Best Small Business Inventory Management Software Shortlist
Here are the programs that made my top 12.
- NetSuite - Best user dashboards
- Zoho Inventory - Best value for money
- Cin7 - Best for e-commerce sellers
- Megaventory - Best for manufacturers
- Sortly - Best for inventory tracking
- Lightspeed Inventory Management - Best for retailers
- inFlow - Best for small teams
- Square - Best for ease of use
- QuickBooks Enterprise - Best for beginners
- Monday.com - Best free inventory management template
- Odoo - Best open-source option
- Extensiv Order Manager (formerly Skubana) - Best for dropshipping
Lead times, re-order points, minimum order quantities, physical counts…keeping track of inventory is no small task. But fortunately, there are a lot of great inventory management software options out there for small businesses. With the right tool, you can spend less time trying to figure out what products you have on hand, how many units are in stock, and when to re-order, so you have more time to grow your business.
What Can I Expect in Small Business Inventory Management Software?
Inventory management software, at its most basic level, helps business owners manage and track the items they have in their inventory. When integrated with your POS system, inventory management software updates inventory stock levels as products are sold.
Many inventory management tools also come with e-commerce features that can help you automatically print shipping labels and forecast future customer demand. Plus, automations can be set up to re-order products whenever the amount you have on hand drops below a certain quantity.
Overviews of the 12 Best Small Business Inventory Management Software Options
The following overviews highlight each tool’s notable features, price, free trial offers, and some high-level pros and cons.
1. NetSuite - Best user dashboards
NetSuite offers what I think is both the clearest and most detailed inventory dashboard, letting you see all the key stats for your business’s inventory in one place.
Why I picked NetSuite: NetSuite offers inventory management and other features, like automatic reordering in a single package. It has an incredibly detailed dashboard to make it easy to see your inventory at a glance, but it also integrates with Oracle’s other business services, such as accounting programs, CRM, and more.
NetSuite Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include a real-time inventory monitoring dashboard to track stock levels and sales. I find one of its key strengths to be a forecasting tool that can help you with demand-based planning to optimize your stock levels, decreasing carrying costs and boosting profitability.
Integrations include Oracle’s many other NetSuite service offerings, including CRM, accounting tools, workforce management, omnichannel sales tools, and more.
Price: Custom pricing available upon request. One-time setup fee plus annual fee.
Free Trial: Demo available.
- Highly detailed real-time dashboard
- CRM, workforce management, and automated reordering features
- Integrates with other Oracle tools
- Opaque pricing
- Limited third-party integrations
2. Zoho Inventory - Best for low-cost software
Zoho Inventory offers a low-cost inventory management tool that I think is very easy to use. Despite its low learning curve and price, it has all of the features you’d expect and need.
Why I picked Zoho Inventory: Zoho Inventory made the list because it’s one of the best values in inventory management software, offering a completely free service for very small businesses and numerous price plans that you can move to as you expand.
Zoho Inventory Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include multi-currency support, automated shipping label creation and package tracking, and 24/7 support. I think the shipping label creation and tracking are particularly helpful if you plan to make a lot of e-commerce sales.
Integrations include Zoho’s other business software, such as Zoho Books accounting software, Shopify, Amazon, Etsy, eBay US, FedEx, UPS, and other shipping providers.
Price: From $59 per month
Free Trial: Free plan available (50 or fewer orders per month)
- Free plan available for small businesses
- Integrates with other Zoho tools
- Automates portions of the shipping process, like printing labels
- You’ll be forced to upgrade to more expensive services as your order volume grows
- Limited integrations
3. Cin7 - Best for e-commerce sellers
Cin7 combines inventory tracking and order fulfillment management in one tool, making it a great choice for online sellers.
Why I picked Cin7: Cin7 is a powerful inventory management tool that offers both inventory tracking and fulfillment management in a single application. However, it goes beyond offering basic tools for each task and tries to bring more value. For example, it can do automated purchasing when you run low on stock, and it can do almost everything to ship a product short of boxing it up and putting it in the mail when you get an order.
Cin7 Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include automated inventory purchasing to avoid stockouts, plus end-to-end order fulfillment and shipping management. The order fulfillment and shipping tools are particularly helpful if you’re selling goods online.
Integrations include Shopify, ShipStation, Xero, Quickbooks, WooCommerce, Square, Amazon, Wayfair, Magento, Walmart, Etsy, and more.
Price: From $325 per month
Free Trial: 14-day free trial
- Incredibly robust software that can automate key processes, like reordering inventory
- Integrates with a huge variety of e-commerce platforms
- Offers a built-in POS system
- Limited users on non-enterprise plans
4. Megaventory - Best for manufacturers
Megaventory is on the pricier side of things for small businesses, but it offers some unique and useful features that manufacturers, in particular, will benefit from.
Why I picked Megaventory: Megaventory is an inventory management solution designed specifically for manufacturing companies. I feel that its unique offerings, including the ability to make bills of materials, cost different manufacturing processes, and allocate components to work orders
Megaventory Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include inventory management and order fulfillment automations, manufacturing-focused services like production costing, and multi-currency support. Production costing is highly valuable for manufacturers to help make sure you’re pricing goods properly.
Integrations include Zapier, Magneto, WooCommerce, Shopify, Quickbooks, and more.
Price: $1,500 onboarding fee plus $135 per month
Free Trial: 15 days
- Designed for manufacturers (bills of materials and product costing features)
- Discounts for nonprofits
- Customized reports
- High price (mandatory $1,500 onboarding fee)
- Limited number of users
5. Sortly - Best for basic inventory tracking
Sortly is one of the simplest and easiest-to-use inventory management tools and comes at a low cost. Though it lacks some bonus features like integrations with shipping tools, I think it can be a good entry-level inventory tool.
Why I picked Sortly: Sortly doesn’t come with many bells and whistles. In fact, it lacks integrations and add-on services like shipment tracking or customer relationship management. But it covers the basics, and it’s relatively cheap (if the free plan isn’t enough).
Maybe a good pick if you have a limited budget and just need a tool that can help you keep an eye on stock levels and automate a few standard inventory reports.
Sortly Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include real-time reporting for inventory levels, automated alerts when you run low on stock, and a mobile app-based QR and barcode scanner. Its simplicity is its real standout feature. There’s very little learning curve.
Integrations are available through Sortly’s API, but you must develop them on your own.
Price: From $29 per month.
Free Trial: 14-day free trial
- Free plan available
- Very intuitive with a low learning curve
- Phone-based barcode scanning
- Limited integrations
- Lacks shipping and fulfillment features
6. Lightspeed Inventory Management - Best for retailers
LightSpeed’s inventory management software integrates with the company’s other offerings, including POS software, making it a strong all-in-one solution.
Why I picked Lightspeed Inventory Management: Lightspeed offers both an inventory management tool and POS, making it a great choice for retailers that want a single, combined solution. With its low learning curve and useful automations, I think most physical and online retailers could benefit from the service.
Lightspeed Inventory Management Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include tracking of inventory levels across multiple sales channels and locations, product variation tracking that lets you manage multiple product sizes or options, built-in purchasing tools, and stock-out alerts.
It also has customer loyalty tools that I think would be very helpful for attracting and keeping repeat customers.
Integrations include Lightspeed’s POS system, AppCard, Astro Loyalty, Amaka, Drizly, Lendio, Zettle, and a few others.
Price: From $69 per month
Free Trial: 14-day free trial
- Works with Lightspeed POS
- Dedicated account manager
- eCommerce integrations for online sales
- Requires annual contract for best price
- Cheapest plan doesn’t support eCommerce
7. inFlow - Best for B2B companies
inFlow is designed with B2B companies like manufacturers in mind, offering inventory management, purchasing and receiving, and other services alongside more than 30 useful reports.
Why I picked inFlow: inFlow is an effective inventory management tool, helping you keep a close eye on your stock levels from any device, including your smartphone. On top of that, it comes with barcoding and shipping integration to make it easy to fulfill orders.
inFlow Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include an online B2B showroom to help generate B2B sales, plus manufacturing cost and component tracking. You can track inventory across multiple warehouses or retail locations, and sales performance of different items over different time periods.
With more than 30 pre-built reports to analyze different aspects of a company’s inventory, I think inFlow might be a good fit for B2B companies with multiple inventory sites to manage.
Integrations include Amazon, DHL, eBay, WooCommerce, UPS, and Magento.
Price: From $89 per month
Free Trial: 14-day free trial
- Easily generate barcodes
- 30+ reports for tracking performance
- Online B2B product showroom
- Pricing is high
- Cost increases your sales volume grows
8. Square - Best for ease of use
Square offers free inventory management services with its POS system, which seems especially convenient for companies that are already using Square’s POS.
Why I picked Square: Square’s inventory management software is quite easy to use, and it comes as a free addition to the company’s POS service. It’s simple to set up and works well for both physical and digital retailers.
Square Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include a built-in POS service, unlimited item tracking, cross-location stock tracking, and barcode label printing.
I thought the inventory forecasting tools seemed particularly helpful, giving you a way to figure out what your stock levels will look like in the future and to place new orders before you run out of stock.
Integrations include OpenTable, HomeBase, Postmates, Ritual, Marketman, PEachworks, Quickbooks, and more.
Price: Free, or from $60 per month per location
Free Trial: 30-day free trial
- Built-in POS system
- Automated low-stock alerts
- No limit to the number of items you can track
- Limited reporting options
- Higher levels of service can get pricey
9. QuickBooks Enterprise - Best for beginners
QuickBooks Enterprise comes with an inventory management suite that’s easy to use alongside the company’s other services, such as accounting and employee management tools.
Why I picked QuickBooks: I selected QuickBooks because it offers inventory management and tracking that anyone can learn how to use, even without any prior accounting experience. It can serve as a one-stop shop for companies that want help with inventory, accounting, and other services.
QuickBooks Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include access to more than 200 reports for monitoring your company’s performance, smartphone app-based barcode scanning, and instant notifications when stock runs low.
I think the automated purchase order creation feature would help companies avoid stockouts and reduce the time it takes to place new orders.
Integrations include other QuickBooks services, Amazon, Etsy, and Shopify.
Price: From $25.50 per month
Free Trial: 30-day free trial
- 200+ report options
- Integrates with bookkeeping and other QuickBooks services
- Free expert onboarding
- Inventory management only available on higher-tier plans
- High price after introductory period
10. Monday.com - Best free inventory management template
Monday.com is a cloud-based work management platform that supports a variety of tasks, including sales, marketing, project management, and HR.
Why I picked Monday.com: While Monday.com doesn’t offer standalone inventory management software, they do offer a free inventory management template that I think might be a good fit for businesses that are just starting out or on a tight budget. Their free plan includes customizable “boards” that you can use for things like inventory management, digital asset management, and basic CRM tasks.
Monday.com Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include inventory management templates that are easy to use and don’t take long to set up. Monday.com’s work management platform gives you access to an unlimited number of documents for collaboration.
Their dashboards are pretty versatile too; you can set them up to be private, only viewable by team members, or shareable with people outside of your organization.
I like how Monday.com lets you use their templates and up to three workspace boards for free. And I mean completely free, as in they don’t ask for your credit card information or anything.
Integrations include Outlook email, Microsoft Teams, Slack, Zoom, Excel, Salesforce, DocuSign, Asana, and Stripe.
Price: From $24/month
Free Trial: 14-day free trial
- Smartphone support
- Simple interface
- Customizable shareable CRM and PM templates
- No POS integration options
- Only basic plan and higher tiers offer payment processing integrations
11. Odoo Inventory - Best open-source software
Odoo Inventory is a low-cost (or entirely free) open-source inventory management program that offers more advanced features for an additional fee.
Why I picked Odoo Inventory: Odoo Inventory’s free inventory tracking software gives businesses multi-warehouse tracking, automated order placement, and stocking efficiency analysis. Or for a monthly fee, you can combine it with Odoo’s other tools.
Odoo Inventory Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include double-entry inventory tracking, fully automated stock replacement, and reporting tools.
One feature I think would be incredibly useful is the efficient stock analysis tool, which can help you figure out the optimal level of inventory to carry to keep costs low.
Integrations include Odoo’s other services, such as accounting, HR, CRM, and POS.
Price: From $24.90 per month for all Odoo services
Free Trial: 15-day free trial
- Free to use a single service
- Financial reporting capabilities
- Extensive user guides and tutorials available
- Complex onboarding
- Limited function without Odoo’s other services
12. Extensiv Order Manager (formerly Skubana) - Best for dropshipping
Extensiv Order Manager was built with dropshippers in mind, targeting businesses that sell on websites like Amazon, eBay, and Walmart. It helps you keep an eye on stock levels while fulfilling customer orders.
Why I picked Extensiv Order Manager: I think Extensiv Order Manager fits a unique niche that isn’t well-served by other inventory management tools. While dropshippers, by nature, try to avoid carrying inventory, they can still benefit from an inventory management tool to keep an eye on stock levels and assist with order fulfillment.
Extensiv Order Manager Standout Features and Integrations:
Standout Features include real-time reporting of stock levels and order fulfillment status. It also has a wide variety of automations that make it easy to sell through major e-commerce stores like Amazon, which can help you make sales more easily.
I also really like all of the user guides and how-to documentation available through Extensiv’s knowledge base, all of which should help with onboarding and troubleshooting.
Integrations include Amazon, Shopify, eBay, BigCommerce, Walmart, PayPal, Magneto, and more.
Price: From $39 per month
Free Trial: 1 month
- Automate key tasks such as reordering inventory
- Integrates with popular e-commerce sellers
- Extensive support documentation and how-to guides
- High learning curve
- Works best when integrated with other Extensiv services
There are a lot of options in the world of small business inventory management. If you’re not certain that one of my above choices is right for you, consider these alternatives.
- Fishbowl - Best for warehouses
- Ordoro - Best for fulfillment and dropshipping
- Katana - Best cloud inventory service
- ShipBob - Best global inventory and fulfillment service
- BrightPearl - Best for app integrations
Selection Criteria for Small Business Inventory Management Software
To create my list of the best small business inventory management tools, I started by looking at a range of companies and programs to compare their services, function, price, and other factors.
When ranking these programs, I used these factors.
To get a spot on the list of my best inventory management software, the program needed to work with some obvious tasks: It has to allow for the entry of many items, track stock levels and update them as products sell or are received, generate reports about inventory levels over time and notify you when stock is running low, and ideally offer forecasting for future inventory use.
Having the basic functions needed to work is important for any inventory management system, but there are other key features that helped tools win a spot on the list.
- Integrations with POS systems. Good inventory management tools work seamlessly with popular POS services or have a built-in POS system that automatically updates inventory levels with each sale.
- Integrations. Many inventory management programs also work nicely with tools like accounting software or CRM tools. That reduces the workload of moving data from one program to another.
- Barcode generation and scanning. Inventory software should be able to generate barcodes for different products and offer a way to scan them to quickly get details about the product and stock levels. This can make it much easier to update stock levels based on sales and purchases of new stock.
- Order automation. When you run low on inventory, it’s important to know about it. It’s even better if your inventory management software can place the order to restock without you having to do anything!
- Fulfillment. It’s a huge help if your inventory management software can help you print shipping labels, track orders, and do other fulfillment tasks.
- Multi-channel support. An inventory management system should be flexible enough to handle a retailer that sells goods in-person and online.
Any piece of business software is designed to help your business accomplish a task more quickly, easily, and accurately. Inventory management software is no different, so it’s key for it to be easy to use so you can actually reap those benefits.
Some programs have a bit of a learning curve, but they often make up for it with advanced reporting features, forecasting, and other tools. I looked for software that was relatively easy to use once you got over the learning curve without sacrificing function.
Most inventory management tools charge a monthly fee, often based on the number of products you want to track or, in the case of tools that help with fulfillment, the number of orders that you process per month. Some come as add-ons for POS systems, which means the cost can depend on other factors.
Smaller companies can expect to pay $15 - $30 per month for an inventory management solution, though free options are available. Larger companies will pay more, sometimes $200 - $400 or more if they have a lot of orders to fulfill.
If your inventory management system breaks, it can shut down your entire operation, making it all but impossible to find the products you have on hand or to deal with shipping and other fulfillment tasks.
Having customer support that is readily available and a reputation for being helpful is key to ensuring that problems are dealt with swiftly.
What are the must-haves for inventory management software?
Is inventory management software secure?
How much does inventory management software cost?
How do I go about finding the right small business inventory management software for my company?
Inventory management software is a key tool for any company that sells products or that needs supplies to offer a service to customers. Hopefully, now you’re a little closer to choosing the right one for your team.
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