Retail5 of the Best Free Inventory Management Software

5 of the Best Free Inventory Management Software

Inventory management software is a key feature of any business dealing with stock, including shops, online suppliers, manufacturers and distributors. If you’re on a tight budget, choosing the right software can be a problem so our guide helps you with a review of five of the best free inventory management software products available.

Good inventory management systems can help you effectively control stock to manage the amount your spend on buying in new stock and help ensure you neither run out nor have too many sitting in storage. There are a lot of programs available, but we’ll walk you through the five best free inventory management software programs for your small business.

5 Best Free Inventory Management Software

  1. Zoho Inventory – Best Overall Free Inventory Management
  2. Square – Best for Storefronts and Retailers
  3. Stockpile by Canvus – Best for Extensive Simple Inventories
  4. inFlow Inventory – Best On-Premise Solution
  5. Boxstorm – Best for Growing Businesses

1.  Zoho Inventory – Best Overall Free Inventory Management

Find out more at: Zoho.com

Managing your inventory can be tricky when you’re at the helm of a small to midsize business. Zoho Inventory is a cloud-based inventory management software that helps you monitor your stock levels and save time with features like lot traceability and vendor-managed inventory.

Zoho Inventory provides full shipping and tracking capabilities to help businesses manage their inventory and shipments. Using its mobile app, compatible with Android and iOS, you can access built-in features like shipment estimating and tracking besides delivery confirmation.

Users can invoice, ship, and track products, create purchase orders and backorders, and drop-ship items to customers. Zoho Inventory lets users track every product in their inventory by serial number, batch number, and product ID.

Zoho Inventory is the right tool to streamline your inventory management and sync it with multiple e­commerce sites. It seamlessly integrates with e-commerce websites like Amazon, Etsy, and eBay.

With its roots in Zoho, the product integrates with and has features that work around Zoho Books and Zoho Finance Suite.

There’s a free starter plan and you can upgrade as you grow with the pricing based on the monthly orders processed through your system.

Using Zoho Inventory, get more from your inventory with real-time visibility, automated alerts, and advanced reporting.

Pros

  • Customizable inventory software
  • Support barcoding
  • Cloud-based platform
  • Track expiry dates of perishables
  • Item bundling
  • Analytics and Reporting
  • Reordering alerts
  • Excellent mobile app
  • E-commerce integration
  • Shipping management tools

Cons

  • No pick list, bin ID, Bill of Material support
  • No forecasting
  • Only support FIFO costing
  • Sale and purchase order limits

2.  Square – Best for Storefronts and Retailers

Find out more at: Squareup.com

Square’s POS system comes with inventory management tools for free, making it an attractive option for small businesses—especially those in food and beverage. With the free version of Square, you can set up multiple locations, track sales, and manage inventory across all of them.

It is an all-in-one platform that offers the full suite of tools to manage your inventory and sell in-store, online, and via invoice. With in-store sales, e-commerce integrations, and mobile capabilities, Square accounts are the best for retailers looking to cover all bases regarding selling.

It has an excellent mobile app, an easy-to-use platform, and low rates. Therefore, Square is a great choice for self-employed workers looking to sell goods at craft fairs or small businesses.

It’s got great reporting and inventory management capabilities. However, the lack of multiple-location inventory can be a deal breaker for business owners who manage more than one location.

Square is a great option for businesses that are just starting or do not have a high volume. With no monthly fee, you can start processing transactions right away. You will only be charged for what you earn, so it can be a good choice if your business fluctuates monthly.

Pros

  • No monthly fees in Basic Plan
  • Variety of hardware options
  • Usable for mobile sales
  • Free, user-friendly POS software
  • Syncs across mobile sales, in-store, and online
  • Mobile app

Cons

  • Do not track perishables
  • No custom reporting
  • No kitting abilities

3.  Stockpile by Canvus – Best for Extensive Simple Inventories

Find out more at: thecanvus.com

Stockpile provides a cloud-based inventory management system that is easy to use and scalable. Simply make a product catalogue, link it to your locations and supply chain number, set a price, and voila! You’re good to go.

Its catalogue management system allows you to create a product catalogue complete with details like name, stock-keeping unit (SKU), manufacturer name, universal product code (UPC), and location.

Stockpile is a customizable platform for managing business inventory. Users can add new products with information like name, price, and quantity.

It allows you to customise currency preferences in accordance with your requirements before adding products to the database. Users can categorise the added products using labels and assign roles-based permissions to specific persons.

The system allows users to apply a location filter to the transaction database. They can also add comments in multiple entries depending on their assigned roles.

Stockpile is a scalable solution that enables businesses to upload their inventory data, calculate the costs involved with their purchases, and generate reports on their stock counts.

The platform provides organisations with an easy and secure way to import CSV files, remove damaged stock from the inventory count, get automated alerts on low stock levels, add images to inventory products, and more.

Pros

  • Basic inventory tracking
  • Unlimited items and users
  • Unlimited locations
  • Record damaged items and sales
  • Manage manufacturers and preferences

Cons

  • No barcode scanning
  • No customer management modules

4.  inFlow Inventory – Best On-Premise Solution

Find out more at: inflowinventory.com

Want to manage your inventory and orders on the go? inFlow will allow you to do just that.

Used in 90+ countries, inFlow is the inventory and order management system that allows you to grow your small business. The cloud-based Windows, web, and mobile apps make it easy to track what products you have when they are running low and when they need to be reordered. It’s simple, flexible and mobile-friendly, so you can easily manage orders across multiple locations and channels.

With inFlow, you’ll have the tools you need to make the most of your manufacturing and distribution operations. Keep track of products, manage inventory, and streamline shipping with an intuitive interface.

The manufacturing add-ons allow you to easily kite out orders, enabling quick order fulfilment. You’ll be able to generate stickers and labels easily with the built-in barcode generator or create your design template. It comes with customizable access rights, so you can only give certain users the needed features.

inFlow is built to simplify the way you run your business by managing your product information and orders. With custom e-commerce integrations, B2B portals, and reorder points, it takes only a few clicks to manage everything from purchase orders to re-stocking stock.

Pros

  • Best for sales and purchases
  • Easy to use
  • Free trial and free version available
  • Starting price is $79 per month
  • Integrations with third-party software

Cons

  • Lacks year and inventory count reset
  • Sometimes lag while connecting with the Cloud

5.  Boxstorm – Best for Growing Businesses

Find out more at: boxstorm.com

Manage your inventory and streamline the entire product lifecycle with Boxstorm. Whether you’re a small business that needs to organise its supply chain, or a large enterprise working with several suppliers and vendors, this cloud-based solution has everything you need to ensure smooth operations from beginning to end.

Boxstorm automatically tracks inventory and auto-generates purchase orders for each order placed. Manage your suppliers easily, adding your categories to organise items and keeping track of sales history.

Boxstorm allows you to generate quotes and invoices in just one click and assign locations to users. It helps you track the movement of your freight and inventory in real-time. You can monitor through barcode scanning, make electronic payments and generate reports on items moving in and out.

Use Boxstorm to streamline your inventory management, so you can focus on running your business. Boxstorm enables businesses to manage their inventory and navigate sales transactions on mobile devices.

With the help of Boxstorm’s API, your business can automate shipping and workflow processes via integration with third-party applications. These include Stripe, Shippo, BigCommerce, Shopify, etc. Its pricing is based on a monthly subscription, and you can get customer support via phone, live chat, documentation, and email.

Pros

  • Mobile app
  • Vendor management
  • Track perishable items’ expiration

Cons

  • Integrations with API only
  • Limited transactions and items

How to Choose the Best Inventory Management Software for Your Small Business?

If you’re starting or running a small business, it can be difficult to decide how to choose the right inventory system. There are many options, and they all have different features and price points and all of the five we mention in this article have a free plan to get you started.

Here are our top tips for finding the right inventory management software for your small business:

●     Your Requirements

When choosing inventory management software, it’s important to consider your specific business needs. Are you a small business owner who has only just started? Or are you running a large-scale operation that requires a lot of logistics and tracking?

If you’re a small business owner, you probably don’t need anything too complicated or expensive. A basic inventory management system will do the trick. You can use this kind of software to keep track of what your company has in stock and make sure it’s always replenished when needed.

●     Flexibility

When choosing the best inventory management software for your SME, consider the flexibility of the software.

The more flexible an inventory software is, the more likely it will be able to adapt to your needs as they change over time. If you don’t choose a system with enough flexibility, it may be unable to keep pace with your growing business.

So, be sure that your software can handle the number of products you’re selling and has room for growth in the future.

●     Integration

A lot of small businesses have limited staff and resources. So it’s important that your inventory management software can work with other programs in your business.

You may have a point-of-sale system that you want to sync up with your inventory management software. Besides, you might want a customer relationship management (CRM) system integrated with your inventory management software.

These integrations allow you to automate processes, save time and money, and get more accurate data from every aspect of your business.

●     Customization

Inventory management software that doesn’t offer you the ability to customise it is a waste of time and money. You need a system that works for your business, not against it.

Look for an inventory management system with customizable options, from reports and dashboards to inventory control and workflow automation. This will help you adjust the software to fit exactly what you need out of your inventory management system.

●     Easy to Use

The best inventory management software for your small business will be easy to use. You don’t have time to waste, so you want a program that’s intuitive and easy to set up.

Look for software that has an intuitive interface and allows you to get started right away. You should also ensure that the program is compatible with your computer or mobile device.

●     Free Trial

You’ll want to ensure that the software you choose will handle your business’s needs and that it will be easy to use and implement.

One way to ensure you choose the best option is its free trial. A free trial of the software will allow you to explore all its features and determine whether or not it’s a good fit for your company.

●     Cost

While looking at cost, think about how much time and money you can afford to spend upfront on the inventory management software and ongoing training and support costs.

Generally, the price of the software will vary based on the features and capabilities you need. It’s easy to get caught up in fancy features and forget about price—but remember that even if something looks great on paper, it may not be worth paying extra money for.

●     Customer Support

Consider the customer service of the vendor. Ask, if something goes wrong with your software, how quickly can you get help? Does the company offer phone support? Is there an option for email support? Are there training resources available if you need them?

That way, if something goes wrong, you’ll be able to resolve it quickly so that your business isn’t interrupted.

Conclusion

The best inventory management software can help you optimise how you keep your business’s products and inventory. By finding the right software for small businesses, you can be sure that everything on your records is accurate and up-to-date.

In this article, we have outlined five of the best free inventory management software products for small businesses. Using these free solutions, you can track your sales and purchases for the time being and upgrade whenever your business is doing well!

Written by

Mark Hodgson
Mark Hodgsonhttps://gosmallbusiness.co.uk
Mark Hodgson is one of our expert writers. Mark is our lead researcher and editor who writes our main guides and expert topic coverage. He’s passionate about helping entrepreneurs, startups and small businesses with practical advice delivered clearly. Mark’s worked for a number of business magazines and titles and has started two small businesses himself, so has first-hand experience in setting up, managing and growing a small business and shares his expertise with our readers.
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