What if I told you that it sucks to be a high-volume brand on Shopify? Here's why- Amazon has already set high standards for eCommerce companies and consumers expect that kind of service from every Tom Dick and Harry selling online.
In order to deliver Amazon-like experience to your buyers, you must do everything right:
- Don’t go out of stock on popular products
- Have clear images and detailed descriptions including all required info on product pages.
- Dispatch your shipments on time
- Deliver within 2 days (Yes, Prime sucks more ;) )
- Give refunds to customers on any complaint they raise
These are must-haves these days. You need strong technology to make all this happen. If you are still not sure which Shopping Cart to use, let me give you a quick rundown on why Shopify is a decent platform unless you have very complex requirements.
- Shopify is easy to use and requires minimal effort from store owners for setup.
- Store owners are provided with multiple themes providing a different look to their stores.
- It is one of the safest & most secure platforms for website creation & hosting
- It has 24/7 support available for its store owners.
- Ready integration with third-party apps like EasyEcom to manage multiple channel inventory from one platform.
In this article, we will focus on Inventory Management with Shopify for growing organizations.
Inventory Management Features with Shopify
Shopify offers a range of inventory management features that cater to the needs of small-to-midsize brands. It provides essential functionalities that are highly valuable for businesses. Click the link for a thorough guide on managing inventory in Shopify.
Some notable features are as follows:
- Set up products with ease: Shopify helps you organize your product on the basis of categories, types, vendors, discount percentages and more. It provides you with the liberty to list an unlimited number of products, allowing import and export options through sheet upload to make the listing easier.
- Handle product variations: If your product has multiple colors or is available in different sizes, Shopify allows you to easily list your products in variation and assign different SKU’s to each type.
- Allot unique Barcode for products: Shopify allows you to assign a unique barcode to every product type and their variants.
- Integrations with other eCommerce platforms: It also provides an extra plug-in for integration with different applications to sell on different channels and integrate with shipping partners, but with limited options.
With these many features around, it does have few shortcomings which many growing brands have been experiencing. Let us now look at some of these challenges. Later in the article, we will discuss possible solutions as well.
Shopify Inventory Challenges
- Although the platform is adaptable and simple to use, managing SKUs with variants might be challenging when it comes to inventory management. Think about the following instance: With Shopify, a store owner can only display a maximum of three product variations. As in the image, it is not feasible to display a product based on its Brand, Color, Operating System, Warranty, Size, etc.
- Inventory sync between multiple Shopify stores is not possible. Also for different channel integrations; there is no panel where inventory can be updated centrally.
Let us consider scenarios to understand this shortcoming better:
1. Scenario 1: An existing brand with Shopify store 1 has launched its new product line and plans on launching a new store i.e. Shopify store 2. To manage both stores, they will have to log in on separate panels for any updates. That’s very cumbersome for the warehouse staff.
2. Scenario 2: A Brand has two stores in two different locations, supporting different currencies. Here again, the brand will have to launch two stores and manage them separately.
Here's a sum up of the Shopify store's comment section to give you a better idea of the pain store owners have been going through,
1. There is no process set up in Shopify to reconcile inventory or payment for returned or damaged products with the shipment.
2. Shopify does not provide any order aging report or a detailed analytical report of the products.
3. Shopify has its own payment wallet called Shopify Payment (which is not accepted everywhere) . It charges extra for using a third-party payment gateway like Paypal / Stripe.
4. As the business increases, a brand might decide to open multiple warehouses to cater to its client from the nearest location. Shopify doesn’t support that scenario of multiple warehouses catering to a single Shopify store.
Let us now look at ways to address the aforementioned issues utilizing third-party solutions.
How Is Shopify Integration Beneficial in Managing Inventory?
Once the orders start soaring in from your Shopify store, you would like to simplify your daily activities. Such activities include:
- Generating a pick list. In case of high volumes, multiple picklists to divide the work between pickers
- Barcode scan-based sorting and document generation
- Inventory inward process - QC, Putaway
- Inventory forecasting and purchase order management
Trying to manage these things manually via spreadsheets is a recipe for disaster. Using multiple disconnected systems turns out to be complex and time-consuming. Instead, you should consider automating the complete process which should be worth every penny in the long term.
A potential solution for Shopify inventory sync issue
Consider an eCommerce shop owner Mr Ravi Dubey who runs a Healthy snacking company named Ministry of Nuts. His expansion efforts while being able to track sales performance has the efficiency numbers to prove how successful he has been since coming onboard EasyEcom!
Benefits derived by Ministry of Nuts (Shopify store) post EasyEcom
Here is a detailed overview of what the Ministry of Nuts got from Shopify integration with EasyEcom.
Manage multiple operations from a single platform
- Consider logging in to different applications for updating inventory system / sale details on multiple channels/ shipping updates/ accounting management/ excel sheet for order updates and more, then consider logging in to a single platform and handling all the process in one login.
- Inventory management software is the one with a single login for handling all the processes which is supported on a system like EasyEcom.
Increased Sales Growth
- With the Shopify storefront long-serving as its primary sales channel, this snacking brand succeeded in boosting festive season sales by 90% two years ago and was able to update stock levels against seasonal demand. Even as they diversified into multiple marketplaces, the EasyEcom system provided and continues to centralize data to simplify sales, inventory and item performance tracking for operational improvement!
Predict future inventory with the help of Inventory Forecasting
- With inventory forecasting, future sales can be estimated based on past sales. The Ministry of Nuts uses this data to minimize the likelihood of stock inadequacy and surpluses. Without forecasting reports, both scenarios create an undesirable outcome- inventory that you missed to make smart decisions on.
- EasyEcom software helps to overcome hurdles involved with calculating the sales and planning inventory with ease.
Manage sales profit with Business Analytics
- Improve sales based on analytical data of fast-moving and slow-moving products.
- Get channel-wise sales made on a daily/weekly/monthly basis.
- Manage order shipment process with the help of Order Aging reports.
Stay connected with order shipment updates
- Get a flow of order processing and get notified in case of any missed/late shipments.
- Manage all the integrated shipping partners and their approval details on one screen.
- EasyEcom is well linked with shipping partners like FedEx, USPS, DHL etc.
Keep track of Payment Reconciliation and returns
93% payment reconciliation and orders processing accuracy through Tally synced auto-generation of POs and order invoices.
Based on the experience of companies like the Ministry of Nuts, we put together the following guide on how to choose the best inventory platform.
Settling with the best Shopify Inventory Integration
With that being done, it is also necessary to check if the platform has ready integration with any third-party centralized inventory management solution. This is in order to make sure, if you see an increase in sales, you will have the option to automate your inventory handling procedure with the help of Omnichannel inventory management solutions Like EasyEcom.
There are many platforms available in the market. But one solution platform with easy customization and flexible customer support is something one has to look for.
Benefits of Smart Inventory Management for Retailers
If you’re a retail business, you’re probably already selling your wares on Shopify, or at least considering doing so. It powered 20% of all e-commerce websites, and 1.75 million merchants sell on the Shopify platform, in 175 different countries. There are plenty of reasons for online retailers to love it.
But, businesses with multichannel and multi-location operations often find that Shopify’s inventory management features aren’t robust enough to handle high sales volumes and complex workflows.
We hope we’ve made the point that efficient inventory management is crucial to the success of your business, and given you some tips on choosing the right solution to integrate with Shopify. If you’re struggling to make up your mind, by all means, sign up for a free trial with one of the vendors above.
But, if you need an advanced solution right now, Easyecom is the choice for you. It’s fast to implement, easy to use, and comes with so many features that we haven’t had room to list them all! Inventory tracking, automated order management and fulfillment, advanced analytics, built-in accounting, and reconciliation just scratch the surface.
- You won’t be required to change or recount the stocks on a daily basis.
- You will avoid over-ordering the products
- The usage of barcode scanners will help you avoid manual errors and improve productivity.
- Customer satisfaction with stock availability and on-time delivery.
- You get numerous channels to integrate with and generate leads. No more lengthy telephonic/email conversations are required.
As your business grows, complexities are bound to grow. So whether you run one eCommerce store or multiple, it is necessary to understand proper inventory management practices and employ them in your organization. A proper platform that has best practices built in can propel your efficiency and hence drive customer satisfaction.