For any product-based business, inventory is everything. And in the case of a mobile repair store, it is legitimately the undisputed backbone of the business!
In 2017, SquareTrade, a company that insures smartphones, reported that “a cellphone in the U.S. breaks every two seconds.”
The Significance Of Inventory In A Mobile Phone Repair Business:
As pins and needles are to a dressmaker, so are the assorted paraphernalia of parts and tools to a cell phone repair business owner. Starting from nylon spudgers to fine tipped curved tweezers, or precision knife sets to replacement display screens, the inventory list for the tools of this trade is exhaustive and can extend well beyond to the advertising and in-store marketing supplies as well.
You will have new stock coming in, and old stock that needs to be sold. You have to make sure you don’t have excessive stock lying around.
On the other hand, it is essential to always have sufficient stock on hand, let there be a sudden increase in demand. With the increasing popularity of expensive, but fragile smartphones, the repair industry has seen a boost in sales over the past few years! You can check out our recent article regarding this.
Having a good inventory manager, increases deal conversions, energizes the workforce, generates strong word-of-mouth publicity, and speeds up the lead time taken for a ‘damaged-to-repaired’ process of the product.
How Mobile Repair Store Owners Can Manage Their Inventory!
Below we list a few tips and tricks that will help you not only manage your stock but also track pilfering (if any) effectively.
But that’s not all! With this step-by-step guide, you will be able to align inventory with accounting (get a clear idea on profits), and be able to put together an enviably organized store that additionally does away with a ton unnecessary paperwork as a bonus.
1. Be up to speed at all times!
Accurately keeping track of the stock in the store is vital. In fact, it’s not just critical, it’s downright mandatory when it comes to maintaining a healthy business.
Start from the ground up and keep a close check on the tiniest of inventories and move up to the most expensive ones. This is crucial if you’re dealing with the repair of high-end phones such as iPhones.
Categorize, label and compartmentalize!
Ensure to keep a tab and after that, maintain a ready stock of the products most in demand. Reduce holding around an inventory of things that are least requested. This is one of the most efficient ways of never falling out of stock or getting cash trapped with stock that nobody ever asks for.
Needless to say, the daily organizing ritual can be tedious and tiresome if done manually, but done it must be. Alternately, use a systematic, automated POS software that will track and provide up-to-date, actionable inventory information.
2. Make accurate forecasting your mantra!
Quite unlike products based on seasonal demands, the business of mobile repair does not have specific time patterns when customers are expected to come in droves or not at all when its off-season. The trend is usually quite steady and fixed, so you should already have a historical inventory calculation.
That said, ‘forecasting for the future’ is a formula that you must master well. Take historical sales figures to make guided projections about future inventory requirements. Marketing and publicity also drive sales, so that should be another factor to consider.
It goes without saying that nowadays Inventory Control features are available with most software so that forecasting can be automated and data-driven as opposed to physically entered data that has heaps of space for human blunders.
3. QA check with a top-down, bottom-up approach!
Sounds simple enough we know, but often a simple routine check can be all that you need to keep the business running in ship shape. Understand that the mobile repair business DOES rely on certain complex parts that are intended to replace damaged parts — so appropriate QA checks are a good thing to do.
Auto reminders for running routine stock audits and automated checklists that give a low-down on obsolete/out-of-date inventories do greatly help in simplifying the above-stated quality check tasks and thereby making the business a lean, mean profit-making machine.
4. Use technology to your advantage!
Of course, keeping a physical count of inventory may become a time-consuming affair, prone to errors! Let a useful software that allows you, a mobile repair store owner, to seamlessly manage inventory, auto-generate invoices and send lightning-fast quotations, carry out the activity for you.
Technology has made inroads in every business, and the mobile repair industry has embraced it wholeheartedly too. Today, it is a proven fact that tech-led mobile repair enterprises have efficiently managed changing trends, competition, and fickle customer preferences by adopting, adapting and relying on technology-driven software.
As hinted to earlier, the best way is to invest in a POS (Point Of Sale) System that manages all key aspects of your cell phone repair shop — including the inventory! Some additional benefits, along with keeping track of the inventory, are as below:
Having a POS system helps keep a record of the inventory and the sales made throughout the year, as well as make smarter decisions about your business, ultimately impacting the bottom line.
Integration, as a part of the centralized software solution, helps connect every component of the supply chain, and work with your suppliers to establish effective processes for replenishment of the stock, as well as special orders.
If you wish to build new stores in different locations, or expand the range of your offerings, or simply expand your customer bases, a POS will always come in handy to automate and monitor your business.