How to be a Power-Vendor: Updating Your Inventory

By Savannah Rainey

Thanks to the internet, the buying process has changed. Over the past decade, Amazon and other E-Commerce websites have transformed the buying process.

Buyers want to know exactly what they are purchasing before they actually commit to purchasing it, they want to be able to research the products and learn about the vendors, and they want - they expect - to do that online. And this change in mindset is taking hold in the landscape industry.

While creating your online storefront may sound daunting, it will actually make your life much easier. It's easy for you to provide ALL of your potential customers with the information they need about any plant in your inventory. The best part: your efforts scale, meaning if one customer requests a photo, every future customer will see that photo as well.

Instead of waiting for the phone to ring and then taking the time to explain to each customer the specs of every plant in which they are interested, you can post all of that information at once, telling them everything they need to know at a glance. Not only that, but by keeping your inventory updated online you are able to reach more buyers, because for every person who calls there are probably ten who don't pick up the phone. The Modern Buying Decision has changed your customers' behavior.

Add pictures to your online inventory, and you will be even more likely to attract new buyers.

In the modern age where most aspects of life are fast-paced and technology-driven, taking advantage of the available technology will help your business flourish.

Let's take a look at how to best manage and update your plant listings. Start by clicking the "Inventory" button, which takes you to your inventory page as shown below.

Once on the Inventory Page, click "Switch to Update View", where you can edit multiple plants at once.

The Update View has been designed to streamline the process of updating certain information. You will notice 4 blue buttons above your listings. Each one will allow you to focus on specific information about the plant. To save changes, remember to click "Update" at the bottom right of the page.

Step 1: "Pricing & Availability."

Within this view, you can quickly update price and quantity on hand, indicate an item as out of stock, or even list future availability with an approximate ready date. These are very important pieces of information that will directly affect your sales. A potential customer is much more likely to purchase your plants if they know the price and can see if those plants that are currently in stock.

Step 2: "Specifications."

In this view, you can easily run down the list and update Height, Spread, and Caliper. With this information readily available, you will preemptively answer dozens or hundreds of questions from your potential customers.

Step 3: "Ordering Information."

The Ordering Information tab enables you to set a maximum and minimum order size for each inventory item.  Setting a Max Order size allows buyers to know your total crop size and how much you can reasonably supply. If you grow 200 per crop, you won't get calls from customers looking for 2000.

Step 4: "Photos & Descriptions."

Every customer wants to see a photo of the material they are buying. Instead of taking a photo for each customer that inquires, manage your inventory photos on Local Plant Source to ensure you're only taking the photo once. The Photos & Descriptions tab is where you can upload photos of your plants and add a short description.  The Plant Photos field is a drop-zone, making adding pictures of your plants as easy as simply dragging and dropping them into this area of the page. Pictures and well written descriptions will give buyers a good idea of what the plants will look like and are therefore a crucial part of any good storefront.

That's all it takes!

Managing your online storefront has never been easier. Any other questions about updating your inventory or using the Local Plant Source site?  Check out our Customer Support page to see if your questions have already been answered or to send them to us. And of course, if you have any questions, we are always here to help. Just give us a call, and one of our support staff would be happy to walk you through this process.