What have you been seeing out there this year? We took a look around and noticed a few trends from omnichannel selling to automation that can help keep you ahead of the competition well into 2019 and beyond.
Trend 1: Omnichannel Selling
Prepare to wear a lot of hats because you are going to have to manage several sales channels all at once.
With the digital age, everything is consumer-centric. You’re playing by their rules and you will have to be more flexible to stay at the forefront of a competitive market. However and wherever consumers want to engage with brands, you’ll have to be there waiting for them at every touchpoint. This includes offline channels, website, telecommunications, and social media channels – any and all of these can lead to building brand awareness, improved customer satisfaction, and ultimately higher sales.
Trend 2: A Growing Commerce Ecosystem
This seems like the stuff of dreams. Now there are online B2B wholesale stores that can offer customers comparable services to what retailers have been benefiting from for years. Here’s what a healthy ecosystem can offer:
Vendor-agnostic content that brings customers
Social selling that encourages personal relationships
Transparent pricing and product information
Real-time customer service and payments
Enhanced buying experience and streamlined shipping
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Your customers are going to be from all over the globe. To outperform competitors, you must have a complete omnichannel marketing approach. And as international buying grows, so will your need for cross-border payment technologies. Flexible payment options are imperative as you reach into global markets. If you only have one or two payment option available on your online store, you may be alienating a huge population who cannot or will not pay through those methods. Additionally, understanding cultural norms of your target demographic will help you tremendously in this arena. For example, the US and UK population predominantly use credit cards for purchasing, while central Europe is generally more credit averse.
Trend 4: Inventory and Order Management Transparency
How are you on making data-driven business decisions? By investing in inventory management systems, you’ll be able to gain a competitive edge through collecting error-free data. This data can then fuel decisions about which products are most in-demand, how to maximize sales and profits from past trends, integrate your business from sale to fulfillment, and so much more. While an inventory management system may seem like a big cost up front, it is usually worth the investment, and can often save businesses money down the line.
To help ensure customer demands are met, think about streamlining the supply chain and fulfillment process. You’ll want to say “I do” to marrying B2B wholesale selling with the B2C customer experience; an inventory management system can help to keep your customers in the loop from the time a sale is made all the way through fulfillment. More informed customers make happier customers, and many times, this information will reduce the stress on your call centers.
Trend 5: Automation
Who doesn’t want to cut costs when it comes to shipping, staging and warehousing?
You’re in luck. Wholesalers like you will be able to more effectively manage operations, thanks to new technology like automated sensor and tracking innovation.
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Together, we can come up with a plan to help you reduce inefficiencies in your operational procedures.
When you’re ready to incorporate technologies that allow you to embrace more customers, we’re here with tools and solutions that are sure to click with you.