Best Free Inventory Management Software Solutions to Consider in 2017

Tracking orders and inventory levels is difficult to imagine without the proper software nowadays, be it that you’re running a small, local store or an international corporation. Rather than the spreadsheet packed with products and amounts (as most of us perceive it to be), inventory management software is a valuable source for accurate product documentation, and our closest guarantee to saving money while keeping customers satisfied.

Is buying an inventory management system a reasonable investment?

In short, inventory management systems are dedicated data control hubs that investigate the presence/absence of valuable fixed assets, manage and document delivery, and help make more accurate forecasts for any type of production. Highly productive businesses can rely on such systems to limit their expenses, and direct money towards more profitable operations. According to Robert Lockard, Huffington Post writer and employee of the popular inventory management service Fishbowl, there are many critical advantages to shifting to digitized inventory for any business. Among those, he discusses instant shipping and customer satisfaction, anti-theft security, and preventing expensive products from becoming outdated and spoiled.

While it is true that a small team is able to complete inventory operations by hand, it is highly questionable whether involving intellectual effort into batch ordering can pay off in the long run. Managing assets the good old way involves a variety of labor costs and time consumption small businesses can’t really afford, especially knowing that no team is 100% confirmed to avoid costly mistakes. Another important circumstance is anticipating customer base growth (and we all do that!), and reaching a certain point where managing orders is no longer possible without automation.

The good news is – inventory management can be, but won’t necessarily be, a painful software investment – there are systems that will actually govern your stock for free!

Can free inventory management software do the heavy-lifting for you?

Unlike similar business automation software categories, inventory management is not exactly the small-biz friendliest market you will find out there. As expected, tools able to eliminate the uncertainty of future demand, evaluate trade-offs, and come up with critical investment decisions in our, as Harvard Business Review likes to put it, age of big data, can, and most probably will break the bank.

So, how reasonable it is to expect a free inventory system to fine tune the strings? For the sake of truth, little has been done to simplify ordering & shipping services and to make those accessible to low-tier market participants, but from an expert point of view, what was done was done pretty fine. There are several solid free inventory management software solutions that deserve a second look, especially if you’re just sailing into the world of digitized stock control.

How do these systems look? One of the feasible scenarios is to get a system where functionality applies just fine to all available packages, but you get to implement it for fewer users or manage less products/services than expected. In cases like these, it is highly likely that you won’t get to integrate the system with all services you need, or will have access to, roughly speaking, second-hand support compared to premium users. With a local business and only few products to distribute around, this scenario will make absolute sense.

The second and probably preferable option you’ve got is to opt for a completely free system where all functionality is offered at no cost, and the number of users, storage, or access to support is unrestricted altogether. That is, of course, once you’ve examined their features and made sure they are compatible with your needs.

What is the best free inventory management system?

It is easy to get lost looking for an affordable inventory management solution, because of the huge functionality gaps between them. Even with a clear list of priorities, choosing the right app happens to be a daunting experience, which is why we listed and compared the top 10 free inventory management software solutions for 2017.

Here they are:

  1. Ordoro
  2. inFlow
  3. Lokad
  4. PartKeeper
  5. RightControl
  6. Delivrd
  7. Ornavi
  8. ABC Inventory
  9. Stockpile Inventory Management
  10. Skyware Inventory

1. Ordoro

Choose it because of: Dropshipping management

The leader of our freemium inventory management software listing is Ordoro, often referred to as the most intelligent shipping system for small and medium businesses. Ordoro has what it takes to handle a variety of shipping, dropshipping, and inventory management requirements, and guarantees error-free performance regardless of the amount of supplies it is going to be used for.

When using Ordoro, a supplier has the unique possibility to compare the rates of different shippers, negotiate UPS and Fedex rates, and acquire deals to resemble in the final price of their products and thus become more competitive. As expected, Ordoro will also make it possible to brand service upon need, use your own logos, and draft personalized summaries for your upcoming decisions.

The true value of the system, however, is not fulfilled but unfulfilled orders management. The highlight of this system is dropshipping control, as you can assign items as drophipped SKUs and still get to use the service for the rest of your products. In the meantime, you can assign new suppliers and run reports on your performance, catering to the one main priority of your work – keeping end customers satisfied.

Who is Ordoro designed for?

Ordoro is developed to serve sole proprietors and businesses all the way from small startups to international enterprises. It is particularly recommended to businesses with wide product palettes, and such working with several suppliers and shipping service providers.

What features will you get for free?

Ordoro is a freemium inventory management service with a total of six SMB and enterprise pricing plans. Our experts consider its free plan to be one of the best unpaid inventory alternatives, having in mind that the two main functionalities of the system (return labels and split shipments) are packed inside, and so are the basic features. The plan, however, is offered to single users with no more than 50 orders per month.

This is what you will get for free:

  • 1 user
  • 50 orders per month
  • 1 sales channel
  • USPS, UPS, FedEx, Canada Post shipping
  • Batch create shipping labels
  • Split shipments
  • Return labels
  • Tracking number writeback

What features will you have to pay extra for?

Next to the Free plan, Ordoro offers 2 more basic plans with setup assistance and advanced functionalities ($25 and $75 per month), and three professional packages ($99, $199, and $299 per month) for larger enterprises in need of premium dropshipping, SKUs, and admirable business analytics.

This are the extras available in the paid plans:

  • Unlimited users, orders, and channels
  • Autosync
  • Comprehensive training & setup assistance
  • SKUs
  • Dropshipping
  • Business analytics
  • Kittings

2. inFlow

Choose it because of: Simplicity

inFlow is a popular, desktop-based inventory management system for small and medium businesses. You can use it to fill and distribute customer orders, reorder your stocks, generate invoices and purchase orders, and to create customized reports. As such, inFlow is applicable in a variety of industries, including wholesale, retail, eCommerce, manufacturing, healthcare, governing and administration, and many more.

For much of its functionality, inFlow resembles a traditional, old school inventory management dashboard, but plenty has been done to modernize its functions, and yet preserve the same, easy navigation companies are used to. For instance, the Sales, Purchasing, Inventory, and Reports, as well as General and Settings modules can still be accessed using a Windows Start-like button, and most main tasks can be completed on the main screen, but during the years, this system was enriched with functions such as line graphs, pie charts, cash in and cash out, net cash flow, customer and vendor payments due, cost value, and many more.

Who is inFlow designed for?

Small and medium teams looking for a simple tool to track their inventory. Particularly recommended to first-time inventory management users.

What features are available for free?

inFlow is another example of freemium inventory management software where premium functionality is not restricted to paid packages. Instead, paid and unpaid plans are distinguished depending on the number of managed products, customers, and reports, available storage, and data protection mechanism.

This are the features included in the free plan:

  • RFID enabled
  • Barcode compatible
  • Cost tracking
  • Customizable pricing models
  • Inventory forecasting
  • Inventory optimization
  • Inventory overview
  • Purchase order management
  • Reorder management
  • Supplier management
  • Shipping management
  • A total of 100 products and clients (combined)
  • 13 reports
  • Multi-user mode
  • Phone, email, live chat, and forum support

What features will you have to pay for?

Next to the Free Forever plan, inFlow offers two paid plans for more products and customers:

  • Regular Plan – $399/license
  • Premium Plan – $799/license

Here is what they add up to the free plan:

  • 25/30 reports
  • Unlimited products/clients
  • Document customization
  • Restricted access rights & user logins
  • Bill of materials & work orders
  • Count sheets

3. Lokad

Choose it because of: Inventory optimization

Designed predominately as a business intelligence system and quantity supply chain for commerce operators, Lokad makes use of your data and turns it into valuable intelligence for inventory optimization and fraud detection. The system assumes the role of an accurate demand forecaster, and delivers top Excel reports needed to automate all types of reordering processes. It is hosted in cloud, which means that your data will not only become understandable, but also accessible from all devices and locations.

As our experts like to put it, Lokad is the ‘polishing layer’ of your already existing inventory management scheme, used to perform statistical analyses, and handle intermittent demand patterns that are frequently observed in the commerce world. The company is also known for providing excellent commerce transaction support, and delivering hands-on assistance for as many multichannel order management software systems (MOMs) as your company’s working with.

Who is Lokad designed for?

Small, medium, and large businesses trying to make their inventory management processes more optimized and transparent, and to make stock decisions based on facts.

What features are available for free?

Generally speaking, Lokad’s no-expiry free plan wraps up most of its inventory intelligence features, but being a part of the company’s Bare Metal pricing module, this version is only offered as downloadable software with no access to support. Same goes for the three basic plans in this group, while for professional users, Lokad is offered as SaaS and includes expertise for various industries.

Here are the details of Lokad’s free Bare Metal plan:

  • Probabilistic forecasts
  • Reorder quantities
  • Ordering constraints
  • Inventory performance reports
  • Data import/export
  • Script everything
  • Automation & Scalability
  • Community support
  • Integrations

What features will you have to pay extra for?

In the case of Lokad, the difference between its Basic Bare Metal Plans and the premium plans is access to support and expertise, while the core of its functionality remains the same in all cases. Other than the Free plan, users can opt for any of the Bare Metal plans:

  • Basic 1 for $150/month
  • Basic 2 for $450/month
  • Basic 3 for $1,350/month

Or the dedicated industry supply chains with expert support:

  • Ecommerce for $2,500/month
  • Retail Networks for $10,000/month
  • Manufacturing for $5,000/month
  • Aerospace for $10,000/month

4. PartKeepr

Choose it because of: Part data parameters

PartKeepr is an open-source inventory management application developed to help companies reorder items in their stock, and always have a clear overview of the products they have at disposal. With a blazing fast search function, and a variety of part data parameters being tracked, PartKeepr is the master of its skill, namely helping companies streamline relationships with distributors, and keeping their customers satisfied.

The system doesn’t limit the number of users in charge of inventory management, and allows companies to control as many items, distributors, and manufacturers as they currently have. Each addition/removal from the stock is immediately tracked and documented, alongside with prices, users, and optional comments. Users will also have the possibility to configure their minimal stock levels, and use advanced filters to quickly find any items in their database.

Who is PartKeepr designed for?

Teams of all sizes and industries looking to manage part inventory data, and preserve full control of their stock items.

What features are available for free?

PartKeepr is a completely free system where the number of users, managed items, or storage is not restricted. These are the main features to expect:

  • Unlimited users
  • Unlimited stock items
  • Unlimited storage
  • Search filters
  • Drag-and-drop dashboard
  • Part data parameters
  • Octopart integration

5. RightControl

Choose it because of: Centralized warehouse management

RightControl, as indicated by its name, helps preserve full control over your stock and inventory. This well-known Losoftware product is ideal for centralized warehouse management is perfect for freelance and small-biz service providers, but can also be tailored to cater to larger performance due to its unlimited size ventures and functionality.

Why choosing RightControl? This modern and simplified system puts in place accurate invoice management, constant stock level monitoring, order management, barcode scanning, and enterprise-level reporting mechanisms for you to enhance stock control. It is cloud-hosted and easy to access from any device/operating system, and integrates will all popular packing & shipping management tools.

Who is RightControl designed for?

RightControl works the best for freelance and small-biz service providers interested to bring all inventory management operations under the same roof.

What features are available for free?

Unless you’re looking to manage more users with specific task access, or to control kit items and bills of materials, all key RightControl functionality will be delivered to you for free. The unpaid package is called Lite, and includes the following features:

  • Inventory management
  • Stock level monitoring
  • Order management
  • Barcode scanning
  • Packing & shipping
  • Contact management
  • Invoicing
  • Dispatching
  • Return management
  • Reporting
  • Mobile access
  • 1 terminal per licence
  • 1 user per terminal
  • 10 inventory lines

What features will you have to pay extra for?

Other than the free package, RightControl users can choose between:

  • Solo Plan (£0.99/month)
  • Pro Plan (£4.99/month)
  • Workgroup Plan (£19.99/month)

The software features remain the same in all packages, while the main difference is the number of users (1 for Solo, 3 for Pro, and 10 for Workgroup), terminals, and inventory lines.

6. Delivrd

Choose it because of: Order fulfillment

Deliverd is a free-of-charge inventory management and order fulfillment application for eCommerce site operators and online retailers from Amazon and eBay. Its main function is to keep track of the products in your stock, and cover end-to-end each stage of the fulfillment & delivery process making sure customers are happy with what they get. Even for large shop operators, Delivrd will eliminate the hassle related to sourcing products and services, selecting the right pieces, and then packing and delivering them to the location in question.

What will Deliverd’s inventory management do to enhance your business? The very first moment you receive products from the distributor, they are accounted for in your database, and thus easy to count or open to any distribution idea you might have. You can count them regularly, and respond only to the orders for products you have available. The system is also equipped for barcode printing & scanning, sourcing-to-shipping monitoring, profit & loss analysis, and shipping management.

Who is Delivrd designed for?

Small, medium, and large eCommerce operators and web store owners on Amazon and eBay. It is a reasonable alternative for each business looking to control sourcing-to-shipping processes.

What features are available for free?

Deliverd has one of the best shipping & order fulfillment plans that can be acquired for free. All main inventory and shipping features are available in this free plan, but users will be limited to manage up to 25 products per month.

This is how Deliverd’s free plan looks like:

  • Single inventory location
  • Create product catalog, up to 25 products
  • Count, receive and issue stock
  • Low stock level alerts
  • Serial Number Management
  • Inventory transactions history
  • Email support

What features will you have to pay extra for?

Deliverd offers only one paid plan next to the free one (Advanced Inventory Management & Order Fulfillment – $49.99/month) which offers pretty much the same functions, with the difference that you can use it for an unlimited number of stock instances and products, and benefit from several advanced features.

Here are the features you would have to pay for:

  • Unlimited number of inventory locations
  • Unlimited products
  • Transferring stocks
  • Purchase order management
  • Sales order management

7. Ornavi

Choose it because of: Business process management

Developers described Ornavi as a job management tool, right because it combines a lot of business management processes, monitoring, and HR practices in a single hub from where users can also maintain inventory and purchase control. Plus, it is one of the most innovative systems of its kind, always trying to please users with trendy features and automated updates. It is hosted in cloud,  and thus available on all devices and operating systems.

What should you expect from Ornavi’s inventory management module? The system offers simple, yet powerful stock management capabilities, such as importing suppliers’ price lists, rapid quote generation, and multiple units due for monitoring and management (boxes, metrics, etc.).  A separate part of this system is dedicated to purchase orders, where you get a clear view of your minimal stock levels, store manufacturer information, auto-generate orders for shortfalls, and record both lists and prices for each item.

Who is Ornavi designed for?

Small and medium companies looking for an affordable, yet complete business process management system that will also cater to their inventory and purchase management needs.

What features are available for free?

Ornavi offers three pricing plans to meet the needs of different users, and the good news about them is that the content of the chosen plan is not directly linked to its price. What you are about to pay (or skip paying) is the number of users, available storage, and support. For the free plan, for instance, you can involve 3 users for 5 active jobs, and benefit from 250 MB available file storage.

Here are the details of the Free plan:

  • Job management
  • Clients and suppliers
  • Quotes
  • Timesheets
  • Invoices
  • Purchase orders
  • Inventory and stocks
  • Reports and business tools
  • User management
  • 1 concurrent login
  • 3 users
  • 5 active jobs
  • 250 MB file storage

What features will you have to pay extra for?

Ornavi offers two paid plans with features identical to the ones of the free plan, but which are reserved for larger teams in need of more storage, and dedicated customer support. You can choose:

  • Standard Plan (£19/month for unlimited users, unlimited  jobs, 5 GB storage, and full support – phone & email)
  • Professional Plan (£49/month, that adds up 25 GB of storage and more than 10 concurrent logins)

8. ABC Inventory

Choose it because of: Customization

ABC Inventory is Almyta System’s free inventory management system you can download and use right from their official website (EXE or ZIP), without creating an account. The system collates all basic inventory control functionality required by small and medium businesses, and one which won’t limit the number of records or workstations. As soon as you put it into action, ABC will track each stage of your inventory’s lifecycle, and let you create purchase orders for suppliers as soon as the product has been delivered to the customer.

The main advantage of this system is extensive customization, as its neat modular organization gives users the chance to tailor the commercial version to their needs, and make it more business-specific. ABC Inventory will also allow you to maintain multiple warehouses at once, and govern as many separate companies as you have in place. What is best, you get to use the system in several different languages, and operate with multiple currencies whose rates are updated automatically.

Who is ABC Inventory designed for?

Sole entrepreneurs, small and medium commerce operators interested to manage multiple warehouses and create purchase orders for free. Particularly recommended in specific industries looking to modify and customize their workstations.

What features are available for free?

ABC Inventory is a completely free-of-charge system that won’t restrict the storage, or number of managed companies or warehouses, and will also provide the possibility to configure workstations and make them more specific. There are no hidden fees and recurrent costs – all you have to do is to download the system, and let it handle all of your inventory management needs. The only restriction is that the free, noncommercial version is available to single users only.

This is what ABC Inventory has to offer to its users:

  • Single user
  • Multiple companies and warehouses
  • Multiple languages and currencies (autoupdated)
  • Multiple workstation configurations
  • Reports
  • Purchase orders for inventory and fixed assets
  • Supplier catalog
  • Warehouse appointments and port-to-port operations
  • Inventory master lists
  • Inventory reservations
  • Cost quotation
  • Barcode scanning
  • Sales/Shipping orders
  • Free work orders
  • Fixed asset management
  • Bill of materials

What features will you have to pay extra for?

ABC Inventory doesn’t offer any paid plans to consider. Larger companies with more complex requirements, nevertheless, should consider contacting the vendor for a commercial version of the product (adds up advanced functions, reports, and forms technology) or consider a different system such as the Almyta Inventory Distributor.

9. Stockpile Inventory Management

Choose it because of: Tiered access model

Stockpile is Canvus’s most popular inventory management application that makes stock control a breeze at no cost. Designed exclusively for startups and small businesses, Stockpile Inventory Management has one of the easiest-to-use interfaces, and is also well known by its innovative development policies which please users with trendy features day by day.

But ease of use is not all there is to Stockpile. The system can be used to add inventory, record sales and manage returned and damaged goods, take returns, or report on all inventory-related activity. The highlight is saving time, as the system uses a tiered access model to administer multiple locations, manufacturers, physical areas, or even custom preferences. At the same time, Stockpile Inventory Management is one of the very few systems where the number of users, locations, and managed products is not limited.

Who is Stockpile designed for?

Startups and small businesses looking to save time by accessing and administering multiple locations simultaneously. Sole proprietors should give it a look as well.

What features are available for free?

All of Stockpile’s functionality is available at no cost, and all you have to do is to open an account on their website and get started. These are the features you should expect:

  • Unlimited users
  • Unlimited locations
  • Unlimited products
  • Unlimited storage
  • Inventory management
  • Tiered access model to govern multiple locations at once
  • Reliable technical support

10. Skyware Inventory

Choose it because of: Item history

Skyware Inventory is an open-source inventory tracking system for small to mid-sized businesses from various industries. It was developed with the idea to provide a clean, web-based alternative to professional and expensive inventory management apps, and thus combines the best of traditional and modern inventory tracking features. The system is very intuitive and easy to use, but access help and technical support is nevertheless provided for novice users.

The functionality of this system is divided in two main modules: Inventory management and Item History. On a single dashboard, users will be able to add and track multiple inventory items, govern and follow their transactions, and guide and exchange important order documentation. Skyware Inventory is also one of the rare stock management systems allowing users to draft detailed custom report on their performance.

Who is Skyware Inventory designed for?

Solo proprietors, small and medium businesses looking to track multiple inventory items at a fraction of the price (or for free).

What features are available for free?

Skyware Inventory is an absolutely free system when managed by a single user. Additional users can be included at any point of time for as much as $10 per user (one-time fee).

These are the main Skyware Inventory features:

  • Inventory management
  • Add & Follow transactions
  • Transaction totals
  • Document management
  • Multiple inventory items
  • Reporting
  • Export lists
  • Page links
  • Filters
  • Access help & support

COMPARISON OF MAIN FREE FEATURES

Number of usersNumber of locations/warehousesNumber of products/ordersInventory management & order fulfillmentAvailable support
Ordoro11 sales channel50 ordersAvailable in the free plan
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Training
ABC Inventory1UnlimitedUnlimitedAvailable for free
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Training
  • Forum
inFlowUnlimitedUnlimited100 products/clientsAvailable in the free plan
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Live chat
  • Forum
LokadUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedAvailable in the free plan
  • Forum
Skyware Inventory1UnlimitedUnlimitedAvailable in the free plan
  • Forum
DeliverdUnlimited125 productsAvailable in the free plan
  • Email
Ornavi31 concurrent login5 active jobsAvailable in the free plan
  • Training
RightControl11 terminal per license10 inventory linesAvailable in the free plan
  • Email
StockpileUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedAvailable for free
  • Email
PartKeeprUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedAvailable for free
  • Forum
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