Stock control defines the process of reducing the cost of holding stock whilst ensuring you have enough to keep up with demand. It sounds easy right? Understanding why stock control is important in eCommerce fulfilment can help you when looking at how to manage your stock and inventory. This can help ensure your business scales. Let’s take a further look at this in more detail.

There are a few things caused by poor stock control that can negatively affect your business and impact the effectiveness of your eCommerce fulfilment:

Poor customer service and experience

Poor money and resource allocation

Excess stock that isn’t selling, meaning extra space is taken up your warehouse or outsourced fulfilment centre, and hits you in the pocket.

You’re then left with a few choices. Either sell off your slow-moving/excess stock cheaply which subsequently devalues your brand, give it away or hope it eventually picks up. None of these options are particularly favourable for you, but don’t worry, there are some ways to tackle this:

Reduce storage cost by eliminating low-sale products

Are the products you’re selling suitable for the needs of the market you are in? It’s easy to become carried away and start offering loads of new products when you see the orders rolling in. A good question to ask yourself when looking at your stock and inventory is, are they making you money or costing you money?

It can be hard to get rid of products, but through stock control, you can effectively gauge which ones aren’t doing so well. However, by eliminating products, this will help with reducing your storage costs by reducing the space needed. Whether you’re using your own warehouse or a 3PL, you will be able to reduce the storage space needed and will therefore reduce your overall costs and financial losses.

You can also help reduce the number of delayed orders you have since you can then allocate more time for picking and packing instead of spending time finding space for storing away new products.

Look at your previous sales data

You should always refer back to your sales data as this is extremely insightful for eCommerce fulfilment, and it will help give you an accurate prediction of what to expect. It will also help you determine which products aren’t doing so well.

If you offer a wider range of products, you may not initially realise which ones aren’t doing so well and are costing you unnecessary amounts of money, so analysing sales data can be extremely important.

Handle your returned orders effectively

Unfortunately, sometimes returns are just simply inevitable. A returned order doesn’t have to mean you have lost a customer for good. Customers are still likely to return as long as the returns process is easy for them. No one wants a complicated process.

Having a clear returns management system in place will help with this since it can help you determine whether or not the returned item needs to be put back, replaced, or binned. A system can help speed this up and save you money.

If your returned orders aren’t being worked on a regular basis, it’s likely that you won’t be getting an accurate understanding of your stock levels. Did you know that here at TSP, we have an expert customer service team who will deal with returns for you?

Improve your warehouse

Sending out the wrong item can ‘’SKU’’ the figures, and frustrate the customer. Using a great 3PL will minimise this risk, as they work to a 99.9% service level. Likewise, an unorganised warehouse creates many issues with stock control, and the productivity and efficiency of your operation is hindered as stock that sells best isn’t where it needs to be. Having a quick, streamlined fulfilment process along with good stock control is great for business, leading to happier customers.

Using a competent fulfilment centre will do wonders for your stock control, not only will they ensure orders are out on time every day, but you’ll have access to world class systems with real time stats. The best fulfilment centres will offer inventory management, which enables you in knowing how much stock you have, when to order more of certain SKUs and based on current order volumes how long the stock will take to sell out.

What’s more, you’ll be able to get expert advice on new marketplaces and sales avenues, with a tailored service that helps you to scale your business. Here at TSP, we can help with all these aspects and more, so why not contact us today and let us take care of your eCommerce fulfilment the right way

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