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The Ultimate Guide to Shopify Inventory Management

Gina Tirelli
Updated 03/10/20 2:43 PM

Ecommerce is expected to be a $4.5 trillion industry by 2021 and over the next 20 years, experts anticipate online shopping will account for 95 percent of all purchases. For Shopify store owners who want to rise to the forefront of that online sales movement, inventory management is a necessity.

For online store owners, understanding inventory levels is a real-time evaluation of how the company is performing. When an owner can’t move product from the inventory, it’s a sign that there’s a struggle to build revenue.

For more than a million merchants, Shopify is the chosen ecommerce platform to present the products and be the trusted point-of-sale system that allows businesses to reach their audience in an effective, secure way.

What Should You Look for in a Shopify Inventory Management Software?

Shopify's inventory management software offers a multitude of strategic advantages. Understanding the needs of your business will lead you to choose a platform that allows you and other team members to grow profitability, expand business to other channels, and stay ahead of inventory levels to prevent depletion.

As purchase orders come in from multiple outlets, ecommerce shop owners can use Shopify to ensure orders are fulfilled without overpromising on one platform while failing to meet orders on another. This leads to a negative customer experience and can have a direct impact on your customer lifetime value.

A well-designed Shopify inventory management platform will allow you to see which warehouse or storage facility is housing in-demand items.

As you monitor the units being distributed from your warehouse locations, you can strategically plan for when it’s time to restock, open another storage facility, or eliminate a warehouse that isn’t in a geographical location that makes sense for your business requirements.

Inventory management capabilities from tools like Skubana allows Shopify brands to know when to expand the business to other sales channels, and which channels potentially hold the most profit.

Whether you’re selling on social, your brand’s Shopify website, Amazon, or a pop-up shop, you need to know exactly how much inventory is available to accurately show what customers can and can’t purchase.

You can customize the visible available inventory across channels and show only a percentage of stock to avoid overselling and create a sense of urgency using artificial scarcity techniques.

And don't forget about returns. With as much as 30% of your inventory coming back to your warehouse. Of these returns, about 70% of that inventory being new with tags. That means they can be restocked into inventory.

Finally, with a good Shopify inventory management tool, you are able to stay ahead of low inventory levels so you know when it’s time to restock, delay orders, or discontinue certain items.

When you know the items that are popular with your customers, you can keep them in stock while reducing the inventory of less popular products. This means the storage space you do keep is largely dedicated to your profit-driving items. Without quality inventory software, your ecommerce brand is at a strategic disadvantage.

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Top Challenges of Shopify Inventory Management

For some businesses, moving inventory has to happen much more quickly than others. Having too much inventory on hand can be a business expense that reduces revenue and leave you needing to liquidate excess inventory at the end of the season.

Conversely, not having enough inventory for order fulfillment can lead to a significant loss in potential sales and potentially damage your brand image with your customers.

To avoid the business cost of too much inventory and prevent losing market share because you can’t keep up with purchase demand, you want to rely on a trusted inventory management system. Your inventory management solution should oversee every single unit and coordinate it with each channel you sell on with the necessary speed and accuracy.

In addition, Shopify doesn’t let you know when stock is low. You need to be aware when inventory depletes so you can order more products. You want to find an inventory management solution that allows you to automate purchase orders and never fear having to tell the customer you’re out of stock.

Another major challenge for ecommerce owners is the silo mentality created by Shopify inventory. The information is relegated to just product-based information.

As a business owner, you know each moving part relies on another aspect of the company, so it can be detrimental to view and manage your inventory independent of other aspects of the company.

The Value of a Comprehensive Inventory Tracking and Management System

The solution to the top Shopify inventory challenges can be found in incorporating a comprehensive inventory tracking and management system.

This approach gives online retailers the power to:

  1. Avoid diminishing inventory levels of best-selling products
  2. Control changes in order requests without overselling current inventory levels
  3. Ensure product information is accurate
  4. Give more control over each selling channel to necessary employees
  5. Improve behind-the-scenes accessibility with inventory management software
  6. Improve product organization with accurate data and increased visibility
  7. Improve sales and customer satisfaction by knowing what inventory is available at all times
  8. Synchronize data across multi-channel selling points

Daily management of inventory strengthens an online retailer’s business intelligence and incorporating inventory management software means you’ll have constant visibility on your stock levels.

Top Inventory Management Software

Ecommerce is the future of retail, and with millions of brands relying on Shopify and Shopify+ as the foundation of their business, they’ll also need to implement one of the best Shopify inventory management systems.

Manage your orders and inventory across channels, reduce the likelihood of over or underselling due to incorrect accounting, and accurately forecast where your customers will spend the most money based on products that you replenish most often. Skubana is the trusted leader in Shopify inventory software. Request a product demo and get ready to uplevel your business with expert inventory tracking.

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About Skubana

Skubana is consistently ranked as one of the top Shopify inventory management platforms available to ecommerce owners. Skubana understands your target audience can even help you expand beyond Shopify for multichannel selling made easy.

To help manage orders and inventory across multiple channels, Skubana provides native integration with Shopify, Shopify+ and Shopify POS. You can see your sales, inventory, and analytics in one convenient, easy-to-understand dashboard. The platform’s intuitive connectivity means you can eliminate manual data entry and transfer, which often leads to mistakes and improperly documented inventory.

Tracking inventory with Skubana doesn’t stop with a basic product count. The platform is designed to give you detailed information about your profitability, customer needs, and more. The robust analytics portion of Skubana offers insight into products, inventory, orders, customers, and accounting. Request a product demo and get ready to uplevel your business with expert inventory tracking. 

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