If your business sells physical products, you likely need to keep an inventory. On some occasions, you might use drop shipping and avoid it. However, if you keep stock yourself, you need to manage it, and your inventory is part of that. You might not give a lot of thought to your inventory, but how well you manage it could make a huge difference to how you run your business.
If you improve your inventory and its management, you could save time and maybe even money. While you can hire a service to improve your inventory management, there are also several things you can do to make it better on your own.
1.Why Improve Your Inventory?
There are some important reasons it’s worth taking the time to improve the management of your inventory. If you have too much stock, it could mean you have money tied up in it that you could use better elsewhere. But you also don’t want to end up running out of products that your customers need, especially when they could end up taking their business elsewhere.
How you manage your inventory can make a difference to how much time you have available too. If you have to spend longer than necessary checking on stock for a certain product, you could waste valuable time. Improving how you keep and manage your inventory could benefit your business a lot.
2. Keeping Your Inventory in Excel
Many small business owners simply use Excel or a similar spreadsheet program to list their inventory. It’s a perfectly acceptable method of managing your inventory, especially when you don’t need to spend money on fancy software. However, even in a program like Excel, you don’t need to make everything too simple. There are several ways to can improve how you manage everything with the right tools and methods. For example, filtering a list in Excel will help you check on stock for a certain product much quicker than trying to search for it by eye. If your spreadsheet skills need updating, try taking a course or looking for resources online.
3. Specialist Inventory Software
Some people need to go beyond a spreadsheet to manage their inventory properly. You might want to create a database or use specialist inventory software to make it easier to get everything done. You might already be using something like this, but if you’ve been using simpler methods, it could be time for an upgrade. If you’re not sure which software to choose, you can find lists of the top recommended systems. Some are specially made for certain industries, like SynergySuite for Restaurants
4. Hiring Someone to Improve Your Inventory
If you think your inventory and its management requires some problem solving, think about hiring someone to fix it. You can look for consultants who will take a look at your inventory and the methods you’re using, then make recommendations for improvements. It can be worth the cost for long-term savings.
Whether you own a tiny online business or something larger, managing your inventory well is essential. Get organized if you want to save time and money.