Megaventory Blog - Online Inventory Management Software, Order fulfillment and Control System
This is the company blog for megaventory, an online software that helps small businesses that buy, sell and manufacture physical products to manage sales, purchasing, manufacturing and inventory. We blog about new features and updates but also about enterprise software, small businesses, cloud computing and the industry in general.

Monday, October 23, 2017

How to invoice services in Megaventory

Part of having a business that offers services along with their physical products is invoicing your clients for your services.

Especially in the B2B market, most companies require an invoice before they place a payment, making it rather crucial for the service provider to be able to generate an invoice quickly and properly.

In this article we cover how to invoice for services in Megaventory, track your service fees and include services in a work order.

How to track services

In Megaventory, a service is considered any non-physical product that is charged but there is no stock reduction when a sale is made.

Therefore, under the product type of "service", you can track delivery fees, installation costs, labor costs, or even your hourly rates if you are a designer, a lawyer, an engineer or any freelancer whatsoever.

Before starting invoicing your clients, your first step is to add your services as products in Megaventory.

  1. Log in to your Megaventory account and go to Products. Sign up for an account here.
  2. Click Add Product.
  3. In the Product Type, select the option Service.
  4. Fill out the other fields, including the Default Sales Price if you have a standard cost for this service.
  5. Hit Insert to add it to your product list.

Pro Tip: If you offer your services for free, you can still include them in the invoice with a zero price. 

Selling both services and products

For the sake of an example, let's imagine the following scenario: your company sells electric appliances such as air conditioners. As an added service you offer the installation of purchased appliances for an added cost, which has a flat fee.

The above is a sample invoice created within Megaventory. Headers and footers can be customized to include information like declamatory messages or QR codes, to make sure you give the right message to your customers.

Pro Tip: Especially for sales that the customer may need additional help after the purchase, it is advised to include info on how they can reach you best.

Checking stock availability 

When it is time to send the products to the customer and you click to ship and invoice, you can see the stock availability of the items to check that everything is right (or not).

Next to the air conditioner, you can see that you have a product availability of 5. The box next to the installation fee, though, is empty. That happens because there is no physical restriction to how many times you can offer this service. Pretty convenient, right? 

Managing manufacturing with services 

If you are in the manufacturing industry, you may want to track the labor cost of a work order in order to calculate how much this product costs you.

This may be really helpful for Megaventory users that have pricing rules in place which automatically calculate the sales price of a product depending on its cost. For example, you can create a pricing rule for the sales prices of certain products to be the manufacturing cost + a 20%.

Back to services, let's see the scenario where you create custom-made shoes.

With the manufacturing module of Megaventory, you can track the leather - the raw material - and the service or labor cost of the professional shoemaker as different parts of the work order.

Again, next to the leather you can see the product availability in the selected inventory location, while there is no number next to the Shoemaker's Cost.

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Now that you know how to invoice for services in Megaventory, you can easily bill your clients and partners. Importing your standard service fees in your account will save you time to do the thing you love more as an entrepreneur: run your business.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Why You Should Integrate Online Tactics Into Your Brick and Mortar Retail Shop

This is a guest post by guest contributor Mitch Pazanski

Shopping at traditional brick and mortar stores might be a lot of fun, but shopping online can be far more convenient. When we’re slumped on the sofa after a long day at work, we can just pop online, do a bit of searching and make a few purchases.

It’s so much easier than getting into the car, driving through the traffic and finding a parking spot before we’ve even arrived at a physical store.

The numbers are in: Over 70% of shoppers think they’ll find a better deal online, while 60% of American shoppers don’t like shopping in crowded stores.

However, not all is lost. 56% of online stores still have a brick and mortar store because they know people continue to enjoy the brick and mortar shopping experience. As Forbes points out, brick and mortar stores don’t need to die - they just need to evolve.

Let’s take a look at why you should integrate online tactics into your brick and mortar retail shop.

The Millennials Are Here, And They Want More Buying Options

Millennials have grown up during an epoch in history that is defined by technology. Consequently, they’re the group of shoppers that are using tech the most. They have grown using brick and mortar stores and online eCommerce stores - and expect to be able to enjoy the best of both these worlds with every shopping experience they have. This is why improving and expanding your business with online tactics is essential, if you are to keep the millennial shopper happy. They use numerous devices to make purchases, with their mobile phones now essentially acting as digital wallets. Moreover, Generation Z are hot on the heels of the millennials - and they’re growing up fast.

Once Online, You Can Understand Your Customer Better

One of the problems faced by a brick and mortar store is that you don’t really get a good chance to understand your customers needs extremely well. According to a survey carried out by RetailDive, no more than 43% of customers are willing to share information after they’ve made a purchase in a physical store.

This means you still don’t know over 50% of your customers. As such, you can’t personalize their shopping experience.

Online is a different story. You can use Artificial Technology to better understand your customers and their buying habits. This is important. Faced with so many buying options and sales channels, the 21st-century shopper is becoming harder and harder to understand.

AI presents you with data on consumer habits that you can then analyze and make good use of. This will help you to keep up with your competitors who are also trying to understand their customer. You can understand your own performance metrics online better too, including what your customers are searching for once they’re in your online store.

Enhanced Customer Experience

For your customers to like your brand, you need to treat them well by delivering a personalized experience. As mentioned above, AI can help with that.

AI also enhances the customer experience in ways that help to build your online presence, thus bolstering the reputation of your business as a whole. The more personalized you make the shopping experience, the more likely it is that a customer will be satisfied and retained.

Chatbots can help. Nothing more than a piece of software which chats to your customers, chatbots are on-hand to listen to the customer and offer them relevant information that improves their experience and nudges them towards a crucial sale.

The best thing? Chatbots learn the habits of your customers and know them far better than you ever could.

Your Customers Can Order Online And Pick Up In-Store

One of the best online tactics you should integrate is in-store pickup. Why? It’s booming. It’s been popular since US and UK customers were quizzed about it back in 2012.

Another reason why you should integrate this online tactic is because it’s worth noting that people like to research their options online. It saves them time, it means they can easily reserve a product, and even if they don’t buy, they might head on down to your store anyway.

If you go down the route of adding in-store pickup, you’ll need to keep on top of your inventory, both online and offline. There are inventory management apps that help you synch and monitor your product across numerous sales channels. As soon as you sell a product, the apps automatically update your inventory.

To recap, unless you integrate online tactics into your brick and mortar store, you’ll miss out on a huge chunk of your targeted audience. The tactics don’t take long to master, and once learned, they will help you expand your business.


Mitch Pazanski is head of the art department at MightySkins, a company that leads the internet in custom designed skins for your devices. He helps design the DJI Mavic skins offered by the company.