E-commerce has a number of very positive effects on inventory and let me share with you just a few. First of all, you have instant visibility into more real-time demand. You are able to collect information off of your eCommerce to the degree that you are able to really enhance that information with analytics, combining that information from other retail or e-commerce situations, and you can then draw from your Inventory much more accurately. You can reduce safety stock needs because you’re seeing demand online very quickly.
In fact, I just was working with a client who was having a very hard time managing multiple channels and therefore had to hold safety stock and turn off ordering on some of these Channels because he was never really sure about his inventory. The solution was connecting e-commerce with his ERP system. Another option is even using a simple PIM (product information management) system to create an inventory management system. Now you’re able to sell more, more accurately in real time. Now, what does that do for the back end? Well, that improves your ordering as well. You’ll begin to see much more accurately any needs you might have.