DTC Inventory Management Services
Direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands are given an upper advantage than traditional brands thanks to social media, the ability to offer lower prices, customer-friendly policies, product quality, better customer engagement, and more.
But many DTC brands struggle to manage inventory as they grow, reducing the advantages that come with shopping from an online brand.
If you’re struggling to keep up with your DTC inventory, ShipBob can help.
ShipBob is a best-in-class 3PL that can help you optimize your inventory management process and grow your business.
Read on to learn more about our inventory management solution for DTC brands.
We chose ShipBob because it was very much about the DTC experience, as opposed to becoming Amazon or something. We want to make sure people are coming to our site and creating that loyalty and getting a personal experience.
Co-owner of The Caker
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What is DTC inventory?
DTC inventory refers to inventory purchased for an online brand that sells directly to consumers. Inventory must be purchased and ready for fast fulfillment once orders are placed.
Many direct-to-consumer brands struggle with inventory management. It’s challenging to optimize inventory by keeping storage costs to a minimum while also forecasting inventory to ensure there’s enough readily available to meet customer demand.
With DTC inventory, businesses must implement inventory tracking systems that offer SKU management capabilities in order to organize, update, and view SKU at a glance. This allows brands to track inventory across their sales channels and quickly make decisions on SKU performance.
Best practices for managing DTC inventory
Managing DTC inventory can be a challenge. Whether you’re a brand managing multiple yet similar SKUs or a home furnishing business that needs to store overweight and heavy items — every DTC industry comes with its own set of challenges.
However, there are universal best practices for all DTC brands. It includes implementing the right processes and technology to track inventory efficiently.
Here are some best practices for managing DTC inventory.
1. Track inventory in real time
Be sure to implement software designed specifically to help manage inventory in real time. With the right real-time inventory management solution, you can reduce risks of inventory shrinkage, inaccurate inventory reports, stockouts, and backorders.
With inventory tracking software in place, your orders and inventory are synced in real time. This makes it much easier to track inventory by increasing inventory visibility and providing insights into when it’s time to replenish inventory, run a promotion, and track slow-moving items that are no longer generating sales.
“Having ShipBob’s dashboard is so helpful, especially when you can look on there and see how many have been sold today and how many you can sell. It’s really helpful to know that it’s a trustworthy inventory source! It’s really handy, and I love that it just automatically implements new changes.”
Nakisah Williams, founder of Craft Club Co.
2. Practice proper SKU management
With the right inventory tracking software, you can easily track slow-moving items vs. fast-moving items and make decisions on what SKUs to discontinue or replenish.
“With ShipBob, we were able to mark any combination of SKUs as a unique bundle and select the component SKUs right through the dashboard. Each time that bundle was fulfilled by ShipBob, we could see the individual components that were physically picked, and we would know that the order went out as expected.
ShipBob also allowed us to make changes to bundles on the fly with complete control and visibility, which is important in monthly subscription boxes, holiday bundles, and many more scenarios. With our old 3PL, we had to rely on a game of telephone and someone else to do this for us.”
Gerard Ecker, Founder & CEO of Ocean & Co.
3. Simplify fulfillment
Managing inventory is a major component of the ecommerce fulfillment process.
If you are currently handing fulfillment in-house but offer different products in variations, it might be time to partner with ShipBob.
ShipBob’s entire distribution network is powered by the same fulfillment software, which includes built-in inventory management software. ShipBob can receive and store each SKU separately, pick and pack orders efficiently, and ship orders through the most cost-effective route. This allows you to spend less time on logistics but maintain visibility into operations.
It’s simple to add products to the ShipBob dashboard automatically or manually. If you have the same SKU imported from different stores, you can easily merge them to prevent duplicate products/inventory.
“As we saw our small startup business beginning to gain traction, we needed to find a 3PL that could help us manage the thousands of orders we would get in minutes. When I was researching companies, I knew they had to be tech-enabled, integrate with Shopify, and a company that could scale with us. We found exactly that with ShipBob.”
Jason Ton, CFO of 100 Thieves
Partner with ShipBob
ShipBob has vast experience in fulfilling a wide range of DTC industries.
With a global fulfillment network and best-in-class technology, ShipBob offers a wide range of fulfillment capabilities to help you create an effective DTC logistics strategy, including flexible fulfillment, advanced data and analytics, and other world-class logistics solutions.
“Last time we shipped our own packages, it took us 3 weeks. It took ShipBob less than 2 days. I couldn’t wait to delegate this business over, because the stress level was through the roof. I am just so grateful for ShipBob.”
Andrea Hamilton, founder of The Finer Things 1920