Inventory is never a fun task for any business owner, and the good news is it is slowly becoming a science. Struggling with a clipboard in a musty storage room is a thing of the past.
From technology, to simple smart tips, many people have worked out a way to save a little dough when it comes to inventory management. The following are 5 great cost-saving tips for making your inventory process less painful:
1. Realistic Projections
Look at what you have sold in the past year and crunch your numbers. If you sold 4 bottles of a certain liquor last month—or 2 kegs of a craft beer, chances are you will need it again this month. The only time this may not apply, is with seasonal items.
That being said, you should also be aware of what is popular for every season, and stock up accordingly. Pumpkin and spiced liquor during the fall, and light beers and vodka for the spring.
2. The Blue Dot Method
Sometimes it simply comes down to visuals. Entrepreneur and CEO of Village Green Apothecary, Marc Isaacson was constantly out of stock with some of his most popular items.
Rather than looking to technology for everything, sometimes a solution can present itself in a very easy process. Issacson’s “blue dot method” simply consists of a visual marking all of his products that are best sellers (using a tiny blue sticker). His loss of sales went down from 2-3% to only .5%.
The blue dot made it easier to identify the best selling items and served as a visual reminder to stock up. This can easily be done in a liquor room at any time.
3. Inventory Software
If you choose to go the tech route, using a software platform to manage your inventory is a good bet. TapHunter is a program that allows you to not only keep track of everything ordered from every distributor, but can also aid you in predicting orders.
In addition, TapHunter is a platform that can help you simplify your pricing calculations based on pour size—so you can save time and money from running complex calculations.
4. “A” Items
Statistics show that 80% of your demand is generated by only 20% of your items. Always focus on products that matter the most; but never forget to consistently introduce new products into your inventory.
“A” items are the ones that make you the most profit. Forecasting, reviewing your in-stock position, and reordering these items more frequently, is a great way to save cost on inventory.
The next high-selling items are your “B” items, and at this point, they only represent approximately 10% of sales. Thus it is imperative, in order to save on cost, that your main focus relies on your “A” items—regardless of what they are at the time.
5. Always Have a Backup
Computers are never foolproof, so it is imperative that you back up your inventory management with remote tools. If you use a spreadsheet on a hard drive, anything can occur —like a fire, and your files will be lost.
Although your backup plan can be as simple as a thumb drive, there is technology like TapHunter on the market that can store your information in the cloud. Thus, you never have to worry about losing important inventory data.
There are a variety of ways to improve your inventory management, and all it requires is thinking smarter—not harder. Understanding your numbers and having some forms of technology to automate processes will greatly improve your ability to manage your inventory, and save you money in the long run.
Bars and Restaurants – Want to save hours daily, drive thirsty patrons through your door and create an engaging experience for your customers? Learn more about how TapHunter can help your business today!