Inventory Management/Selling Software
August 4, 2011 8:49 AM   Subscribe

What is the best inventory management/selling point software you know of?

I need a good software to manage inventory and selling of whatever type of products.

I have no real specifics since I'm new to this but any comment or question might help. I'd really appreciate your suggestions.

posted by theholotrope to Work & Money (2 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Wikipedia has a great comparison of shopping cart software packages. Obviously this is for an online application, so if you're looking for something for a brick and mortar store, you'll need to dig a little deeper. Xcart is a package my husband recently implemented for a client of his.
posted by wwartorff at 9:54 AM on August 4, 2011

The features you need in an inventory management application depend, nearly entirely, on the kind of product you must manage. If you are selling serialized inventory items, like stereos or cameras or cars, tracking serial numbers by inventory item is a must, but not all inventory management packages support this. If you're managing batch products like animal feed, food products, or bulk paint, batch tracking and management features may not only be nice to have, but required by law. If you're selling shoes, your inventory management application had better have a means of recording and reporting on physical characteristics like size, style number, color, and width, that make no sense to a vendor selling pharmaceutical inventory control software.

As far as your term "selling point" goes, I don't know precisely what you mean, in industry terms, but if you meant "Point of Sale" (POS), you still have some qualification to do, before worthwhile recommendations can be made. Do you mean retail POS, in that you'll be handling sales tax, cash management, credit/debit transactions, returns, credits, and have to support customer notes, vendor notes, and financial chargebacks? If wholesale POS, will you have to support changed units of measure in repacking, or handle multiple currency transactions? Do you need to support a particular cost basis, like average cost, weighted average cost, or standard cost? Is there a need, either for accounting reasons or statutory requirement to support FIFO or LIFO, or other tax view of inventory valuation?

There are plenty of software consultants and business analysts looking for work, who know all about this stuff, that can come in, analyze your situation, and make sensible recommendations in a few days. If you're doing this as a real world exercise, hire a pro to help you. The cost of getting a software selection really wrong is many, many times greater than you might imagine.
posted by paulsc at 2:27 PM on August 4, 2011

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