Sellers love to talk about how to scale up their Amazon businesses. However, they tend not to include Amazon inventory management in the conversation. The result? Stock-outs, loss of profit, and an overall unpleasant, faulty scaling process. If you want your scaling journey to be successful, it’s time to learn the importance of managing your Amazon inventory and how to do it correctly.
Here are the three techniques you need to sync up to scale your Amazon inventory management and grow your business.
The Weak Link (Problem) and The Missing Link (Solution)
Inventory significantly affects an Amazon business’s bottom line and cash flow. At first glance, you might think that the problem is all about inventory mismanagement, but there is actually more to it. The real problem is that sellers plan their marketing efforts without considering their inventory. It’s the weak link that disrupts a smooth scaling process.
Now that you know the main issue, what can you do to address it?
This is where proper inventory management enters the scene, and there’s a reason why most Amazon sellers avoid this topic. To start off, proper Amazon inventory management can be overwhelming at first, often leading to stress. But there are best practices that you can implement to streamline your inventory management system. Let’s talk about inventory syncing, the missing link that will level-up your Amazon scaling process.
The Significance of Syncing Up Your Systems
If inventory management is one of the most overlooked topics in the Amazon space, marketing is the complete opposite. Sellers are always talking about the latest and best marketing hacks. But relying on your marketing efforts solely will not guarantee a successful outcome. In fact, what could happen is you create sales increases that will take a massive bite out of your inventory without you being prepared for it.
For example, many sellers have had to cancel Lightning Deals because they don’t have enough inventory to support them. Some sellers also tend to fail in planning far enough in advance for future events. These show that improper inventory management causes a lot of lost sales and lost revenue for your business. If you want to reap positive results from your marketing efforts, inventory and cash flow need to be a part of your strategy.
Process of Syncing Your Systems Together
Marketing, inventory, and cash flow are three things you need to sync to have a positive scaling experience. These systems need to be thoroughly coordinated. Strong communication across teams will help your business in having a smooth flow of operations.
Amazon Inventory Management and Marketing
When laying out your marketing plan, your inventory team needs to be part of the discussion. It’s vital to know whether you have the right amount of stock to support your campaign. An inventory timeline will give you a better picture of your marketing in relation to your inventory and logistics. You will have an easier time tracking your daily and seasonal growth, as well as plotting the promotions and deals you have planned out.
You can do this process manually, or you can use Amazon inventory management software, like SoStocked. Whatever tool you opt for, the inventory timeline will help you in visualizing and pulling everything together. When the marketing team gives the plan to the inventory team, the latter will look for potential stock out risks and adjustments the marketing team will have to make. They will decide if the marketing campaign is ready for launching a new, aggressive PPC campaign or if it’s better to be more moderate at first while placing larger orders with the next shipment.
Cash Flow and Inventory Management
When the suggested revisions from the inventory team have been performed, the accounting team is the next team to review the plan. They will analyze the existing plan and determine whether it’s feasible to execute it based on the cash flow estimations. The following are the common questions that the accounting team will ask.
- What are the estimated upcoming sales?
- What is the projected income, and when will it be banked?
- What is the cash currently on hand?
- What additional funds can be used if that is needed?
The discussion based on these questions will help the accounting team know if there are enough funds to support the current marketing plan. If things need to be adjusted, they can compromise and ask the inventory team if some orders can be delayed, canceled, or decreased. The marketing team must explain to the accounting team how they envision the whole plan to work out. When the consultations and preparations are all said and done, only at that point can the finalized plan be launched.
The accounting team’s primary role is profitability and ensuring you won’t run out of stock due to not having enough cash to support everything. It’s crucial to think about what actions are best for the sales and growth of your business.
Tools That Help to Streamline This Process
Now that you know how everything should work, it’s also essential to have a trusty tool for scaling your Amazon stock management. When it comes to creating your inventory timeline, you can use spreadsheets for a manual approach. But there is also Amazon inventory management software like SoStocked on the market that’s worthy of your attention. When looking for the perfect match for your unique needs, you can search for these features:
- The software must be customizable
- The software’s algorithm must be easy to understand
- The software must allow for adjustments of calculation on an SKU level (no one-size-fits-all approach)
- The software must provide accurate forecasts (for both FBA inventory and warehouse inventory)
In the end, it will all boil down to its ability to make inventory planning easy and accurate.
A better understanding of the importance of Amazon inventory management will help your business significantly. You’ll realize how essential it is to have all of your systems work together to reach your goals successfully. Now is the best time to sync your marketing, inventory, and cash flow to scale up and thrive in the Amazon space.
SoStocked is an Amazon inventory management software that factors your marketing strategies into your inventory forecasts and reordering. We’ve created a free downloadable Amazon inventory planner template to help you streamline your system more efficiently for starters. Start implementing these systems to truly and quickly scale your business.