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Most products are bought in a carton and sold as singles. Some products are bought in one unit, for example carton, and sold in many, different units, for example cartons, six-packs and singles. Beer and cigarettes are two such products. Each method of selling the product, that is carton, six-pack and single, needs to be set up as separate items in the system. This is because each product has its own sell price and may have its own barcode which you can use for scanning purposes. However, you can only buy the product one way from the supplier. These additional items are known as linked items.

You set up the product which you can buy from the supplier in the system. This is set up like any other product with costs, order code, barcode number and sell prices. The costs are entered against the product as usual, for example \$30 for 24 units (1 carton). Note this gives a unit cost for when an item is sold in singles.

When you go to set up the remaining items you DO NOT add them in like other products. You retrieve the main item and tell the system you want to create a linked item (available on the Linked Stocked Items tab of the Items form). The system asks how many of this first item is in the second item (the linked quantity). Remember, the main item is set up to be sold as singles. So if you want to set up a six-pack, you tell the system that there is six of the main item. The system creates a new item for you which you can retrieve as per normal. However, the system does not let you enter cost details for this item. It automatically takes the cost of the main item and uses this as the cost for the linked item. The carton size and unit cost of the item are automatically changed by the system to reflect the linked quantity. The following table shows how this works.

 Item Description Linked To Link Quantity Carton Cost Carton Size Unit Cost 1 BEER (SINGLE) \$24.00 24 \$1.00 2 BEER (6 PACK) 1 6 \$24.00 4 \$6.00 3 BEER (CARTON) 1 24 \$24.00 1 \$24.00

If you need to change a cost for the item, you need to change it on the main item. Remember, the item was only available in one form from the supplier and it is you who created the other items. If the cost changes for the main item, it automatically effects the linked items.

Linked items should be set up so that the original item is the one sold in the smallest unit and the additional linked items ‘grow in size’ up to the full carton size. This is because most supplier's electronic host files give the cost per carton size, for example \$30.00/24, suggesting that the item is to be sold in single units. From this original item, the linked items can be set up.

When a linked item is created it should not be made any larger than the original carton size. In the above example, an item that consisted of forty-eight items would exceed the bounds of linked items and should be set up as a recipe item.

## How Do Sales, Stock And COGS Work On Linked Items?

Sales are kept against the item which was sold. In the example given in the above table, if you sell one carton of beer, it is recorded as a quantity of one against that item. It does not get recorded as a quantity sold of twenty-four against the main singles item.

Stock on the other hand is kept on the main item only. This is because it is the only item which you can order. The supplier doesn't know about the other linked items you have created. If you purchased three cartons of beer from the supplier, this would be recorded against the main singles item as a stock on hand of 72 (3 x carton size of 24). If you sell a single, the stock on hand will be decremented by one. If you sold a six-pack, it would be decremented by six.

There is no average cost or last invoice cost in the linked items themselves. Their cost of goods sold is calculated by taking the appropriate cost (average or last invoice) of the original item and multiplying it by the linked quantity. Therefore, a six-pack would have a COGS sold of six times the single.