In Stock/out Of Stock

Like many shop owners I keep a certain range of products in stock and many other products are drop shipped direct from distributors. I want to keep track of my on-hand stock and know when to order more.

The Inventory Tracking doesn't seem to support the scenario that many of us use so I was hoping someone could advise me on what they do in a similar situation to me.

I have a competitor that doesn't keep much stock at all and in fact I am told by many customers that they have to wait for a week to get an order as they get stock from other countries. So having stock on hand is a plus for me and the Availability: In Stock label with many of my products help but for those products that are drop shipped, and thus have a total of 0 in stock, I would like to have the availability change to something like “Availability: Direct from distributor”.

I thought of changing the “Out Of Stock” lqanguage to this however it stops the customer from purchasing.

Any thoughts?

The inventory of items works just fine if you have things setup correctly (or the default settings).

What specifically do you believe is not working for you?

Both current company and suppliers need to have stock managed. So I think it's more about having accurate information than it is the system not doing the right thing.

I have the following:

Enable inventory tracking: YES

Allow negative amount in inventory: YES

Low stock notification threshold: 0

Show out of stock products: YES

Stocked Items:

I have some products that I stock myself and want to show “In Stock” to the customer when I have >0 inventory.

I want to track my stock and receive notification of items when they are out of stock

Dropped Shipped Items:

I have some products that I do not stock (0 stock) as those products are dropped shipped direct from the distributor to the customer.

It would be nice if the “Availability: In Stock” text that is shown for these drop shipped products to be either not shown or better still to say “Availability: Direct from distributor”

If a stocked product becomes 0 in stock then I would simply get it shipped direct from the distributor so all the logic is based on 0 stock (shipped direct from distributor) or >0 stock (on-hand stock I have and notified when it gets to 0)

I tried playing around with an “IF” statement in the product_data template to say this but couldn't get it to work

It doesn't matter if the supplier is a drop-ship supplier or you, if inventory is zero or below it will be out of stock.

As I said before, you need to manage the inventory of items you sell regardless of where they come from.

You don't want to sell something to your customer that your supplier is out of stock and has a 3 month lead time.

Most people do NOT want to tell their clients that an item comes from somewhere else.

You can look at the product_data.tpl and probably find a hook that will allow you to do some extra logic and display what you want.

I really hate people telling me how to run my business when they have no idea HOW I run my business!!!

I do not keep physical stock of items over $175 for 3 reasons:

  1. Security
  2. It would require tieing up over $100,000 of capital
  3. My distributors offer free shipping direct to the customer for order over $175

    My main competitor gets most of his stock from another country which delays their orders for 1 to 2 weeks which is why they don't have “In Stock” listed with their products…they just blanket their site with heaps of products and then goes and sources them, giving them a bad name

    So I, from a marketing sense, want to have “In Stock” listed with my products or “Shipped direct from distributor” for the non-stocked items.

    PLUS, and a HUGE plus, is that it displays to customers what products they can simply drop in to our shop and buy/pick up at any time they like and what products are shipped direct from the distributor…so YES, I want to tell my customers what I can do for them as it doesn't waste their time coming to my shop…it is called customer service and for the last 10 years I can count on one hand the times a distributor has not had stock of something that I list on my site…that comes from also having a great relationship with my distributors.

    So don't tell me how to run my business unless you know HOW I run my business but instead provide help for what a person needs when they post in these forums for help!!!


I don't speak english very well, but if I good understand your problem:

I was using addon, when I used 3.0.1.

Might you need this add-on too. This is not the best solution, but you can setting 'unique' shipping time/message.

In stock goods: 1-5 days,

not in stock goods: available / not available (pro-order, out of stock) / available, but shipping time 5-10 days / available, but 1-2 weeks / available, but call me / on request / etc…

Main problem: You don't know, what products are in stock ur distributor. But, better than nothing.

Alt-Team made an similar solution for 4.x.x. Shipping xyz, please search in this forum: shipping time add-on, or something similar.

Thanks eroleves but unfortunately after looking at that addon I don't think it will do what I need but thanks anyway

Wasn't telling you how to run your business, was just trying to describe how cs-cart works and my views on why it works that way.

tbirnseth…CS-Cart only provides for the following:

  1. Turn Inventory Tracking OFF so you can't track inventory and nothing is displayed with a product…or
  2. Product is In Stock - a customer can order a product
  3. Product is Out of Stock - customer can not order the product
  4. Product is Out of Stock - customer can be notified when stock arrives
  5. Product is “really” out of stock as it is drop shipped BUT the product displays that it is In Stock

    They are the only options that I can see you can have if you want to track inventory

    However you said:

    “You don't want to sell something to your customer that your supplier is out of stock and has a 3 month lead time.”

    so option 5 above is wrong to have.

    So the question is “How can you display dropped shipped products” without saying it is in stock…because it isn't…and still manage your inventory of those products that you really do stock? I would really be interested to hear how one could set up the “In Stock/Out of Stock” system, that supposedly works fine, in CS-Cart for products that you have physically in stock and products that are dropped ship and still allow customers to order something that is “Out of Stock” because it is dropped shipped?

Some of this has evolved over time and if there are newer features in V4, then I'm just not aware of them.

In your earlier note you stated that you have “allow less than zero” for inventory. If I'm not mistaken, this is intended to behave as “in stock” when zero or less and it gives the merchant an idea of how many they need to order. So I believe (but not confirmed) that this setting negates the others related to whether something is in-stock or not.

In V2/V3 a quantity of zero meant out-of stock and the order (if only that item) would become Backordered. Not sure of the handling of the order if only one item is out-of stock or how it's handled for partial-fill.

If it were me, I'd burn the $7 for a support ticket and let cs-cart answer since no one who does what you do has chimed in here.

We use Alt-team's “Stock Availability” Mod to give our customers a better idea if the item is to be drop shipped or what the wait time is. You can set up whatever language you want. However, it is not tied into CS-Cart's inventory system, so Google feeds don't reflect it unless you say you have one in stock. So we have to change availability in 2 places. It's not by far a perfect system, but it helps.

See: CS-Cart Shipping availability add-on


Thanks Jack, that may be the go…the ability to simply add text above the qty ordered line

I have been giving this whole thing some considerable amount of thought and experimenting. It seems CS-Cart is lacking in the ability to manage stock and provide inventory alerts when you have both physical stock and drop shipped stock. Especially in my case when say I have qty of 1 in stock of a physical product and the customer orders 2. In my case I simply ring the distributor and order 2 more. I am then faced with the question of either getting them to drop ship the 2 direct, still leaving me with 1 in stock or as they have free over night shipping of orders over $175, I can then look up in CS-Cart what other normal physically stocked products that I have from that distributor which are also at 0 stock level level and make up the $175 order for free shipping to me. This is the most cost effective way of handling stock for me…I am not carrying high levels of stock taking up a large amount of capital of items that are slow movers and getting free fast over night shipping to me and providing customers with quick order dispatch by either having in stock or drop shipped.

All I need is some system that tells the customer which products are normally kept in stock and which are drop shipped direct from the distributor to alert them that depending on what they order, they may receive two packages, one from me and one from the distributor plus it also tells them that if they drop in to the shop what products are likely to be there for them to purchase then and there and what products are sent direct from the distributor.

So, please correct me if I am wrong but with this addon I could:

  1. Set the following:

    [indent=1]Enable inventory tracking: YES - so I get a list of products that I physically stock but are now out of stock so I can see what products I can include in my order with the distributor to make up $175 for free shipping

    Allow negative amount in inventory: YES - so a customer can order more of my physically stocked products than I currently have in stock

    Low stock notification threshold: 0 - In many cases I just keep 1 in stock of physically stocked products

    Show out of stock products: YES - ALL products are shown and can be ordered whether they are in stock or not[/indent]

  2. I remove this code from the /design/frontend/YOUR_THEME/templates/common/product_data.tpl file so the whole “In Stock/Out of Stock/Availability” is not shown to the customer:

{capture name="product_amount_`$obj_id`"}

3. Purchase the addon you mentioned and install and then with each product:

[indent=1]If drop shipped product select “Do Not Track”[/indent]

[indent=1]If drop shipped product, in the addon text use “Availability: Shipped direct from distributor”[/indent]

[indent=1]If physically stocked product select Track with options[/indent]

[indent=1]If physically stocked product, in the addon text use “Availability: Normally stocked item”[/indent]

Does all this sound right and will achieve what I need to?

Well, I bit the bullet and purchased that addon and everything works well and I have full inventory management and a product display to the customers exactly what I was after incorporating physical stock, drop shipped products and special orders plus a popup window on information on Availability

Here are some screen shots of what I have done:

[attachment=7743:1.gif] [attachment=7744:2.gif] [attachment=7745:3.gif] [attachment=7746:4.gif]





Glad it’s working for you. I agree it’s sort of a kludge, but better than nothing. Just remember that if you use feeds they are not adjusted. We modded the code sand still use the CS-cart in/out of stock. When I have more than 1 it makes the Google Feed feature go to in-stock and visa versa.

This is a very weak area of CS-Cart imho.

Btw; I liked the page definting your stock availability and I shall add one to my site. pages. If I can get any of the customers to read them… ;-)


Thanks Jack, have actually changed the “Special order” to “Will order in for you” as it sounds a little less of a delay if they order that product.

If you need to know, I created the popup explanation by:

  1. Created a new CS-Cart page called Availability and set it as a popup window
  2. Saved the ? icon as a separate image - I didn't know how to reference the ? from the sprite
  3. An example of the code I used for each of the Availability statements is:


Availability Info : Normal stocked item

The only issue with this is I don't know how to take the hard coded reference to the page out of the code and just have the page as currently this new version of the shop is in development in a "shop_new" folder and not the root so when I do go live I have to change the url to the popup page.

When you say feeds are not adjusted, what do you mean by this as I haven't turned on Google Base feeds yet...given that the mod doesn't tie in to anything other than just providing a text field that is displayed on the product info...can you advise...thanks

I think I'll just build the page and use targeted links off the product page statuses.

CS Cart will allow you to export the “in stock/out of stock” based on +/-1 as part of your Google Feed. So I don't think I'd take that out of the equation in your design.


[quote name='JackConnick' timestamp='1393301043' post='178153']

I think I'll just build the page and use targeted links off the product page statuses.



Good idea Jack, might change mine to have a (read more) link