Managing inventory can be challenging and costly, especially when it’s done inefficiently. Ecommerce companies that wish to meet customers’ expectations of fast and affordable shipping must understand the optimal locations to store their inventory, specific to their business. To help you figure this out, ShipBob created the Inventory Distribution Calculator, an Excel tool that’s free to download.
This template lets online retailers enter their products, inventory quantities, and a historic breakdown of items shipped to each zip code. These inputs help provide recommendations on how to distribute your inventory, including the optimal product counts to send to each fulfillment center when outsourcing to a third-party logistics (3PL) provider.
For example, the map below shows an ecommerce business that is using a 3PL company with multiple fulfillment centers in Los Angeles, CA; Dallas, TX; and Chicago, IL. These locations are ideal for warehousing and storage because the company’s customers ship to addresses near these fulfillment centers.
If you understand shipping zones and how distance affects shipping costs, it makes the most financial sense to distribute your inventory this way, especially compared to using just one fulfillment center.
Download this free Excel template and you can:
- Enter your inventory and sales data to automatically have complex formulas calculated for you
- Select different regions throughout the continental US to see which locations are optimal for your business to fulfill from
- View the recommended inventory counts and percentages by location, displayed in plain text and visually on a map
Gain a better understanding of your orders, customers, and inventory. Save money for your e-commerce business by making data-informed decisions rather than just relying on your instincts.
P.S. Need an ecommerce fulfillment provider that can help you efficiently distribute your inventory based on customer data? Check out ShipBob! With a network of fulfillment centers in the largest metro areas of the US, ShipBob offers the technology and geographic footprint you need to automate fulfillment. In a couple of clicks, you can connect your e-commerce platform, so orders are fulfilled as they are placed on your store. Learn more here.