Whether big or small, most eCommerce businesses have inventory to manage. With the new technology available, barcode systems are easier than ever to get set up for use.
At Scout, we’re all about creating efficient systems that help your business provide better service to your customers. That’s why we created topShelf––the ultimate barcode inventory system for any business.
We combine the ease of using smartphones with barcode inventory to help make the costs of operating a barcode system even lower. This has made our system especially easy to integrate into small businesses that, at times, have tighter margins and fewer resources at their disposal.
What is a Barcode Inventory System?
So what is a barcode inventory system and what does it mean for your business? It’s a lot like what grocery stores use, right? Well yes, it is a lot like the barcode system used at grocery stores to locate items, keep them in stock, and price them.
The difference for small businesses is not so much in the system as it is with the desired outcome. While you’ll still be able to track inventory,, your goal isn’t to understand the price. It’s more for you to know where the item is located and how many of that item your warehouse has available. Just like a grocery store, the item is assigned a location in your warehouse. This makes it easily accessed and found to pick and ship when an online order is placed.
What Will a Good System Offer?
A good barcode inventory system is going to offer you the capabilities to do several different things. At this point in time, your small business might not need all of these features. But, as you grow, you may want to look into using some of them to help make your business more functional. Here are some features:
Print and scan barcodes
Good software systems allow you to do even the simplest tasks more efficiently, like printing and scanning barcodes.
Ship, receive, and count inventory
When shipping, receiving, and counting inventory, it’s important that the system be able to keep track of what inventory comes in, goes out, and that is still being stored in your warehouse. This data should be easy to access and organize.
Handle order management
Automating order management frees up time for you. When an order for shipment is placed, you’ll receive a notification, and you’ll know exactly where in the warehouse you can locate an item. After locating and packing an item, your software should be able to update your system and notify the customer when the order ships.
Track inventory items across multiple locations
If your business has grown to multiple locations, you should be able to integrate and manage your inventory between all locations. A good system will keep inventory numbers updated across all platforms and allow you to manage orders and shipments.
Integrate with your accounting system
Each of these tools can help to make your small business or warehouse more efficient. Some of the clear advantages of warehouse and barcode system integrations manifest themselves in the number of hours you spend managing inventory. The less time you need to spend managing inventory, the more time you can spend focusing on your product and growing your business.
Types of Barcode Inventory Systems
There are different types of barcode systems. The difference comes within the ability to scan different items and how much information is stored within each barcode. For example, 1D barcodes such as those on the tags of clothing will only hold the product item and description.
QR codes are an example of 2D systems. 2D is a large advancement from 1D and can sometimes carry as many as 100 different data points, including images, recordings, and web addresses.
Depending on the need you have for detailed information, either of these options could work well for you. Within the two umbrellas of 1D and 2D, there are variations that can come in different sizes and amounts of data points. If you’re looking for a more detailed explanation of what barcodes are used and where you can find it, click here.
The Tools Needed for Barcode Inventory Systems
After you’ve decided what type of barcode is right for your warehouse or business, you’ll need to get the tools that are right for the job. At scout, we offer barcode systems that can be completely run from a smart device that has a camera. That’s right; all you need is your trusty iPhone. If you’d rather have a tool specifically dedicated to inventory management, we’re willing to provide that as well!
The other tool that you’ll need is a barcode printer. Our system works with any zebra printer. Find the one that’s right for you and the type of barcodes that you want to print on Amazon. You’ll then be able to get started printing and tracking your inventory via barcode.
Your Data is Safe and Secure
One question that our customers often ask, is if their data is safe and secure. Our answer to these questions is always that your data is completely safe and secure. You won’t have to worry about our systems and databases at all. We have our own team of engineers that work hard to always keep our security features up to date and ready to handle your everyday workload.
How to Choose the Right Software Company for Your Business
Choosing the right software company is difficult. You might not think that the company you work with will impact your everyday operations, but it does and will in the future. If you’re new to using software within your warehouse or business, you might consider working with a company like Scout.
Scout offers free support to our customers and will help you get your systems up and running. This can be a critical resource for your company while you work out the kinks of starting a new program.