Inventory Management – How to do it.

Inventory Management -Warehouse

Why Inventory Management

Imagine a world where you have a few 100 SKUs in your online store and on a a given day, the average sale you can expect is about 10 per SKU. This means that you will need to store at least 10 units per SKU. Life is not that simple as you don’t know which product will sell how much, you don’t know which product will need immediate delivery and which not, you also don’t know the courier charges and will it help you to wait for a few days and send 2 packets together or send them at once. etc.

You will thus need to stock SKUs in your warehouse and also know a lot of details about those products like the weight, the dimensions, amount and location. This will help you to manufacture / procure SKUs as per the demand and will also help you deliver on time.

In today’s ecommerce enviornment, it does not take long for customers to cancel the order and specially on late delivery. Thus you need to ensure that you inventory management system exists and is functional so as to fulfill all the delivery promises made.

Without such a management, you are bound to lose on customers and eventually a lot of business.

Procurement Planning & Inventory Models

The Purchase plan of a company depends on a lot of factors. At the end, the objective is to ensure that the products are delivered on time to the end consumer. Here are the most common models

  • Small businesses cannot afford to keep a lot of inventory with them as they don’t know how many products will sell and also they may not have sufficient space to keep lot of inventory. In such cases, they go with no inventory model and ensure that products are procured after the order has been placed.
  • Another model that is followed across many ecommerce companies (and this is the most common model) is Inventory light model. In such a case, only a select few products are stored with limited quantity and rest all products are based on the no inventory model. The selection of which product has to be stored is based on current demand, past sales, product promotional campaigns or unique offers.
  • The third model, and the most obvious one is inventory based model where all the products are stored. The purchase planning (mostly in terms of units) is done based on past sales, current demands, promotional campaigns and unique offers

Inventory Management Systems

A system that tracks –

  • Inventory levels
  • Orders
  • Sales
  • Deliveries

is an Inventory Management System. Based on how large your business is and how much complexity exists in your business model, you need to decide if you need to maintain this in-house using tools as basic as Excel or go for high end Inventory management applications that contain every business case you can think of.

Key advantages of Managing Inventory

  • Timely delivery to the customer (as per the promise)
  • Prepare for the future with Procurement Plans
  • Easily manage complex cases like Returns and Exchanges
  • Set SLAs for each and every step of the business
  • Achieve economies of scale and save cost

Inventory management is a must have for every business who has more than 50-100 orders a day. If you are not doing it, start it today.

 

Akash
Loves digital marketing. Has been working in this field for over 7 years now and is known in our office as THE go to guy for digital marketing

23 thoughts on “Inventory Management – How to do it.

  • April 21, 2016 at 9:05 pm
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    Good & concisely written article.

    Reply
    • April 26, 2016 at 11:45 am
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      Thanks for the kind words. For more details on ecommerce, digital marketing or Buildabazaar tutorials, please subscribe.

      Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 8:39 am
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    Inventory management system is the need of the hour in this e-commerce era.

    Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 10:25 am
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    What are the other tools that can be used for inventory management apart from Excel?

    Reply
    • April 26, 2016 at 11:45 am
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      You can use databases like SQL

      Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 12:00 pm
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    This is a very well written article. The key advantages of managing inventory section will be of great help for any business.

    Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 2:48 pm
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    Having an online store is not a joke. This article on inventory management gives a good insight for an amateur in this field.

    Reply
    • April 26, 2016 at 11:43 am
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      Thanks for the kind words Gineel. For more details on ecommerce, digital marketing or Buildabazaar tutorials, please subscribe.

      Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 3:14 pm
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    Inventory management system is very important for any small or big business. This article is points out the key advantages of having a proper system in place that will help any business.

    Reply
    • April 26, 2016 at 11:43 am
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      Thanks for the kind words Jaarvis. For more details on ecommerce, digital marketing or Buildabazaar tutorials, please subscribe.

      Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 4:03 pm
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    I am sure ,not many know about inventory management. It’s fundamental to your business if you don’t want to lose out on your customers and thus a lot of business.

    Reply
    • April 26, 2016 at 11:42 am
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      Thanks for the kind words Damien. For more details on ecommerce, digital marketing or Buildabazaar tutorials, please subscribe.

      Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 5:24 pm
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    This is one interesting blog that I have read. Now, I can implement it in my business.

    Reply
  • April 22, 2016 at 6:32 pm
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    If you have more than 50-100 orders a day, then starting an inventory model and knowing how to use it is definitely important.

    Reply
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    There is definately a great deal to find out about this topic.
    I really like all of the points you have made.

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    Heya are using WordPress for your site platform? I’m new to
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