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I use calculated shipping almost entirely, so it’s important to know the actual ship weight of an item. For fragile and/or big and bulky items, I will pack for ready to ship. I don’t seal the box due to a need to do a quick final check before shipping.
As for issues with answering buyers questions with ready to ship. I have no issues with unwrapping something in order to answer buyers questions. It’s all part of the business. Besides, I never had a return from a buyer that had asked questions and when I do get questions, I tend to edit the listing to include those issues I answered since I inadvertently forgot or didn’t think of.
I would add, for your unlisted items, don’t worry about itemizing each item. For example, if you come across a bag or box of items that was purchased from a single vendor, give that bag or box its own line item and number. You’ll deal with breaking it down either by average or actual when you go to list the items. Another example, if you have four bags purchased from one source, average the amount paid across all four bags.
I would tackle your existing inventory (listed and unlisted) first. Since this the huge number that will tie back into your COGS. Using the 4 data points mentioned earlier, arm yourself with a package of removal dot labels. Mark them starting with 1,2,3,4… On a spreadsheet or note pad, starting with the first item, create your titles and then place a label on the item if you can. Don’t worry about putting in a date or price. You want to get everything you have in-house on paper or in spreadsheet first.
Then go back and enter in the date and amount purchased. Don’t get hung up on anyone item. If you can’t readily determine the date or amount, move on to the next. Leave the field blank so you can sort on these fields to see what’s missing. Don’t be afraid to add a column for a note or reminder that may help later.
Next tackle the sold items in a similar fashion.
Yes. That would be perfectly fine. The idea is to assign the item some value so when it is sold, that value is removed from your inventory account (asset) and recorded as GOCS.
A system, no matter how horrible you may think it is, is still a system worth maintaining if you are consistent in applying it. What shocks me the most is those individuals that have no idea what their COG’s are, let along how calculate it. It is such a fundamental aspect of doing business, not to mention required for the preparation of tax returns. And if understood, gives so much insight into running of a business.
With a spreadsheet, an inventory management system is only as complicated as you make it. You only need 4 data points to keep track of your inventory. The item description, date and price paid and date sold. And because we’re humans and not machines, we need a unique identifier such as a SKU#
It doesn’t matter if your system has 100 items or 100K items. You only enter that information once and it takes less than a minute to record it. I like to look at this way… Rather than thinking of a system that needs to track 4k items, you only need a system for one item entered correctly, then has been repeated 3.99k times.
Thanks for listening.
Kind of getting off subject here, but no, just relocating. But not spending any significant time in any one location that allows keeping handling times consistent. The trick to knowing when and how long I’m going to be at a specific location so you can adjust the handling times. When I started accumulating inventory in the second location, I had to change the numbering system (SKU#) so I can easily search and modify them. Initially I had sold some items that were in one location that I wasn’t. No problem though, buyers were cool with it.
Like right now, I have items that had a 40 day handling time and have slowly been reducing it as the time gets nearer to when I’m at my second location. Inventory is not as broad in the second location so sales are minimal and not much shipping when I get there. When I leave here in a couple weeks, I’ll put these items where I’m at now on a 3 week handling time.
It’s not all that complicated. My online store software allows me to run everything from a single dashboard. Certainly helps given I sell on 1 eBay store and 6 additional eBay accounts.
After roughly 18 months, run rate of slightly above 3.3k. On a weekly basis it varies. Bulking up on stock for a new venture that I’m kicking of after the first of the year as well as going through a relocation to a place that sourcing is not that abundant. In this case, items are stored in a storage bin until the are gone through. They are accounted for by assigning that bin its own SKU# and using the total price paid for those items as its COG. When the bin is eventually gone through, the bin SKU# will be reassign to first item pulled from the bin and the COG and active date adjusted accordingly. Not only does this process keep the spreadsheet and accounting in check, the active date gives a constant reminder of how old that bin in getting.
The increase in unlisted inventory and for tracking and selling inventory in two locations that are 900 miles apart is getting a bit stressful. It’s breaking all the rules of best practices of inventory and asset management. But this soon will pass and operations should be back to normal operations.
Anyone playing here?
Okay, I’ll start. Simple version. I keep an Excel Spreadsheet that keeps track of purchases and sales. I assign a SKU to each and every item with the date of purchase, price and when first published (listed). The spreadsheet keeps an ongoing balance of my inventory. COGS = beginning inventory balance, plus purchases, minus ending inventory balance.
The long version… it’s just that… Long.
Angry Birds 🙂
Personally, Blood Sugar Diet. I like my screen to be filled with as much information as possible. Two column format. Title on left. Top 3 or so threads on the right. Also removes 1 click from the process.
Also another suggestion. Locking down your header so you don’t lose it when you scroll down. I know it requires a little CSS code, but it sure helps. I don’t know why they don’t hard code this in. Almost all sites need it.
Also, if you’re not already aware, here’s a list of some cool uses of bbpress to find inspiration from.
I see it now. I couldn’t tell since I basically can only can read only one post per page on my screen. I wonder if it has to do with the column layout. Too tight. Maybe why there is so much white space. Anyhow… You’ll figure out…. Trial & error.
Since you’re using bbpress, any chance you can take a look at enabling reply threading (nesting). Very difficult to follow a conversation when many are going on at once in the same thread. Also, my issue with bbpress has always been the massive amount of white space between replies. My fingers hurt after awhile with all the flipping. If your contractor knows how to resolve this, I would certainly like to know, regardless if you use it or not. Reply threading will help a bit.
I use the Sterilite 115? qt latched clear bins. I can fit between 15-25 items in them. My storage consist of these bins, shelving and hanging rods for clothes. Rough estimate is that your storage needs should accommodate no more than 150% of your average # of items listed. For shelving I calculate 6″ cube per item. For clothing… 1.5″ per piece.