Stock Balance

Stock Availability: What It Is and How to Improve It

By Team TranZact | Published on Sep 8, 2023

From the shelves of stores to the virtual online shops, having products available when customers want them is important. Therefore, learning about stock availability for any business is important.

It's a careful strategy involving managing inventory like a pro and predicting what customers want. In this article, we will see stock availability meaning, its importance, and how you can keep track of the stocks.

TranZact - Best Inventory Management Software

Define Stock Availability

Stock availability refers to how much inventory a business has for each item, making sure it's enough to fulfill customer demands quickly and easily. It is a complex balance that involves using inventory management techniques to meet customer needs while increasing capital investment and balancing any fluctuations in demand and supply.

Top 4 Challenges E-Commerce Stores Face Regarding Stock Availability

Here are the 4 common challenges that e-commerce stores face regarding stock availability:

1. Higher Storage Costs

Storing goods takes up about 30% of all inventory costs. This cost depends on where you keep things, how many types of items you have, how fast they sell, and if you handle shipping in-house or not.

2. Inventory Moves Slowly

Not having what customers want means you sell less, and that makes your products move off the shelves slowly. Ideally, you should refresh your stock 2 to 4 times a year, which means restocking covers how much you sell on average.

3. Stock Runs Out Too Often

You might not have anything to sell if you have limited stock available. It leads to delays, unhappy buyers, canceled orders, and bad online reviews. Mistakes like not guessing what customers want, or supplier delays can cause inventory shortages.

4. Keeping Shoppers Happy

Most customers won't shop again if they have one bad experience. That is why giving your customers clarity about the new stock available is important. Using real-time inventory managing tools for stock helps make customers happy.

Stock Availability: An Overview

For e-commerce businesses, having goods available at the right time is important. Making sure you have the right products ready brings more money, cuts costs, and makes shoppers happy. But getting this right is hard work. You need to be smart about how much product to have so you're not wasting money or making customers unhappy.

Balancing what's in stock is tough. You can strike this balance by using good inventory management tools and systems. It helps to know what's already in stock, what people will buy, and when to order new goods.

Why Is Stock Availability Important?

Stock availability issues can affect day-to-day business functioning. Not being ready for supply issues or changes in demand can impact sales and overall customer satisfaction.

Imagine not having products customers want — that's bad for business and brand. In addition, it will force customers to buy things from competitors.

But loading up on everything or having extra SKUs (stock-keeping units) to meet demand isn't smart either. Having too many goods ties up money in storing costs and can lead to things going to waste. In addition, money spent on extra stock can be more wisely used in other business areas.

5 Challenges of Stock Availability

There are many challenges subject to stock availability, and it is important to know them all.

1. Getting Real-Time Stock Updates

Getting real-time stock updates is a puzzle for businesses that store goods in multiple warehouses. Having the latest information and tools to check available stocks at different storage facilities is important. Businesses can rely on TranZact, which offers a complete solution that works with the warehouse management system. It helps monitor stock levels across various warehouses in real time.

2. Reducing Carrying Cost

The cost of keeping goods (like storing, moving, insuring, etc.) can be a headache. Trying to have extra goods to avoid stock-outs increases these costs. Additionally, you might have to pay to keep or dispose of the products you can't sell anymore.

3. Maintaining Turnovers

How often you sell or restock items is important. It's like your business's scoreboard. But if you mess up how much goods to buy, your score goes down.

4. Decreasing Stock-Outs

Businesses can run out of inventory if they can't predict what people want, have trouble with suppliers, or don't know how many goods they have. Nothing to sell messes up orders irritates customers, and leads to bad reviews.

5. Customers Satisfaction

If companies don't have what customers want, they might go to another store. Customers want to know what's there before buying. They want true information about the products and delivery time. If something's not in stock, they want to know that too.

7 Ways to Improve Stock Availability (Without Overstocking)

Here are the 7 ways to improve stock availability:

1. Smart Inventory System

  • Use inventory software, like TranZact, to reduce manual tracking.
  • Get real-time data on stock availability reports, trends, and purchasing behavior.

2. Demand Forecasting

  • Predict inventory needs using past sales, seasonality, and trends.
  • Forecasting tools guide decisions and avoid stockouts or overstocking.

3. Aim for Service Goals

  • Measure and increase stock availability over time.
  • Use long-term goals to set minimum order quantities and safety stock.

4. Reorder Wisely

  • Use real-time data for correct reorder points.
  • Automated systems suggest reordering timing based on trends.

5. Store Stock Smartly

  • Distribute inventory across various locations.
  • Keep products closer to customers for quicker delivery.

6. Strong Supplier Ties

  • Improve relationships with suppliers.
  • Collaborate on order volumes, timing, and challenges.

7. Regular Checkups

  • Audit and verify inventory data reliability.
  • Perform regular physical counts and spot irregularities.

Inventory Optimization and Stock Availability

Inventory optimization means having the right amount of goods to sell while not spending too much on storage. The aim is to avoid common stock problems like not having enough or having too much stock or delays in orders.

In today's retail world, optimizing inventory is a must. First, you figure out how much stuff you'll need by making smart guesses. Then, you adjust how much inventory you have to match the guesses.

This way, you're ready to sell but not stuck with extra items taking up money.

Manage Stock Availability Data With TranZact

Using spreadsheets to track stock availability takes a lot of time. TranZact Inventory Management Software changes that. It makes managing stock automatic and smart.

It promotes better stock management, less spending, and happier customers. With real-time data about inventory, you can have the right items in the right places.

FAQs on Stock Availability

1. What is stock availability?

Stock availability is when a store has enough items to sell to customers. It means keeping stock ready whenever the customer wants to buy it.

2. Why is stock availability important?

Stock availability is important because having items ready when customers helps win the trust of the customer. It also helps the business earn more money. Moreover, it reduces carrying costs, storage space, overstocking, and delayed orders.

3. How can I know what's in stock?

You can use automated inventory tracking tools to see what and how many items you have in stock. TranZact offers customized software that simplifies this process, allowing you to quickly access real-time stock information across various warehouses.

4. How do stores keep things in stock?

Stores watch what sells a lot and try to predict what people might want next. Then, they order more of those things and keep this cycle running. They also use demand forecasting tools to make the process easier.

5. What if a product is back ordered?

If a product is back-ordered, the store doesn't have it in stock, but they'll stock it soon. Customers can buy it, and the store will send it once it's in stock. It's like reserving your item for the future.

6. Why do companies sometimes run out of products?

Sometimes companies can not predict what people want to buy, or unexpected shopping trends happen. Therefore, companies might not have enough of what customers want to buy. To overcome this issue, companies should use demand forecasting software.

7. How can businesses improve stock availability?

Businesses can use real-time information and inventory management tools to plan better and keep more things ready to buy. As a result, businesses can plan and buy stocks more wisely.


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TranZact

TranZact is a team of IIT & IIM graduates who have developed a GST compliant, cloud-based, inventory management software for SME manufacturers. It digitizes your entire business operations, right from customer inquiry to dispatch. This also streamlines your Inventory, Purchase, Sales & Quotation management processes in a hassle-free user-friendly manner. The software is free to signup and gets implemented within a week.