales, operations, and services while in the long-run enhancing customer experience. Some of the primary features are:

  1. Manage Financials & Budgets: Business Central helps you connect the entire financial database, which can be extremely beneficial in overall business decision making. Using the system, businesses get synchronized financial performance chart and smart dashboards. Automatic reconciling, reporting, compliance maintaining and forecasting can turn out to be an instrumental tool for decision-making.
  2. Restructure Supply Chain: Business Central for e-commerce companies can be groundbreaking in dealing with super-sensitive supply chain functioning. The system is equipped in optimizing inventory levels, mechanical stock calculations, substitute suggestion algorithms, and vendor recommendations. These features can substantially reduce the number of lost sales and instances of stock shortages, which in due course improves the company’s performance, not just customer satisfaction scale but also enhance business profitability.
  3. Improve Customer Satisfaction: E-commerce, like many other online businesses, starts and ends with reputation and brand value. To gain customer’s trust and increase repeat transaction probability, enhance customer satisfaction level is the key aspect. Business Central can help in providing value at every touchpoint by keeping a close watch at every business-customer interaction. The system offers complete solution and supervision for optimum up-selling, cross-selling and even renewal opportunities during the entire sale cycle.
  4. Enhance Operational Efficiency: Business Central puts your organization’s operational efficiency at the top of its game. You can utilize the unique sales forecasting feature for stock management and anticipatory stock feeds to automate sourcing plans and purchase orders. These automated features can be incomparable support to your operational staff and help in improving their productivity. Business Central can become your tool for achieving better order fulfillment rate by providing a 360-degree picture of the inventory.
  5. Data Protection and GDRP Conformity: The ERP system is packed with built-in privacy-by-design and privacy-by-default methodologies, both of which play a significant role in helping you better comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). As an e-commerce platform, you can restrict and grant access to customer’s data based on the necessity and program data revelation on multiple levels. In order to ensure the best possible security and even internal liability, regular audits can be deployed.
  6. Flexible System Deployment: With Business Central, you can run your business figuratively from anywhere. Being available on cloud, on-premise and on hybrid, Dynamics Business Central rendered similar customer experience in all three versions.

BC vs NAV: What Makes Business Central Feasible?

The on-premise deployment offered by Dynamics NAV and the cloud deployment provided by Business Central are the aspects that make all the difference in the performance of these ERP systems. Even though there is a possibility that NAV can be hosted on the cloud as well, the performance can’t as seamless as it can be in Business Central. Here are certain points for understanding the key differences in the NAV vs Business Central discussion:

  1. Functioning: Business Central cloud version comes with true cloud solutions and offers 24/7 access, real-time information flow, easy integration building through web APIs, and seamless upgrades.
  2. Licensing: Business Central is licensed based on a monthly subscription and paid only per user name. The entire cost includes hosting, maintenance and the application. On the other hand, Dynamics NAV is licensed perpetually for the application with maintenance. The cost of hosting in NAV is additional.
  3. Accessing: Ease in information access is one of the best bets of Business Central. In case of NAV, one needs the local desktop client in order to get their hands on important data, however, with Business Central, necessary information can be safely accessed by a related user using a web browser.
  4. Update Availability: Being a SaaS, Software as a Service, Business Central’s integration with your e-commerce platform would not need a new integration every time the ERP is updated. The system will receive automatic updates on its own with no data loss. As for the case of Dynamics NAV, every annual release by Microsoft must be integrated with the older version for functioning.


While both Business Central and NAV are primarily built with the same standard functionalities, there is a core difference in how both can be utilized for optimum benefits for your business. Business Central has been presented by Microsoft as an ultimate all-in-one solution for those entrepreneurs who are looking forward to a much-streamlined business process, putting the BC vs NAV debate to rest. And because of the similar codebase, a transition or upgrade from NAV to Business Central would always be rather simpler.
For more understanding and details regarding Business Central for e-commerce, i95Dev provides easy and sophisticated integration solutions with a promise to cater all your process needs for building a robust e-commerce platform.

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