Automotive Inventory Management Software Buyer’s Guide
The automotive industry is one of the most profitable and massive initiatives. According to one research, in 2023, $104 billion is the value of the car and automobile manufacturing market in the United States only. Although the market took a big hit by the pandemic, it is bouncing back.
No surprise if you want to jump into the automotive business or have already started the business. However, as a business owner, managing the inventory is crucial to keep any business running efficiently.
Your presence here shows that you might be facing an issue with your current automotive inventory management system or, as a startup, might be looking for the best automotive inventory management software.
You are in luck. In this guide, you will find the top auto inventory management software, factors to consider while selecting the solution, its importance for the business, core features, top advantages, and how much it costs.
» What is Automotive Inventory Management Software?
Before you step any further, start with a simple understanding of what automotive inventory management systems are and how they work.
Automotive inventory management software, also known as vehicle inventory management software, is not just about knowing how much inventory a business has. It is all about tracking, sorting, and organizing the vehicles and auto parts from the point they manufacture and delivered to end users.
They are online cloud-hosted tools that allow users to perform inventory management-related processes. These powerful solutions have many top features to offer, such as contact management, workflow automation, customization, invoices & billing management, and visualization.
Furthermore, the tools allow users to capture comprehensive inventory data and store them in a centrally secured place from where users can easily access those data, analyze them, and generate various reports.
» Importance of Automotive Inventory Management for Your Business?
Having over-stock is as bad as getting out-of-stock for auto parts. Hence, efficiently managing automotive inventory is vital.
When auto parts are stored more than requirements, they may go out of trend, become less demanding shortly, and might never be sold. Moreover, some auto parts may take up more space, leaving less room for vital inventory.
When users are unable to keep track of auto inventory and forget to replenish the resources, it might be possible that customers may get out-of-stock messages for their desired auto parts. It may result in a bad customer experience, and businesses might lose potential customers. Losing customers means less revenue generation and low business growth.
Best automotive inventory management systems keep track of all automotive stock and provide real-time updation of changing numbers based on orders, reorders, and returns. Furthermore, users can generate various metrics using the tools’ analytical ability. These metrics can provide actionable insights to forecast the auto parts requirements accurately.
» Best Features of Automotive Inventory Management Software
Automotive inventory management software consists of many outstanding features. Dealers can use these best features to manage their automotive inventory and streamline the workflow. They are as follows:
› Stock Management
The solutions allow users to quickly and effectively add, edit, track, filter, and organize the number of vehicles and other auto parts for seamless management. Moreover, users can get real-time updates on auto parts on demand to satisfy customer demands efficiently. Stock management is one of automotive inventory management systems’ most crucial and core features.
› Analytics and Reports
It is also one of the crucial features of vehicle inventory management software. Using this feature, users can generate many vital metrics, such as financial status, sales history, customer satisfaction, and retention rates. Based on these metrics, users can create reports that can be presented during a weekly, monthly, or quarterly meetings to review business performance.
› Contact Database
The systems let users create a centrally secured contact database. Here they can save comprehensive contact details like a contact name, email address, contact number, vehicle number, and other vital information. Users can easily access the contact database whenever required.
› Document Management
Using this feature, users can create a secure repository to store all documents, such as sales and service-related documents of vehicles. They can access this repository and create, edit, import, export, and manage all documents effortlessly.
› Online Retailing
Using this feature, users can securely allow their customers to complete most financial processes online. It improves user experience and boosts brand awareness. However, they must come in person to verify and finalize the order.
The tools support seamless integration with other websites and service providers for various processes. I.e., Third-party integration is required with convenient payment gateways for fetching secure transactions from users.
› OEM Communications
The tools allow running OEM (original equipment manufacturers) programs to provide seamless communication between manufacturers and dealers to best satisfy customer demands and expectations. The programs are not limited to just buying process. They are intended to work as long as the vehicles life.
› Payroll Management
Users can easily track and manage their expenses for employees, like salary, incentives, and other benefits given to employees. It will provide a clearer view of budget expenditure for better visualization. A transparent system may also improve employee satisfaction and increase morale.
› Sales Management
Automotive inventory management systems effectively track, save, and manage sales-related data. Users can access the data anytime for various purposes. For instance, they can generate the sales reports for different timelines, like weekly, monthly, and quarterly to review business performance.
» Top Advantages of Automotive Inventory Management Software
Dealers can leverage the top benefits of auto inventory management software using the best features that the tools provide. Have a look at some top advantages that may need for business growth. They are as follows:
› Built with Advanced Technology
The solutions are cloud-hosted. They allow users to access the data regardless of time and location. Users only require a device with active internet, and they are good to go.
› Provides Robust Security
Automotive inventory management tools stores crucial customer data. If the solutions are hacked, all the precious customer data may get into competitors’ hands. The tools provide robust security against maximum online viruses and threats and prevent online attackers from stealing data.
› Increases Customer Loyalty and Retention
Using the solution’s top features, users can facilitate customers in many ways, like wishing them on festivals & other occasions and reminding due vehicle service dates. It will make them feel special and increase customer loyalty and retention.
› Better Customer Experience
Suppose customers preferred auto parts are unavailable at the moment. In that case, the tools allow customers to add them to the wish list. Customers will get a notification about that whenever that particular auto parts are available. This way, users can enrich the customer experience.
› Easy Accessibility
Automotive parts inventory management software saves inventory data in a centralized place. Users with the credentials can easily access those data as required. They can also share the data if needed.
› Automates Multiple Processes
The solutions enable users to automate many monotomous processes, such as sending notifications and confirmation messages of booking confirmation, vehicle service due dates, and overdue invoices. It saves users precious time that they can utilize to perform other crucial business activities.
› Efficient Order Management
The tools allow users to manage orders efficiently. Users can track, filter, and organize all orders as required. It will simplify and speed up order management processes without missing out on any orders.
› Easily Manage Warehouses
Dealers storing auto parts in multi-warehouses can use automotive inventory management solutions to manage stocks effortlessly. The solution can track the goods and provides dealers with real-time availability.
› Simple and Effective Supplier Management
Dealers with multiple suppliers in their contact list can effortlessly manage and maintain them with auto inventory management tools. They can collect crucial data like supplier information, pre-booking stock orders, invoices, bills, and more in different segments for better visualization.
› Precise Demand Planning
Using the dealership inventory management solutions, users can keep track of their auto parts availability in real-time. It allows users to plan their demands. Leaving no room for overstock and out-of-stock situations.
› Increases Business Revenue
With other advantages mentioned above, such as increased customer loyalty and retention, automation, efficient order management, and accurate demand planning, dealers may stay ahead of their competitors. And increase their business revenue and grow the business.
» 7 Secret Factors to Consider While Choosing the Best Automotive Inventory Management Software (Last One is Crucial)
So many top-notch automotive inventory management software is obtainable in the market with powerful features. Dealers may get confused about which one to choose that best represents their businesses.
Dealers should consider key factors while selecting the best automotive inventory management systems. They are as follows:
› Define Business Requirements
Many powerful automotive inventory management software is available in the market with different subscription plans based on their features. Different sizes of businesses may choose different levels of tools. Hence, before selecting any inventory management software for dealership businesses, one must understand their business requirements to prevent them from selecting the costlier solutions with so many enterprise-level features that one might not need.
› User-friendly Interface
Suppose a dealer has spent handsome money to purchase an excellent dealership inventory management software with advanced functionalities for his/her business. After purchasing it and implementing it in the business, he/she realizes that operating is complex. Rather than increasing productivity, a dealer and his/her employees spend more time learning to use the solution. In other words, a dealer is unable to get the desired ROI. Hence, going for solutions that are less complex and provide a user-friendly interface would be better for businesses.
› Essential Features
Considering startups and small-sized automotive businesses with limited requirements and budgets, auto inventory management software that offers essential features should be the best choice for them. Ensure the systems include crucial features needed to manage the inventory efficiently, like inventory management, workflow automation, customization, and reports & notifications.
› Best Customer Support Service
Dealers might need to contact customer support in many circumstances. For example, suppose they need help installing the solutions. In that case, they might get stuck using some features, or something is amiss with the solutions. Hence, customer support service is crucial to any auto inventory management software. It would be best for businesses to choose automotive parts inventory management software that offers convenient and fast customer support service.
› Mobile Responsive
Automotive inventory management solutions are cloud-based online solutions. Hence, dealers need devices with active internet to access the solutions regardless of time and place. Many dealers nowadays use mobile devices like smartphones and tablets to access solutions to stay up to date with the auto parts inventory status and get critical real-time notifications. Ensure the systems are mobile responsive before selecting.
› Social Media Integrations
With a large active number of users, platforms like Facebook and Instagram have become so popular that many dealers are running marketing campaigns and even started selling on the platforms. Potential customers from social media platforms may start conversations with dealers to get the best deals. Hence, it may benefit businesses to consider social media integration support while choosing solutions.
› Regular Updates and Bug Fixes
Dealership inventory management solutions’ contacts & stock data are the most crucial elements for dealers. Hence, they need a robust security system to stay ahead of their competitors and protect their valuable data from online attacks, threats, and viruses. Moreover, new threats and viruses are developed regularly. Hence, the system needs updated threats and virus databases. Consider solutions that update and fix bugs regularly.
» Automotive Inventory Management Software Costs
Auto parts inventory management software comes in different variants of pricing structure to avail. The solutions’ pricing differs based on many factors, such as the accessibility of features and the number of users who will use the solutions.
The average pricing starts from $3 to $495 per month. Moreover, sometimes dealers may pay yearly and get discounts and perks.
Furthermore, many companies offer lifetime service with collecting one-time subscription charges. The average one-time amount is around $5400 in the market.
There are also some free-of-cost dealership inventory management solutions obtainable in the market with essential features. They might be a good choice for startups and small-sized dealership businesses. However, they may never facilitate your business like other paid tools.
You need vehicle inventory management software with the best features to stay ahead of competitors and fulfill your dealership business requirements. There are many feature-rich tools available in the market to purchase.
Initially, it might feel like you are paying handsomely for the automotive inventory management software. Still, as your dealership business grows and seeing how beautifully the solution benefits your business, you may realize the investment is worth the money.
If you are still confused about choosing the right auto inventory management solution for your business, you can start with the top solutions provided here.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why Would You Use an Inventory Management System?
Any businesses that want to quickly and effectively manage customer orders, save contact and goods details, sort and filter them, and streamline the workflow would use dedicated inventory management solutions.
What Type of Inventory System Do Dealership Businesses Use?
Dealership businesses often use LIFO (Last In, First Out) for inventory management. It is suitable for lessening annual income tax liability as it reports lower profit and defers income tax.
Do Car Dealerships Use a Perpetual Inventory System?
Yes, many dealership businesses use a perpetual inventory system. It is suitable for high-value items. For instance, the automotive industry. It is used to count inventory frequently.
What Features Should an Inventory Management System Have?
A dedicated inventory management system for any business should have the following essential features to scale the business:
- Contact management
- Document management
- Invoice and billing management
- Notifications and Alerts
- Sales management
- Real-time tracking
Which is The Best Automotive Inventory Management Software?
Below are the top vehicle inventory management tools:
- Cox Automotive
- MAX Digital
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