Our top three overall best inventory management software tools are Zoho Inventory, Netsuite and Shore. We reviewed the top options, ranking them according to their range of features, value for money and ease of use. At the bottom of this piece, we give our final verdict on which tool which we think is the best.
Best OVERALL 🥇
Easy to use, great integrations, and good value for money.
Best Reporting 📊
Great analytics, and a wide range of automations.
Best for Small Business ✅
Easy to set up and use, good reporting and well priced.
The history of inventory management can be traced back to ancient civilizations, where early forms of inventory management were used to keep track of goods and supplies.
The ancient Egyptians used a system of hieroglyphics to record the goods they received and distributed. Not to be outdone, the ancient Greeks used a similar system of inscriptions on clay tablets.
Today, it’s obviously far, far more advanced, having grown into one of the largest SaaS categories on the planet – used by billion dollar companies to track and manage their inventory.
But which is the best tool for you?
- What Is The Best Inventory Management Software?
- What Is Inventory Management: A Brief History
- So, Why Is Inventory Management Important?
- What Is An Inventory Management System?
- Final summary: Which is the best Inventory Management Software to Use?
What Is The Best Inventory Management Software?
Just to recap, our top three options are:
In this review, we’ll give you a breakdown of each product.
- Including an overview of the platform and its best features.
- As well as its biggest pros and cons.
- We’ll also cover its support and pricing.
- Plus, we’ll take a look at how it performs on independent review sites.
- Finally, we’ll give you our all-important verdict on each product.
Let’s get started.
1. Zoho Inventory
What Is Zoho Inventory?
Zoho inventory is an inventory management software platform, designed for small and medium-sized businesses. It allows you to track your inventory levels, sales, purchases, and manage orders from a single platform.
So, what Are The Pros and Cons of Zoho Inventory?
Let’s start with an overview of the product itself.
- Zoho inventory is an online inventory management tool with warehouse management and order fulfilment functionality.
- The simplistic dashboard and reporting make it easy to manage even large warehouses.
- Improve the efficiency of the order management process by tracking all orders in a single platform, including creation of purchase orders and drop shipments.
- The serial number based tracking system makes it possible to track the movement of all goods in your inventory.
- Streamlined shipping process thanks to being partnered with some of the biggest shipping companies in the world, including DHL and FedEx.
- Offers easy integration with a range of tools, such as shopify, amazon, paypal and Zoho CRM.
- Mobile apps are available for both iOS and Android devices.
- Users love how easy it is to use the software.
- Users also say that it offers great value for money.
What About It’s Customer Support?
Zoho inventory provides a comprehensive help center with extensive documentation and tutorials to help users navigate the software. They also offer regular webinars to help new users get up to speed with the tool. Additionally, they are community forums and the support team can be contacted directly by phone or email. In general, users really appreciate how good the customer support is.
Is Zoho Inventory Free?
Yes there is a free version but it is limited to 50 orders per month.
How Much Does Zoho Inventory Cost?
Zoho Inventory offers six paid plans ranging from free to $329 per month. Prices depend on the number of orders per month. In addition, Zoho offers a 14 day free trial for all paid plans.
So, What Do Other Customer Reviews Say?
- “For the price, you get an amazing amount of tools for managing inventory. It has a great integration with Amazon and makes everything sync very easily.”
- “Zoho Inventory has helped us streamline our operations and reduce costs. The system’s automation features, such as purchase order creation and stock alerts, have eliminated the need for manual data entry and reduced errors. The integration with other Zoho products has also been a plus.”
- “The best thing is the ease of use. You don’t have to be an accountant or a professional inventory manager to understand this software.”
- “Zoho Inventory can be difficult to set up, especially for businesses with limited inventory management experience. The system offers a lot of features, which can be overwhelming for new users.”
Finally, Is Zoho Inventory Worth It?
What Is Netsuite?
Netsuite offers inventory management as one of its key features. It’s a Multi-location inventory management tool which allows you to manage inventory across warehouses, stores, or distribution centers. It also provides real-time visibility into inventory levels, stock movements, and order fulfillment status, with the aim of you being able to make more informed decisions about purchasing, production, and sales.
So, what Are The Pros and Cons of Netsuite?
Before we give you our opinion, here’s a rundown its best features.
- The inventory management tool provides a real time view of inventory across multiple locations and sales channels.
- It allows users to automate the inventory management process, including purchase order creation and stock alerts.
- The simple serial tracking feature makes it easy to trace the location of all goods and orders across multiple sites.
- Netsuite inventory management makes it easy to optimize stock levels using the in-built data analytics.
- It provides a centralized place to view all data about inventory items.
- The tool can be customized to meet the requirements of different businesses.
- Users especially like the reporting capabilities, with in-built or custom report templates helping companies to make data driven decisions.
- They also praise the automations offered by Netsuite which have helped to increase efficiency.
- However, some users have complained that the tool is difficult to setup and use.
What About It’s Customer Support?
Netsuite has a help centre that includes a large amount of useful documentation. The support team can also be contacted by phone or through the chat bot. Users really rate the customer support, with plenty of testimonials saying how positive it is.
Is Netsuite Free?
How Much Does Netsuite Cost?
So, What Do Other Customer Reviews Say?
- “NetSuite’s inventory management module has helped us reduce inventory costs and increase efficiency. The system’s automation features have eliminated the need for manual data entry and reduced the risk of errors. The real-time visibility into inventory levels has also helped us avoid stockouts and overstocking.”
- “NetSuite’s inventory management module provides robust reporting capabilities. The system offers various pre-built reports, and you can also create custom reports to meet your specific needs.”
- “NetSuite’s inventory management module offers a lot of automation features. You can automate purchase orders, stock alerts, and reorder points, which saves time and reduces the risk of errors.”
- “NetSuite’s inventory management module can be difficult to set up and use. The system requires a lot of customization to meet specific business needs, which may require expertise or training.”
Finally, Is Netsuite Worth It?
What Is Shore?
Shore includes a comprehensive set of inventory management features that can help all types of businesses manage inventory more efficiently. It may not be as robust as other options on the market, especially for larger businesses with more complex inventory management needs, but it has a well designed system and excels in simplicity.
So, what Are The Pros and Cons of Shore?
Before we give you our opinion, here’s a rundown its best features.
- Shore is a point of sale system that also includes an automated inventory management tool.
- It automatically tracks all stock making it easy to keep enough inventory on hand.
- It’s suitable for a range of different businesses including cafes, spas and retail.
- Shore makes it easy to categorize all inventory and store all product data in a single platform.
- The analytics and reporting help to ensure that adequate stock levels are maintained at all times.
- The inventory control system is integrated into the POS tool, helping to automate the stock tracking process.
- Users love how easy it is to set up and use the tool.
- They also praise the efficiency improvements thanks to the reporting features.
- It comes with a 15 day free trial for all new customers.
What About It’s Customer Support?
Shore has a help portal that includes documentation on a wide range of topics. The customer support team can also be contacted by phone, email or chat bot. Users have had mixed experiences of dealing with the Shore customer support team.
Is Shore Free?
No but it has a free trial.
How Much Does Shore Cost?
Shore cost 109.90 euros per month but it is not currently available to customers in the US.
So, What Do Other Customer Reviews Say?
- “The system is user-friendly, and we have been able to easily manage our inventory levels and movements. The customer support team has been helpful in resolving any issues we’ve had.”
- “Shore Inventory has been a great tool for us. We can quickly see inventory levels and movements, which has helped us to make informed decisions. The system is easy to set up and use, and the pricing is very reasonable.”
- “Customer service has been fantastic in helping implement and to learn the Shore system, which is packed with features essential to any modern business.”
- “Shore Inventory is lacking some key features that we need for our business, such as the ability to track inventory across multiple locations.”
Finally, Is Shore Worth It?
Those are our top three, what are the best of the rest?
Cin7 is a comprehensive inventory management platform that enables you to manage your inventory across multiple sales channels and locations.
With Cin7, you can:
- Streamline operations
- Improve efficiency
- Gain real-time visibility into inventory (and sales).
Cin7 Pros and Cons
The platform offers a range of features, including inventory control, order management, POS, and B2B e-commerce. It’s seen as both a versatile and flexible solution.
However, one potential downside to Cin7 is that it can be complex and time-consuming to set up and configure, particularly for businesses with complex inventory management needs.
Additionally, some users have reported that the customer support can be slow or unresponsive at times.
Is Cin7 worth it?
Overall, Cin7 is still a powerful tool that can help optimize inventory management processes and drive growth. With its advanced features and comprehensive functionality, Cin7 is a useful option for those looking to take control of inventory and sales operations.
What is Inflow?
Inflow is an inventory management software which allows you to track inventory levels, manage orders, and create reports – all from a single platform.
Inflow Pros and Cons:
One of the major pros of Inflow is its affordability, with a variety of features at a relatively lower price point compared to other inventory management software. Its simple, easy-to-use interface makes it a great tool for companies which don’t have dedicated inventory management personnel.
One of the expected cons from a smaller system is limited integrations. While it does integrate with some popular sales channels such as Shopify and Amazon, it may not integrate with all the channels that you use. The reporting capabilities of Inflow are also not as detailed as other inventory management software on the market.
Is Inflow worth it?
Inflow can be a good choice especially for businesses with limited resources. However, for larger, complex organizations, Inflow may not offer enough integrations or reporting capabilities. If that’s you, then it may be worth considering other options that are more suitable, with more in-depth features.
Our Inflow verdict
Overall, Inflow is a solid option for small businesses looking for a cost-effective and user-friendly inventory management software.
What is ScanUnlimited?
ScanUnlimited is a cloud-based inventory management software offering real-time inventory tracking, order management, and reporting.
ScanUnlimited Pros and Cons:
There are lots of pros for ScanUnlimited – we think it’s a really underrated tool! One of the major pros is its barcode scanning capabilities.
It allows businesses to scan and track inventory using barcode scanners or mobile devices, which can save time and reduce errors.
ScanUnlimited also offers a range of integrations, so you can manage orders from a single platform. The reporting capabilities are decent – offering detailed analytics and custom reports.
However, one of the cons of ScanUnlimited is its price.
We think it’s expensive compared to some other inventory management software on the market – so if your budget is small, this may be the sticking point!
Is ScanUnlimited worth it?
Yes and no… but if it’s quality you’re after with price not a factor then yes.
What is Sortly?
Sortly is an inventory management software tool designed mainly for smaller businesses. It has a simple and user-friendly interface, making it easy for you to get started with inventory management, no matter what your level of prior experience.
Sortly Pros and Cons:
The biggest pro of Sortly is its simplicity. It also offers a mobile app that allows businesses to manage their inventory on-the-go, which can be convenient for businesses that require mobility. If you’re unsure, pick the free trial and test the software before committing to a subscription.
The limits of Sortly mainly come in its lack of integrations. For example, it may not offer integrations with all the sales channels or shipping carriers that you need or want.
Is Sortly worth it?
A strong choice for small businesses that are just starting out with inventory management. Good if you need a simple and user-friendly inventory management software without too much depth.
8. Finale Inventory
What is Finale Inventory?
Finale Inventory is one of the best inventory management software systems for reporting and integrations with popular sales channels.
Finale Inventory Pros and Cons:
One of the major pros of Finale Inventory is its scalability. It can accommodate businesses of different sizes, especially when it comes to those with complex inventory management needs. The integrations are very good, and it comes with advanced reporting capabilities for deep insights into inventory performance.
There are no real cons as its pricing isn’t unfair, but it could be a concern for small businesses with limited budgets. Some users have reported a pretty steep learning curve, which could impact its ease of use. You would need to get used to it before you start using it to its full potential.
Is Finale Inventory worth it?
Finale Inventory is one of the best inventory management software tools. We would have had it higher up our list but for the multiple reports about it taking a while to get to grips with. Its scalability and flexibility make it a good option.
9. sku iq
What is SKU IQ?
SKU IQ is an inventory management software. It goes out of its way to state that it’s made for businesses of all sizes! It also provides integrations with popular e-commerce platforms.
SKU IQ Pros and Cons:
One of the major pros of SKU IQ is its user-friendly interface. Simple and intuitive, it makes it comfortable to get started with.
A cons of SKU IQ is its slightly limited reporting capabilities, which are not as in depth and can be a bit confusing in their layout. Some people may understand these quickly but others might take a while to adapt. If you’re a monster business, it might not provide the complexity you need.
Is SKU IQ worth it?
SKU IQ is a useful option for certain types of businesses, but if you’re an enormous multinational you may want to look elsewhere.
What Is Inventory Management: A Brief History
In the Middle Ages, merchants and traders used a system of inventory management known as “just-in-time” (JIT) inventory.
This involved maintaining a (very!) small amount of stock on hand and regularly replenishing it as needed. The fundamentals of this system are still around today, used to minimize the costs associated with storing and maintaining large quantities of goods.
By the time of the 18th and 19th centuries, the Industrial Revolution led to the development of more sophisticated forms of inventory management.
With the advent of new manufacturing technologies, it became easily possible to produce goods in much larger quantities (and at a lower cost).
As a result, businesses began to use a system of inventory management known as “economic order quantity” (EOQ) to determine the optimal order size and reorder point for their inventory.
In the 20th century, advances in technology and the rise of the internet have led to the development of new inventory management systems and software. Today, businesses use a variety of inventory management systems, including enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, warehouse management systems, and inventory optimization software, to manage their inventory more effectively.
The history of inventory management has been a story of adapting to changing technologies (just like today!), with each one being more sophisticated than the last.
Business models have evolved, and customer expectations have been transformed by today’s ‘instant’ approach to practically everything.
Inventory management is as complicated as we want it to be, and is a critical function that helps you keep track of what you have and what you need. It’s vital to the overall success of a business.
So, Why Is Inventory Management Important?
Inventory management is crucial, and here are a few examples why:
Cost savings: Effective inventory management helps businesses to reduce the costs associated with storing and maintaining large quantities of goods – storage is expensive and should be minimized wherever possible.
By maintaining the right level of inventory that reflect the size of the company, businesses can reduce the costs of carrying excess products – which also impacts on insurance costs.
Improved customer service: Effective inventory management helps businesses to ensure that they have the right products in stock to meet customer demand. This can improve customer satisfaction and help to build a positive reputation.
Conversely, poor inventory management can lead to popular products being out of stock, which is a major irritant for customers.
Increased efficiency: Effective inventory management helps businesses to streamline their operations. It significantly reduces the time and resources required to manage inventory.
This can lead to increased productivity, which obviously has an excellent effect on the bottom line.
Better decision-making: Effective inventory management gives businesses an opportunity to make much better decisions. With accurate and up-to-date information about their inventory, they you can make smarter calls about inventory levels, product mix, and other aspects of operations.
Reduced risk: Effective inventory management cuts down the risks associated with inventory management – such as stockouts, overstocking, and inventory write-offs.
This can help businesses to maintain a stable cash flow and significantly minimize the potential for financial losses.
In a nutshell, inventory management is important because it helps businesses:
- Optimize their operations
- Improve customer service
- Make better-informed decisions
It’s crucial for cash flow, reducing costs and risks, and ultimately increasing efficiency and productivity.
What Is An Inventory Management System?
An inventory management system is a software system used to track and manage a company’s inventory.
This can include the quantity of items in stock, their location, and their movement in and out of the warehouse. Most importantly, it enables you to track when new items should be ordered, and when items should be removed from the inventory.
An inventory management system can be integrated with other systems, such as accounting, customer relationship management, and enterprise resource planning systems, to provide a comprehensive view of the business.
It typically includes the following functionalities:
Inventory tracking: The system keeps track of the quantity of items in stock, their location, and their movement in and out of the warehouse.
Order management: Allowing you to manage purchase orders, sales orders, and transfer orders. Tracking the status of orders, like whether they have been received, partially received, or fully received.
Barcode and RFID scanning: Inventory management systems can be integrated with barcode and RFID scanning technology like those seen in the best asset tracking software technologies, to automate the process of tracking inventory items as they move in and out of the warehouse.
Reporting and analytics: Reporting and analytics capabilities that let you view inventory levels, stock movements, sales history, and other key metrics.
Reordering: A system that can be configured to automatically generate reorder points and purchase orders. This makes sure that inventory levels are maintained at optimal levels.
Mobile and web access: The best inventory management systems are web-based and can be accessed from any device (so long as there is an internet connection), which allows for remote access and management.
NOTE: Make sure you have the security configured if this is the route you go down.
Overall, an inventory management system is a type of software tool that can help you to manage their inventory more efficiently and effectively.
Key parts are:
- Real-time visibility into inventory levels
- Automating inventory tracking
- Generating reorder points
- Providing other key functionalities.
Final summary: Which is the best Inventory Management Software to Use?
After reviewing all nine tools, we found that they come down to two things:
- The size and scale of your own organization, which determines how you view the price, and also the depth of reporting.
- The variety of integrations with platforms like Shopify and Woocommerce.
If we were pushed, we’d vote Netsuite as number one.
We hope you found this article useful – let us know which software you think is the best, and don’t forget to subscribe to us on social @thesoftwarepig.