Excel Inventory Management: How To + Better Alternatives (2023)

Inventory Management

March 23, 2021 15 min read

Excel Inventory Management: How To + Better Alternatives (1)

Like a lot of ecommerce businesses, your operations might’ve started small enough that they didn’t warrant using advanced software. Maybe you had the time and flexibility necessary to track inventory using Excel spreadsheets, and those seemed to work alright for a little while. But eventually (if you haven’t already), you’ll likely outgrow what Excel inventory management has to offer, and find yourself looking for a more comprehensive approach.

If you want to experience long-term growth, your company really needs a way to automate its supply chain, automatically track its sales channel inventory, and update its inventory counts in real-time. The sooner you incorporate these automations into your business model, the sooner you’ll start reaping the rewards. And one of the most essential tools for automating your inventory is a well-rounded inventory management software.

Read on to discover more about the limitations related to managing inventory with Excel, as well as the vast benefits of adopting a modern inventory management system.

What is excel inventory management?

Inventory management using excel spreadsheets to record and organize the sourcing, storing, and selling of inventory. This is done to create organized and accessible documentation that inventory managers and employees can use and update throughout the business and supply chain. By doing this, businesses can get a better idea of product performance and where they can improve the inventory management process.

How to Create An Excel Inventory Management System

Excel inventory management can be a good fit for small business owners who are just starting out, and who need a space to log their inventory information. But to use Excel spreadsheets, you’ll first have to familiarize yourself with the program and get accustomed with how to organize your inventory using category columns and manual product entry.

1. Create a spreadsheet

To manage your inventory in Microsoft Excel, begin by creating a new spreadsheet. Open Excel, go to Menu, and select New. Click on the Blank workbook to start with a fresh Excel sheet, or press Ctrl + N. Then, go to the spreadsheet work area to input your specific information.

2. Add any necessary product categories as columns

Once your new spreadsheet is ready, you can add a tab with a Products header where you’ll display your entire inventory list. With the Products tab open, you can then create a table to host your product categories as columns. Designating these individual columns will help you track product performance and profitability on a category-by-category basis.

3. Add each product that you carry to the spreadsheet

Next, you can add each product you carry into the appropriate category column. How detailed you want to get is up to you, but it’s definitely helpful to include the product name, description, list price, average selling price, and serial number or SKU. Other good info for your products are things like inventory quantity, inventory value, stock location, and relevant reorder points.

(Video) How to keep Inventory using an Excel Spreadsheet - [create your own Template]

4. Adjust the quantities as you make sales

Even though you may be finished entering all the necessary product details, you’ll still have to maintain your spreadsheet on an ongoing basis. Since Excel is a static system (i.e. it lacks automations and integrations), you’ll need to reference your worksheet rather frequently, and adjust your various inventory quantities as you make sales and move products.

Staying on top of your inventory counts is paramount, as failing to modify these quantities can result in delays in your supply chain and any number of inventory inaccuracies.

Inventory Excel Spreadsheet Drawbacks

Excel Inventory Management: How To + Better Alternatives (2)

We’re certainly not here to disparage Excel spreadsheets; we understand they’re a useful tool for helping companies — especially those in startup mode or with access to fewer resources — complete simple management or financial tasks. But as you scale your operations and expand to the next level, the complexities of your inventory management will likewise increase.

When your ecommerce business is booming, it’s that much more difficult to find hours in the day to update your spreadsheets, perform manual inventory tracking, or keep an eye on your distribution network. In other words, if you try managing your growing brand using Excel spreadsheets, it’ll prove to be extremely limiting.

Let’s explore why that is, by looking at three of the shortcomings associated with Excel inventory management.

1. Time-consuming process

There’s no way around the fact that updating your inventory spreadsheets is a time-consuming process. More specifically, it requires considerable time to input data >> update data >> export, import, and merge sheets >> review data >> reconcile data >> and the list goes on. And if you’re hoping to unload any of those responsibilities onto someone else’s plate, you’ll have to train them in each function of the Excel inventory template to be able to manage your data.

While spreadsheets might be handy for working with a singular set of numbers, as soon as you add new SKUs to your inventory list, the demands on your time — and your team’s time — will escalate significantly. Unfortunately, it’s not a wise investment to have several people spend the entire day plugging data into a spreadsheet; ideally, the team’s efforts and energy would be focused on profit-driving activities that bring added value to your business.

2. Lack of automation and real-time reporting

When you want to ‘automate’ tasks and calculations within your Excel inventory management template, most people turn to formulas, pivot tables, and conditional formatting. However, those features prove pretty useless if you need to update inventory counts across multiple sales channels, check on reorder levels as stocks are depleted, or shift distribution points to better fulfill orders. In any of these scenarios, inventory spreadsheets are not going to cut it.

That’s because basic spreadsheets lack the sophistication to track this info without manual input or data uploads — and they certainly can’t report on what’s happening with your inventory as it’s happening. This lack of automation and real-time reporting will ultimately inhibit your company from making timely decisions and capitalizing on changes in the marketplace; all the inventory data you enter into a spreadsheet is in the past tense, meaning you’ll always be a step behind your competitors and at the mercy of countless inefficiencies.

3. Greater chance for errors

On average, manual data entry will result in one error for every 300 characters entered. Now, read that statistic again, and consider the effect it can have over an entire fiscal year — pretty staggering, right? Each and every manual error impacts your bottom line, and even the most seasoned, well-trained data entry professional is bound to make mistakes on occasion. But this is the nature of manually entering thousands of lines of data into an inventory spreadsheet.

So the real question is, can your company afford to make these errors? When you want your ecommerce business to reach greater heights, the pitfalls of manual data entry can really weigh you down. This sentiment is even more applicable if you have a multichannel structure, since trying to corral data from multiple channels into scattered spreadsheets is a no-win situation.

Between supplier deliveries, order routing, and inventory tracking, there are countless critical touch points within your fulfillment and supply chain management that need to be protected from unnecessary errors as much as possible.

(Video) Inventory Management using Excel for free | NETVN

Inventory Management Software vs. Excel Inventory Management

Excel Inventory Management: How To + Better Alternatives (3)

As your business grows, you need smart inventory management solutions that’ll evolve right along with you (something Excel worksheets can’t do). Inventory management software like Skubana can elevate your company beyond arduous spreadsheets, to instead connect all aspects of your ecommerce operations — sales channels, inventory levels, warehousing, reordering — and turn them into a cohesive and comprehensive management strategy.

There are five key advantages of using inventory management software over Excel inventory spreadsheets, as detailed below.

1. Automation and time savings

Although spreadsheets sometimes make sense for small businesses, there's little question they become more laborious as your footprint grows. Inventory management software eliminates tedious and time-consuming manual entry by way of barcode scanners and similar inventory tracking procedures. In fact, management software allows you to track incoming stock and outgoing orders in mere seconds.

In addition, automations can really improve your scalability, by enabling you to process both purchase orders and customer orders in a shorter amount of time (and requiring fewer employees to do it). Advanced inventory management systems also automate the inventory replenishment process, calculating how many units you need to order to keep sales flowing.

Automations contribute to greater functionality *and* more productive team members, seeing as they'll have ample time to spend on front-end growth rather than back-end logistics.

2. Multichannel coordination

An essential part of business growth is successfully navigating economies of scale. Whether you have multiple sales channels — online stores, affiliate sites, marketplaces — or a distribution network with multiple warehouses and international fulfillment, inventory management software equips your company to coordinate information across all segments.

This cross communication is courtesy of savvy software integrations that connect to your existing management solutions. Regardless of where orders are purchased or where their fulfillment originates, the system provides up-to-date tracking on purchases and pricing, and immediately deducts sold goods from your current stock levels.

3. Greater inventory visibility

At their best, Excel spreadsheets have a limited window into the movement of your inventory items. And even then, they only offer cursory data that has to be entered and tracked manually.

Inventory management software, on the other hand, has the capacity to monitor the comings and goings between your sales channels and warehouses with ease. This collection of real-time data points affords unmatched visibility into exactly what your business is doing.

Greater visibility is critical for understanding what's being purchased, by whom, and in which geographic locations. This awareness helps you build strategies around your production, marketing, warehouse management, and so much more.

Plus, having all this data in one place (instead of spread across multiple tracking templates) allows you to instantly generate holistic reports on your business. Simply put, the stronger your data and the quicker you can access it, the more refined your business intelligence will be.

4. Improved cost efficiency

From ample automations to more accurate data, inventory management software gives your business a boost in some big ways — and it also supports improved cost efficiency. Automated software dials in your inventory to avoid having too much (or too little) stock on hand, both of which can be a huge detriment to your cashflow.

(Video) Inventory Excel Spreadsheet, Excel Inventory Management

And since management software contributes to greater accuracy, in turn, it minimizes the time spent addressing or auditing errors to ensure manual data points are precise. So on top of reducing the time your team spends on data oversight, inventory software guarantees a lower overhead, as well. Thanks to these developments, you can opt to reassign your team to more vital tasks, and worry less about the potential for errors to pop up.

5. Better customer service

Inventory management software isn't confined to just giving you a closer look into your business — it’s capable of delivering extensive service and insights to your customers and support team, too. Management platforms streamline the order process for customers, by providing them with correct item availability, updates on their order location, and a seamless return system should things not work out with the product.

This dynamic customer engagement inevitably reduces the time your team spends addressing questions or resolving concerns. With that said, if and when a customer needs to speak with a representative, inventory management software will also simplify that step. Management solutions give instant access into the customer’s order status, so your team can provide the best possible service to encourage customer satisfaction.

3 Companies That Scaled by Moving Away From Excel Inventory Management

Perhaps the greatest way to appreciate all the benefits of an inventory management system is to learn how it helped other companies flourish. The following are three examples of mid-level startups who were facing hurdles in scaling their business — that is, until they leveraged the Skubana inventory management platform and exceeded their goals in no time at all.

Moonglow Jewelry

Excel Inventory Management: How To + Better Alternatives (4)

Moonglow crafts unique jewelry pieces that align the phases of the moon with the most important dates in their customers’ lives. Although they had an interesting product, Moonglow also had a huge selection of styles and SKUs (nearly 700 individual components and approximately 175 different styles). Their potential for sellable combinations was approaching 5,500, and they were accounting for all of this via a rudimentary spreadsheet.

An inventory audit revealed Moonglow was overselling on certain products, and had little visibility into the sales of others. It became almost impossible to manually keep tabs on their products, which left them unable to calculate sales or forecast for the future. Still, they wanted their business to grow, so Moonglow made a deliberate switch to Shopify, and partnered with Skubana to secure real-time inventory insights around their incredibly diverse offerings.

Skubana responded by introducing them to the low-cost concepts of bundling and kitting. By bundling their products, Moonglow was able to account for all component SKUs, and accurately deduct them from their stock when a piece was sold. The year before integrating with Skubana, the brand closed its Q4 with less than a million dollars in sales — the following year (*after* onboarding with Skubana), they ended Q4 with over $2.5 million in sales.

Death Wish Coffee

Excel Inventory Management: How To + Better Alternatives (5)

Death Wish Coffee has curated a repetition for producing robust, well-crafted coffee. The company had already built a loyal following among coffee enthusiasts, but then in 2015, their level of exposure skyrocketed. That year, Death Wish won a small business contest that awarded them with a 30-second commercial aired during the Super Bowl. What followed was an avalanche of attention, and a massive wave of overselling across their two sales channels.

Their suppliers were seeking additional reorders, their customers were questioning product delays, and their logistics team was working around the clock to try and keep up. It was an uphill battle Death Wish was quickly losing, until they did a search for ‘Shopify inventory management’ and came across Skubana. After an enlightening conversation and a few convincing screenshots, Death Wish officially teamed up with Skubana.

Since then, Death Wish has gained tremendous insight into their inventory, and can now cite exact numbers and metrics. This accuracy has helped them to forecast better, and to gain greater control over the orders coming in and the products going out. Their company has completely stopped overselling, and has expanded their fulfillment across eight active channels. With the help of Skubana, Death Wish went back to doing what it does best: making great coffee and growing its brand, which is now available on store shelves across the country.

Nomad Goods

Excel Inventory Management: How To + Better Alternatives (6)

(Video) How to create an Inventory/Sales System in Excel (Tagalog)

Nomad Goods has catered to fellow travelers and adventure seekers by creating a small, thoughtful charging device that’s easy to use on the go. After a successful Kickstarter project, Nomad Goods had the funding to develop a slim, credit card-shaped USB cable charger that fits into almost any wallet. This initial device gave their company incredible notoriety, and helped them grow their product line to include over 30 different items in just a few years' time.

But the same growth that landed Nomad products in Best Buy, Urban Outfitters, and Staples, also caused some serious strife. As the business scaled, they were unable to effectively manage their various product listings, warehousing network, and multiple sales channels. Moreover, Nomad Goods lacked a foundational understanding of their inventory numbers, and the spreadsheets they were relying on weren’t doing them any favors.

Nomad Goods was exhausted by these inefficiencies and ready to maximize their multichannel selling, which is why they called on Skubana to help organize their fulfillment. With Skubana’s systems, Nomad Goods could finally track their inventory across every fulfillment point, expand to Amazon (like they’d always wanted), and effectively increase their sales across all channels. On their own Shopify site, Nomad’s orders are rising at a rate of 15% every month. And on Amazon, their order volume has grown 125% each month, with no signs of slowing down.

FAQs about Excel Inventory Management

  • How is Excel used in stock and inventory management?

    Excel inventory management can help companies keep track of their existing inventory items. Using Excel worksheets, users can manually enter their product details into rows and columns to organize stock counts, check availability, and adjust these numbers as goods are sold.

  • How do you create an inventory spreadsheet in Excel?

    To create an inventory spreadsheet in Excel, go to Menu and select New, and then click on the Blank workbook to create a fresh Excel sheet. There, you can input relevant product categories as columns, and add each product you carry into its designated column. Additionally, you can manually adjust your inventory quantities as sales occur over time.

  • What are the benefits of inventory management software over Excel?

    As your business grows, you need smart inventory management solutions that’ll evolve right along with you (something Excel spreadsheets can’t do). Inventory management software has a number of wide-ranging benefits, like automations, greater visibility, improved cost efficiency, and better customer service, which can enhance your ecommerce operations at every level.


Is Access or Excel better for inventory? ›

Without question, Excel has been the most used spreadsheet program and unsurprisingly continues to be the first option for many major businesses and organisations when looking to manage inventory.

How do you create an inventory formula in Excel? ›

The 7 Most Useful Excel Formulas for Inventory Management
  1. Formula: =SUM(number1,[number2],...)
  2. Formula: =SUMIF(range,criteria,[sum_range])
  3. Formula: =SUMIFS(sum_range,criteria_range1,criteria1,[criteria_range2,criteria20,...)
  4. Formula: =LOOKUP(lookup_value,lookup_vector,[result_vector])
15 Jul 2021

What is the easiest way to track inventory? ›

The best way to keep track of inventory is with an easy-to-use, robust inventory management software system. With inventory management software, you can get real-time alerts, add meaningful pictures to your inventory list, and utilize barcodes and QR codes to automate otherwise tedious, error-prone processes.

What are the three methods of tracking inventory? ›

3 important inventory management techniques

The three most popular inventory management techniques are the push technique, the pull technique, and the just-in-time technique. These strategies offer businesses different pathways to meeting customer demand.

What are the 4 basic reasons for keeping an inventory? ›

Four very good reasons to hold inventory
  • Expecting the unexpected. By far the greatest adversary any inventory manager is expected to overcome is fluctuating consumer demand. ...
  • A time to buy and a time to buy more inventory. ...
  • Capitalizing on low cost offers. ...
  • Putting on bottom-line body armor.
19 Oct 2015

Which inventory management method is best? ›

5 most effective methods of inventory management
  • 1) ABC analysis. ABC analysis stands for Always Better Control Analysis. ...
  • 2) Economic order quantity (EOQ) ...
  • 3) FIFO and LIFO. ...
  • 4) Fast, slow and non-moving (FSN) analysis. ...
  • 5) Just in time (JIT) method. ...
  • Conclusion.
15 Jun 2020

What is the best way to do inventory? ›

The best way to count inventory is with inventory management software that helps keep inventory audits short and sweet. Using an inventory app is faster than physically counting items and maintaining spreadsheets, and it's also more accurate.

What are the 4 methods of inventory? ›

There are four accepted methods of inventory valuation.
  • Specific Identification.
  • First-In, First-Out (FIFO)
  • Last-In, First-Out (LIFO)
  • Weighted Average Cost.

What are the 4 types of inventory? ›

While there are many types of inventory, the four major ones are raw materials and components, work in progress, finished goods and maintenance, repair and operating supplies.

How do I organize my inventory spreadsheet? ›

Use a row for each item in each section and create column headers above the rows. Suggested column headers include the item name, the number of items in stock, the unit price, an expiration date of the item, if applicable, and the total value of the group of items.

How do I automatically generate barcodes in Excel? ›

Use the barcode font in the Barcode row and enter the following formula: ="*"&A2&"*" in the first blank row of that column. Then, fill the formula in the remaining cells in the Barcode row. The numbers/letters you place in the Text row will appear as barcodes in the Barcode row.

Can I use my phone as a inventory scanner? ›

While a smartphone can in fact work as a barcode scanner, here are some important factors to consider when selecting the best barcode scanning technology for your business needs, environment and functionality requirements.

Can you use QR codes for inventory? ›

Yes! QR codes are ideal for inventory tracking. A single QR code holds more than 7,000 numbers—or 4,000 alphanumeric characters. The storage capacity of a QR code far exceeds the limitations of its predecessor—a one-dimensional barcode that holds 20 characters.

What are the 5 steps to effective inventory systems your answer? ›

5 Steps to Successful Inventory Management
  • Create a System to Get Accurate and Accessible Information on Your Inventory. ...
  • Create a Unique Process Customized for Your Business Type. ...
  • Keep an eye on Contemporary trends in the industry. ...
  • Be prepared for fluctuations in supply and demand.
29 Sept 2021

How do you improve track inventory? ›

Inventory management techniques and best practices for small business
  1. Fine-tune your forecasting. ...
  2. Use the FIFO approach (first in, first out). ...
  3. Identify low-turn stock. ...
  4. Audit your stock. ...
  5. Use cloud-based inventory management software. ...
  6. Track your stock levels at all times. ...
  7. Reduce equipment repair times.
27 May 2021

What are the 2 methods used to determine inventory quantity? ›

Examples of Inventory Methods

The following are only a few of the many cost flow assumptions used for valuing inventory: First-in, first-out (FIFO) Last-in, first-out (LIFO)

What are the six types of inventory data? ›

The 6 Main classifications of inventory
  • transit inventory.
  • buffer inventory.
  • anticipation inventory.
  • decoupling inventory.
  • cycle inventory.
  • MRO goods inventory.
29 Sept 2020

What are the two major method of inventory management? ›

Inventory management is the entire process of managing inventories from raw materials to finished products. Inventory management tries to efficiently streamline inventories to avoid both gluts and shortages. Two major methods for inventory management are just-in-time (JIT) and materials requirement planning (MRP).

What are the three key aspects to successful inventory management? ›

The following three aspects serve as a basis to effective and successful inventory management.
  • Must have #1: Forecast analytics for optimal demand planning: ...
  • Must have #2: Optimized Procurement: ...
  • Must have #3: Inventory controlling: ...
  • Closing word.
8 Jul 2013

What are the 5 objectives of inventory management? ›

Objectives of Inventory Management System
  • Material Availability. ...
  • Better Level of Customer Service. ...
  • Keeping Wastage and Losses to a Minimum. ...
  • Maintaining Sufficient Stock. ...
  • Cost-Effective Storage.

What is most popular inventory method? ›

First-In, First-Out (FIFO)

The FIFO valuation method is the most commonly used inventory valuation method as most of the companies sell their products in the same order in which they purchase it.

How can inventory accuracy be improved? ›

Improving Inventory Accuracy
  1. Pick a quality program and stick with it. ...
  2. Know what you are up against. ...
  3. Keep your processes simple. ...
  4. Examine your entire supply chain. ...
  5. Establish product traceability during the distribution life cycle. ...
  6. Select technology that fits your needs. ...
  7. Implement a continuous cycle-counting program.
15 Mar 2007

What is the 80/20 inventory rule? ›

The 80/20 rule states that 80% of results come from 20% of efforts, customers or another unit of measurement. When applied to inventory, the rule suggests that companies earn roughly 80% of their profits from 20% of their products.

What are the 6 steps in conducting an inventory? ›

  • Understand and characterize your demand. Inventory shortages or excess is the result of supply being out of sync with demand. ...
  • Characterize your supply and inventory costs. ...
  • Stratify your inventory. ...
  • Establish goals for each category and measure.
  • Develop a process to track and.
  • Refine goals and adjust processes.

What are the 9 types of inventory? ›

9 Inventory types: From raw materials to finished goods
  • Raw materials inventory. ...
  • Maintenance, Repair, and Operating (MRO) inventory. ...
  • Decoupling inventory. ...
  • Work In Progress (WIP) inventory. ...
  • Finished goods inventory. ...
  • Safety stock and other types of stock. ...
  • Packing materials inventory. ...
  • Pipeline (or in-transit) stock.
3 Dec 2021

What are the 3 forms types of inventory? ›

Manufacturers deal with three types of inventory. They are raw materials (which are waiting to be worked on), work-in-progress (which are being worked on), and finished goods (which are ready for shipping).

What is the inventory formula? ›

The first step to calculating beginning inventory is to figure out the cost of goods sold (COGS). Next, add the value of the most recent ending inventory and then subtract the money spent on new inventory purchases. The formula is (COGS + ending inventory) – purchases.

What are the inventory techniques? ›

Inventory Management Techniques and Terms
  • ABC Analysis: This method works by identifying the most and least popular types of stock.
  • Batch Tracking: ...
  • Bulk Shipments: ...
  • Consignment: ...
  • Cross-Docking: ...
  • Demand Forecasting: ...
  • Dropshipping: ...
  • Economic Order Quantity (EOQ):
18 Sept 2020

What are the 8 functions of inventory? ›

Functions of Inventory Control:
  • To Develop Policies, Plans and Standards Required: ADVERTISEMENTS: ...
  • Effective Running of Stores: ...
  • Technological Responsibility for the State of Different Materials: ...
  • Stock Control System: ...
  • To Ensure the Timely Availability: ...
  • Maintenance of Specified Inputs: ...
  • Protection of Inventories: ...
  • Pricing:

What is the best program to keep track of inventory? ›

  • Our Top Picks.
  • Cin7 Orderhive.
  • inFlow.
  • Lightspeed Retail.
  • Upserve.
  • Megaventory.
  • Zoho Inventory.
  • See More (3)

Does Excel have an inventory template? ›

For details about your existing equipment, an Excel inventory template stores everything you need, including stock number, physical condition, and financial status.

What is an inventory checklist? ›

Inventory Checklist is a record of the items stored in a specific area or department of a company. It helps in tracking and controlling the goods in an organized way. This document can be also be used for inspection because all items in the inventory are recorded here.

Can Excel produce QR codes? ›

You can create QR Codes in an Excel spreadsheet with the help of a free add-in.

How do I make a scannable barcode? ›

To create a barcode

Select the barcode type: EAN-13, UPC-A, Code 39, or ITF. Fill in the product category information in the barcode data box. Click on the barcode title box and barcode note if you want to add them in the barcode. Add a name for the barcode in the title box and more details in the note box.

Does Excel have a built in barcode font? ›

Well, in Excel there is no default option to generate a barcode. And, the bad news is: There is no plan of Microsoft to add any option like this. But here is the good news: You can generate a barcode in Excel by installing a font.

Is there an app to keep inventory? ›

myStock is recommended for small- to medium-sized businesses and has a wide number of features that can be accessed through either an Android or iOS device. This inventory management app is quite generalized and allows users to create multiple inventory centers, which is great for continued use as your business grows.

How do you keep track of inventory without barcode? ›

Use a Spreadsheet

It works in the same manner as pen and paper, but you can store it on your computer. When it's time to do inventory, you can print off the spreadsheet, make changes to counts as necessary and then update the spreadsheet on your computer.

How do you keep track of inventory by hand? ›

The simplest way to track inventory is to manually count your inventory every two weeks and compare the numbers versus sales. That's known as periodic inventory. There is also perpetual inventory, where inventory management systems like BinWise are used and integrated into your business's POS.

Which is better barcode or QR code? ›

QR codes can hold more information - While a barcode can represent up to 25 characters, a QR code can go up to 2500. This means you can include much more information, like the URL of a product's page on your webshop. QR codes can be smaller - a QR code can be up to 10 times smaller than a bar code and still readable.

Should I use barcode or QR code? ›

The amount of data a QR code can hold over a barcode is arguably the most significant difference. QR codes are two-dimensional as opposed to their one-dimensional barcode counterparts. This means that QR codes can contain much more data. Barcodes on items we purchase are not unique.

How do I generate a barcode for inventory management? ›

Set up your barcode system for inventory in 6 steps
  1. Define all SKUs and variants. ...
  2. Choose a barcoding inventory software system. ...
  3. Define your barcodes for Barcoding Inventory. ...
  4. Create the barcodes for Barcoding Inventory. ...
  5. Update your inventory management system with new barcodes. ...
  6. Put Barcoding Inventory on your place.

Can you use Excel for inventory? ›

With integrated tools, features, and formulas to make spreadsheets more dynamic and interactive, Excel is also capable of handling basic inventory management for small businesses. While not ideal for a medium or large sized inventory, Excel is cost-effective or, if you use it in OneDrive, even free.

Which inventory counting system is the best? ›

1. Bar-Code Readers or Mobile Device: This is the most accurate method, however the most expensive given the fact that your items/bins need to be labeled and you need a software that can register the counts. The benefit, however, is that your inventory levels are more accurate because human error is greatly reduced.

How do I compare two inventory lists in Excel? ›

You can use the IF Function to compare two lists in Excel for matches in the same row. If Function will return the value TRUE if the values match and FALSE if they don't.

How do I sort my inventory list in Excel? ›

Select a cell in the column you want to sort. On the Data tab, in the Sort & Filter group, click Sort. In the Sort dialog box, under Column, in the Sort by or Then by box, select the column that you want to sort by a custom list. Under Order, select Custom List.

How do I make a simple inventory list? ›

How to write an inventory report
  1. Create a column for inventory items. Similar to an inventory sheet template, create a list of items in your inventory using a vertical column. ...
  2. Create a column for descriptions. ...
  3. Assign a price to each item. ...
  4. Create a column for remaining stock. ...
  5. Select a time frame.
15 Jul 2019

What are the 5 steps to effective inventory systems? ›

5 Steps to Successful Inventory Management
  • Create a System to Get Accurate and Accessible Information on Your Inventory. ...
  • Create a Unique Process Customized for Your Business Type. ...
  • Keep an eye on Contemporary trends in the industry. ...
  • Be prepared for fluctuations in supply and demand.
29 Sept 2021

How do you get 100 accuracy in inventory? ›

Improving Inventory Accuracy
  1. Pick a quality program and stick with it. ...
  2. Know what you are up against. ...
  3. Keep your processes simple. ...
  4. Examine your entire supply chain. ...
  5. Establish product traceability during the distribution life cycle. ...
  6. Select technology that fits your needs. ...
  7. Implement a continuous cycle-counting program.
15 Mar 2007

What are the 2 methods of inventory control? ›

In general, there are two inventory control methods: manual and perpetual.


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