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Square for Retail: Inventory Plus

The Square for Retail POS system includes robust inventory management tools – create purchase orders and manage your stock, right from your online Square Dashboard.

If you’re new to Square for Retail, take a look at our comprehensive Getting Started Guide. The guide includes helpful tips for Square sellers who are new to the Square Point of Sale for Retail (but have experience using the Square Point of Sale app), as well as easy-to-follow onboarding steps for anyone brand new to Square.

Note: Advanced inventory management is not available with Square for Retail on Mobile at this time. You can still, however, receive stock in-app. Learn how to Track Inventory for any item variations created on your Square Dashboard or in the app for Square for Retail Free and Square for Retail Plus.

Inventory at a glance

When you log in to the Items tab on your online Square Dashboard, you’ll see the list of your inventory items. If you have multiple locations, the stock levels for each item variation will reflect the total amount of items across all locations.

Note: Before you begin managing your inventory, review creating items, managing modifiers and importing your item library.

Actions you can take from here:

  1. From your Items page, click on any inventory item to see its variants, unit type, unit costs, SKUs, price and current stock level.

  2. Click Actions > Transfer Inventory to move items individually or in bulk between locations.

  3. To navigate around your inventory management tools. Click Inventory Management to view your vendors, create purchase orders or view your stock action history.

  4. Manage Modifiers, Categories, Discounts, Taxes, Gift Cards and Dining Options as well as Comp and Void Settings.

Get started tracking your inventory

To track inventory for a new item or existing item:

  1. Navigate to Items > Library tab of your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Click the name of the item to track > under Price and Inventory, click Stock.

  3. On the variation details page, each location will appear below. Toggle on each applicable location by enabling Tracking.

  4. Select the stock action and enter the Current Stock amount.

  5. Enable Alerts and set a Low Stock Alert > Save.

Note: If you use decimal quantities, you can only set stock alert levels to whole amounts.

To update inventory levels for an existing item:

  1. Log in to Items & Orders > Items > Inventory tab of your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Search for the item > click the variant to adjust.

  3. From the variation details page, update your stock by clicking Stock Action.

  4. Enable Alerts and set a Low Stock Alert > Done.

Learn more about tracking your Square Inventory.

To adjust stock levels from the Retail app:

  1. Enter the item name in the search bar.

  2. When the item appears in the drop down, tap More Info.

  3. Locate the In store section > tap Adjust stock.

  4. Enter the new stock number, select a reason and tap Save.

Note: There is a 100,000 item limit. Stock Received, Inventory Recount, and Return will add to the adjusted stock amount – Damage, Theft and Loss will remove stock.

Stock conversion

If you need to track inventory for things you sell in multiple units, you can do so by utilising the stock conversion feature in your Item Library. For example, if your retail business sells wine by the bottle and by the glass, you can now track all of your inventory on a single item variation so that whether you sell it by the bottle or by the glass, the inventory is reduced.

To get started:

  1. Go to Items & Orders > Items from your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Select an existing item or click Create an item.

  3. In the Variations section, select Add unit in the price field, or select Edit variation details > Add unit. If your item contains multiple variations, select the variation name and then from the Edit variation details modal, select Add unit.

  4. Select a unit, or create a new one, like ‘glass’.

  5. Under the Conversion section, enter in the conversion details specific to the item variation. For example, a conversion for a bottle of wine might be ‘4 glasses is equal to 1 bottle’.

  6. Click Done to save.

Note: If you are tracking stock for an item, the stock column in the Variations table will display the quantity of that item available in each unit. (In the example below, there are either 12.5 bottles of the McLaren Vale 2018 wine available or 50 glasses available).

You can add multiple units to any item that does not use Item options. This process can be repeated for any additional items sold in multiple units.

Inventory Counting

With Square for Retail Plus, you can easily perform cycle counts from your iPad or iPhone manually or using a compatible barcode scanner or the built-in camera on your iPhone or iPad.


  1. From the navigation bar in your Square for Retail app, tap Inventory. Note: If you’re using Square for Retail on an iPhone, tap the list icon to access Inventory, then tap Stock Overview.

  2. Tap Adjust stock > Count.

  3. Tap the search bar at the top of the screen, and select the appropriate variation > tap Add to List.

  4. Tap the item variation to input a quantity using the number pad > tap Done.

  5. Repeat this process across all applicable variations.

  6. Tap Continue > Confirm.


  1. From the navigation bar in your Square for Retail app, tap Inventory. Note: If you’re using Square for Retail on an iPhone, tap the list icon to access Inventory, then tap Stock Overview.

  2. Tap Adjust stock > Count.

  3. Using a compatible barcode scanner or the built-in camera on your iPad or iPhone, scan the item. Continue to scan or tap the screen while the built-in camera is open to increase the quantity by one each time.

  4. Repeat this process across all applicable variations.

  5. Tap Continue > Confirm.

You can save or cancel an inventory count at any time by tapping the X icon next to Stock count in the corner of your screen. You’ll see a pop-up that says Save Progress and can either save and close or close without saving. Note: Progress will only save on the device used to count inventory, meaning you can’t access a saved count from another device, even if it’s logged in to the same Square account.

Transfer stock between locations

If you need to transfer stock from one location to another, you can transfer individual items, or move your inventory in bulk – quickly and easily.

To get started:

  1. Go to Items & Orders > Items from your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Click Actions > Transfer Stock to begin your stock transfer.

  3. Select both the source and destination locations.

  4. Choose the items to transfer and enter the transfer quantity. Take note of the current source location stock levels to ensure you have enough stock to support the transfer.

  5. Click Complete Transfer.

Stock transfer with Retail

Once you complete the transfer, you can view the order information at any time – including location details, product name, date and time – all from your History log. Each transfer is assigned a unique transfer number to help identify past transfers.

To filter your history to only view item transfers, click All Adjustment Types > deselect all filters except Transferred.

Learn more about reporting with Square for Retail.

Advanced inventory reporting

With Square for Retail, you have access to three new, powerful reports: Cost of Goods Sold, Projected Profit and Inventory by Category. Log in to your online Square Dashboard and navigate to Inventory and select the report you wish to view to get started.

Aging inventory

Aging inventory refers to items that have been in the store for an extended period of time. The low sales of these items can be due to out-of-season or excess inventory, or low product visibility. For your business, this slow turnover results in poor inventory organisation, higher holding costs and little to no return on investment. Find out more about managing aging inventory.

Cost of Goods Sold

The Cost of Goods Sold report helps you keep an eye on your profit margin by keeping your topline metrics – cost of goods, total revenue, profit and profit margin – front and centre. Drill down deeper into your reporting by setting your desired filters and clicking Export to download a CSV.

The COGS column will account for additional costs associated with an order. For example, when you receive a purchase order, you can choose to include shipping and handling by selecting Add Optional Fee. Including additional costs when receiving an order will increase visibility into your profit margin.

Note: The Cost of Goods Sold report is calculated based on FIFO (first in, first out) sales of items received with an assigned cost. As a reminder, if you have questions about using Square for Retail reporting for tax or accounting purposes, please reach out to a tax professional.

Vendor Sales

The Vendor Sales report allows you to view which items are sold in a given time frame, sorted by vendor. By selecting a date range and filtering by vendor, you will have an accurate look at how each of your vendors are performing and additional insights for each item sold.

With easy-to-view graphs included in the Vendor Sales report, surveying your top vendors by net sales and units sold will be a breeze – meaning more time back for you to focus on other aspects of your business.

To get started:

  1. Go to Reporting > Reports from your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Click Inventory Reports > Vendor Sales.

  3. Use the date selector at the top-left corner to choose the date range you’d like to view or enter custom dates.

  4. Select which ones you’d like to see if you have more than one location.

Projected Profit

The Projected Profit report shows you the potential profit of your business inventory. Slice your data to see the performance of an item, view each location’s profit potential, and see how each inventory category contributes to your business’s strength. The Projected Profit report is only updated once per day and will not reflect changes in real time.

Inventory by Category

The Inventory by Category report compares the data from the previous two reports to show the cumulative value of your inventory by category – it includes your total inventory value, potential profit and profit margin by item category.

Note: Variably priced items are included in your Inventory by Category and Projected Profit reports, but we do not provide projected margin since these reports reflect potential future sales. The COGS report will reflect your profit margin once you sell a variably priced item at a fixed cost.


When you manually adjust your stock, accept a purchase order or make a sale, your History log will reflect each adjustment. Your History log is intended to give you a detailed account of your current inventory levels by listing out each stock adjustment.

Note: If your COGS, Projected Profit or Inventory by Category report seem low, take a look at your History log. You may have received stock or made an adjustment without an associated unit cost. You can update your unit cost for a historical adjustment from your History log to get back on track.

Read more about Square for Retail advanced reporting.

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