Handling goods may not be the most exciting aspect of business, but it is undoubtedly crucial. Once you’ve sourced your products, it’s time to turn your attention to handling and managing your goods. There are many ways to store your stock, from self-storage or renting warehouse space to using a fulfillment center or even dropshipping. But selecting the best options depends on your business needs and resources. Thus, don’t overlook this critical aspect of your operations; take some time to explore multiple options, and find the best fit for you.
If the scale of your business is small, as you have just started, you can choose the self-storage option or rent a space. Though it seems cost-effective, there’s more effort needed than meets the eye.
- You’ll need to pick and pack on your own. Furthermore, you must invest in time, space, and packaging material.
- You will need to discuss tariffs with shippers/express companies, which may not be as cost-efficient as joining a big account.
- With rented space, you will have to spend less time handling goods and more on packaging material, picking and packing, and shipping.
There are other options, like an order fulfillment center, which is a facility that stores and manages inventory on behalf of a business. The pros are that you don’t need to worry about picking, packing, and shipping, as they take care of everything. However, you’ll have to pay more for storage. You can save on shipping as they have better negotiating power to deal with shipping companies, but you’ll have to pay more for space.
And last, there’s dropshipping. It has also gained currency lately and is considered perfect for businesses that don’t want to invest in their storage facilities or hold inventory. You can have items shipped directly from the manufacturer or wholesaler to the customer without a list. It means sellers are not required to worry about stock availability or shipping costs. Still, the problem is they will have to rely on their supplier for product quality and timely delivery.
While dropshipping and fulfillment centers have their pros and cons, these are suitable options for businesses looking to sell internationally without the hassle and expense of maintaining a warehouse.
Managing Stock Level: Why It Matters
For several reasons, optimizing stock levels and forecasting customer demand is crucial in retail businesses. The reason is simple: having too much stock on hand is costly as it ties up resources and can lead to waste or spoilage. On the other hand, insufficient stock can result in missed sales opportunities and dissatisfied customers. By accurately forecasting customer demand, businesses can ensure they have enough stock to meet customers’ demands without wasting resources or losing sales. During seasonal cycles, forecasting becomes even more critical as demand for certain products may increase or decrease depending on the time of year.
The task of managing stocks becomes all the more complex in the case of e-commerce selling when you’ve multiple channels. To ensure successful business operations, monitoring the rate of goods sold, the reach of the stock, and managing them across various sales channels can present challenges in tracking the required data.
The process of handling and managing stocks is contingent upon myriad of factors, including the specific requirements of sellers and financial resources. Therefore, it is critical to thoroughly ponder each option and evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of each option before making a final determination. It will help you make the right choice that perfectly aligns with the organization’s unique needs and available resources.