E-commerce is skyrocketing, hitting $4.9 trillion in global sales in 2021. In this fast-paced world, getting your stock taking on point is crucial for keeping your inventory in check. With so many options, picking the best method for your business can feel overwhelming. But fear not! In this article, we’ll explore top stock taking methods for e-commerce fulfilment and share insights from Clarus’s clients to help you find the perfect fit for your needs.
Instead of counting everything at once, cycle counting focuses on smaller inventory chunks daily, catching discrepancies in real-time and reducing the need for a full-blown physical inventory count. To get started with cycle counting, split your inventory into smaller groups and count each group in rotation.
A Clarus client, an online clothing retailer, adopted cycle counting and saw a 30% drop in inventory discrepancies within six months. This boosted their inventory accuracy and freed up time for employees to tackle other important tasks.
Barcode scanning is a popular stock taking method in e-commerce fulfilment. By placing barcodes on each item and scanning them with a barcode scanner, you’ll achieve fast and accurate inventory counts while cutting down on human error.
A GS1 study showed that barcode scanning slashes error rates in stock taking by up to 90% compared to manual methods. This means major cost savings and improved efficiency for businesses.
Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is a cutting-edge solution for stock taking in e-commerce fulfilment. RFID tags on each item are read by an RFID reader, making it easy to track inventory levels accurately. This tech is especially great for businesses with extensive inventories, as it dramatically trims down time and effort spent on stock taking.
One of our clients in the electronics field switched to RFID technology and saw an 80% reduction in stock taking time, allowing their team to concentrate on strategic tasks and drive growth.
Physical Inventory Count
A physical inventory count means counting each item in your inventory by hand. While it’s labour-intensive and time-consuming, this method gives you a comprehensive view of your inventory levels. Physical counts are often done at the end of a financial period but can also be done regularly to keep your inventory accuracy in check.
According to an Aberdeen Group study, businesses that carried out regular physical inventory counts enjoyed a 7% boost in inventory accuracy compared to those that didn’t.
Picking the Perfect Stock Taking Method for Your Business
When deciding which stock taking method is right for you, keep these factors in mind:
- Size of your inventory: For large inventories, choose a method that can quickly and accurately track your inventory levels. RFID technology and barcode scanning might be your best bets.
- Budget: Consider the cost of implementing each method and ongoing expenses like software or equipment fees.
- Human error: Go for a method that minimizes human error, which can significantly affect your inventory accuracy.
- Frequency of stock taking: Determine how often you need to take stock for your business and pick a method to handle this.
Wrapping Up On Stock Taking
In conclusion, choosing the right stock taking method for your e-commerce fulfilment business is crucial for maintaining accurate inventory management and staying ahead in the competitive industry. By carefully considering inventory size, budget, human error, and stock taking frequency, you can determine the most suitable method for your business – RFID technology, barcode scanning, or physical inventory counts. By investing in the appropriate stock taking method, you will not only enhance the efficiency of your operations but also lay the foundation for long-term success in e-commerce.