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Retail Tech Case Study: How Soch plugged leaks to achieve 98% real-time inventory visibility

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Ethnicwear brand Soch struggled with inventory leaks that led to nearly 30% of lost revenue opportunity. Using the right technology, it is now able to achieve higher visibility and 20% more revenue

Bengaluru: Premium ethnic wear brand Soch Apparels was incepted by Vinay Chatlani in 2005 with its first retail store at Forum Mall, Bengaluru. In nearly 18 years of its existence, the apparel brand has grown from strength to strength and now is present in over 59 cities across India with more than 150 stores.

Apart from its offline presence, Soch is also available to consumers through its website Sochstore.com and via online fashion aggregators including Myntra, Flipkart, Amazon, Ajio, Snapdeal, Nykaa, and Tata Cliq.

The commencement of its e-commerce website in 2014 marked a pivotal moment in its digital expansion. In 2019, Soch launched its first international store in Nepal and also created a global website for international consumers.

Over the years, the brand’s product range has seen a continuous expansion and has also taken the lead in enriching the consumer experience via digital interventions like inventory-linked large format content displays in stores and omnichannel retailing.

However, the brand faced challenges in its e-commerce journey. It became apparent that a portion of its inventory was being inadvertently leaked, leading to a situation where customers were not being presented with the complete range on the online platforms.

“According to us 100% was visible on the e-commerce portals but actually what was available was about 70%,” said Manu Chatlani, director of Soch.

The challenge

The e-commerce team of the brand struggled to identify leaks in its inventory and product exposure resulting in nearly 30% of lost revenue opportunity. The brand’s pain points included…

  1. Out of the total inventory from e-commerce warehouses and physical stores, what got catalogued was only 77% and with the balance 23% being left out.
  2. After cataloguing, the inventory that got pushed to the OMS (order management system) was 52%, with the rest 25% disappearing in stock leakage.
  3. Customers were not exposed to the entire range on portals leading to a direct loss of sales of almost 15%.
  4. Almost 30% of unexposed inventory leading to high inventory holding costs.
  5. Manual monitoring of catalogue and inventory checks leading to a gross 40% people productivity loss.
  6. Catalogue corrections took at least 3 weeks due to manual intervention.
  7. Inability to audit WMS /OMS (warehouse management system/order management system) for real-time inventory synchronization.

Realising the need to plug the leak on priority, Soch partnered with Tenovia in 2022. Founded in 2006, Tenovia is an e-commerce analytics and consulting partner for retail and D2C brands with a focus on building and scaling e-commerce revenues. Tensight is Tenovia’s e-commerce analytics platform that helps solve business problems to increase revenues and boost profitability according to the firm’s official LinkedIn page.

The Approach

Tensight integrated with different stages of inventory management of Soch including OMS/WMS, catalogue, physical stores, e-commerce warehouses, backend of other online marketplaces such as Myntra, Flipkart, Amazon, Ajio, Snapdeal, Nykaa, and Tata Cliq and finally, its omnichannel platform Omuni.

The solution provider look deeply into:

  • Exposure of products across portals
  • Stock not available on Omuni/ Vinculum by SKU for priority actioning
  • Live view of products not catalogued on individual portals
  • Actionable triggers on hero product visibility issues
  • Catalogue inefficiencies such as cut size visibility

Tensight enabled the apparel brand to access the above-mentioned insights including the quantity of inventory that was not getting exposed to consumers. Consequently, Soch implemented measures to solve the inventory leak.

Business Impact

The partnership with Tensight helped Soch Apparels to expose 98% of the actual inventory to consumers and in four months they witnessed a 14% uplift in revenues without any other marketing intervention.

“Earlier we used to ask our teams to continuously check the browser portals manually and check what is available and what is not available on the portals. Now Tenovia does this automatically and effortlessly,” said Chatlani.

  • Real-time e-commerce inventory exposure contributed to a boost in revenue by 20%.
  • The brand has been able to track the sales and get alerts on which products need to be reordered or pulled from its other warehouses or its EBOs right on time to not lose sales.
  • The band now gets insights that help it decide how much to discount and monitor the impact of discounts on the increase in sales.
  • The brand can track what is selling faster by attributes such as fabric, colours, styles and concepts and study what is potentially leading in the competition.

Adapted from the Tech.nxt fireside chat at Phygital Retail Convention (PRC 2023). To view the video, click here.

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