As well as downloading orders, Tradebox One is able to upload stock levels back to your marketplace from either your accounts package or from Tradebox's own stock control module. For Amazon, Bigcommerce, eBay, ekmPowershop and Magento 1 channels, this is done via API directly to the marketplace.
Channels that import via CSV cannot directly upload stock levels back to the site, however Tradebox can produce a CSV containing the online SKU and stock quantity and publish this to a specified folder on your PC or upload it to an FTP, thereby achieving the same goal so long as your webstore or marketplace can import stock levels from CSV. Our guide to the CSV stock upload file is available here.
The rest of the settings described below apply to both CSV and direct uploads.
Manual vs Automated Uploads
To turn on uploads for any channel, double click on the required sales channel in the Channels screen and tick the Upload Stock Levels box, then click Save. Alternatively, right-click any channel in the channel list to turn upload on or off.
Note - Opening a channel for editing will temporarily deactivate the channel; this ceases all its activity so that, for instance you don't get half a download with one setting and the other half with another. On saving and closing a sales channel, it'll automatically reactivate for download but not for upload.
For an upload to be carried out:
- The channel must be Active
- Upload must be ticked against the channel in the Channels list
- Product Mappings must be in place
- For eBay channels, the Listing ID and Variation Flag must also be in place and correct
- The upload must be initiated:
- For manual upload, a user clicks the Upload Stock Levels button
- For automatic upload, the Tradebox Data Service must be running
Tradebox will default to manual upload; users perform an upload by clicking the Upload Stock Levels button in the Products Module. If you want an extra level of control and visibility over your stock uploads, tick the Display Quantities box in Configuration > Preferences. If ticked, whenever you run an upload Tradebox will first show you a summary of which products and quantities are scheduled to upload for each Sales Channel; a sort of 'draft' of the upload that you can cancel if you need to amend any of the items. This option only applies to manual product uploads.
Manual uploads are useful if you want more control over the uploads, or if, for example, you are using Sage stock control and want to make sure the ledgers are updated before the upload takes place (note that Tradebox can update ledgers automatically after raising the invoice if you prefer an entirely automated system; a system set to automated upload and automated update ledgers can perform hands-off stock synchronisation between different marketplaces).
If you'd prefer more hands-off automation, the upload can be done automatically by the Tradebox Data Service. To switch to automatic upload, in Configuration > Preferences, untick Manual Stock Upload. Stock upload will then take place automatically as part of the service loop. We recommend reading this article in full and making sure all other settings are configured before turning on automated uploads.
Preparation For Uploading
When uploading stock levels, Tradebox can either take the stock levels from its own database, or use the Sage free stock levels. You will be prompted to choose this option during the initial setup of Tradebox, but it can be changed at any time via Configuration > Preferences > Inventory > Get Products From:
The upload process requires your products to be set up in Tradebox, and, if using Sage stock control, also in Sage. Additionally product mapping must be in place before the uploads can take place. The products can be imported into Tradebox in a number of different ways:
Product Mapping can also be imported from a CSV file. To upload products for eBay, an additional field is required, which is the eBay Listing ID.
The eBay listing ID is a unique identifier applied to each listing on eBay. The listing ID will be automatically populated if Tradebox creates product records from eBay; you can do this in bulk at any time by importing products from ebay and ticking to update existing records. Unlike other marketplaces, eBay will allow you to use the same SKU on multiple listings with different descriptions. Tradebox does not support stock upload of non-unique SKUs to ebay; if you wish to upload stock, as a workaround you should ensure that each listing contains a unique SKU/custom label.
A similar piece of information is required to upload to Bigcommerce, the Product ID. The process to retrieve this is virtually identical to getting the eBay listing ID; after setting up your Bigcommerce channel, at any time you can choose to import products from Bigcommerce and update existing records, which will bring down the product IDs.
BOM Products and Quantity Multipliers
If using Bill Of Materials products in Sage, by default the quantity uploaded will be the free stock level from the BOM product itself, not the quantity available to make up. This would apply if you use BOM's to create your end retail products from subcomponents and do keep stock of the end products. If however, you don't track stock of the end components and 'build to order', you can upload the quantity available to make up by applying the setting 'For Sage BOM use Qty to Make up' within the Sales Channel Details.
Quantity available to makeup is calculated directly from the BOM tab of the end product's Product Record in Sage. The Quantity in the BOM tab is compared to the Free Stock of each subcomponent; the subcomponent with the lowest available relative stock determines how many of each end product could be made up. Where a free stock is not divisible by quantity, Tradebox will round down; for example with 5 wheels (subcomponent with 2 quantity) and 3 frames (subcomponent with 1 quantity) in stock I could only realistically manufacture 2 bicycles (end product).
If you use the quantity multiplier feature, and wish this to be taken into account during the upload, tick the Apply Quantity Multiplier to Upload box in Configuration > Preferences as shown here:
Tradebox will then divide the accounts/Tradebox quantity in stock by the Quantity Multiplier in that product's mapping table and pass that figure up to the marketplace. Please note that if the figure in stock does not divide exactly, then it will be rounded down, e.g. a quantity in stock of either 30 or 39 with a multiplier of 10 will pass a value of 3 to the marketplace.
There are a number of additional options and controls that you can apply to uploads on a per product level. These can be applied in batches by clicking on the Upload Options button in the Products module or at an individual product level in the Channels tab of any Tradebox product record.
Exclude from Upload: Selecting this against a SKU will remove this product from the upload for the specific channel selected at the top of the upload options screen.
Upload Fixed Quantity: This instructs Tradebox that it should upload a set quantity for a particular product, regardless of the true level in stock. I may have 70 or 5 of a product in stock, but only ever wish to upload 10.
Fixed Quantity: If you have chosen to upload a fixed quantity for a specified product, set the quantity here.
Max Qty to Upload: You may wish to specify a maximum quantity of each product to upload, for example if your marketplace carries a limit on listed value per store and your real-life stock value exceeds this. A max upload quantity of 0 indicates that the option is not being used; note that this option cannot be used to upload zero quantities or to exclude from upload.
You can set a maximum upload quantity per-product-per-channel in Upload Options as displayed above. You can also set a global maximum upload quantity for all-products-all-channels in Configuration > Preferences > Inventory > Maximum Upload Quantity.
Note - where multiple settings are applied to your dataset, the following order of priority is used: Fixed Quantity overrides Maximum Upload Quantity per product; either of these override the global Maximum Upload Quantity.
Export: This will export a copy of your current settings to a CSV file.
Import: If you are changing settings in bulk, you may wish to import them via CSV rather than amending manually in the Upload Options screen. The import and export formats are identical, so export > amend > save > import is often the easiest way to change settings in bulk.
Reset Last Upload Quantity: Tradebox records the last quantity uploaded back to your marketplace so that it can compare it against your current stock levels and only upload those products that have changed. Clicking the Reset Last Upload Quantity button at the bottom of the Upload Options screen will reset this so that the products in the grid will all be included in the upload as if it is the first time the upload has been run. Resetting applies to that product on all sales channels, not just the one currently selected in the Upload Options screen.
If you're using an eBay channel, you will see two additional columns, the Listing ID and the Variation Flag. These are required pieces of information that need to be held in Tradebox to be able to upload to eBay successfully. They can be added or amended here manually, but the easiest way to get these added to your products is via Products > Import > Products; set the Source as your eBay sales channel and ensure Update Existing Records is ticked.