The Product module allows you to monitor all of your products. As you may remember, products differ from parts in the fact that products are always meant to be sold to customers while parts may or may not be intended for that purpose. It’s possible to use the same part in more than one product, so Fishbowl lets you associate multiple products with the same part, if necessary.
Add New Products
You can create new products in the Product module by clicking the New button in the toolbar and filling in all of the information about the product’s name, description, part, price, and unit of measure. In addition, you can add an image of the product and specify the thumbnail size. This is a big help because it helps you visually identify the part, so you don’t have to rely purely on names and numbers to figure out what it is.
Products are eternal. After you create one in Fishbowl, you can never remove it. This is an important feature because it protects the historical data on sales, inventory levels and values, and more. But if you find that a product is no longer available through your vendors or is not worth keeping in stock, you can always inactivate it. Simply select the product, click on the General tab, and uncheck the Active checkbox. This product will cease to clutter your Product module by becoming invisible and only viewable via an Advanced Search.
If you want to duplicate a product, that’s easy as well. Click on the product and then click the Duplicate button in the module’s toolbar. A new product will be instantly created, which uses the same part as the original product. The difference is that it will have “Copy of” at the start of its name. You can change that and any other information about the new product. You’ll have to add details about the product’s pricing, substitution, and memo because those aren’t copied over from the original product.
Use the Product Tree
The Product module is where you’ll find the Product Tree. It’s prominently placed in the middle of the toolbar. You can create categories and subcategories to place your products into. That way, similar items get grouped together in your system. There are two big reasons to use the Product Tree. First, it helps with organizing your inventory and ensuring you can find what you’re looking for quickly in Fishbowl. Second, you can apply pricing rules and discounts to every product in a certain category or subcategory.
A Fantastic Tool
These are the main things you’ll find in the Product module. There’s plenty more that you can do in it, but this should get you started. We’ll continue next time as we discuss the ins and outs of the Inventory module.
Robert Lockard is a copywriter with Fishbowl. He writes for several blogs about inventory management, manufacturing, QuickBooks, and small business. Fishbowl is the #1-requested manufacturing and warehouse management software for QuickBooks users. Robert enjoys running, reading, writing, spending time with his wife and children, and watching movies.