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Warehouse Management Blog

Our team of Fulfilment Consultants share warehouse management best practice and advice.

Web-based inventory management for eCommerce

WRITTEN BY Jonathan Bellwood /

24 November 2015

Web-based inventory management has struck a chord with eCommerce for its suitability in companies that are growing quickly. In this age of eCommerce, any company that is not growing is simply not competing, so having a web-based inventory system could be what makes or breaks your business.

1. Pay-monthly software costs lowers upfront capital expenditure

Traditional on-premise inventory management software can cost more than £10,000. Smaller, modern eCommerce businesses are working on tighter margins with less cash flow than the retailers and wholesalers that put inventory management software in 5 or 10 years ago.

Being able to pay monthly for warehouse management software can really help mitigate risk. If an eCommerce warehouse puts in a web-based inventory system and doesn't like it, they can simply turn it off. The same goes if they fall out of love with the warehouse management system provider.

2. Variable pricing to match the seasonal nature of eCommerce

eCommerce businesses are typically more niche than retail stores and this often means they are more exposed to seasonal changes in demand. No matter what you sell (swimsuit companies aside), come December your eCommerce warehouse is full of extra hands to get customer orders out the door.

Web-based inventory management software allows you to increase the number of operator licences during busy periods and reduce them when demand slows down. This is a big benefit over buying on-premise warehouse management software.

3. eCommerce warehouses need inventory management software yesterday

Once an eCommerce business realises that they won't be able to cope with the order picking demand, action needs to be taken. Web-based inventory management software can be changed to remedy any shortfall in order picking capacity in a controlled way, picking more orders per person rather than throwing more less-experienced people at the problem.

4. No dedicated IT resource required for install or maintenance

Warehouse software has previously been thought of as a big project to both manage and implement, from an operational and IT perspective. Web-based inventory management is usually hosted by the provider which minimises the IT resource needed to get one up and running.

On top of that, web-based inventory management software is maintained, monitored, and upgraded by the software provider. Upgrades can be pushed seamlessly without forward-planning or downtime.

5. Easy to use

A web-based inventory system can easily be accessed via a web browser on any internet-connected device. Unlike on-premise inventory systems, there isn't any confusing installation process, and new users can be set up and using it in minutes. A web-browser provides a familiar environment to web-based application users.

6. Money-back guarantee

Web-based inventory systems cost significantly less to get up and running than older on-premise inventory systems. Through increasing inventory accuracy, speeding up warehouse processes, and increasing warehouse operator productivity it can quickly pay for itself.

The upfront software costs for on-premise software mean return on investment can take over a year. For some warehouses, web-based inventory systems have shown a return on investment from month 1.

Want to know more about how a web-based inventory system can improve your eCommerce warehouse.

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