Inventory management is a component that can make or break your business. It’s not just a large amount of goods in your stock. It’s a crucial factor that makes a difference between increased sales and profits, and business losses and failure. How’s that even possible? Scroll down to discover what proper inventory management can do to your company and the best inventory management software to streamline your business operations.
What Is Inventory Management?
But first, let’s define what inventory management actually is. It refers to the process of storing, moving, arranging, sorting, counting, and maintaining stock, more precisely goods, parts, components, and so on.
Effective inventory management is all about keeping inventory levels continuously balanced, in other words, not running out or pilling up your products in stock.
There are different techniques and tools you can use to manage your inventory efficiently and achieve this delicate balance that will bring many benefits to your business.
Benefits of Inventory Management
Speaking of the benefits, here is the impact that inventory management has on your business.
- Save on storage costs. With proper inventory management, you’ll reduce the time your goods sit in the warehouse and therefore you’ll spend less money if you are renting the space.
- Improve cash flow. When you manage inventory carefully, you won’t drain cash on purchasing too much stock. That means you won’t have a hole in the bank balance while waiting to sell all products.
- Eliminate expired or spoiled stock. No more wasted goods because you’ve ordered too much or they went out of season.
- Avoid shortages, overstocking, or stock obsolescence. Track your inventory and always have the necessary number of products, no more and no less.
- Accurate planning. When you keep track of your stock, you can keep the right amount of goods on hand and be prepared for the next season.
- Improved efficiency and productivity. With inventory management software or bar code scanners, you’ll eliminate manual processes, which means you can focus on the more important aspects of your business.
- Loyal customers. Good inventory management helps you meet the demand of your customers and always have the products they need, so obviously, they’ll come back for more.
Learn here more best practices for small business inventory management and organization.
What does inventory management software do?
Inventory management software is a computer program that helps you track your stock, orders, sales processes, and deliveries. Basically, it represents a more efficient system to organize inventory information, a difference from regular paper and spreadsheet.
Nowadays, there is a wide range of inventory management software. They come with different features and prices. Moreover, they cater to different business sizes and industries.
Therefore, to narrow down a choice a little bit, here is a list of the best inventory management software to find the right one for your business.
Top 10 Inventory Management Software
This is an online solution that helps you manage orders and inventory. Keep track of your stock from purchase and packing to shipping and payments.
- Manage your offline and online orders.
- Track each item in your inventory with serial number.
- Manage inter-warehouse transfer, check the stock level, and generate reports for specific warehouses in no time.
- Categorize all items effortlessly.
- Automatic re-ordering eliminates the possibility to miss an upcoming sale.
Best for: Growing business.
Price: Free, but there is also a basic plan for $39 and a standard plan for $79/month.
Free trial for 14 days.
This inventory management software allows you to track the entire life of your products: starting from raw materials and various operational tasks to physical product and order delivery.
- Plan your products and manufacturing jobs.
- Optimize and control your inventory in real-time.
- Track exact manufacturing costs with product recipes.
- Get alerts when the stock falls below a certain level.
- Keep purchasing in sync with accounting.
Best for: Small manufactures.
Price: $99 per month.
Free trial for 14 days.
A cloud-based inventory suite and point-of-sales package that fits the needs of businesses of different sizes and industries. It helps you track your inventory and keep your stock in line with orders across each sales channel and stock location.
- Manage inventory and orders for brick-and-mortar stores, wholesale channels, and eCommerce websites.
- Structure and classify your products.
- Customize your workflow: products, customers, suppliers, purchase orders, and sales.
- Track the accurate cost of each transaction.
- Great customer support.
Best for: Businesses that need both POS system and inventory management in one solution.
Ordoro is an application for small to medium-sized businesses that helps you manage your inventory, shipping, and everything in between. It’s accessible via web, so there’s no need to install anything.
- Manage orders from multiple sales channels in one place.
- Generate and send POs to quickly restock your products.
- Set low stock thresholds to avoid overselling.
- Ship fast and in bulk in seconds.
- Easy to navigate and user-friendly interface.
Best for: Online retailers.
Price: $25, $49, or $129 depending on the plan.
Free trial for 15 days.
This inventory management software that assists you in handling sales and supplying chains, as well as managing inventory and customer relationships from one place. It helps you work smarter, save time, and sell more.
- Keep track of your products as you manufacture, sell, and restock across different warehouse locations.
- Automate and control your orders with ease.
- Generate accurate sales, inventory, business reports, and forecasts.
- Organize all your supplier and customer data in one place
- Integration with other online tools
Best for: Wholesalers, distributors, manufacturers, and eCommerce brands.
Toast is a cloud-based restaurant management software system equipped with inventory tools and POS. It provides valuable insights into food and alcohol inventory that can help you streamline kitchen operations and reduce waste.
- Track food inventory, units, suppliers, and prices.
- Make more accurate food orders.
- Minimize your food waste.
- Analyze your food cost percentage.
- Your inventory is always in sync.
Best for: Restaurant owners and food businesses.
No free trial.
This software enables you to efficiently manage inventory from different channels – in-store, 3rd party marketplaces, online and all that from one place. This easy-to-use software is equipped with many useful features for proper inventory management.
- Custom product setup and fields for better category organization, product tracking, and reporting.
- Accurate and efficient receiving processes.
- Simplified order management and fulfillment.
- Manage orders based on fulfillment stage: created, invoiced, shipped, paid, complete.
- Create custom views to sort and schedule fulfillment.
Best for: Retails and wholesalers.
Price: $79 per month.
Free trial for 30 days and free consultation.
An inventory management software that offers flexible solutions that can be customized to fit the needs of every business. It provides the possibility to add modules to expand the tool to suit your business needs.
- Manage inventory and order fulfillment.
- Count, track, and manage your products and unique data.
- Effortlessly manage orders from multiple channels.
- Create orders, backorders, and quotes.
- Use Shipping Bump Bar option to pick, pack, and ship.
Best for: Small to medium-size businesses.
Price: Starting at $99/month.
No free trial.
This multi-location inventory management software that helps you manage orders, inventory, reporting, accounting, and customer data. It allows you to stay in control of your inventory and therefore make better business decisions.
- Clear view of inventory across sales channels.
- Automated inventory tracking.
- Inventory planning option.
- View reports on historical sales data, seasonality, product cost, average sales, and out of stock periods.
- Create individual inventory dashboards and track inventory KPIs.
Best for: Retail and wholesale businesses.
Price: Contact vendor.
No free trial.
This is a cloud-based inventory management solution that lets you easily track and manage your stock. With this tool, you’ll run your business more efficiently and save money too.
- Set an on-hand reserve amount and receive alerts when you when you’re running low.
- Run reports on your existing inventory and report usage over a period of time as well.
- Add your own fields to track anything you want.
- Check and manage your inventory from any device.
- Excellent customer service.
Best for: Small to midsize businesses in a variety of industries.
Free trial for 45 days.
Do you want to learn about other software that could improve the efficiency of your small business? Here you have our top picks for budgeting software.