When you sell a modest number of products each day at your goods-based store, it may be pretty easy to keep track of your sales on a spreadsheet and know what items to order. But if your business begins to grow quickly, you will soon realise that there’s a little more involved in managing your inventory. Nonetheless, it’s something that any business owner can handle if they approach it the right way. If you own a fast-growing business, consider these practical tips from How To Build A Brand for managing your inventory:

But first, cover the basics...

It’s important to work out a scheduling system that works for everyone on your team. Thankfully, the days of pen-and-paper schedules are gone, as you can utilise shift scheduling software to make the job much easier and more efficient. Additionally, this type of software can ensure your business stays in compliance with any scheduling laws in your state.

Offer chat support...

No matter how much work you put into inventory management, it’s important to realise that it’s not going to be perfect. There will be times when an order gets mixed up or lost, you sell an item that you don’t have in stock, or any other number of mishaps occur.

In these types of situations, communication is key. Consider hiring a chat support agent who can fill your customers in on the status of their orders. You can save money if you hire remote chat support by using freelance sites. However, you may want to eventually hire a customer supportemployee. Chat support can also be handy on a day-to-basis when things are running smoothly.

Determine the par level of each item...

Par level refers to the number of each item you keep in stock at all times. If you keep too much of any one item, it can go bad or you may have to sell it at a discounted rate. If you don’t keep enough of any one item, you can’t meet customer demand.

Determining the par level of each item is an imperfect science, it may take time to get the hang of, and it may fluctuate by season and as your business grows. To get an idea about which items to store, start by reviewing the previous month’s sales and/or looking at the same month from the previous year.

You will also need to do some forecasting to determine which items to order for the next few months. Study the current sales market, consider your guaranteed sales (i.e., subscriptions, contracts, etc.), and factor in your business’ growth over the last year to get an idea of what items you should order next time around.

Use up-to-date tracking methods...

Tracking your inventory is a big part of making sure you have items in stock when you need them. And as your business grows, you will find that keeping a basic spreadsheet will not suffice. As I started to grow One Drop Movement, our Unity Pendant starting selling quickly and we needed a proper system to take care of the orders. Look into barcode scanners that integrate with inventory management software. This way, you can track your inventory in real time, and you will know when it’s time to place another order. However, it’s still important to do physical audits periodically.

Organise your stock...

If your storefront, stockroom, and/or warehouse is a mess, it’s only a matter of time until it will affect your sales. Consider your space, along with the types, number, and size of products you stock to determine the best organisation method for your business. For example, some companies find it most effective to categorise their products alphabetically, while others arrange them by product type or market. No matter what method you use, however, it’s always a good idea to make your most popular items the most accessible.

Inventory management is key to succeeding as a goods-based business, and it gets more complex as your business grows. Among other things, you will need to communicate with your customers, figure out how much of each item to stock, use modern tracking systems, and organise how you stock and sell products. Putting these tips into practice can help your operations run more efficiently, which will keep your customers happy and, ultimately, lead to more sales!

Do you need help launching your company to greater success? How To Build A Brand has helped thousands of business owners position themselves as leaders in their industry, and we can help you, too! Contact us to learn more or join us on our next RippleFEST Quest to meet other visionary business owners who are at the stage of success you want to be. Book your place now at www.RippleFESTQuest.com

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