Delivering for Best-in-Class Wholesaler-Distributors

How to Unlock Profitable Growth in Today’s Market – Value Creation Strategy #7

For many distributors, growth has been stagnant. The question is — why? Partly because of their sales-oriented mentality, a senior executive may hear responses such as “we need to hire more sales reps” or “increase sales calls.” However, the real solution to market access is understanding what’s occurring in your markets and responding appropriately. It’s [...]

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Distributors: Listen Up If You Want to Beat Amazon – Value Creation Strategy #6

Most distributors think they know their customers, until they actually talk to those customers. That is because wholesaler-distributors often operate in an echo chamber, talking to their sales team, but not to their customers. Distributors in an echo chamber don't measure anything, so they don't understand what is working and what isn't. They also focus [...]

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Your Channel Partners Are Talking. Are You Listening? – Value Creation Strategy #5

They may never share a romantic candlelight dinner, but distributors and manufacturers who are united in a supply chain are certainly in a relationship. And in channel relationships, as with any other kind, the key to success can be summed up in one word: communication. Sounds simple. But, as in any relationship, communication between distributors [...]

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The Best Strategy for Staying Competitive: Be Proactive – Value Creation Strategy #4

Rumors of wholesale distribution’s death have been greatly exaggerated for quite a while. A decade ago, it was the Internet that was going to kill distribution. Now, it’s Amazon. If you’ve been in the business for a while, you know there will always be something hanging over the industry like a big dark cloud. But [...]

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5 Ways to Be More Valuable to Customers Without Cutting Prices – Value Creation Strategy #3

Ask your customers how you can provide more value, and most of them will automatically think of price cuts and discounts. But distributors are increasingly realizing there are other ways, from service to cost savings, that provide value but don’t chip away at margins. What’s more, I would argue that these alternatives provide greater value [...]

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New Technology and New Thinking Can Help Your Team Sell Smarter – Value Creation Strategy #2

Last month, I talked about how often outside sales reps should call on existing customers. The answer largely depends on two things: whether there is opportunity for increasing sales to that customer, and how often that customer wants to see a sales rep. Both of those factors are evolving along with our rapidly changing marketplace. [...]

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How Often Should Sales Reps Call on Customers? – Value Creation Strategy #1

How frequently should sales reps call on existing customers? It's a good question, because most distributors we've worked with are investing $75 or $80 per sales call once they account for all expenses associated with hiring, training, managing, transporting, supporting and compensating an outside sales rep. In some ways, though, this question misses the mark [...]

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NAW-What Challenges Are Distributors Facing?

What Challenges Are Distributors Facing?

There are unprecedented challenges facing wholesale distribution companies. What can you do to meet them? More and more wholesale distribution executives have recognized an urgent need to take positive action. But the driving factors are not entirely new. The industry has often struggled to understand and adapt to macroeconomic forces such as globalization, accelerating product [...]

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