Managing stock effectively is critical to your bookstore’s growth and success. Your inventory is likely to be your business’s largest investment and represents thousands of dollars sitting on your bookshelves. But, with hundreds or thousands of unique titles to keep track of and new books arriving all the time, keeping track of stock can be a challenge.
Your inventory management system is only as accurate as the data it holds, so performing a regular stocktake is key. By physically counting the stock you have on hand – both the titles out on the bookstore floor and those you have in storage – and comparing this to your records, you’ll know exactly where you stand.
Making a regular stocktake part of your business-as-usual processes will take the guesswork out of inventory management and deliver several benefits for your bookstore.
1. Uncover discrepancies
A stocktake provides you with an up-to-the-minute view of your stock levels. It also gives you insight into whether theft or damage are issues for your bookstore. You might find that several books have been damaged while being read at your bookstore café, or perhaps there’s a water leak or pest problem in your storage area. Once you know, you can update your inventory to reflect these discrepancies and put steps in place to avoid these problems in the future.
2. Increase profits
Stocktaking will support you to increase profits by reducing loss and wastage. With an accurate stocktake, you can run reliable reports to show you which titles you hold, books that are selling well, and those that are slow-moving and negatively impacting your cash flow. You can use this information to make an informed decision about future purchases, by targeting (or avoiding) certain authors, genres or topics.
3. Optimise stock management
In an ideal world, your bookstore would hold exactly the right number of exactly the titles your customers are buying and no slow-moving stock. While this an unrealistic scenario, conducting regular stocktakes will allow you to move closer to this utopia. With trusted data on the stock you’re holding, you can order new titles with confidence, knowing you’re not going to discover a forgotten-about box of those books out the back.
4. Refine your pricing strategy
Counting your stock regularly you can easily review stock age, which will give you an opportunity to consider and refine your pricing strategies. Once you know exactly what titles you hold – and which books you need to move – you can adjust your pricing accordingly.
Identifying slow-moving or obsolete books, allows you to promote, discount, or dispose of to recover valuable storage space.
Regular stocktaking is fundamental to effective inventory management and will support you to run a more profitable and efficient bookstore. Used in combination with regular stocktakes, specialist bookshop management software like Booknet will help you to operate more efficiently, reduce costs and grow your businesses.
Booknet has been designed specifically for independent and small chain retailers, and integrates seamlessly with book industry tools like Titlepage to simplify the way you work and help you to grow your bookstore business.