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Wouldn’t it be nice if your company could just buy up all the stock it needed once a year and then spend its time focusing on sales, marketing and service? While this may be the dream for purchasing and budgeting, the fact is, warehouse management is meant to walk a fine line between just enough and time to reorder.

Inventory management is all about space and resource management. Running a warehouse means paying for time and space that you want to use as effectively as possible. This goes for the actual physical space inventory requires as well as the people involved in maintaining, storing and shipping items as needed.

Understanding how and when products will be in demand is an important part of warehouse and inventory management. By using a sales forecasting inventory tool for small business, companies can not only plan their budget and spending needs more effectively, they can also manage their inventory.

Sales and inventory forecasting for small business is no small feat, either. The fluctuations in sales for every company can vary widely, so business intelligence has to be based on the best data available. Typically, that means using tools that can be integrated to work with each other and share information on inventory and sales throughout a company’s history.

By using forecasting tools wisely, companies can deal with one of the biggest challenges of inventory management — reorder points. Order too soon and you end up with a stockpile of excess merchandise you suddenly need to move. Order too late and you run the risk of having to issue backorders or rainchecks for customers who may ultimately choose to take their business elsewhere.

At the end of the day, managing inventory is about more than just having enough stock on hand. It’s about understanding the flow and sales cycles of your company so that you can use all of its resources effectively. Forecasting tools go a long way in achieving this goal as well as making it easier for companies to plan for the future.