The decision to use POS software to manage your inventory may feel like you are leaving your firstborn child on someone’s doorstep, but it can be one of the most liberating things you do for yourself as a business owner.
If you want your business to grow, you need to free up time to focus on making that happen, and the precision counting and prediction tools that inventory management software provides is a valuable resource to set yourself up for success. If you are nervous about finding the right fit for your business, here are a few tips on what to look for in your search:
Flexible Product Variants and Composites
A general understanding of your stock will suffice if you only sell products that are all the same, but when you have multiple variants, details matter. If you are in the clothing industry, for example, you need to be able to categorize your items by name and also by style, color, and size. Sometimes you may want to bundle products together into gift baskets or special promotions. Other times you want to split items into smaller increments. If you are a massage therapist, you do not necessarily use a whole bottle of massage oil on every client, but it is still important to know what you have on hand.
A system that can handle varying data without getting bogged down or having to edit each individual item is essential in order to innovate. When looking for POS software that gives you a clear picture of exactly what is in your inventory, go with one that is powerful enough to organize all the details, but simple enough to use with ease.
The most successful retail businesses have multiple outlets for their products. Because of the evolving way consumers shop, you need a brick-and-mortar store in addition to eCommerce, and maybe even a shopified Instagram account. If you have multiple outlets for your retail business, keeping separate inventory for each can make you question why you ever wanted to expand. In order to keep your sanity, a POS system that tracks all of your inventory in one place is absolutely essential.
Your inventory and your checkout process go hand in hand. If you ever run special promotions, you need to be able to customize the prices and purchase limitations on your inventory. If you do not want that one bargain hound to wipe out your entire inventory of knitted gloves at half off, you are going to have to put a limit on the number they can buy.
Or maybe you want your customers to spend a certain amount before they can claim a free item. Make sure your software is set up to handle special instances of pricing before a mistake in the system costs your business more money than the promotion was worth.
Real-Time Inventory Counts
When you run a busy shop, it is essential to know what you have on hand in real-time. This way, you can instantly help customers find the products they are looking for, and you never have to disappoint.
Knowing what you have at the moment can help you plan and prepare for when you start to run low on specific items. If something is selling out in one location, but you have an abundance in another, you can ward off a stock-out by moving things around. If a customer wants to confirm you have something in stock at a particular location, you can answer with confidence when you have real-time updates on your inventory.
In addition to real-time inventory counts, why not make your life easier with automated orders? Good POS system software will notice trends and know exactly when to create another order, to make sure you never run out. In addition to making sure you never sell out of an item, software set to make automated orders can help you prevent overstock.
Retail and grocery businesses lose revenue every year due to the diminished value of a product sitting on the shelf for too long. Take the guesswork out of how much stock to keep on hand by leaving it up to your intuitive POS software to handle it.
POS software is one of the most powerful tools you can have to help your business grow. Your software should be storing all of your sales data and making the resulting analytics accessible and easy to use. Find a POS system that makes it easy to decide your next move, by presenting a clear picture of performance and progress with just a few clicks.
Integrates For Growth
Maybe you already have multiple outlets, or maybe you plan to scale your business. Either way, your POS software should be built to help your business grow in addition to growing with your business. Make sure you never have to go through the hassle of converting all your data to a POS, by using one made for your business no matter how small or large. Savor the process, and pat yourself on the back for making the wise decision to automate your inventory.