Fishbowl Inventory Custom Setup For Business Management

Fishbowl Inventory custom setup is for small to mid-sized businesses that are facing a fast-paced climate of change today.  Manufacturing and warehouse employers are hard-pressed to keep up with their products and services in real-time, yet this is necessary to keep a competitive edge with larger-scale e-companies & big box stores.  The demand for instant knowledge & efficiency is at an all-time high. By using fishbowl custom fields, Fishbowl Inventory custom setup will help your business meet the demands & keep its competitive edge. Fishbowl Inventory is compatible with Quickbooks and Xero via Fishbowl Nexus to keep all of your inventory & pricing accurate and accessible at all times.  You may read more on the fishbowl wiki.

How does Fishbowl work? In a nutshell, it works by tracking your inventory, through the use of various Fishbowl modules.  It will also help you with shipping your product and allow you to generate Fishbowl custom reports that are helpful for all of the employees involved.  This process can be highly intimidating for companies who are still doing inventory entries by hand onto databases that are not accessible to everyone who needs them, all at once.   The Fishbowl Inventory system can help with that. When you become a Fishbowl client, you will begin the process of automating your inventory by using Fishbowl Inventory quick fulfill and taking your business into the next stage of growth. Our Fishbowl support staff will be available to help you each step of the way with Fishbowl implementation.  This video gives an introduction to the Fishbowl Inventory Management System & how it can improve your business operations.

Fishbowl consists of two main components.  These are the Fishbowl Client and the Fishbowl Server.  The server is the part where your database is stored. It has an application that connects to Quickbooks that is called Fishbowl Nexus.  This helps your business to integrate all of its applicable inventory information into the Quickbooks software for quick and easy access for those who are making financial decisions for your business.  The Fishbowl Client is the software component that you use and see on a daily basis & that you and your employees will interact with the most from your prospective workstations. It is necessary to have the Fishbowl Server up and running before connecting the Fishbowl Client to it.

Fishbowl not only has integrations with Quickbooks, however.  They have capability to integrate with different accounting softwares if you prefer, or are using a different accounting software.  They also have a number of integrations for e-commerce companies, shipping companies, CRMs, merchant services, EDIs, mobile hardware, platforms & their own Fishbowl plugins.  New choices are being added every day. If they don’t integrate with something you need, our programmers will pick up the slack. Data can be extracted with ODBC connections and SQL queries. Records can be auto inserted use Fishbowl’s API. 

Whether your business is primarily that of a manufacturing company trying to track inventory, warehouse storage & shipment of your materials or if your company is a warehouse distributor for different manufacturers, Fishbowl ERP is right for you. Your Fishbowl status is determined by whether you are a manufacturing business or a warehouse business.  Fishbowl manufacturing will help you set up Fishbowl sales order templates that are custom fit for your business so that you will be able to fulfill your customer demands while also making your sales & warehouse staff happy that they do not have to enter information in duplicate or triplicate onto paper or into antiquated databases, Fishbowl database maintenance will take the trouble out database upkeep.

This inventory software uses fishbowl sql for their databases and can help you with several key components of your business. It is not difficult to learn how to Fishbowl!  If you are a manufacturer, Fishbowl manufacturing will begin by helping you with tracking your inventory. It will have Fishbowl server requirements that will need to be met in order to begin setup.   It is set up to be able to keep track in several different warehouses at one time, so growing your business will not create an extra hassle. It can track how many items that you have on hand, where they are located, and even generate maps of the warehouse to show where each item is located.  But it goes much further than that, it can also track whether the item is on backorder, if it has been ordered from another location & when it is expected to ship. All of this information is invaluable when your sales team is speaking to interested customers to give them the most up-to-the-minute information about the products they’re interested in purchasing.  Fishbowl Inventory quick fulfill will help keep your inventory stocked to your specifications by automating the re-ordering process.

You’ll rest easier knowing that you will not run out of key components in your Fishbowl stock that are essential for manufacturing the goods that your customers expect in a timely manner.  The Fishbowl inventory cost component of the software has the ability to track product numbers, descriptions, part costs and total costs. It can also track whether a product has been committed, whether it is available for sale or whether it is on backorder.  Tracking the products as they ship to customers is another invaluable tool that will help your customer service team as they interact with those who are buying your products. It can generate barcodes for your products.

Perhaps the most important aspect of the inventory tool is how it interacts seamlessly with Quickbooks.  Think of how nice it would be to have all of that information from Fishbowl export to Quickbooks and not have to spend extra time to enter it!  Streamlining all of these systems takes a bit of setup time, but is well worth it when you see how much time you’ll save in execution of daily tasks!  Other inventory software may be effective, but Fishbowl software is the top choice for manufacturing and inventory software for Quickbooks.


The Fishbowl Inventory system is not the only part that is beneficial to manufacturers.  The ability to generate Fishbowl sales order templates, purchase orders, pick-tickets, etc. is essential if you are going to run an efficient business with an etrail or paper trail that will give all of the information required.

Fishbowl manufacturer will save you time and money by automating your work orders.  Instant communication to the people who need it can save money for your company. FBM can assign tasks to specific employees. It can also help you organize your manufacturing jobs into different production stages, which is helpful to individual production lines. It can schedule tasks in a specific order to be sure that they’re done in order and to a certain standard. Production work orders can be automated to your specifications, and can be multi-leveled so that everyone can see at which stage of production a current item is & evaluate whether it is satisfactory or if it needs to be adjusted to meet a customer order.  This will help you to determine whether your estimate for the item’s production is in line with its actual production time. Lot numbers and serial numbers can be tracked to accompany the work orders that you send out. Bills of materials & cost analysis of materials are available to manufacturers with the Fishbowl software to make everything available in one place in a sleek, streamlined fashion.

Multi level Bills of materials can be replicated indefinitely for popular items that you manufacture within the Fishbowl software.   They can also be customized to meet a specific customer need. It can easily create & maintain multiple bills of sale at one time while keeping track of the parts needed & the quantities available.

If you are a manufacturer with several warehouses, this software will enable you to check inventory in each of your warehouses.  It will also analyze the sales trends from each warehouse so that you can determine the areas of popularity for your products. This can help you avoid a shortage of an item.  It can also arrange for transport of excess materials or products from one warehouse to another, thus ensuring that the supply is adequate, not too little and not too much for the current needs of the company.  If you find that you are regularly stocking too much of an item in a certain warehouse & too little in another, Fishbowl warehouse can help you to update & solve the problem automatically.

Custom Tracking

In addition,  Fishbowl has part  tracking abilities so that you’ll always know where a necessary part is at and how long it will take to reach you.  It lets you track both raw materials, as well as finished goods in this way. You will always know the quantity of an item that you have, where it is located, how much it costs, when it will be available in your location & how long it will be until it is available to a customer. You will also know if it is on backorder for any reason at all, and when it will come available again. Imagine all of that information at your fingertips, ready for your excellent sales force to utilize efficiently in fulfilling customer requests!  Orders can be made, sold & shipped out more quickly and with fewer glitches than ever before.

Integrate with Accounting Software

As was stated earlier, Fishbowl Inventory software is compatible with Quickbooks and Xero. Whether you are using Quickbooks online or any of the current desktop versions of Quickbooks, Fishbowl will integrate with it without effort. It will ensure that you can continue using the accounting software that you are familiar with while integrating a myriad of new, innovative and helpful solutions for your inventory management.  Fishbowl saves you time, but it also saves you money be ensuring that nothing gets missed or double counted in your inventory. No one wants to have loads of stock that sits, unmoving from the shelves. Shelves are meant to be temporary holding places for rotating stock.

Fishbowl will help you track how quickly your stock is turning over.  If you’re utilizing Xero as your accounting software, Fishbowl can post completed work orders to the general ledger without a second thought. It will be a valuable help to you as you set up pricing tiers.  While going through Fishbowl, you can see all of the information that you need to make important decisions for your business. Decide whether the production time is taking too long for you to charge so little.  Decide whether the cost of raw materials has gone down enough to justify a lowering of a price or a special flash sale for your most loyal customers. Decide whether certain members of your sales or warehouse team are in need of a raise because of a job done in a manner consistent with your values for quality. Many people produce accounting software.  Many others produce inventory tracking software, but Fishbowl is uniquely positioned to integrate that inventory software with accounting software to give you all of the information you need in one place for easy access.

Integrating the fishbowl software with Quickbooks or a like accounting software is only the first step.  Fishbowl also offers these hardware products that lead the industry and put your company on the cutting edge of the latest technology within business.  There are several mobile scanner kits available if you are utilizing the Fishbowl Go product. These will help you read barcodes, but will also do much more.  There are also pocket scanners available specifically for reading barcodes. These are especially helpful for warehouse employees as they search and inventory products to be entered into the system.

Bar Code Scanning

For those who would rather have more mobile usage, barcode tablets are also available. Point of sale hardware & kits are also available.  These include cash drawers, barcode scanner, credit card reader, and receipt printers for your customers on the spot immediately. They can also include integrated computers and touchscreen monitors.  These can be incredibly handy for anyone with business sales taking place on the go. If you have truck drivers, for instance, that are equipped to sell extra inventory from their delivery trucks, this is a must have kit.  If you are not interested in all of the features that are included in the point of sale kits, or if you need to order specific parts, the “a la carte” option might be right for your company.

Wholesale Distribution

Fishbowl is not only effective for manufacturers, however.  Fishbowl warehouse is another aspect of the Fishbowl software that is highly regarded for warehouse operators & distributors.

Fishbowl warehouse allows you to receive products into your warehouse in a timely manner.  You can track your shipments out to their destination with ease. If you are consistantly running low on specific items in a warehouse, you can set up reorder points that will help you automatically reorder certain products so that you will avoid shortages and lengthy backorder delays.  Because it tracks the amount of an item available at all times and in real time, you can also analyze the data to see whether you need to order less of an items so that you are not using up valuable space on overstocks.

By using Fishbowl Inventory receiving,  the parts are tracked by lot numbers, serial numbers, part number and tags through fishbowl purchase orders so that you’ll never have to wonder whether the part you’re looking for is actually there.  It also simplifies the conversions for units of measurement so that you’re not wasting time doing conversions. It includes maps of where each product is located & in which warehouse so that those doing order fulfillment and forklift drivers can easily find the items that are needed without lengthy search times.

Carrier Software

Whether your company is in manufacturing or warehouse distribution as a fishbowl business,  shipping will be of utmost importance. The Fishbowl shipping plugin has a number of ways to integrate with several companies to make shipping easy, efficient & cost effective. It eliminates the need for open database connectivity within your interface.  Plugins facilitate the order fulfillment. UPS shipping via ShipExpress is embedded into Fishbowl’s interface, but it does also integrate with Fed-Ex, USPS and all other major shipping companies.

Best of all, you will not need to download anything to use this amazing service! Once you have bought & activated ShipExpress, it will automatically be shown as a module within Fishbowl.   You can then use that module to create and print shipping labels or get quotes on shipping rates for materials & products coming into the warehouse. This can make receiving inventory, transfers between warehouses or getting your products to your customers a smooth and seamless automated process.  More than this, it will make your estimates as accurate as possible with up to date shipping information provided at the touch of a button. ShipExpress makes it easy to get signature verifications upon shipment delivery & obtain shipping insurance on necessary items. When you use ShipExpress with Fishbowl, you’ll even receive label discounts through USPS Commercial Plus Pricing & receive refunds for unused labels.

Multi Currency

If your company purchases or sells internationally, Fishbowl software integrates Multi-currency conversion to make your life easier.  You can assign certain currency to vendors or customers that are different from your home currency. You can also create a sales order, Fishbowl invoice, or purchase order slip for them in any currency, saving them the time & confusion of doing the conversion.  

Fishbowl invoicing is effortless & will make sure that all of your costs and revenue are in the correct currency and make everything streamlined when it goes to Fishbowl accounting & finally to the tax preparers.  You want all of your records to be as accurate as possible before they go out to the financial department. Currency conversion is one time when things can get easily muddled. With the automatic currency conversion, you will not have to worry about whether you’ve gotten the most up-to-date conversion amounts & whether the prices that you’ve offered are still profitable for the company.  This feature is imperative if you have warehouses in other countries.

Order Management

Fishbowl sales order templates are a great way to manage sales orders for your business.  The most commonly used features include the ability to save your sales order for specific customers from whom you have repeat business.  If they often have the same order, you’ll save time in data entry & product number searches. It can help you to manage vendor relationships & track names & addresses of those which you use frequently.  It can also give you a great platform to use for figuring out discounts for certain customer groups. For instance, you’d like to offer a 20% discount to customers that mention a specific advertisement when ordering, or perhaps offer a coupon code for those who visit a specific website.  This feature allows you to offer the discount & track it through the sales orders for use later by the advertising team.

One feature that is extremely helpful for your Method:CRM or Sales Force is the ability to turn price quotes that they’ve offered to customers directly into sales orders.  It saves a great deal of time if they do not have to create an entirely different document with all of the information that they’ve already entered previously on the price quote.  Customers, also, appreciate not having to repeat the information they’ve already given to the sales representative. Your customer’s time is just as valuable to them as yours is to you.  

The Fishbowl sales order templates also include a custom order configurator.   If someone is ordering a customized product and you or the sales team need to find out the new price for the product, this feature is worth its weight in gold!  Say someone calls in and orders a piece of equipment that you manufacture, but they want an alternate type of hardware for the handles, or they want no hardware at all, how will the price differ for them?  The configurator makes giving them an answer quick & easy without having to offer a “call back” with the information, during which time they may decide to go with a different company.  

Reporting Capabilities

Fishbowl has so many features that you can use and apply to various situations.  In several instances you may find it helpful to generate and print reports of the various information that is gathered, either for your own use, or to address in meetings with various internal departments.  In these cases, our Fishbowl report writer is incredibly helpful. The scope of reports that can be generated is astounding. You can look at trends in sales, for finances, for inventory, geographic changes in your sales trends, etc. With this software you will be able to generate a cycle count report for Fishbowl.

You can also run Fishbowl Inventory aging reports, Fishbowl inventory turnover reports, and Fishbowl Inventory backorder reports.  Aside from this you can generate reports on which products are flying off the shelf, versus which ones might be best to keep to a minimum.  Reports can be generated to show which salespeople have the highest amount of sales in a given time period. These could be used for internal rewards programs as incentive.

The reports have the ability to add pie chart or graph chart graphics so that there is a better visual representation of the information.  It also has the ability to report on recent updates to Quickbooks if you’re doing a quick session because of a financial decision. Fishbowl advanced reports goes into further detail in a number of areas.  Simply click on the reports module to run a fishbowl custom report.  Any of your reports can be adjusted or customized by clicking the “Modify Report” button in the Fishbowl reports store.  This feature has the potential to charge your staff with excitement at being able to quickly create & share information in a meaningful way within their specific teams.

Fishbowl Time and Labor

In addition to all of these things, Fishbowl offers a time & labor module in its software program.  Employees can log in and out from specific locations, track their vacation time, overtime, etc. It can also handle simple tax details that might be needed for the individual employee.  All of this can be accessed from anywhere on any device, but you can set up GPS as an option if an employee needs to log in from a certain place.


If, at any time during the purchase, implementation or use of your software you find that you need fishbowl help, because you’ve encountered fishbowl error codes, simply go into the fishbowl client and go to contact support. You can also contact them by phone, chat or email.  There may be times when you encounter a fishbowl client white screen, a fishbowl unable to connect to mysql database code, or it may be necessary to enter a fishbowl mysql root password.

Do not be concerned, simply search on the FAQ page or contact customer service.  They are happy to help you with anything from pricing to technical support questions in order to make your transition as seamless & beneficial as possible.  If you are a regular user of Fishbowl already, be sure that your fishbowl client download has been run recently for the latest updates that are available to your software. If you are a fishbowl mac client, they have a Fishbowl server and Fishbowl client available specifically for you.

Free Trial

Getting started with Fishbowl is easy.  Begin by downloading a free trial. Look over their website and read the case studies found there.  There are case studies that show how fishbowl works within a manufacturing business, in a wholesale distribution business and in other businesses for asset tracking purposes.  Choose a few of these to view so that you have an understanding of how Fishbowl might be applicable to your particular company. Then take a look at the fishbowl pricing guide to obtain the information you need about the costs involved in purchasing the Fishbowl Server and Fishbowl Client and any other potential purchases you might find helpful in your business.

Once you have that basic information that you need to proceed, then schedule a demo and extend your free trial. The free trial is an evaluation copy of the software and is available for free for fourteen days.  The Web demonstration can last anywhere from 10 minutes to one hour, online, with a professional from Fishbowl showing you what you need to know. You are encouraged to ask questions during the demonstration, and go through different scenarios that you would face at your own company.  The key decision maker for the company should be in attendance at the web demonstration & it is also important for you to have a list on hand of all of the features that your company needs, as well as a good understanding of the workflow of your business.

You will be able to learn how to put customers, inventory and vendors into the database.  You’ll also learn how to integrate it with Quickbooks or other integrations that are of interest to your business.  The demonstration is important for your basic understanding of how it all works. Scheduling is easy, just go to their website & fill out the form to request a demo.   After you’ve gone through the demo, you will be equipped to determine whether this product and service is a good fit for your company.

Getting Started

If you’re interested in the full scale product, Brandow Consulting offers two options for set up and training.  You can choose to follow the online training videos which are comprehensive and very easy to follow. They include everything you may need in order to set up Fishbowl for your company.  If you have any questions during set-up our expert consulting and tech support will provide you with the help you need. You’ll need to be sure to include anyone else in the company that needs the information for setting up the Fishbowl server & Fishbowl client & do training on the hardware for your staff.  This is possible with someone who is familiar working on these types of things.

Most companies that are buying the entire package find the best success with the on-site set up and training we offer.  This is because the Fishbowl professional that visits your site will ask you all of the pertinent questions with regards to your business that you will need to set up the modules that your company will need.  They can also help you troubleshoot anything that comes up and train your employees successfully on the hardware that they’ll be using on a daily basis. The on-site training has been incredibly successful for those companies that have decided to use it.   It is always easier if someone who is an expert is involved in any endeavor. Our Fishbowl professionals are experts at what they do and the transition will be a smooth one if they are involved in it!

Additional Products

Fishbowl has several additional products for those who are interested in them.  Fishbowl Inventory’s custom setup for these add on’s is a simple plug and play. The first of these is Fishbowl Anywhere. This is a plugin that lets you use Fishbowl Manufacturing or Fishbowl Warehouse software from anywhere.  Salespeople, warehouse staff and executives have access to everything they need from anywhere. It makes life much easier for everyone involved.

Fishbowl Canada makes all of this available for businesses in Canada.

Fishbowl’s Asset Tracking Solution is perfect for nearly any business at a much lower price than other asset tracking software.  It is successfully used by NASA & several other government and private sector businesses.

Fishbowl Go is a mobile app and can help you utilize Fishbowl Manufacturing or Fishbowl Warehouse and it can be used to scan barcodes and do a number of the other jobs that are necessary for physical inventory management in the warehouse.

Fishbowl ShipExpress helps your business integrate with all major shipping companies to get your product to your customer in the most cost-effective and time-efficient manner possible for excellent customer satisfaction.

Fishbowl Checkout offers excellent point of sale software and hardware for your business if it is in need of sales, checkout and payment solutions in addition to inventory tracking software.

Fishbowl Hosted Services allows you to focus on your business while they take care of IT issues, server updates, and security technology.  Their facilities are fully able to handle all of your needs & are secured themselves, using the latest advances in biometric security for access.  You can rest assured that your information will be as safe as possible with them.

Fishbowl for Salesforce is perfect for allowing your sales team access to all of the information that they need from wherever they are.  When they are speaking with a potential client, it is important that they have the latest information regarding the availability of products, particular prices that the client is asking about and shipping information pertaining to a potential order.  All of this is available with Fishbowl for Salesforce. Your sales team will be happy, your clients will be happy, and when everyone is happy, your revenue will likely increase, which makes executives and shareholders happy!

Fishbowl Time & Labor is an online time clock solution for businesses.  Use your existing desktop, laptop or smart devices to access and save money on special equipment.  It can be automatically integrated with your accounting software so the accountant and tax preparer have all of the information that they need at their fingertips!

Inventory Management

Running a small or medium-sized business is challenging, time-consuming and can be incredibly grueling at times.  So many aspects need to have one’s attention at all times. If you are running a warehouse or manufacturing business inventory management can be the most grueling of all aspects of the business.  Getting the best inventory software will alleviate the pressures that can come with the management of that inventory, and free you up to manage the other necessary parts of your business.

Once you’ve seen how Fishbowl helps with inventory management, you’ll probably desire to use the other types of services and products that they offer.  This process is incredibly simple, especially if you’ve already got the Fishbowl server and Fishbowl Client setup for your company. Any of the other apps and plugins are easily added at your convenience if you should desire to do so in the future, as you familiarize yourself and your employees with the system’s operations and application.

Brandow Consulting’s team has an amazing scope in their abilities to move your business forward.  From asset tracking to inventory software, hardware to mobile apps, stocking to shipping, we can help with nearly all of your needs in some way or another.  Consider putting those aspects of your business into our very capable and experienced hands and relax knowing that your business is moving forward in the best possible way.   If you have any questions or qualms concerning a potential purchase of this software and server, please do not hesitate to call or email and ask us about it.  We are fully equipped to attend to any questions that you may have.  If we do not have the answer you need, we will find it for you so that you will feel fully comfortable that you can make a decision that is right for your company.  We will not pressure you into a decision that is not suitable for you, but will help you to understand the benefits of the services and products that we offer and how we can be of great help for you, your staff and finally, for your customers.  Providing a streamlined, efficient system in each key area of business will make the job of managing the business a more enjoyable experience. People who enjoy their work are much more willing to promote the business and its benefits to others.  Begin today to make Fishbowl a part of bringing your company and it’s operations current so that your shareholders, employees, staff, and yourself can benefit from all it has to offer. You will be so glad that you did.