Whether you run a retail shop, restaurant, salon, or bar, inventory levels are the aspect of your business that allow you to open your doors to conduct business each day. All businesses have some sort of software system or method that they rely on to know what they have in stock. Companies that don’t have inventory and sales tracking software generally don’t have hundreds of items to manage. If this is the case, they may decide on what to order by conducting a visual inspection. Then, they make an estimate and send purchase orders to their suppliers accordingly. The reconciliation process is simple at the end of the week, month or quarter period. Store managers determine end-of-period balances by subtracting inventory on-hand from sales and record them manually.
On the other hand, it’s common for medium-sized retail stores to keep thousands of inventory items in stock. Some restaurants and bars that sell food, drinks, and retail could be handing hundreds or thousands of items. Inventory and sales tracker software empowers businesses to quickly scan new products into their system and stay in sync with sales activities on the front-end to provide stockroom levels that are more accurate.
What Does It Take to Track Sales Price and Cost?
The various demands on small businesses seem to only increase each year. You are committed to your craft, which takes a lot of time and attention to detail. Therefore, it’s important to remember to simplify and automate operations wherever and whenever you can.
The POS system user interface (UI) is a great place to start. Point of sale displays are where you and your employees spend much of your time each day. If you use tablets, the displays should have an easy layout that is bright and easy to read under various lighting conditions.
Look for a POS solution with menus that are designed around user experience (UX), too. Onboard functionality needs to work well for your employees in the kitchen, stockroom, or tableside. Intuitive software programs can save you a lot of time and effort even on daily tasks. Look for a POS solution that is loaded with custom reporting features. You should most definitely be able to track sales price and costs side-by-side and export to accounting with a few taps on the screen.
Different Methods for Tracking Inventory
There are three general ways to review and count inventory levels:
Periodic inventory counts are usually conducted on a monthly or quarterly basis. Large retailers most often use this method because they have inventory lists that number in the tens of thousands. Managers run these reports to coincide with quarterly tax filing requirements. Internal inventory and sales tracking occur on a monthly basis in addition to other more frequent sales performance reports.
Perpetual inventory and sales tracking works great as an “at-a-glance” reporting feature. The “running” number. The best inventory and sales tracking software record three data events every time a sale is made:
- Inventory on-hand gets reduced by the number of units sold
- Price paid for the product(s) sold
- The associated profit margin for sales
Unexpected sales trends are easier to recognize with the perpetual inventory feature. According to the Small Business Chronicle, “This system tracks your inventory purchases, sales, returns customers make and returns you make to the supplier.”
Instant inventory tracking software is a powerful, real-time sales and inventory management tool. You will need to be able to scan product barcodes in the stockroom and the POS counter for it to work. The feature modernizes your business’s sales, operations, and supply chain management. If you will likely run out of product that day (or week), you can begin to gauge that more quickly than in the past.
POS and Inventory Devices at Work
One important function to keep in mind is compatibility with Windows and Mac OS X operating systems. If you want the option for tracking inventory from your smartphone in the future, be sure to research interoperability with Android and iOS mobile inventory software. Built-in permissions settings for cloud-based POS systems allow you to set appropriate controls for each job assignment.
Increase Your Bottom Line with Inventory and Sales
Inventory and sales tracking features allow you to set tighter controls for how you manage inventory expenditures. With “real-time” data, you no longer have to budget as much for inventory on-hand. Start spending less money and ordering more frequently. Perpetual inventory tracking allows you to make purchase order adjustments as sales cycles change.
An POS industry leader like talech can help you streamline your inventory, reviewing your business with you and giving you the guidance you need to convert to a more efficient POS system with inventory and sales tracking features designed specifically for your industry.