Avoid Supply Chain Hiccups and Manage Inventory Successfully
Never before has the grocery store supply chain faced the issues it’s battled over the past two years and counting. No one could have foreseen the pandemic panic-buying that stripped shelves bare as demand for groceries shot up 50% in the blink of an eye. Specialty and ethnic grocers battered by unprecedented disruption are still struggling to recover from the fits and starts that interrupted manufacturing, transportation and more, not to mention the twin specters of inflation and a potential recession posing a new set of problems.
Retailers juggling so many challenges and threats need a smarter way to operate and manage uncertainty. Grocery POS solutions engineered for the sector’s unique needs can help retailers mitigate supply chain hiccups, get their arms around inventory, and execute the experience shoppers are looking for.
Know What You Have
As a grocery seller, you pride yourself on giving shoppers a great selection of in-demand products. But the key to offering a desirable assortment of perishable and packaged goods starts with procuring the right SKUs from reliable suppliers. Does your grocery POS feature advanced forecasting tools that arm you with up-to-the-minute insights on what’s running out and when you should pull the trigger on reordering? Only by knowing exactly which products you need to replenish can you get ahead of the grocery supply chain problems every one of your rivals is facing.
Matchy-matchy isn’t everyone’s taste when it comes to fashion but it’s very much in style when talking about inventory. Your grocery POS system should be able to make quick work of the stock trucks drop off on your loading docks. Do the SKUs coming in the back match up with the quantities you ordered? Is everything labeled the way it should be? Some POS providers can go the extra mile by creating custom labels tailored to your business’s unique requirements. Be sure the point-of-sale platform you choose integrates with advanced scanners so that back-of-store stock counts seamlessly sync up with the goods moving through the checkout queue. Data suggests that out-of-stocks soared to 15% at the height of pandemic disruption versus historical rates closer to 5% and 10%. Select a POS solution that can help your numbers return to pre-Covid norms.
Specialty and ethnic grocery stores running a tight ship need POS software that stays on top of the nitty-gritty details with precise, actionable info. Today, so many areas of our lives are automated, and daily POS reports should be no exception. Check this status report on where your business stands to start each day with the intel you need to work around any grocery supply chain problems that crop up. Be sure your store never runs out of key products by selecting a grocery POS system that automatically dispatches vendor orders when inventory levels dip dangerously low—that’s one less thing you should have to worry about. The system should integrate with your email so that vendors can easily message you about order shipping and delivery estimates, meaning you’re never in the dark about when you’ll have the next restock in hand.
The other upside to deploying smart inventory management tools is your ability to shrink shrink. It’s one of the occupational hazards of running a grocery business but keeping close tabs on your stock levels will help you suss out anything untoward that might be going on when items turn up missing. Plus, walking the inventory tightrope means you can reduce the rot by employing the Goldilocks method and getting reorders “just right”—not too little or too much. Analyze how frequently your store churns through packaged products versus perishables so you can get a grip on the replenishment cadence different categories require.
Manage From One System
From curbside pickup to same-day delivery, this isn’t your grandpa’s grocery store. Customer demand for modern methods of ordering and getting their groceries means you need a single source of truth managing your omnichannel retail business. This is no longer a nice-to-have if you’re allowing customers to place their purchases online in addition to the traditional in-store shopping experience. A unified inventory system is necessary to prevent commonplace problems from tripping up your grocery supply chain with siloed stacks of data. Don’t disappoint customers when sidestepping stockouts is within your reach.
Knowledge is power and nowhere is that more evident than in a modern grocery POS solution that keeps your store humming. By deploying a point-of-sale system designed for your unique problems and pain points, you can outrun the grocery supply chain challenges creating chaos for your competitors. A platform that does much of the “thinking” for you will come with standard features from automated reporting and instant reordering to real-time tracking. Invest in a purpose-built POS solution that fosters customer loyalty through an inventory management module keeping their go-to favorites in stock on your store shelves.