Home Business Insights & Advice Can a mobile POS system improve real-time inventory management?

Can a mobile POS system improve real-time inventory management?

by Sarah Dunsby
9th Jul 24 11:26 am

Real-time inventory management is the automated process of tracking product sales and stock using dedicated software and, in some cases, mobile point-of-sale (MPOS) systems.

Your chosen real-time inventory management software should be able to record and update inventory data as soon as sales and returns are processed.

Rather than manually updating your inventory data as customers make purchases, you can get up-to-the-minute updates that allow your business to react quickly to supply chain needs.

What are the benefits of real-time inventory management?

Real-time inventory management is essential for your business for many reasons, including:

Avoiding stock-outs

Real-time inventory management allows you to spot low-stock products in your inventory and react quickly to meet customer demand.

If your business doesn’t have enough stock of the desired product in-store or online, you will likely lose customers to your competitors.

Enhancing the customer experience

As mentioned, you can provide your customers with a clear overview of what items you have in stock, which will prevent them from switching to your competitors and enhance their experience with your business.

In today’s competitive retail landscape, where word of mouth is of utmost importance, a bad experience could result in a drop in future sales.

Knowing what to stock

Real-time inventory management provides a summarized overview of your inventory’s sales potential, allowing you to spot popular and aging products.

You can minimize dead stock by prioritizing sales and discounts on aging or ‘soon to expire’ items ahead of popular stock with a longer shelf life.

Meeting delivery schedules more easily

You know what is and isn’t available in real-time, so you can ensure that you’re fulfilling your scheduled deliveries and plan future orders accordingly.

Improving decision making

You can get helpful insights into the profit margins of each product, the highest and lowest selling products, and much more, allowing your business to make improved decisions on inventory and stocking.

Optimising workflow

Finally, if your business is spread across different locations and sales channels, you can easily access data from each, helping you manage finances and sales requirements.

Workflow optimization enables you to get one step ahead of your competitors.

What is a mobile POS system?

A mobile point-of-sale system, known as an MPOS system, is a wireless device that functions like a cash register or traditional POS terminal.

Almost any smartphone or tablet can be converted to an MPOS terminal. The business will sign up with their chosen MPOS provider and download an app onto the device.

In addition, some MPOS providers will set you up with a dedicated terminal.

Here are the benefits of investing in an MPOS system:

  • MPOS systems empower businesses to process transactions on the spot, reducing customer wait times and enhancing their experience. While traditional POS terminals require customers to queue up at a fixed location.
  • You don’t need to dedicate space to a traditional countertop POS terminal.
  • MPOS systems accept various payment methods, including contactless cards, chip cards, mobile wallets such as Apple Pay, vouchers, and QR codes.
  • MPOS systems are an excellent fit for mobile businesses, such as food trucks, home repair services, farmers markets, stadium vendors, and cleaning services.
  • MPOS systems are often cheaper than full POS terminals.
  • Most MPOS systems handle the entire transaction, reducing the business’s liability.
  • No payment card data is stored on the MPOS terminal, so the business needn’t worry about most security regulations, such as PCI DSS compliance.
  • MPOS payments are deposited into the business’ bank account.
  • Some MPOS providers offer business management features that can help with sales, inventory tracking, customer loyalty programs, returns, and gift cards.

Can a mobile POS system improve real-time inventory management?

Yes. An MPOS system is able to sync inventory data across all sales channels, such as your brick-and-mortar stores, online stores, and mobile apps. This way, businesses can have a real-time view of:

Stock levels

One of the best ways to monitor your stock levels is to track your inventory in real time. This gives you accurate and up-to-date information about your stock availability, location, and value.

You can also identify and prevent discrepancies, errors, or fraud that can cause inventory shrinkage.

What products are selling (and what’s not)

Real-time inventory data can give you valuable insights into any rise and fall in consumer demand for certain products, so you know which items to restock and which aren’t going to sell.

When you see which products aren’t selling well, you are able to discount these, hopefully reducing the likelihood of deadstock.

By removing or reducing the number of unpopular products in your inventory, you can make space for more popular products and focus your finances on those that sell.

Customer preferences

Customer preferences and demands are always changing. The first step to managing this is understanding who your customers are, what they want from you, and how they shop using real-time inventory data.

You can segment your customers into groups based on their purchase frequency, spending habits, and preferences.

Knowing your customer segments allows you to tailor your products, pricing and promotions to match individual needs and expectations.

Wrapping up

It’s clear how much value real-time inventory management can bring to your business. Choosing an MPOS system with real-time inventory management tools will lay the foundations for future growth.

When selecting an MPOS provider for inventory management, there are a few features to consider, including:

  • A feature that allows you to track and sync data across sales channels and devices in real time.
  • The ability to set up and receive alerts and notifications when inventory is low, high, or needs to be restocked.
  • A feature that can generate reports and analytics that can help you understand your inventory performance, trends, and opportunities.
  • A feature that can optimize and automate processes such as ordering, replenishing, discounting, and transferring.
  • A feature that is compatible with other tools related to your inventory management, such as accounting, marketing, e-commerce, and suppliers.

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