What Is the Shopify Variant Inventory Policy?

If you are selling products through Shopify, you need to be aware of their variant inventory policy. It affects how your sold-out products are handled.

Kelli Harris
By Kelli Harris
Romi Hector
Edited by Romi Hector

Updated July 4, 2023.

To accommodate expanding sales, your Shopify inventory management must be equally adaptable. Learning how to upload Shopify product variants in bulk will help you manage your Shopify inventory more efficiently.

Using a CSV file to upload your products' data is one option, but by doing so, you must ensure that you follow Shopify's CSV structure requirements for the inventory variant policy. This option is also effective if you share product information between Shopify and another system.

Understanding Shopify's Variant Inventory Policy

When a product is sold out of stock on Shopify, the inventory for that product is set to 0. This means that the product is no longer available for purchase until it is restocked. The variant inventory policy creates a rule for managing out-of-stock products and defining whether you continue selling or not after the inventory level for a particular product or variation reaches zero.

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How to Use Shopify's Variant Inventory Policy

Variant inventory policy indicates that when the inventory level for a product or variation reaches zero, you have to indicate how this is handled. Follow these steps to specify your options in the CSV file:

  1. In the Variant Fulfillment Service column, you can enter the name of the fulfillment service you use.
  2. For manual fulfillment, you can just enter Manual.
  3. Next, enter the price and the compare price in the next two columns.
  4. In the following two columns, indicate if the Shopify variants require shipping or if they are taxable.
  5. Enter the barcode if you have one for your listing.

Learn more about how Egnition's Out-of-Stock Police can effectively organize your collection pages by automatically managing sold-out products:

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