Getting started guide
In this article, learn about different product types and how to add them to your catalog. Afterwards, you can add inventory to your products and use inventory management features. Navigate to other articles in the guide using the carousel below.
Setting up your product catalog is a key step to ensuring the success of your store. This is a collection of all the products available in your store(s) and where you record essential product information such as product names, pricing, supply costs, variations, and inventory. A well-set-up product catalog makes for an efficient sales process, accurate reporting, and better inventory management.
Understanding product types
There are three types of products that can be added to your catalog:
A single product with a single SKU and its own inventory. Examples include a plant, handbag, or vintage jewelry.
A group of similar products that are offered in different variations, such as size or color. Each variant is a unique SKU with its own inventory. Examples include shirts that come in different colors and sizes or candles that come in different scents.
Different products are packaged together to create a product bundle, multi-pack, or fractional products. Examples include gift baskets or furniture sets.
Adding individual products to your catalog
Each product type can be added to your product catalog individually from Catalog > Products by clicking Add product. This allows you to add create and/or grow your catalog on a product-by-product basis and can be especially useful if you sell a limited number of products or don't make large changes to your product offering on a regular basis.
Select the type of product you wish to add for detailed steps:
Bulk importing products to your catalog
For larger product offerings or already digitized product catalogs outside of Retail POS, formatting and importing products to your catalog via a spreadsheet (CSV, XLSX, or XLS) will allow you to speed up the process.
We recommend familiarizing yourself with the basic premise of adding products individually before attempting to import products via a spreadsheet. Once you have an idea of the type of product information you require, refer to our Importing products using a spreadsheet to learn how to correctly format the product information and import it to Retail POS.
Adding inventory to your products
The final step in setting up your product catalog is to add inventory to your products. This allows you to utilize Retail POS inventory management, a feature that maintains accurate stock levels for your products as you make sales so that you always know what you have in stock.
Reporting is also an important part of inventory management, not only for tracking the sales performance of your products but calculating the cost and profitability of those products too.
Before adding inventory to your products
Before you begin adding inventory to your products, we recommend checking that you have correctly entered supply prices for each of your products. This will ensure that automatic reporting that relies on the supply price remains accurate:
- Supply price: A product's supply price is the value that you purchase the product from your supplier(s) for. This is initially entered when adding a product to your product catalog and subsequently confirmed or updated (as needed) when creating purchase orders/receiving stock. The supply price is then used to calculate the product's average cost.
- Average cost: The average cost is a value for each product that is automatically calculated in Retail POS by averaging all supply prices recorded over time. The average cost is then used to calculate the cost of goods sold in your reporting.
- Cost of goods sold (COGS): The cost of goods sold (COGS) are the direct costs involved in purchasing or making the products you sell. When you make a sale in Retail POS with COGS enabled, the values of the cost associated with the products sold will be added up as part of the register closure, posted as a (zero dollar) bill invoice, and appear as as a sum on the register closure summary report. Viewing COGS against total operating expenses helps you monitor your overall profit or loss.
A product's supply price is set once an inventory movement is triggered, which then begins the average cost and cost of goods sold calculations.
Inventory movement: An inventory movement is an event in Retail POS that will trigger the supply cost of a product to be set and the average cost calculated for the first time. There are 4 types of inventory movements in Retail POS:
- Adding inventory directly to your products
- Creating purchase orders and receiving stock
- Selling products on the sell screen
- Completing inventory counts
Adding inventory during the setup process
While you're still setting up, inventory can be added to your products directly as long as an inventory movement hasn't already been triggered for the product(s), by:
Adding inventory after going live
Once you've gone live, inventory movements have been triggered, and the average cost is set, there is only one method you should use to add inventory going forward:
- Using a purchase order.
Using a purchase order to add inventory allows you to continue recording product supply prices and ensure that the average cost and cost of goods sold calculations remain accurate changes.
Updating inventory via product editing after the setup process is not recommended as this does not allow supply price updates to be accurately captured and may affect the average cost and cost of goods sold calculations.