Cin7 Inventory Management Review: Is It Right for Your Business?
Cin7 is one of the best inventory management solutions on the market—especially if your business needs to track sales across multiple channels. Here’s what you need to know to get started.
If you’re looking for a software solution that can keep your warehouse organized, track your inventory across every conceivable sales channel, and integrate with your point-of-sale, customer relationship management (CRM), and accounting solutions . . . well, you have some pretty intense inventory needs.
Fortunately, Cin7 can keep up with them all, which is why it’s currently our top pick among inventory management software solutions. Here’s our in-depth review of what Cin7 does well—and what it doesn’t.
Cin7 is best for growing, omnichannel businesses
As we reviewed Cin7, we were most impressed with the software’s unique, omnichannel approach to inventory management.
Other inventory management systems are geared toward single-location or single-channel businesses, and they treat multi-channel inventory as an advanced add-on. That can make your system more complicated than it needs to be, and it can drive up the price of your inventory management solution.
Cin7, on the other hand, strives to provide omnichannel retail solutions. In other words, Cin7 starts with the assumption that you’re selling your product via multiple channels, and if you don’t have multiple warehouses or retail locations now, you’re striving to grow your business to that point.
The result is a robust inventory management solution that provides advanced features for omnichannel businesses without charging an arm and a leg.
Cin7 pros and cons
- Integrated point-of-sale system
- B2B e-commerce functionality
- Lots of features and over 450 integrations
- Warehouse management and light manufacturing features
- Total support during onboarding
- Integrated EDI solutions
- Advanced reporting and forecasting
- Steep learning curve
- Poor support after initial onboarding
- Nontransparent pricing
- No RFID tracking
- No enterprise-level asset tracking
- No niche industry features
Cin7 offers a lot of features and benefits that other providers don’t. For starters, we absolutely love that all plans include a B2B e-commerce store. It’s perfect for wholesalers who need an easy, convenient way for their customers to order new products and keep track of specially negotiated prices.
Cin7 can also integrate with over 450 other services. So if your business is already using another platform for accounting, payment, marketing, or third-party logistics, you can easily add Cin7 without any major hiccups.
Finally, we love that Cin7 includes features that other inventory software don’t. Cin7’s integrated POS system, for instance, makes it easy to track exact costs, manage in-store pickups, and track inventory across locations. The warehouse management feature makes order fulfillment simple and accurate. And the integrated electronic data interchange (EDI) is a huge cost-saver for businesses that need to send and accept purchase orders online.
Because Cin7 offers more functionality and features than other inventory control software, it can be a bit overwhelming at first. The good news is Cin7 offers comprehensive onboarding support and can even train your employees on how to use the system. The bad news? It may cost extra, and many customers report that Cin7’s post-onboarding support leaves a lot to be desired.1
For all its features and functions, though, we were surprised that Cin7 doesn’t offer RFID tracking support. It’s not a huge deal (we tend to prefer barcode tracking anyway), but if you’ve already invested in RFID tags and scanners, Cin7 likely won’t work for your business.
We’re also big fans of transparency, especially when it comes to pricing. While we’re reasonably sure Cin7 is a good deal for omnichannel sales, we can’t be 100% sure because Cin7 doesn’t display its prices. That said, we do like the idea of being able to customize your plan (and your price) to suit your business needs—we just wish we had more insight into how much those plans cost.
Cin7 plans and pricing
Cin7 doesn’t publicly display its pricing because prices vary depending on the features and base plans you choose. Until recently, though, Cin7’s website listed a starting price of $299 per month.
That sounds like a lot, but it’s actually pretty reasonable compared to other providers—especially when you weigh that cost against the features included with Cin7 plans.
|Starter||Available upon request||View Plans|
|Momentum||Available upon request||View Plans|
|Advanced||Available upon request||View Plans|
Even on a starting plan, Cin7 includes B2B e-commerce features, not to mention a fully featured point-of-sale (POS) software. But it doesn’t include Cin7’s warehouse management solution—you’ll have to upgrade your plan for that. For businesses that need warehouse management features on a budget, that may be a deal breaker.
Key features of Cin7
Cin7 is a robust inventory management tool, so it offers a lot of high-end features. Here are some of our favorites.
Cin7 is a cloud-based inventory management solution, which allows it to track real-time data from multiple locations. The software synchronizes across all channels every five minutes, giving you up-to-date insights on your stock levels and sales any time of the day or night. That’s especially helpful if you’re running a lean inventory system (like just-in-time inventory)—after all, the faster you get your information, the faster you can place replenishment orders to avoid stockouts.
Cin7 also gives you a lot of flexibility when it comes to tracking your inventory. You can track products with the first in, first out (FIFO) method, with batch numbers, or with serial numbers, depending on the way your business keeps tabs on its stock.
Cin7 is a cloud-based inventory management solution, which allows it to track real-time data from multiple locations.
Cin7 also gives you flexibility in your order fulfillment. If you have multiple locations or warehouses, you can route online orders to whichever warehouse makes the most sense for your business strategy. You can even automate this process, setting up rules that automatically send orders to the closest warehouse with the item in stock (so the customer can receive their order as quickly as possible). Order routing can be customized by geographical region, by shipping method, by inventory availability, and even by e-commerce code, giving you the ultimate flexibility in your sales fulfillment.
Finally, we love that Cin7 offers so much automation. In addition to automatically calculating local tax rates (even in multiple currencies), generating barcodes, and printing shipping labels, Cin7 can automate inventory tasks across your business. For instance, you can set up branch transfer rules that automatically trigger replenishment shipments from your warehouse anytime one of your retail locations runs low on stock.
The best part is Cin7’s inventory management options can be either simple (with a single location or fulfillment strategy) or complex (with multiple channels, products, locations, and customer types), which makes it highly scalable for businesses looking to grow.
Point of sale
Cin7’s included point-of-sale software is perfect for businesses looking for end-to-end cost tracking and automated accounting. Cin7’s POS feature lets you track costs on an item-by-item level, so you know exactly what your costs are for all goods sold.
But while Cin7’s POS offering is great for inventory, it’s also great for your customer.
Cin7 takes a lot of the guesswork out of your POS system, giving your employees the freedom to assist your customers in the best way possible. Cin7 POS automatically calculates discounts—even complex multi-item promotions or customer-specific deals. This removes any margin of error and frees up your retail employees to focus on providing high-end customer service.
Cin7’s included point-of-sale software is perfect for businesses looking for end-to-end cost tracking and automated accounting.
Plus, Cin7’s POS system works both online and offline, so you can use it on the go at your pop-up store—even if there’s no internet connection.
The POS system also facilitates in-store pickup and allows employees to view real-time inventory levels across your business. That means you don’t have to send willing customers to other locations in the hope of finding the item they need. Instead, your employees can look up inventory levels and place an order for the customer—which can either be picked up in-store or shipped to the customer directly.
Cin7’s POS software also allows you to manage your customer loyalty programs, triggering automatic emails and vouchers based on each customer’s purchases and buying preferences. It can even track loyalty points across sales channels and set time frames for when and how those points can be redeemed.
We also love that Cin7 works with pretty much any hardware, so you don’t have to spend tons of money to replace the barcode scanners, tablets, receipt printers, and cash registers you already have. Plus, it integrates with other payment services (like Afterpay, if you want to give your customers the option to pay in installments).
Every Cin7 plan comes with B2B e-commerce functionality. Basically, this feature gives you the tools to set up an e-commerce platform for your B2B clients.
This is perfect for wholesalers, since the platform allows you to display your products, current warehouse inventory levels, pricing, and more. And you can personalize your site to fit your brand, with custom logos, banners, and even a branded web address (URL).
Our favorite part of Cin7’s B2B e-commerce feature? You can set it up to display custom pricing for each B2B user, based on whatever pricing arrangements you’ve already negotiated with that client. That way, they can see exactly what they’d pay for your products without having to do the math themselves.
Light manufacturing features
Unlike simpler inventory solutions, Cin7 also offers features for manufacturing and production businesses.
Cin7 allows you to easily produce sales orders and quotes, using standard costs for materials that you input in advance. Plus, you can create custom product jobs using a standard product or previous custom order as a starting point—so you don’t have to start a custom quote from scratch.
Cin7 also gives you a lot of flexibility in creating bills of materials. And the platform includes accurate waste tracking, so you get the most precise cost-per-unit calculation possible—no more arbitrary waste allocation.
One of the biggest reasons to use inventory management software (as opposed to tracking inventory by hand) is the insight that cloud-based software gives you into your business. And nobody does it better than Cin7.
With Cin7, you can track all of the following:
- Individual items
- Product categories
- And more
Then, you can drag and drop those fields within your Cin7 reporting dashboard to customize reports. This gives you the flexibility to get both high-level overviews and nitty-gritty data on what is and isn’t working for your business.
One of our favorite Cin7 reporting tools, though, is the Inventory Success Quadrant. This report displays your business’s gross profit against days in stock to show you how your inventory is performing. You can customize this report by product category, price range, suppliers, and more to evaluate where your business is making and losing money.
Long story short: Cin7’s in-depth reporting feature gives you unprecedented insight into your business performance so you have the right tools to make the best calls for your business.
Cin7 Payment Portal
Cin7’s Payment Portal is an extra feature, which you can add onto your existing Cin7 plan.
Payment Portal provides extra software support for managing sales on the B2B side of your business. It allows you to send automated invoice reminders to clients who haven’t paid their invoices. Emails even include a convenient Pay Now button, which makes it easier for clients to resolve their outstanding invoices so you get your money faster. Perhaps that’s why Cin7 claims 90% of invoices emailed through the Payment Portal get paid within the first 24 hours of the customer viewing the email.2
Payment Portal can also help you convert quotes and invoices to the next stage or order fulfillment automatically, so you don’t have to spend extra time generating new documentation at each stage of an order. Plus, Payment Portal can support any type of order, whether it’s made online, over the phone, or via email or snail mail.
Cin7 integrates with over 450 third-party software solutions, so you can customize your Cin7 plan with the right combination of tools for your business. Here are some examples of popular Cin7 integrations:
- Accounting—Xero, QuickBooks Online, QuickBooks Enterprise
- E-commerce—Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce
- Online marketplaces—Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Walmart
- EDI retailers and suppliers—Army & Air Force Exchange Service, Ace Hardware, Synnex, Tech Data
- Third-party logistics—24/7 Enterprises, 3PL Center, 3PLUK
- Shipping—GoSweetSpot, Shippit, Shiptheory
- Payments—Afterpay, Authorize.net, Windcave
- Sales and marketing—Salesforce, Capsule, MailChimp
What’s more, Cin7 offers all Amazon integrations right out of the box, whether you’re selling directly on Vendor Central or via Amazon Marketplace.
Cin7 is also particularly good when it comes to accounting integrations. Using Cin7’s accounting dashboard, you can easily track up-to-the-minute costs on each item, taking freight rates, duties, landed costs, and more into account. Cin7 even automatically updates your COGS when landed costs change—even if the goods have already shipped.
Keep in mind, though, that not all of Cin7’s integrations are created equal. In fact, some users have reported problems when using less run-of-the-mill integrations,3 which makes sense—Cin7 is more likely to devote its resources to making the most popular and vital integrations run smoothly.
Ease of Use
As we’ve already mentioned, Cin7 offers so many features and options that it can be a bit overwhelming when you first get started. In fact, Cin7’s sometimes confusing layout and difficult navigation was the number one complaint that we found among customer reviews online.4,5
That being said, we also found a lot of praise for Cin7’s onboarding support, which should help you make sense of the platform before you get too far into it. Cin7 also allows you to define staff roles within your system, so your employees have to deal with only the information and performance targets they need for their role. That makes the system a lot simpler and easier to use.
Cin7 also offers a lot of mobile apps and programs to help you implement your software. In addition to the Cin7 inventory app, there are apps for all of the following aspects of your business:
- API access
- API development
- Marketplace sales
- Online B2B
- Pick and pack fulfillment
- Production jobs
- Sales and marketing
Like we stated above, by all accounts, Cin7 offers excellent onboarding support, walking you through the platform and helping you port your previous inventory levels into the Cin7 system.
Once the onboarding process is over, Cin7 offers three different levels of support: regular, priority, and dedicated. Cin7 isn’t clear on whether these support levels correspond to its plans or whether they’re add-ons. But either way, we’re not big fans of having to pay extra to get the help we need.
And unfortunately, it seems that the level of support you choose can make a big difference in your customer experience. Some users claim it took upwards of a week to get a response from Cin7 customer support when they reported an issue.7 For most businesses dealing with a flaw in their inventory levels, waiting a week for a resolution could generate some serious fallout—possibly resulting in significant loss.
The bottom line: pay attention during your onboarding process so you can avoid costly mistakes later—and consider paying a little more for priority or dedicated support.
What is Cin7?
Cin7 is an online inventory management tool. It’s a cloud-based software, which tracks your inventory in real time and integrates with your point-of-sale, accounting, and other business solutions—resulting in a smoother, easier way to run your business.
How much does Cin7 cost?
Cin7 doesn’t display its pricing on its website—mostly because exact pricing varies based on your business needs. The one thing we know for sure? Cin7 isn’t a free inventory management solution. To find out how much it’ll cost your business, you’ll need to book a demo and talk to a Cin7 representative about your company’s specific inventory management challenges.
What is the best inventory software for small businesses?
In our opinion, Cin7 is the best overall inventory management software. Cin7 allows you to track costs and sales down to the item, and it keeps you in the loop with real-time data across all your sales channels. To see how Cin7 stacks up to the competition, check out our guide to the top inventory management software options.
Why is inventory management important?
Inventory management includes everything from sales forecasting and supply chain management to warehouse management and customer order fulfillment. As such, it has a huge influence on your business’s bottom line. Good inventory management can help your business reduce costs, avoid loss, and improve customer satisfaction. Plus, it makes it a lot easier to make smart choices that help your company grow.
Cin7 is our most highly recommended inventory management software for businesses. It’s ideal for multi-channel e-commerce and retail businesses, as it helps you manage your inventory across multiple locations and sales venues. We love that it includes an integrated point-of-sale solution, as well as unique B2B e-commerce features and in-depth reporting. And its warehouse management and manufacturing features are nothing to sneeze at either.
Sure, all these features can make Cin7 a bit overwhelming to use. And we acknowledge that the service’s customer support could use a lot of work.
But if you’re looking for an inventory management tool that can do it all, we think Cin7 is your best bet.
To find out more on how Cin7 compares to other providers, check out our rankings for the best inventory management software.
At Business.org, our research is meant to offer general product and service recommendations. We don’t guarantee that our suggestions will work best for each individual or business, so consider your unique needs when choosing products and services.