The 10 most important tips for Wholesale and Manufacturing companies

Read them here

Many Wholesale and Manufacturing companies are finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with the speed of purchasing, production and delivery. The reason is that they have often grown exceptionally fast and/or their ICT structure does not allow them to be flexible and agile and to respond to the needs of the increasingly "demanding" customer.

As a result, crucial mistakes are made, sales opportunities are missed and many extra (unnecessary) costs are incurred. Does the above sound familiar to you and would you like your company to be fast, flexible and agile and able to meet the wishes and requirements of your customer? 

Read the 10 most important tips below.

11. Put the customer first

That is easier said than done, putting the customer first. For many wholesale and production companies this already has some impact. 

First of all, make sure you put together a project group that once again makes the objectives clear and finds out how the current processes run in the field of: marketing, social media, sales, purchasing, delivery and product support (customer service).

2. Used the right tools and software

Putting the customer first is only possible if you have the right technology in-house that gives you insight into all the different communication and marketing channels and the possibilities to serve all those channels. A system that can monitor all necessary channels is therefore indispensable. 

3. Work with one database

Wholesale and production companies often still work with different databases and software, such as Excel for stock management and contact details, Mailchimp to send the emails and Exact for accounting. Often these databases are not directly integrated with each other and it is difficult to enrich the customer profiles with useful and historical data from the customer. By working with one database, it remains clear for all employees and they have direct access to customer data.

4. Let your employees think from the customer's point of view and not from their own activities

People make the difference, no matter how beautiful and good the technology is. So make them aware of customer-oriented thinking. Set an example from senior management and have them coached by external advisors who can give training courses and/or presentations.

5. Start small and simple

As mentioned, putting the customer at the center of your business processes has quite an impact. So start small and simple and ensure that you integrate, for example, 2 to 3 sales or marketing channels. Evaluate these steps and then add more and more channels. Keep testing and optimizing and set realistic goals (KPIs) for yourself.

6. Go personalize

If you put the customer first, address him personally (Dear Jaap, ) and send him specific information he is looking for. So no general mailing or one-size-fits-all messages. Make sure you try to enrich his profile with, for example, date of birth or personal interests. This makes it possible to personalize even more, for example by sending a flower on his or her birthday or by inviting him or her to a music concert or football match.

7. E-commerce

Searching for information and buying products nowadays is not only done by telephone, e-mail or personal appointment, but is also increasingly done online. Customers are increasingly being informed via the internet and possibly visit the websites of the competitors. So make sure that you are also present online, not just with a “business card” as a website, but with a website that offers relevant information and where it is possible to order or reserve products online. Make sure your purchase and inventory software is linked to this webshop, so that you can accurately respond to requests from different sales channels: telephone, personal appointment and/or webshop.

8. Responsive

Also make sure that your website and webshop are responsive. This means that the customer can visit the website via the various screens of his smartphone (iPhone), tablet (iPad) and/or computer / lap-top and place his order directly. 

9. Create relevant content

(Potential) customers are often looking for information in the initial phase. So make sure you make relevant content available. Think of blogs, how-to videos, online presentations, brochures, white papers, etc. If you have trouble producing relevant content yourself, hire an external party, there are many freelancers who can help you with this. An additional advantage is that you will also become easier to find on Google and your customers will appreciate that you provide a lot of relevant and valuable information.

10. Avoid Confusion

Make sure that you radiate uniformity and consistency in your message on all sales and marketing channels, so actions that you activate online also communicate during personal appointments, clear and unambiguous information about product information, prices and delivery.

If you have any further questions about how you can put the customer first and/or which software is best to use for this. Contact us.

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The 10 most important tips for Wholesale and Manufacturing companies
Ivo Abels 10 november 2015
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