Customer satisfaction should be the priority of any business owner, because without the customers, it is impossible for any business to survive. Whether you run an e-commerce business or not, it can be frustrating for a customer when they wish to buy a product, only to be told that such a product is not available.

If the unavailability of products persists for long, Customer loyalty may be negatively affected. Proper inventory management is very vital to ensure that your business remains thriving at all times.

A part of proper inventory management is proper mastery of how to keep track of your stock flow. Incorporating proper control of your stock flow, as well as other good inventory management practices work together to make sure that your business runs as smoothly as possible.

Now, you might be wondering , “what is stock flow and how can it be managed properly?” Be rest assured, both concepts will be explained in due course. We have come up with this article to answer your questions and tell you all you need to know about stock-flow control. Continue reading to discover all that we have in stock for you.

What Is Stock Flow Control?

For total clarity before proceeding, we would like to elucidate that the “stock” being referred to in this article refers to the products that are currently available in your inventory. Therefore, stock flow control means keeping track of the inflow and outflow of stock from your inventory. 

You have to keep records of the flow of stock for many reasons, but the most important reason is so you do not completely run out of stock. There are other reasons why you should always keep tabs on your stock flow. These reasons include:

  • It helps you make decisions on what products to restock and when to restock.
  • It helps you save a lot of money. 
  • It helps maintain customer loyalty
  • Good stock-flow control boosts production and efficiency
  • It promotes organization in the business. 

As can be deduced from above, the advantages of stock flow management are very beneficial to businesses. Therefore, we encourage you to put more effort into properly managing your inventory. Now, we would harm you with some tips to help you manage your stock flow better. This would help you realize better results in your business.

Tips For Better Stock Flow Management

  1. Always try to update your inventory in real-time

Doing this will help you to keep track of the products that you have sold and need to restock.  This is necessary in order not to get customers frustrated, and leave when they realize that you have run out of stock.

It also helps you become more accountable to your business. Be sure to record the details of every transaction, -inflow and outflow. By doing this you would notice that some products seem to be wasting away in your warehouse and accruing extra costs. You might want to sell such products at a lower price, so you can earn more income that can be channeled towards acquiring more profitable products.

  1. Invest In Inventory Management Software

This is the most important tip anyone can give you on the inventory management topic. The truth is that proper inventory management practices are highly beneficial but also quite time-consuming and stressful. Thanks to modern technology, these benefits can still be enjoyed even in a quicker and more convenient way.

Contrary to the opinion that only big businesses need Inventory management software, it can also be beneficial to small businesses too. No matter how many stores you have, they can all be linked. All their inventories can be channelled to one software,  and they can be tracked from anywhere you are.

  1. Always Divide Your Inventory Into Categories

Division into categories helps you know exactly what goods to prioritize, and those you shouldn’t. This helps you make sure that you are not left with goods that won’t sell. For example, You should prioritize goods that you acquired first. This means, sell off the old goods before the new ones, so that they don’t expire, therefore leaving you with a loss. This is called the First In, First Out (FIFO) principle.

 You can divide your product into these categories to boost efficiency:

  • Group 1: Products that don’t cost much and sells fast
  • Group 2: Products that are a bit pricey and sells slower
  • Group 3: Expensive products that sell the slowest. These are often things that could be considered as luxury items.

Another benefit of categorizing your inventory is that you can save more money and also realize more profits by knowing what products to buy more of because they sell faster. Seasons can influence how well products sell, so if you have an inventory management system, you will be able to make data-driven decisions during forecasting.

  1. Always Audit Your Inventory Frequently

This entails walking around your physical store to ensure that the products that are in the store correspond with your record. Some business owners do it every month, others, every 6 months or once every year. 

We encourage you to do it frequently as it can help you balance your financial records too. 

  1. Ensure That Your Supplier Is Performing At An Optimal Rate

Some suppliers have a non-nonchalant attitude when it comes to doing their job and this cou be very bad for business. If your supplier is always making mistakes while delivering your order, we advise you to get a better supplier. You should do away with late deliveries also.

Customers do not care if your supplier was the reason why you are out of stock. They only care about the products they came to buy, and that should always be available to them.

This is also why you should make sure you place orders for more supplies by yourself, this way if the supplier is slacking you can quickly correct that before it does some damage to your business. This is not a job you should delegate to other people, because money is being invested, and you should therefore be accountable for it.

These are just a few tips to help you manage and improve your stock flow. If you implement these tips, we are certain that you would realize lots of positive results in your business. Choose the right inventory management for you and your business today, stop losing money unnecessarily.

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