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Shopify inventory tracking and management

Good inventory tracking and management is one of the most crucial parts of a Shopify merchant's success. How successfully you manage and keep your inventory flowing is a crucial factor in your company's growth. Overstocking, increased costs, delayed orders and deliveries, and customer unhappiness can all arise from ineffective inventory management. If you're running a Shopify store, solid Shopify inventory management is a fantastic way to avoid this problem.

This help article will show you how to track your Shopify inventory with a Mixtable spreadsheet. It will also show you how to manage your inventory across products and locations, and sync the data back to Shopify.

Shopify inventory tracking with a Mixtable spreadsheet

Tracking inventory is one of the most common uses that Shopify store owners/managers use Mixtable for. You can track how much inventory you have in stock for a product or variant, tracking inventory across multiple locations, share inventory information with others, or export your inventory to an Excel file.

Before we show how to track Shopify inventory with a Mixtable spreadsheet, it's important to explain how Shopify stores inventory. In Shopify inventory quantities are related to variants, not products. This is always the case, even if you haven't added variants to a product as Shopify always auto-creates a variant for every product in its own database. This inventory-variant relationship is important to understand as we set up inventory tracking/updates in Mixtable.

How you set up inventory tracking in Mixtable depends on whether you want to show the inventory for the first variant of a product (i.e., you don't use variants so we are updating the default variant for a product), or whether you want to manage the inventory for multiple variants of a product.

Case 1 - Inventory is managed from a worksheet storing your Variants

This is for stores that make use of variants in Shopify. Here are the steps to get your inventory into your worksheets.

  1. Add a Product Variants worksheet if you haven't already
  2. Find a column that is currently empty, and right-click on the header of the column (the header contains the column's letter)
  3. Click on the "Shopify Sync Settings" option
  4. In the "Shopify Sync Settings" interface that opens, select the "Inventory" radio button
  5. You will now see a dropdown containing the various inventory locations that you have set up in Shopify. Select the location whose inventory you want to map into the column.
  6. Click on the "Save" button
  7. The "Shopify Sync Settings" interface will close, and you will see the column populate with each variant's inventory at the selected location
  8. Repeat the steps above for any other locations whose inventory you'd like to map to a column

Case 2 - Inventory is managed from a worksheet storing your Products

This is for stores that do not make use of variants in Shopify. In this case you can map inventory to a worksheet holding your products. Here are the steps to get your inventory into your worksheet.

  1. Add a Products worksheet if you haven't already
  2. Find a column that is currently empty, and right-click on the header of the column (the header contains the column's letter)
  3. Click on the "Shopify Sync Settings" option
  4. In the "Shopify Sync Settings" interface that opens, select the "Inventory" radio button
  5. You will now see a dropdown containing the various inventory locations that you have set up in Shopify. Select the location whose inventory you want to map into the column.
  6. Click on the "Save" button
  7. The "Shopify Sync Settings" interface will close, and you will see the column populate with each variant's inventory at the selected location
  8. Repeat the steps above for any other locations whose inventory you'd like to map to a column

Setting inventory quantities from your Mixtable spreadsheet

Once you've loaded your existing inventory at each location in your spreadsheet managing that inventory is a breeze. To set the inventory for a particular product/variant just find the relevant cell and change its value. You'll see the cell background color turn light purple, indicating that the new value hasn't yet been synced to Shopify. To get this process underway just click on the Done Editing button in the top-right hand corner of the screen and Mixtable will sync the inventory quantity to Shopify.

What is Shopify inventory management

Inventory management refers to the process by which a company sources, organizes, and moves inventory within its supply chain. It covers everything from raw materials to finished items, as well as storage and distribution. It also keeps track of the weight, dimensions, quantities, and the location of your company's stocked goods.

Inventory management helps you know when it's time to restock products or buy new supplies to create them, lowering the cost of holding inventory. This allows you to keep ideal inventory levels while lowering costs.

Why is Shopify inventory management and tracking so important

Inventory management is critical to the success of a Shopify ecommerce store. It's not just about providing statistics on what you're selling; it's also about saving money, enabling effective cost control, and keeping your consumers happy. To avoid stockouts and surplus stock, reduce the risk of overselling, increase productivity, improve customer experience, and so on, a Shopify store needs efficient inventory management.

After all, every company wants to provide excellent customer service, generate profitability, and track everything from order progress to stock levels. That is why inventory management is so important.

Inventory management in Shopify guarantees that your online store has enough merchandise to match client demand. You may lose money by stocking too much inventory or squandering money on prospective sales if you don't control your inventory via Shopify. On the other hand, if Shopify inventory management is done correctly, it can significantly enhance your cash flow while also lowering your business expenses.

Save money on warehouse storage

Warehousing is frequently a variable cost, meaning that it varies depending on the amount of stuff you're storing. Your storage costs will rise if you store too much stuff at once or if you end up with a product that is difficult to sell. You will save money if you avoid this.

Manage cash flow

Inventory management provides you with a clear picture of your cash flow and assets, allowing you to better understand how much you should budget for stock or spend in other areas of your company.

For example, correctly controlling your inventory can save you money on storage costs by allowing you to acquire only the amount of product you require. You'll be able to make well-informed decisions about how to use warehouse space, whether to refill products, how to price things, and which products to discontinue stocking. As a result, you'll be able to devote more of your budget to marketing and customer acquisition.

Avoid overstocking and under-stocking

Inventory tracking issues can cause Shopify stores to buy too much stock (causing cash flow problems) or sell more things than they can provide. Both of these issues are detrimental to a company's reputation and bottom line.

By preventing overstocking and under-stocking, an inventory management system can help you provide a better client experience. You'll be able to tell customers how many products you have in stock and save your customer service team from having to communicate with customers on a regular basis.

Forecast product demand

An inventory management system will assist you in tracking and forecasting sales, allowing you to predict how much inventory you'll need at various times throughout the year. From there, it's much easier to see how your inventory varies over time and how product demand shifts from season to season.

Avoid overselling

Consider purchasing an airline ticket, arriving at the check-in counter, and learning that your aircraft has been overbooked. You are unable to board the plane, and staying at the airport for long periods of time is inconvenient.

Overselling irritates customers and has a negative impact on customer satisfaction and loyalty. You want a seat if you're promised one in exchange for money. When an airline fails to keep that commitment, it tarnishes their reputation and undermines your faith in them. The same can be said for overselling—selling a product that you no longer have in stock can irritate customers and damage your company's reputation.

You can avoid the backlash from unfulfilled promises by accurately managing SKUs through inventory management and publishing the status of your items on your distribution channel.

Inventory management best practices

Always keep the following Shopify inventory management best practices in mind, whether you're a new Shopify store owner or launching your second store on this platform.

Categorize your inventory

Segmenting products into groups will help you figure out which ones need to be ordered regularly and how quickly they're being depleted. This allows you to concentrate on things that are profitable.

Consider splitting your inventory into several groups based on profitability and turnover in order to improve it. Begin with these three:

First, there's the group of things that sell quickly and for a low price.

Second, those items with a medium sales volume and a medium price tag.

Third, a group that consists of products that are slow to sell and have a high price tag.

Keep inventory records up to date

Keep track of all your products' inventory quantities in as real-time as possible. The key to moving things swiftly and efficiently is having access to the most up-to-date and accurate inventory data. You'll need to keep track of things like barcodes, SKUs, and vendors.

Regularly audit your inventory

Real-time inventory tracking makes it simple to conduct regular inventory audits. Many people audit their inventory once a year, while others may check their products on a monthly or weekly basis. In any event, conduct audits to guarantee that financial records and stock quantity are accurate. This will help you keep track of your inventory flow, profit and loss, and ensure that your inventory runs smoothly.

Use cloud-based management software with real-time data

Keeping track of your inventory in a secure cloud-based system allows you to combine it with other elements of your organization and access it at any time. Such a system should also provide you with real-time, continuous stock level updates so that you can swiftly generate accurate reports and statistics.

Make time to work on your forecasting. Always be learning.

Your past sales data is a gold mine of information about your company. Pay attention to what it says and adjust your forecasts accordingly. The better you get at forecasting, the less time, money, and stock you'll squander.

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