Footwear retailers are consistently in the position of needing to match up the right style to the right size for a customer, and without inventory visibility, there’s always the risk of having to utter those three dreaded words, “out of stock.” Econsultancy found that the impact of out-of-stock products goes far beyond losing that single sale; negative brand impressions stay with the customer through future interactions. A disappointed shopper may also choose to share their unfavorable experience across social networks, casting a negative light on your brand. So what’s the best way for a footwear retailer to minimize customer disappointment without overstocking footwear?
Real-time inventory updates are made possible with a retail inventory management solution that utilizes real time inventory tracking. Instead of checking inventory at the end of the day, or manually syncing sales records from an old POS, this type of system provides complete visibility as sales occur. Biz Tech Magazine found that 60 percent of retailers use some form of inventory management system that provides them with real-time data. For footwear retailers, keeping the most popular styles and sizes in stock means the difference between a happy customer walking out the door in their new shoes, and one who walks out the door to go to a competitor.
A quality customer experience helps improve revenue through customer retention and prevents the dreaded social media blasts that out-of-stock experiences can cause. Real-time updates allow store managers to make data-driven decisions with full inventory visibility. Intelligent inventory management based on real-time data also improves profit margins by limiting over-purchasing of inventory, which allows stores to avoid large volumes of discounted products.
A modern footwear POS that supports inventory tracking may offer apps to make it even easier to stay on top of inventory information. An app-based system allows the manager to check inventory quickly at each location, ensuring that merchandise numbers match the demand associated with each store. It monitors inventory status, such as whether footwear is on hand, in transit or on order. It also shows whether particular employees do a better job selling certain shoe categories, which is beneficial to staffing decisions. Critical sales metrics are available on the go, which allows managers and owners to make intelligent inventory ordering and return decisions.
A footwear POS has the potential to transform a retail location through inventory management. Being able to track footwear sold in real time provides the data a manager or owner needs to understand what the customers are interested in, how much to deliver and how to keep the customers coming in to their store, instead of shopping online or down the street.