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Inventory Management

Get an Accurate View of Your Shopify Committed Inventory

Your Shopify committed inventory may not be as real-time as you think. Here’s how to fix that.

If you don’t know or regularly update how much committed inventory you have, then you do not have an accurate representation of your available inventory counts. This puts your brand at a major risk of overselling, which turns off customers and hurts profits.

Consider this:

  • Out-of-stocks have the potential to cost North American retailers $1 trillion in sales (Retail Dive
  • The majority of Americans (54%) would stop buying from a brand after just one bad experience, with inconsistent online product information being the top deal-breaker (Newsweek)
  • Inventory record inaccuracy (IRI)—the difference between the recorded amount of inventory and amount of physical inventory—can lead retailers to a revenue loss of more than 3% gross profit (Shopify

Committed inventory refers to the item(s) that have already been promised to a customer as either part of a sales order or an in-transit transfer. ‘Committed’ is the variable that proves that “tracking inventory” is much more complicated than knowing what is sitting on your warehouse shelves versus how many units have been ordered.

Let’s say you have five white pairs of size eight shoes left at your 3PL, but you aren’t aware that two are already committed to an order (that last-minute marketing email really worked!). As a result, four pairs of sneakers are allowed to be sold, leaving one unlucky customer in a lurch because you only actually had three units left. 

This discrepancy is why it is so exciting that Shopify expanded their inventory states beyond just Incoming and Available to include Committed. Unfortunately, there’s a catch.

Assessing the Accuracy of Your Shopify Committed Inventory

The breakdown of your Shopify committed inventory is not accessible via API, only the front-end. This makes it very difficult to leverage outside of Shopify’s UI. If you are unable to use this Committed inventory state with your 3PL, you will need to double-check their WMS when looking to restock. Having to assess everything manually is akin to not having real-time visibility into your committed inventory at all.

It is also not currently possible to add custom reasons to the drop-down menu explaining why an adjustment is being made. If you sell offline (wholesalers, your brick-and-mortar store, etc.) you cannot make a note of the stock adjustment when these offline sales are processed.

TL;DR: The Shopify Committed inventory state is great if you solely rely on Shopify’s fulfillment network and use Shopify as your only sales channel, but fails to provide the necessary visibility outside of that.

Commit to Multi-Status & Multi-Location Inventory Tracking

You may be thinking, “We’re not that complex, we only have one location.

You may have just one warehouse, but that doesn’t mean your inventory isn’t coming from multiple places. By default, you actually have three inventory locations:

  1. New finished goods
  2. Warehouse
  3. Returns

Not to mention all those statuses, including:

  • On Hand
  • On Order
  • Committed
  • Reserved
  • Damaged

Are you tracking all these locations and statuses effectively? Your brand’s operations are not as simple as assumed. To prevent overselling and other fulfillment disasters, your brand must be able to view and manage inventory across all sales channels, fulfillment locations, and statuses. This is how you know exactly how much you have left to promise customers—referred to as available-to-promise (ATP) inventory.


The Shopify Committed inventory state is great if you solely rely on Shopify’s fulfillment network and use Shopify as your only sales channel, but fails to provide the necessary visibility outside of that.

With ChannelApe’s real-time inventory and fulfillment management system, automatic inventory updates (including committed) to sales channels and financial systems means no error-prone manual tracking. 

ChannelApe can be integrated with a broad range of fulfillment partners and apps (including Shopify) so that multi-status, multi-location inventory visibility can be leveraged across the critical systems you are already accustomed to using. Acting as your single source of truth for all things inventory, you can view recent adjustments and add any notes that make sense for your business. This can help you discover backorders, ensure everything at your 3PL is for sale on your site, and make it easy to pull reports.

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