Top Tip for controlling stock management when using third-party fulfillment in Linnworks

Stock Control Blog Banner

Many eCommerce retailers choose to use either a Dropshipper or a 3rd Party Fulfillment company to ship their orders. The main benefit of introducing either of these methods into your business can be invaluable.

It will help to lower expenditure on warehouse space or the cost of hiring more staff as the business scales; leaving you to concentrate on the jobs which are harder to outsource.

If this relates to your business model, then you will be aware that when an order has been shipped, the 3rd party fulfillment centre will constantly provide stock level updates through .CSV file exchanges.

This helps to ensure that stock levels can be controlled from the Linnworks management system and pushed to selling channels.

It is common to set up integration with a Dropshipper or Fulfilment Centre by creating a separate location in Linnworks, and exchange data using CSV files via an FTP. This is to allow:
  1. The export of open orders to a supplier or fulfillment center.

  2. To import the “dispatched status” of completed orders from supplier or fulfillment center.

  3. To receive updates from the supplier or fulfillment center regarding product stock levels.

The export/import of this data is scheduled to update – at the minimum – on an hourly basis. Even so, you may begin to detect inconsistencies within your stock levels when selling a high volume of orders.

This is because most suppliers update their on-hand stock levels once or a couple of times throughout the day.

This common problem can lead to customer dissatisfaction and waste valuable employee time.

Thankfully, there is a solution.
The Stock Level Adjust import routine will replace your existing Stock Level Update process.Click To Tweet

It will either increase (stock received by a Fulfillment Center and booked in) or decrease (any damaged and scrapped items) product stock levels depending on the values passed in .CSV files, which can be positive or negative.

For example: SKU qwe123 has a stock level of 10. Importing a file with SKU qwe123 and qty 5, using Stock Level Adjust will update the SKU to 15 rather than changing the value to 5.

By taking advantage of standard fulfillment center locations in Linnworks for export and import order statuses, disabling stock level update, and ticking the options below for the location you let Linnworks update selling channels with up to date stock levels to prevent overselling.

Screenshot of Location fields

These simple steps will ensure that the scheduled Stock Level Adjust Import is created separately, keeping your stock levels accurate and up-to-date.

Holiday Season Splash Image

Successful Sales In the Holiday Season

Social Media Marketing

How Social Media Marketing boosts sales for eCommerce

Peak season eCommerce main image

Peak 2018: an array of new shipping challenges and how to beat them

Fnatic blog feature image

Why companies like Fnatic automate with Linnworks