Sky Pilot
Digital Commerce

Map out your inventory strategy and have a contingency plan

One of the most important decisions you’ll make as a Shopify merchant is determining which products to offer in your inventory, and how to manage them effectively.

2 minutes, 21 seconds

One of the most important decisions you’ll make as a Shopify merchant is determining which products to offer in your inventory, and how to manage them effectively. You shouldn’t slap the same label on each item; after all, some should be flushed out as featured products, while others should be on sale if you notice a backlog of certain products that you’d like to move quickly.

Figure out the right kind of discounted price for those products. Find out how low you can go but still maintain profitability across the line. Will certain products be more seasonal in nature and thus it makes sense to discount them during this heavy shopping week? Have you noticed that certain products are lingering in a consumer’s online cart but they don’t finalize the transaction? Perhaps that product deserves a sale price that could help encourage more conversions.

Another factor to determine is the size and weight of the products you plan to sell. Do you want to opt to sell bigger and bulkier products that end up being expensive to ship and thus more difficult to sell, even if the profit margins work in your favor?

With lighter products, they can be easier to bundle with free-shipping deals and allow for more flexibility with your logistics protocols. If you’re looking to ship overseas, it’s exponentially easier with lightweight products.

When it comes to peak shopping periods, do you have enough inventory on hand if site traffic spikes? The last thing you want to do is be short on products when customers expect you to be reliable and efficient during the holiday shopping season, say, or during back-to-school shopping periods. 

It’s recommended to smooth out any bumps on the supply chain road so consumers don’t have to wait for their products to arrive at their doorstep. Are your supply chain partners communicating to you about any delays in sourcing parts? Do you have a contingency plan in place in case your supply chain is disrupted by something unexpected, such as another pandemic wave?

What savvy online merchants often determine is how to bring digital downloads to their product offerings, which skirts around the issue of shipping delays and supply chain fiascos. Digital products continue to be hot sellers for consumers, as a recent survey highlighted: according to CIO, 83% of consumers expect the demand for digital products to increase even further in the post-pandemic stage, pointing to a favorable attitude towards dynamic digital offerings.

When you layer a digital download app atop your online store, you can reap the benefits of giving your consumers another easy option to enjoy, say, an instructional video, a compelling ebook,  or e-learning materials that will further elevate your brand in their eyes. They can be downloaded an unlimited number of times and give you a recurring revenue stream that doesn’t rely on bricks-and-mortar logistics.

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