How to manage and sync your multi-channel inventory

How to manage and sync your multi-channel inventory

You undoubtedly enjoy the benefits of selling your products through multiple channels, such as marketplaces, web stores, and physical locations. But managing your inventory between different channels is no small feat. The challenges of keeping track of item quantities and staying on top of order fulfillment are enough to make the most experienced eCommerce managers shudder.
You are constantly on the clock, ensuring the accuracy of your inventory so you don’t oversell or undersell. But instead of struggling with managing multiple sources for sales, there’s a better way. Sync your multi-channel inventory with software solutions that automatically update stock levels from everywhere you sell.

This blog post will discuss why multi-channel inventory management can be challenging and explore how inventory management software can help.

What is multi-channel inventory management?
Before we dive in, let’s define what multi-channel inventory management means. Multi-channel inventory management is the process of keeping track of your product’s stock levels across multiple sales platforms and physical locations.
This includes monitoring products sold through online marketplaces like Amazon and eBay, your website, social media, and physical locations. The goal of multi-channel inventory management is to get better insight into your stock levels to determine reorder points, forecast inventory needs, and ensure accurate inventory tracking.

Why is multi-channel inventory management complicated?
You’ve probably struggled with inventory management when selling your product on a single eCommerce platform or from a single location. Now imagine having to keep track of different inventory levels across multiple channels. You’ll encounter several challenges, including the following:

Stockouts and overselling
When you’re selling across different channels, it can be difficult to track inventory manually. It’s also easy to overlook a change in your sales volume and delay replenishing your stock. The impact is missed sales opportunities.
You’re probably familiar with this situation if you’ve ever bought something online only to learn later it’s unavailable. That’s a case of overselling, which negatively impacts the customer experience.

The opposite of overselling is overstocking, which can cause you to spend money on inventory that’s not moving. Data shows that overstocking costs retailers worldwide approximately $362.1 billion per year. Your business has to bear the cost of storing and managing unsold stock.
When selling on multiple channels, it’s possible to overstock due to difficulty forecasting demand, inaccurate stock counts, and manual errors. All these add up to an increased cost of carrying inventory and put a dent in your profits.

Lack of visibility
When operating on multiple sales channels, staying on top of product availability and fulfilling orders on time can be challenging. It can also be hard to compare performance across multiple channels, accurately predict your sales performance, or forecast future demand.
Without access to this kind of data, you won’t be able to make informed decisions about inventory replenishment and maximize the efficiency of your operations.

Inconsistent shipping logistics
Selling across multiple channels also means having to deal with different shipping logistics. You may need to source and use separate couriers, fulfill orders from multiple locations, or find ways to optimize your shipping process.
This process can become tricky when dealing with different carriers, especially if they don’t integrate. You’ll also need to ensure that you include the right shipping cost and ensure that it’s reflected in the price customers pay.

Inconsistent data
Having to deal with different sales channels can mean using multiple software solutions for different tasks. This makes it difficult to get a clear picture of your inventory and operations, as each application may use a different system for recording data.
So, even if you can access the same data from various systems, the language and format used by each may be different. You have to manually transfer, interpret, and adjust data before you can use it.

How the right software can help
The good news is that there’s a way to overcome these challenges and streamline multi-channel inventory management. The secret lies in using inventory management software with multi-channel syncing capabilities.
This kind of software can help you track and manage stock levels easily. With the software, tracking your inventory is easy as you get real-time counts for all your items across various sales channels.
You can search for a particular item to see the count and even set low stock alerts. The visibility helps you avoid stockouts or overselling and make informed decisions about stocking levels.
The right software can also help you overcome the logistics challenges of multi-channel inventory by helping you pick, pack, and ship more accurately. Some solutions, like SKULabs, allow you to use barcode scanning to verify picked items and choose from live rates.
You can pick and ship a single item or in batches for more efficiency. The catch is that you see these shipping rates and print the shipping labels from different carriers without switching between software. This is possible because of the software’s integration with major carriers like FedEx and USPS.
The right solution also facilitates warehouse management by making it easy to manage all your stocking centers in one place. You can see how stock changes across these locations and get a clear picture of all your orders, inventory, and operations.

Benefits of using multi-channel sync software
Leveraging an inventory management solution that syncs across multiple channels has various benefits. For example, it helps you build better relationships with your customers by providing accurate product information. Customers can see the available inventory in real-time, eliminating disappointments related to stockouts and overselling.
Customers are also more satisfied because they can return their purchased items both in-store and online, regardless of the channel they used to make the purchase. Additionally, it helps you save time and money as data is seamlessly transferred between platforms. You don’t need to transfer information or update product availability manually.
Manage your multi-channel inventory easily with SKULabs
While selling your products on multiple channels has benefits like increased sales and customer satisfaction, managing inventory across these platforms is complex. Fortunately, the right software can help you overcome these challenges and streamline your multi-channel inventory management process.
SKULabs is one of the multi-channel inventory management solutions that can help you stay on top of the challenges of managing stock across different platforms. This Shopify app has real-time inventory control and sync features to give you an accurate count of available items.
SKULabs will also streamline your order fulfillment process by helping you pick, pack, and ship more accurately. Learn more about SKULabs and how it can help you manage your multi-channel inventory.

14 Common Reasons Why Shopify Merchants Need a Solution to Manage Inventory

If you’re a Shopify merchant, you are no stranger to the saying, “the devil is in the details.” You work hard to develop your Shopify store, placing your products and services out there for the world to see. Then comes the part most merchants dread: inventory management.

With customer expectations becoming more demanding, managing inventory can seem like an uphill battle with no clear victory. An inventory management solution can help you stay one step ahead of the competition and keep your customers happy.

But it’s not enough to choose just any inventory management software. You need a solution that will help you address the biggest pain points in inventory management software.

The best solution will address the following pain points in inventory management software.

Difficulty managing multiple inventory locations

Your store could have multi-location inventory, especially as you continue expanding and entering new markets. Without the right software, your inventory management process will encounter errors and challenges like late items and warehouse quantity errors. An effective inventory management system will allow you to track your inventory across all locations in one place to avoid overstocking or stockouts.

Inaccurate inventory updates

Inconsistent updates on your inventory can mean the difference between happy customers and disappointed ones. Any discrepancies between what’s on your inventory list and what’s available could lead to unhappy customers and potentially lost sales. An effective inventory management solution will help you keep accurate records of the items in your store by automatically updating stock levels when orders come in and go out.

Having a system to tell you where your inventory levels are at any given time at any location, could save you thousands of dollars in stolen or misplaced property. Having visibility and identifying the source early on is key here.

Lack of integration with existing systems

You may have multiple systems to help you manage your store, such as a CRM system, accounting software, and shipping solutions. It could be difficult to integrate these systems without the right inventory management solution. This is why you need an inventory management solution that works seamlessly with your existing platforms and software to allow you to have the best of both worlds.

Limited customization options

No two eCommerce businesses are the same. Unfortunately, one of the pain points in inventory management software is a lack of customization options. Many software solutions offer generic templates that don’t consider the specific needs of your store or business. A flexible solution will allow you to customize settings like ordering thresholds.

High cost of the app

The price tag of inventory management software can be another significant pain point. Many solutions on the market are prohibitively expensive, making them inaccessible to small businesses with limited budgets. If you’re looking for an affordable solution, compare different products to find one that provides the features you need at a price point you can afford.

Poor customer support

Imagine running into an issue with your inventory management system and not being able to get help from the customer support team. This is a nightmare scenario for any store owner, but unfortunately, it is common. To ensure this doesn’t happen, look for an inventory management solution with reliable customer service that is available 24/7 and offers various customer support methods.

Inability to combine inventory across multiple stores

Some solutions on the market only allow you to manage inventory for one store. This can be a problem if you have multiple stores or outlets and you need to keep track of their stock levels. The right solution should combine your inventory across all your stores and provide real-time updates on stock levels, so you never miss a sale due to an out-of-stock item.

Difficulty tracking inventory across multiple stores

Unfortunately, most solutions don’t provide a centralized platform where you can view and control all of your stores’ inventories in one place. Discrepancies between stores can lead to inaccuracies in reporting and forecasting. The right inventory management solution lets you view stock levels across all your stores.

Inability to transfer inventory between stores

Successful businesses need the flexibility to move their products between stores to maximize sales and efficiency. However, many inventory management solutions don’t offer this option, and you have to make manual updates when you transfer products between locations.

This process can be tedious and time-consuming. To make it easier, look for a solution that allows you to automatically transfer stock levels between multiple stores.

Complex setup process

You’re already dealing with many tasks when running your eCommerce business, so the last thing you need is a complicated setup process for your inventory management system. Unfortunately, many solutions on the market require a complex setup that can take hours to complete. Look for an inventory management solution with an intuitive and straightforward setup process so you can get up and running quickly.

Syncing limits and delay times to sync / artificial limits on updates like paying for manual sync

Some systems don’t sync regularly or in real-time, resulting in outdated stock levels that can lead to overselling or underselling of products. In addition, some providers charge extra for manual syncs, which can be expensive if you need to update your inventory frequently. To ensure your stock levels are always up-to-date, look for an inventory management solution that provides real-time updates and doesn’t limit or delay syncing.

Unintuitive/inaccurate syncing

Inaccurate syncing can wreak havoc on your inventory. Sometimes, it can lead to lost sales if products are tagged incorrectly or the wrong stock levels are shown. That’s why you need software that provides accurate and reliable syncing so your product tags are always up-to-date.

Ability to determine cycles in inventory

Managing seasonal or cyclical inventory can be a challenge for eCommerce businesses. You need to anticipate demand and plan so you don’t run out of stock at the wrong time. To help you manage inventory, look for an inventory management solution that offers advanced analytics tools to identify trends and cycles in your product lines.


Stay on top of inventory management pain points with SKULabs.

SkuLabs is the best inventory management solution to help you stay on top of these pain points to manage inventory on your Shopify store. This Shopify app has features to facilitate barcode scanning, order picking, multi-carrier shipping, and purchasing, among others. SKULabs has direct integrations with platforms like Amazon, eBay, and many more.

It also allows you to track your inventory by providing real-time counts for all the items in your multiple locations. Learn more about SKULabs to manage your inventory across one or multiple warehouses and get started on better inventory control.

What is Inventory and Shipping Management Software?

What is Inventory and Shipping Management Software?

As every eCommerce business owner knows, keeping track of orders, shipping processes, and inventory levels can be a tall order – especially if you’re planning to scale up operations. Fortunately, inventory and shipping management software can help optimize this process and ensure you continue to meet customer demand throughout the year. If you’re considering investing in inventory software or shipping management tools, we’ve put together an introductory guide below. 

What is inventory and shipping management software?

Put simply, inventory and shipping management software helps businesses manage their inventory levels and shipping operations, ensuring customers receive goods and services as efficiently as possible while minimizing wastage. There are many inventory management systems and shipping software packages on the market, some of which are tailored for specific industries or eCommerce solutions. For example, some inventory software packages integrate seamlessly with Shopify stores or other point of sale solutions. 

Broadly speaking, most inventory and shipping management software includes at least a few of the following features:

  • Inventory tracking: Business must track their inventory to ensure stock levels continue to meet customer demand. As well as tracking the number of stocked items and their location, businesses must track the raw materials and tools involved with manufacturing goods (if applicable).
  • Purchase order management: Most inventory software allows businesses to create and manage purchase orders, including placing orders with suppliers and tracking the status of orders. 
  • Automatic batch sorting: This feature helps streamline the order-picking process by grouping similar orders together for picking, packing, and shipping. 
  • Sales tracking and reports: Businesses can use inventory management software to track sales figures and generate reports on inventory movement. Business leaders can use these reports to make informed decisions about upcoming purchase orders, production schedules, and new product launches.
  • Shipping label creation: Some shipping management programs allow users to automatically generate and print shipping labels, including labels for international clients.
  • Package tracking: Package tracking features allow companies to keep close track of goods as they move through the shipping process. As well as viewing package locations, operations managers can view expected delivery dates and ensure the business maintains an efficient service throughout the year. 
  • Carrier management: Some shipping management providers help retailers choose the best shipping carriers to suit their needs, comparing rates to find the most cost-effective suppliers. 
  • Point of sale integrations: Some inventory platforms may integrate with point of sale payments, automatically syncing orders with the inventory in real time. 
  • Cost management: Businesses can track and manage shipping costs by keeping close tabs on the cost of raw materials, shipping materials, and the cost of shipping every package.
Man in a warehouse using inventory & shipping management software.

What are the benefits of inventory and shipping management software?

Wondering whether your business will benefit from inventory and shipping management software? Whether you run a small community enterprise or an expanding international corporation, inventory software can offer the following benefits:

1. You’ll keep customers happy

Poor inventory and shipping management can significantly impact your company’s reputation and ability to function smoothly. If you want to avoid mistakes such as lost parcels, incorrect orders, or shipping delays, a comprehensive inventory and shipping management package represents the perfect solution. Plus, it will ensure your team has enough time to fulfil their duties.

2. You can prioritize your inventory and make smart spending decisions

Almost every business sells a few blockbuster items that drive significant sales numbers. Inventory software will help you identify these items and alter your supply ordering processes accordingly. Many businesses use the ABC approach to managing stock, whereby:

  • A items = those responsible for the top 20% of the revenue
  • B items = those responsible for the middle 20% of the revenue
  • C items = those responsible for the bottom 20% of the revenue

Ideally, you should use your inventory management tool to ensure you always have plenty of A items in stock. 

3. You can draw up contingency plans

Inventory management tools allow businesses to avoid operational disasters by flagging issues before they develop into big problems. Examples of such problems may include:

  • Slow-moving products: If businesses discover that some products are not moving as quickly as hoped, they can draw up plans to lower prices or launch special offers.
  • Unexpected sales spikes: Sometimes, businesses discover that certain items become incredibly popular in a matter of days or weeks. Inventory software can flag such trends at an early stage, allowing companies to negotiate with suppliers and carriers to meet growing demand. 
  • Seasonal sales spikes: Businesses may need to invest in extra warehouse space or raw materials if they encounter seasonal sales spikes. 

4. Enhanced reporting and data analysis 

Most inventory management software can generate detailed reports that offer granular insights into business operations, helping decision-makers spot changes in demand and develop cutting-edge growth strategies that drive revenue and secure long-term growth. 

5. Update records in real-time

Keeping up-to-date inventory records helps businesses avoid operational bottlenecks and ensure suppliers and carriers live up to their duties. Manual record-keeping, on the other hand, is laborious, slow, and prone to mistakes.  

Looking for premium inventory and shipping management software? Get in touch with SKULabs today!
Are you looking to maintain premium levels of customer service, reduce your company’s administrative burden, streamline operations, and boost revenue in the long term? You’ll need a high-quality inventory and shipping management provider like SKULabs. We help eCommerce stores pick, pack, and ship their orders with 100% accuracy. If you’re looking for real-time inventory control features, discounted shipping deals, simple label printing, and much more, please do not hesitate to get in touch today at (800) 243-2986 or by emailing

8 Strategies to Manage Inventory in 2023

With 2022 coming to a close, eCommerce businesses are looking to review the most effective operational strategies to manage inventory in the new year.

This guide will share 8 best practices for managing inventory for multi-channel eCommerce businesses interested in using the latest technology to streamline processes to efficiently avoid errors and maximize profits.

But first, what is inventory management?

Inventory management tracks the operations of products in your inventory from suppliers to warehouses, to your customers in the supply chain to ensure that your product levels are healthy enough to keep the business running smoothly.

The goal of inventory management is to create an efficient process across all products sold in your store starting with the suppliers to your warehouses to your customers is done with accuracy and on time.

There are multiple areas of operations that should be considered in the process of inventory management as technology strengthens and our need for efficiency and accuracy becomes even more vital. Let’s dive in.

1. Implement an Inventory Management System

Inventory management systems are automated software solutions designed to track, organize, and store information about products and raw materials in an eCommerce organization’s inventory. By implementing an inventory management system in the workplace, companies can save time, improve accuracy, and reduce losses due to inventory mismanagement. Furthermore, this system will allow for more accurate forecasting and decision-making processes moving forward.

2. Automate Resource Allocation

Through the use of automation and AI, inventory allocation can be

made more efficient. Automation systems can provide reliable and accurate data used to intelligently forecast demand and allocate resources accordingly. By eliminating the need for manual labor, companies can save time, reduce costs, and decrease the likelihood of errors.

3. Integrate with eCommerce Platforms

Inventory should be integrated with eCommerce platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce to provide real-time updates on stock levels, pricing, and customer demand. When integrated properly, this information can improve the customer experience, while streamlining order management.

4. Embrace IoT Technology

The Internet of Things (IoT) is rapidly becoming an invaluable asset to any business with an extensive inventory network. Utilizing these IoT devices will enable companies to track inventory levels, monitor stock movements, and gather valuable data to monitor demand and improve accuracy.

5. Implement Replenishment Processes

To ensure inventory always remains at a healthy level, companies should implement automated replenishment processes. This will help to ensure demand is always met while avoiding costly overstocks or stockouts. Tools such as SKULab’s Velocity Reporting can give insight into past sales and suggest reordering targets.

6. Utilize Blockchain Technology

Blockchain technology can provide supply chain traceability and improved asset management. This can be used to monitor inventory throughout its various stages while ensuring data accuracy, security, and transparency.

7. Utilize Cloud-Based Solutions

Cloud-based solutions can provide a secure, centralized platform to store and manage inventory data. This can help ensure data accuracy and reduce the manual labor required for data entry. Furthermore, a cloud-based system will provide flexibility for businesses to scale as needed.

8. Increase Collaboration with Suppliers

Businesses should strive to cultivate meaningful relationships with their suppliers. By maintaining a close connection with suppliers, companies can ensure supplies are available on time, quality remains consistent, and unexpected disruptions are minimized.


With the advancements happening in technology, the ability to better manage inventory in 2023 will be improved by following any or all of these steps. Implementing these 8 steps can help to reduce manual labor, increase accuracy, and allow for better forecasting, decision-making processes, and resource allocation.

About SKULabs

SKULabs is a multi-channel inventory and shipping management solution for some of the largest brands in eCommerce and is available on Shopify and BigCommerce. Pricing starts at $499 a month.

How to Avoid Errors in Shipping for Multi-Location Warehouses

How to Avoid Errors in Shipping for Multi-Location Warehouses

Maintaining the highest standards of efficiency and effectiveness in product and service delivery is essential. But this can be easier said than done, even after you’ve built your brand and created a consistent stream of consumers.

Every company, no matter how large, will inevitably experience problems in its day-to-day operations. Shipping is a pain point for many e-commerce retailers, and supply chains can be difficult to manage. You want to know where your product is, which warehouse has the stock needed to fulfill specific orders and a real-time view of how much inventory you have at all times. For large companies that sell tens of thousands of SKUs, the challenge is even more daunting. It’s also a huge cost of doing business. 

Thankfully, we’re here to help! We’ve assembled a bevy of tips to help ensure that you minimize errors in picking, packing, and shipping, particularly for multi-location warehouses and multi-channel shipping.

What is Multi-channel Shipping?

Before we get started, we should note that this article can be applied to many forms of eCommerce shipping. However, we’ll be offering advice through the lens of multi-channel shipping and fulfillment. Popularized by sites like Amazon, multi-channel shipping is a form of eCommerce shipping in which orders are fulfilled from a variety of locations and warehouses beyond the primary one.

The eCommerce giant Amazon handles the distribution of third-party products to customers from all over the world. Whenever a third party is involved, mistakes are bound to happen because there are simply more variables in play. The more people and steps in the process, the more failure points there can be. A robust system, powered by equally robust software, is key to the streamlining and protection of the picking, packing, and shipping processes.

What Types of Errors Can Occur in Multi-Channel Shipping?

There are quite a few. Here are some of the major ones:

Late items – Customers expect a certain level of service when they order items especially if they are needed by an expected date. If the order doesn’t arrive at the promised or expected date, merchants will experience order cancellations, and some customers may even want compensation for the inconvenience.

Errors in Item Type, Item Quantity, or Delivery Location – These are pretty self-explanatory and shockingly common in eCommerce shipping, especially when there isn’t a real-time view into the best warehouse to ship from based on inventory levels. All of these will frustrate the customer and slow down the process.

Warehouse Quantity Errors – If your site advertises an item as in stock but it is not available due to quantities not updating in your inventory in real-time, then you have effectively misled the customer. This can lead to delays or cancellations and cause the customer to question your reliability.

The Steep Cost of Picking and Shipping Errors in eCommerce Shipping

In short, the cost of picking, packing, and shipping errors in eCommerce Shipping – and particularly multi-channel shipping – can be steep. Couple this with any administrative or operational overhead due to complexity or recurring problems and attempting to fix them, this can have a massive impact on the bottom line.

Cost-per-error: Your business may have an even larger (or smaller!) amount of errors, but how would you determine this? The best way is to calculate your cost-per-error. You can do this by quantifying the actual cost of several actions, such as losing customers, picking up wrong deliveries, write-offs, re-shipments, etcetera. Each of these has a specific impact on the profitability of your business. By identifying problems in this manner, you can take the appropriate level of action to control costs.

Customer Service: One study indicated that customers are likely to tell people about a negative experience rather than a positive one. Most of us have probably experienced this firsthand, whether it’s an order from an eCommerce store or something as simple as a bad meal. One bad experience may convince us, the customer, to take our business elsewhere! Every bad experience can result in negative consequences to your profit margins. Mitigating these errors and ensuring the overall customer experience is stellar can be as simple as sending the correct orders on time at the onset.

Reputation: As common sense dictates, most businesses will not want to partner with a company that is error-prone with order handling and fulfillment. This could be devastating if you are attempting to launch a bundle deal or be featured on a wider variety of storefronts and applications.

This is particularly true in running an eCommerce business, where there are multiple variables at play in ensuring success. You are relying on another company for a service (or are sourcing businesses for products in the supply chain). The better your reputation and the more reliable your processes, the less likely they will look to establish partnerships with other companies.

How to Avoid Errors in Shipping for Multi-Location Warehouses

How to Prevent Errors in Multi-Channel Shipping

Warehouse shipping management doesn’t have to be difficult. There are ways you can mitigate problems in the picking, packing, and shipping processes!

1. Double-check everything: It may seem obvious, but nobody has perfect eyesight. It can be easy to mix up numbers on an address or quantity. Typos are common, and no system is perfect. Addresses may have to be verified as well. Double-checking is also true in fulfillment: Try to have consistency in your fulfillment processes.

2. Employ a barcode scanner: These items are fast and reliable. The financial risk of not having these tools in place as your business outgrows manual processes far outweighs the initial investment. The benefits include saving time, money, and costly mistakes. You will also save on payroll by eliminating some of the tedium of updating inventory and inputting numbers.

3. Hire qualified individuals: Warehouse management is one of the most important aspects of running your business efficiently. Finding the right stakeholders to manage one or more warehouses will shore up whether you are operating with accuracy and efficiency, especially as you bring on more and more locations.

4. Implement an automation process with powerful software: This is perhaps the most comprehensive way to mitigate mistakes in picking and shipping in the multi-channel warehouse shipping management field. For example, the software suites provided by companies like SKULabs offer exceptional solutions for warehouse management. SKULabs offers a robust all-in-one solution for multi-channel picking and multi-channel shipping needs. SKULabs offers highly accurate software focusing on powerful label creation services, item comparison tools, and real-time inventory control.

Fitness Avenue even lauded SKULabs as a “Great warehouse management software!” 
SKULabs is available to install on the Shopify and BigCommerce eCommerce platforms and will provide your company with an excellent foundation as you work toward mitigating errors in multi-channel warehouse shipping management. For a more comprehensive list of eCommerce partners, you can review here!