11 February 2020

8 Inventory Management Best Practices for Retail Business

Do you want to get the most out of your retail inventory process? Though inventory management is the backbone of any retail company, it is also a complicated department to manage. The complexity of inventory management comes from multiple interlinked and interdependent processes within the process.

Accuracy is a vital aspect of the inventory management process. Even minor errors in the processes, such as stock counting and item information, could result in both tangible and intangible damage to your business. You need to implement measures that optimize the most crucial aspects of inventory management.

Inventory Management Best Practices for Retail Business

Here are a few best practices that would help you streamline your retail inventory management process:

Adopt Automation

Automation is the most efficient way to manage your retail inventory. It minimizes human error and therefore increases overall inventory accuracy and saves time. Automation can digitalize the most crucial and error-prone process of your inventory management. A retail inventory management solution can solve many  

For example, if your inventory management team does stock counting manually or through spreadsheets, there are high chances of errors in the process. However, an automated solution supported by barcoding technology can make stock counting accurate and stress-free.

EDI Implementation

The benefits of EDI go beyond purchase order processing. EDI can streamline the process transactions of the entire supply chain management process. It also makes sure in time-critical business data transfers to the vendors. Hence, EDI optimizes the shipping process of your inventory, which, in turn, positively impacts your

Order-to-shelf Inventory Management

Order-to-shelf (OTS) inventory management is a fast-growing trend in the retail sector. This practice enables you to minimize your storage and labor costs. As per the OTS inventory management system, you only ship in the stock when and as you need it. This system primarily works for businesses that deal with perishable products. Order-to-shelf practice also helps retail enterprises limit the risk of spoilage and over-selling of goods.

Track Your Inventory Analytics

You can plan your inventory better if you are informed about the trends in your stock. Your inventory analytics can help you determine best-selling items, performance-based on the placement of products, and seasonality of a few products.

When you can build an efficient inventory analytics tracking system, you are better able to strategize your inventory in the future effectively.

Foster Supplier Relationships

It is a great practice to keep your suppliers in the loop with your analytics because your suppliers are generally unaware of the product journey after they sell the product to you. Hence, sharing your analytics with your suppliers not only helps them evaluate the performance of the product, but it also helps you build a strong business relationship with them.

Comprehensive Product Labelling:

When you adopt automation to manage inventory of your retail business, barcoding is one of the crucial aspects of the process. Barcoded labeling is an efficient way to keep track of and retrieve item information.

However, not only can you , but you can also include the category of the product in the label. The category of product could be replenishment, excess, or obsolete stock. This method aids in inventory tracking and management.

Track Safety Stock:

Safety stock is the reserve of stock, which is additional to what is required. This safety stock comes handy when any product is oversold. Hence, you must keep the correct levels of safety stock at all times. Automated inventory management helps you to check the safety stock levels and update the data daily.

Classify your stock

Another way to improve your retail inventory management is to classify your stock into best-selling and slow-selling products. This classification assists you in creating your purchase plan so you can purchase best-selling products more frequently to make sure they do not run out-of-stock. Similarly, you decrease the likelihood of overstocking your inventory with slow-selling products.

Efficient Inventory Management

Inventory management is a cumbersome process in any industry, mainly in the retail sector, which is highly driven by its inventory functions. Following these best practices will ease your stress around inventory management. However, automation is not only a best practice but it is a must-have in the ever-evolving and competitive retail industry.

To Increase Anywhere Retail solution is designed to cater to the inventory needs of the retail sector. The solution includes some vital tools that can help you optimize the inventory processes of your retail business.


Empower Your Retail Business with an Inventory Management Solution

Michiel Toppers
Michiel Toppers,
Michiel Toppers,
Senior Director of Product Management

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