Retail & Distribution

4 Steps to Better Inventory Accuracy

18 February 2019

3 min
In today’s complex retail landscape, it can be difficult to accurately track the movements of all stock through warehouses, shipments, transfers, stores and deliveries. To offer 24/7 access and ensure stock is available – for in-store shopping, delivery or pick-up – inventory must be accurate.

“Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted, counts.”

-William Bruce Cameron

For retailers looking to provide world-class service, inventory does count !

Customer loyalty is the engine of retail success. To cater to shopper preferences, our omnichannel world has created a variety of shopping options. Customers can order online and pick up in the store, request an item be transferred to the store of their choice, or return an item in person that they originally bought online. Offering this cornucopia of fulfillment options has become a strong part of competing in retail.

Yet the rising number of options and channels has created both higher customer expectations and a complex fulfillment system that can be difficult for brands to manage. Customers now expect to obtain their desired item without waiting – and an out of stock message can mean a lost sale for you and a new sale for competition.

The real cause of this lost sale? Inventory inaccuracy.

Transforming Inventory With Unified Commerce

If this is a familiar challenge, there’s only one way to clarify your visibility into stock across all channels: using the right tools. Today’s retail software solutions can turn stores into internet-connected hubs that act as both warehouse and fulfillment center.

The right technology can also help your Sales Associates provide world-class service. Providing Sales Associates with accurate inventory visibility enables them to conveniently arrange transfer or delivery of stock items even if the store is out at that moment. Consider a Wharton retail study that found knowledgeable sales associates can increase sales by 23 percent, and you’ll see why empowering your Sales Associates with the right technology is essential for your brand to offer exceptional customer experiences.

Cegid’s cloud-based platform for unified commerce achieves this in multiple ways. A centralized catalog includes digital, physical, retail and ecommerce updates in real-time, so your staff can accurately locate items at any time. Customer requests can also be fulfilled in real-time, boosting both sales and your brand’s reputation for sophistication and convenience.

Most importantly, Cegid’s Retail Management and POS software solutions allows you to master the 4 steps to smarter inventory control. Our ebook Inventory Precision: Vitally Important, But Too Often Ignored explores the 4 steps in detail, explaining how to:

  1. Unify: Use unified commerce capabilities to create a fully integrated IT environment. Minute-by-minute inventory status and updates are shared across channels.
  2. Identify: See where all of your stock is in real time so you can connect customers to the exact items they want and save the sale. No more stock-outs – you can fulfill shoppers’ requests no matter what they’re looking for and how they’d like it delivered.
  3. Replenish: Maintain accurate inventory quantities and automate restocking and transfer tasks. Based on the nuances of your company’s needs, Cegid’s retail management software solutions can also help your brand benefit from accurate forecasting and item performance monitoring.
  4. Mobilize: By capturing stock movements such as physical inventory, cycle counting, stocking, deliveries and more, you can know the location of all your items with certainty. Tracking, transfers and BOPIS picking become smoother and easier, no matter what the customer has requested.

Accurate inventory is the key to capturing lost sales. But its benefits extend far beyond the individual transaction. You’ll foster deeper customer loyalty and increase the customer’s lifetime value. You can also move more stock without resorting to markdowns. There’s no better way to connect your customers with their favorite items – and build a lasting brand connection and never miss a sale.

[eBook] Inventory Precision: Vitally Important, But Too Often Ignored

Learn how to master the 4 steps to smarter inventory control to help your brand deepen customer loyalty and ensure you never miss a sale. Download the essential guide today.