Shopify is completely ignoring their clients' needs on this issue as far as I am concerned. I have done a bit of digging online, on the community and spoken with a few developers as well as Shopify's own staff and it boils down to this: Shopify lacks the ability to allow the client to change inventory from 0 to 1 or more and have it show up as if it were a "new" item. Back in stock items essentially can become buried on your site if you have thousands of SKU's in various collections like I do. I cannot waste the MASSIVE amount of time it would take to tagging each of these back in stock items so they show on a special collection and then remove them later so other newly re-added items can show up as back in stock.
It boils down to a really very simple problem in how Shopify gauges the age of an item entry. Rather than looking at the publication date for an item, something we supposedly have control over, it looks at the creation date of the entry. So basically if I made an item in January, left it unavailable, had to wait for 8 months for production and THEN made it go live, it would already be buried under 8 months of other products that I created after it even though the product is only now just being released. More importantly, when I sell out of a product I want to be able to showcase when it comes back in stock without micro managing it. If Shopify would simply change it so that the automatic "newly added items" classification worked off the publication date and NOT the creation date, the problem would be solved by clients simply updating the publication date.
This problem has numerous posts over several years, and Shopify needs to address this. It's stupid that this cannot be worked around either, short of duplicating and then deleting a previous entry which will screw up the entire functionality of the "back in stock" app which requires customers to sign up for SPECIFIC product alerts, and doesn't solve the problem of not having items listed more prominently.
The staff member submitted this issue as a feature request, I e-mailed Shopify to inform them about it as well, and I would ask you all PLEASE bring it to their attention as well, so that hopefully we can have this resolved after all these years. I know that I am likely losing business because we handle thousands of SKU's and out customers are most interested in what is newly being added to the on hand counts, and as long as they are actually new entries it's fine, but all back in stock stuff goes ignored because it gets buried.
While I can understand what you want and why you want it, this is quite a specific thing.
What we do on our site is tag new items with a 'New' tag, and then these can be filtered or shown in a collection etc. But of course that does require manual maintenance over time.
In order to be able to determine that an item 'just came back into stock', you're actually talking about having TWO inventory numbers, the PREVIOUS number and the NEW number. And then you'd be able to compare old vs new. But I don't think shopify is about to implement an 'inventory history' or tracking of what the number was prior to the recent change. Would be nice, but, that's extra fields and database storage and so on, somewhat complicated.
You could write some kind of automation or excel macro or something to download the inventory each day, then you can keep track offline of what the numbers were yesterday. Then if the number goes from 0 to >0, you can output some list of products that are becoming new, add a tag, then import that product file. But that also is a somewhat manual process.
That's true, but in general 'newness' isn't usually anything to do with inventory levels. It's to do with products that have never been on the site before at all. Stuff going 'out' of new and into old and back to new again is not a common way of doing things.
Thought I do see it would be helpful to mix in the 'back in stock' items with the 'newness' of items.
Overall though something isn't really new just because it came back into stock. If it goes in and out of stock on and off over time it's going to be constantly fluctuating between new and not new, and could've been on the site for 5 years and still be considered 'new'. And probably in fact 'newer' than something that was added last week.
If its an item that has never been available before it should probably not be added to the site until it is actually available, or close to.
If it was available and has now been backordered for months at a time and is coming back and you want to 'feature it' more, it's going to have to be a more custom solution. It's not technically new, it's just 'revived'.
My store has over 1,500 variants. When we come out with something new, we highlight it with a new collection. I don't feel like this is a bad workaround.
In the case where you create a product but don't offer it for 8 months...
Could you duplicate your product so it has a new creation date? Then just delete the old product?