Guides » Inventory Management

How to Avoid Dead Stock and Use Data to Find Top Sellers

By Dani Avitz

Here's three tips to help you avoid overstocking, and find bestselling products that will never tie up valuable capital and warehouse space.

How to Avoid Dead Stock and Use Data to Find Top Sellers

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Wow thank you so much Dani
Such an amazing informative and factual article.

Mark Hetherington

Good point on Historical Data. I’ve never taken any notice of it. I can guarantee that in most categories most, if not all, of the items in last year’s top ten won’t be seen anywhere in this years, especially in the tech and fashion fields.

As for suppliers, I generally find the stuff they are offering you at a “good price” is the stock they can’t shift themselves. Avoid such offers unless it’s something you’re already selling, or others are selling and there’s a decent markup to be made quickly.

For smaller businesses and sole traders though, which makes up most of us, if you have spare storage space don’t worry too much if certain stock isn’t selling because it almost all sells eventually. If you must, move it at cost price unless it’s something you’re really stuck with such as phone cases for phones that haven’t been around for the past few years, or time sensitive items that have sell-by dates etc. but most things will sell eventually. Unless you need the cashflow it’s generally better than selling at a loss to get rid of it. I honestly can’t think of anything I ever sold at a loss of any significance.

Bundling items often works well if you choose carefully. We recently sold a stock of slow/non moving phone chargers with a “free” Bluetooth headset, which on it’s own also wasn’t selling, simply by adding the price we paid for the headset onto the total price and fairly quickly sold out of both items that we’d had in stock for quite some time while still making a reasonable profit.


Great advice! I buy and resell vintage jewelry and name brand new and gently used clothing on several sites. I started my business about 8 months ago just buying items I love on that “gut instinct”; this will help me be more objective and realistic about what will sell and how to market better. Thank you!

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