2. Getting Started: Orders and Inventory
IN THIS GUIDE
Whether or not you have enabled any integrations, to get started with Order Desk, you'll need some orders.
If you already have orders through one of the carts we are integrated with, enable the integration to begin downloading orders. If you aren't ready to download your orders, you can manually pull in some orders with most integrations:
Or, if you don't have orders or haven't enabled any integrations yet, you can manually create real or test orders to begin exploring Order Desk. To manually create an order, click on Add New Order under the Tools menu in the left sidebar:
Fill out as many of the order details as you'd like. You can always edit or add information to an order later.
Add Inventory Items
Adding inventory items to Order Desk is beneficial for record keeping purposes, and, in some cases, such as with print on demand products or if you need to split your orders, necessary to automate the submission process.
There are a few ways to add inventory items to Order Desk.
First, you can manually add them by going to
Inventory Items under the
Tools menu in the left sidebar:
From here, click on Add New Item in the upper right corner and fill out the item details.
As you can see from the screenshot, you can also add new print on demand items manually by clicking on Add Print on Demand. Print on demand products will need to have a little extra information added to them, specifically a link to the print file and the printer's product code for the item being printed on. For more information on manually adding this information, read through this section of our print on demand fulfillment guide.
- Another way to add your products to Order Desk is to import them from a spreadsheet. This is a quick way to import all of your products at once, however it does take a little set up to create the import template. The import template needs to match the field names from your spreadsheet to the field names used in Order Desk. For detailed instructions on how to import your inventory, please read our import data guide.
- One useful way to import products is through the orders themselves. If you go to your Store Settings page and look under Inventory Settings, you can enable the bottom two settings (both need to be enabled for this to work), Automatically Update Stock Count When Orders Added and Automatically Create New Inventory Items:
- With these two settings enabled, when you import, download or create a new order, any products in the order will automatically be added to your Inventory Items here in Order Desk.
The last way to import your items is through one of our integrations. Not all integrations have this feature, but check your integration settings page for an inventory import button, like this one in the Shopify settings:
For a more thorough overview of the Inventory Items page and working with your inventory once it has already been added to Order Desk, please refer to our Inventory Items guide.
Submitting Orders Through An Integration
You can set up rules (which we'll discuss in the Customization Guide) or adjust the settings in certain integrations to automatically submit orders, but initially we recommend that you submit orders manually to get a sense for how the fulfillment process works in Order Desk. This also gives you the opportunity to correct any mistakes as you catch them, something that can be a little harder to do when everything is running automatically. After you are familiar with the flow of orders through Order Desk, have corrected any mistakes that cause errors, and you can trust that your integrations are set up properly by watching your orders pass through the app for a few days, it would be a good time to begin automating the process for your store. Before doing that, let's look at how to submit orders manually.
To submit an order manually to an integration, open up the order and look under the order details for a little button with the name of the fulfillment service you are sending it to. Click the button to submit:
It's that easy!
However, there may be issues when you first submit an order. When you click to submit, the order queues up to go through to your fulfillment service. If you check back (or refresh the page) after a couple minutes, scroll down and look at the order history section at the bottom of the page to see if the order submitted or not.
In most cases orders submit without any issues, but occasionally an order is rejected because something is wrong in the order per the fulfillment service's requirements for submission. When this happens, an error message is passed through to Order Desk from the fulfillment service that gives the reason the order was rejected.
Some common errors include the address format being wrong, the shipping country being unavailable for that fulfillment service, the shipping method not matching what the fulfillment service is expecting or the print file missing for print on demand items.
Based on the error message, fix the problem with the order and re-submit it. If the error message doesn't make sense, you can reach out to Order Desk Support or to your fulfillment service for more help. In some cases, we may ask you to contact them, as we aren't familiar with every error message we see from different services, but we'll be happy to take a look at your order to help you figure out the problem.
Dropshipping Orders to a Third Party Fulfillment Service
If you need to submit orders to a third party service that isn't currently integrated with Order Desk, you can do this too! Typically the way Order Desk customers submit orders to third parties is to send them a dropship email with the order details. For more information on how to set up these emails, please review this guide on creating email templates.
It isn't necessary to create a rule yet to automate the process. If the email template has already been created, you can submit an order from the order details page by clicking on the email button and selecting the email template meant for your fulfillment service:
Another way to submit an order to a third party service is to export a csv file. This is a more advanced option, requiring an export template to be created and sent through email or FTP. For more information on how to do this, please review these guides on Exporting Orders for Fulfillment and Building Export Templates. If you need any help with this, please contact Order Desk Support.