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Upgrade to Barcoding – How to Ship Smarter as a Small Business Part 7

Ultimately, increasing productivity is the goal of implementing the shipping tips we’ve covered in the past 6 posts. The next question to ask is: Should I upgrade to barcoding?

After you have the basics down, with a good grasp of the manual systems that work best for your business, the answer is yes. The next step is to upgrade to a barcode system.

The Benefits of a Barcode System

Before we dive into how to set up a barcode system, it’s important to understand why you would want to transition to this system in the first place.

A barcoding system provides efficiency, accuracy and accountability. By keeping real-time data on the processing of shipments, your order processing will become much more efficient. More importantly, when issues arise you can deal with them quickly and easily if a barcode system is in place.

Also, using barcodes can decrease up to 99% of inventory and warehouse tracking issues. As you scan items in and out, you can automate the inventory planning and updating process.

Finally, while barcoding will eliminate many manual errors, systematic errors in your shipping process can be more readily identified and fixed when a barcoding system is implemented.

How to Get Started

  1. Get the resources you need. We’d prefer if you got your barcode printers, labels and scanners at of course, but you can also contact your shipping vendor rep to see if they offer any printers based on your shipping volume.
    • Barcode Printers (click here to shop)
    • Barcode Labels (click here to shop)
    • Barcode Scanners (click here to shop)
    • Barcode Data Collection Software (if you have an inventory management system, just make sure it can be integrated with the barcode printer you purchase.)
  2. Create a system
    • Specify what information should be included in the inventory and shipment processes
    • Integrate with your backend reporting systems

Each system will look different, depending on your resources, personnel and business model. But the important thing to keep in mind is that it’s important to map out all the information you want to capture up front. Then, you need to make sure that you stick to your system for consistency.