How To Simplify Omnichannel with Inventory Management in Retail Pro®
The omnichannel expectation set by Tier 1 retailers has quickly trickled down to specialty retail and retailers everywhere are feeling the pressure to deliver. Retail Pro helps retailers simplify the inventory management across channels for omnichannel retail.
What’s wrong with omnichannel inventory management
The modern retail experience is composed (often) of several entirely different, disconnected software, so you are forced to keep disparate inventories for your e-commerce orders and your in-store sales – with all the duplication that entails.
In the very big picture, it doesn’t matter all that much if your systems are disconnected and duplicated. They still get the job done.
But if you examine the process more closely, you’ll see the pockets of chaos you keep tolerating when you segregate your channels, the collective negative impact of which compounds when extended year over year.
Inefficiencies in replenishment
Extraneous steps in the workflow
Gross inventory and labor duplication
And it hinders you from making more intelligent use of your inventory across the enterprise – especially later in the season, when you might be faced with stock outs (lost sales) and overstocks (unprofitable markdowns).And it hinders you from making more intelligent use of your inventory across the enterprise – especially later in the season, when you might be faced with stock outs (lost sales) and overstocks (unprofitable markdowns).
Omnichannel in its most practical sense is intended to stop retail chaos like this through the simplification and streamlining of retail processes and technologies.
Connecting your back office inventory, e-commerce, POS (and etc.!) systems in the Retail Pro Prism platform gives you unified visibility into your operations and performance, and simplifies data sharing – so you can make data-driven optimizations and achieve benefits like these:
Shopper autonomy Empower shoppers to look up, order, or purchase available store inventory online or at another location
Reduced shipping costs Allow customers to pick up or return online purchases in-store or at satellite locations
Increased inventory turn Rebalance inventory across the enterprise and fulfill online orders from the nearest store instead of from the warehouse
With all your technologies connected in Retail Pro Prism, you can then deliver the inventory visibility your customers expect from omnichannel.
Deliver on the omnichannel expectation
Your customers have learned to expect little conveniences like being able to go on your website to look up whether a particular item is in stock at the store nearby and reserve or purchase it.
Little customer-facing conveniences like that can actually require a major operational upheaval, depending on the state of your inventory and whether you can tie your e-commerce to your inventory management software.
With Retail Pro Prism, you can do that. e-Commerce and POS at every location can be seamlessly integrated to the Retail Pro platform (whether you use the native applications or opt for other software of your choice), so they can share transactional data in real time (or whatever interval is optimal for your operations) with the inventory management tools in Retail Pro.
This ensures that your inventory data is up to date when a shopper is looking for a particular product at your store. You won’t have to ask your customers to wait while you go get a different device to look up the inventory information. You can easily look up whether you have that item in stock from any device you use for your everyday operations, including iPod, iPad, Windows, Android, laptop, and desktop – because all of the same features are accessible on every device, even from the POS.
You can also see whether your other store locations have the particular item your shopper is searching for. With Send Sale transaction is Retail Pro Prism, you can record a sale at one store and fulfill the transaction at a different store that has available inventory, so you save every sale and your customer leaves satisfied.
With Send Sale transaction is Retail Pro Prism, you can record a sale at one store and fulfill the transaction at a different store that has available inventory, so you save every sale and your customer leaves satisfied.
Reconcile digital and physical inventory counts
To offer customers this kind of visibility into what you have in stock, it’s critical for you to be on top of your physical inventory. Retail Pro Prism helps you keep accurate counts of your physical inventory and determine whether any loss has occurred.
Confirm your inventory on a store-wide or warehouse-wide scale, or on a bin or shelf
Record physical counts data by scanning barcodes, RFID tags, or manually typing item identifiers
Use current On Hand inventory values as start quantities in your physical inventory file
Identify and review discrepancies easily with a separate Discrepancies list
Retail Pro Prism helps you keep accurate counts of your physical inventory and determine whether any loss has occurred.
With your inventory levels confirmed in Retail Pro Prism, you can increase in-store fulfillment accuracy for online orders being picked from your store shelves, and improve replenishment rates.
Sporting goods and apparel retailer Massey’s Outfitters uses Retail Pro to keep lower inventory. They rebalance their goods between stores and send directly from the vendor via integrated dropship rather than pulling from the warehouse. Warehouse-based replenishment for web sales accounts for only 25 – 50%, resulting in significant efficiency gains.
Inventory accuracy is foundational to every omnichannel strategy. Take control of your inventory today with complete visibility in Retail Pro Prism.