Opening a Dollar Store - Effective Inventory Handling Basics

Bob Hamilton

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Are you opening a dollar store? If so, then never forget the importance of inventory handling. Effective inventory management can literally be the difference between profit and loss. It can be the difference between success and failure.

While inventory handling includes many, many functions and tasks, there are some basic elements that must always be considered. First among these is the time that newly received inventory is allowed to remain in the receiving area. In a tight margin business such as you will have after opening a dollar store it is important that merchandise not be allowed to remain sitting in receiving areas for lengthy periods of time. In fact when opening a dollar store on strategy might be to establish time limits to ensure that the oldest merchandise is stocked before newly arrived merchandise.

Back stock handling and storage is another concern. After opening a dollar store it is easy to get into the habit of simply placing full and partial boxes of excess merchandise on shelves above the sales floor. Often these boxes are dull and tend to reduce the amount of light that actually gets to the merchandise that is being displayed for sale. A much more effective strategy when there is excess merchandise is to simply remove that merchandise from the shipping box and place the merchandise on display overhead. Not only does this brighten up the store sales area, but you will also make a few extra sales.

Time is money when you are opening a dollar store. Merchandise display is critical to sales yet efforts must be made to do everything possible to reduce the labor associated with merchandise handling and display. One way to reduce labor cost is by using striping and bulk display strategies properly. Striping should be the standard practice for most of the store. Bulk display should be practiced in high-volume areas where you do not maintain high inventory levels. Areas where bulk displays should be used include cleaners, paper goods, food, some health and beauty items and others.

Another area of concern is the actual ordering of products for resale. To reduce the amount that is invested in merchandise inventory frequent, smaller orders are best. Almost never is it appropriate to order quantities that require maintaining back stock in a storage area. Maintaining back stock can result in shrinkage as well as double and even triple handling of merchandise. There are exceptions such as opportunities to obtain products at special pricing. It is important to remember that under-ordering of in-demand merchandise can create out-of-stock situations that can cost you sales and ultimately customers.

To Your Dollar Store Success!

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