The first hurdle in retail or ecommerce business you’ll have to overcome is stock management. Most businesses collapse early under their weight. If you’re looking to not only survive, but thrive in this period - you’ll need to have a strategy right from the start. However, it’s actually easier than managing stock the traditional way. So, this is something you should welcome with excitement rather than worry.
Stock management in retail
Old fashioned stock management methods (Excel or pen and paper) in retail are quickly becoming obsolete. Compared to current solutions, it’s a system that’s prone to human error. It's also ineffective in terms of time and cost.
With competition across all categories of goods as high as ever, you can’t afford dealing with any disadvantages that are easy to overcome. Otherwise, numerous competitors who tend to their stock in a proper manner will run laps around you.
Even though there are plenty of ways to optimize your business, the top priority in retail is stock management software. That’s because it provides the biggest improvement in business efficiency and also makes other important tasks much easier.
To be more precise, we’re talking about inventory management software, like Multiorders. Think of it as the ultimate control station, where you link all your ecommerce and point-of-sale platforms together.
Since most features are easy, intuitive and straightforward, we’ll skip talking about those and focus on something else. We’ll outline two things to focus on that are not as apparent to inexperienced merchants. However, if you’d like to skim through the features - feel welcome to do so.
Importance of reports
Reports are an integral part of your business. Unfortunately, sellers tend to overlook this. Most commonly because they struggle to translate reports into appropriate action. In short, they’re not sure what to do with them. We’ll give you an example. Chances are, it’ll bring you into the right mindset to view reports and identify opportunities within them yourself.
You open a standard sales report. There, you can immediately see the products you make most profit out of. Be it a low profit margin product with high sales volume, the opposite or anything in between. You list your products from most important to least. This is basically a priority list.
Optimizing your best performing products even further can dramatically increase profits. One way to do it is to strengthen the partnership with your supplier. Provide them with demand forecasts, sales volumes and other relevant information. Now you can negotiate for smaller minimum quantities, discounts or quicker lead times.
Has the supplier given you a typical lead time of 12 weeks, but you want it in 10 so you can stay ahead of the competition or coordinate your production schedule with other projects in the works? You may want to consider offering your supply chain vendor a tiered bonus if they complete your order on time or ahead of schedule. - MCL
Expanding your business
E-commerce is outperforming traditional retail at an increasing proportion. With software that can link your point-of-sale and accounts like Amazon or eBay together, there’s plenty of reason to expand online. And also, very little reason to stray away from it. As a retail store, you’ve already got everything you need to start selling online. The only thing you’re missing are shipping carriers.
However, some software, like Multiorders, will take care of that. All you need to do is pack the items, print and stick the automated label on the side and ship it off. This will increase sales volumes and even outperform your physical store. Therefore, you should seriously consider it.
Stock management software
We recommend Multiorders. It’s an easy to use, highly automated and feature-rich solution. Stock management in retail, ecommerce or, preferably, both becomes a breeze.
Opposite to popular practice, our software doesn’t put any limits on you. You’re free to integrate as many sales channels and other accounts as you like. Create any number of sub-accounts for employees.
The only reason you’d upgrade to a (barely) pricier plan is to complete more orders per month. Also, there’s a maximum product limit, but it rarely hits the ceiling before the order count.
Anyways, you’re invited to try Multiorders for free. You don’t even need a credit card to start. Getting it up and running won’t take longer than a few minutes. Shortly after that, you can begin generating reports and expanding into online channels.