The B2B wholesale industry is evolving and to stay ahead of your competition, you must be aware of all the aspects of your wholesale business.
With the global economy slowing down, it is easy for your business to fall apart when you’re not familiar with what to do and what not to do.
You need to watch out for things you must avoid at all costs, or else you’ll see your money going down the drain.
In this article, we’re going to discuss the five basic things that no wholesaler should be doing, especially when times are uncertain.
1. Managing inventories ineffectively
Your stock is the basic building block of your wholesale business. When you manage it ineffectively, running a smooth and profitable business will be impossible.
This is why you should let go of manual methods of managing your inventory, as they don’t give you accurate real-time information about your inventory.
When you keep track of your inventory on any register or a spreadsheet, you’re much likely to miss updating the stock information, especially during busy hours.
As a result, you can go pretty wrong with forecasting demand. When you don’t know how much stock is available on hand and what needs to be replenished, you run into inventory problems like overstocking and understocking.
And this makes you lose thousands in a single go.
That is why using any inventory management system is the need of the hour. It minimizes human error and saves you from the trouble of updating stocks manually.
It lets you track your stocks in real time and notifies you when you’re running short of stocks.
To simplify inventory management, you can invest in an inventory management system especially designed for wholesalers. It keeps a close eye on every item in your inventory.
2. Running a physical store with no online presence
While the pandemic has forever changed the buying habits, still many wholesalers make the mistake of relying just on their brick-and-mortar stores.
And that’s what you must not be doing.
Buyers now prefer to buy things online, so it’s not wise to stick to your offline store when the market and economic conditions are fluctuating.
Not having an online presence will leave you behind the times and your online counterparts will steal all your market share.
Many wholesalers find it hard to jump into ecommerce as they think it requires technical expertise, months-long setup, and lots of money.
This is partly true as many fail to realize the low-cost growth opportunities that lie within online wholesale marketplaces.
One fine example here is of SeeBiz.
It’s a trading and business networking platform built by wholesalers for wholesalers.
There you can connect with manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors, and retailers directly with no intermediate party involved.
Unlike most wholesale marketplaces, SeeBiz charges no commissions on orders—so what you earn is solely yours!
And that’s one BIG reason to quote Seebiz’s example here.
Moreover, you can get a mini-store built for your business by choosing their yearly package and it’s moderately priced.
3. Taking orders on paper or clipboards
This is a digital era that we are living in.
The traditional and outdated business methods and practices are no longer helpful.
According to a recent survey, order writing inefficiencies were cited as wholesale distributors’ number one order writing challenge.
So, if you still track the records manually with the help of a pen and paper, drop this strategy as soon as you possibly can.
The main reason behind this is that the use of technology in our everyday lives is inevitable. We use emails instead of fax, smartphones instead of landlines, LCD/LED instead of television, and whatnot.
This is why many successful wholesale businesses use order management softwares to:
- Track and fulfill their orders efficiently
- Provide a seamless experience to their customers
4. Using an ineffective sales strategy
Your sales strategy significantly impacts the number of your existing and potential customers.
When you have got a poor sales strategy in place, little to no customers will pour in, no matter how great your products are.
This is why you should NOT just stick to ineffective methods of reaching out to your customers.
Try adopting a multi-channel sales strategy that has proven to be effective for the B2B wholesale industry. You must:
- Build your connections on LinkedIn
- Send personalized emails to your prospects
- Offer a product demo to your potential customers
- Nurture existing accounts and get a chance to cross-sell and upsell products
If you’re someone with a brick-and-mortar store, you must diversify your revenue streams by exploring different sales channels. So, if one channel fails, you’ve another to lean on.
5. Ignoring the changing customer behaviors and market trends
When you compete in a highly saturated market, you don’t have the leverage to ignore the changing customer needs and market trends.
If you’re doing this, you’re giving your competitors the chance to leave you behind and capture the market share before you could do it.
When you don’t keep up with trends in the wholesale industry, you fail to adapt to the changing needs of the market and your buyers, which eventually leads to a decrease in sales.
Moreover, when you understand the evolving market and customer demand, you will be able to effectively advertise and market your business and its offerings.
Let’s suppose you are a wholesaler who deals in makeup and skincare products. And these days, the demand for glosses is higher than it is for matte lip wear.
It will be preferable to pay heed to this trend and focus more on the product which has a higher demand, i.e., stock up on more glosses than mattes. And eventually, you’ll see an increase in your sales.
The B2B wholesale industry can be tough to navigate when you’re not aware of the mistakes that can hurt your business.
By avoiding the five things mentioned above, you can reduce the chance of error, keep profits coming your way, and make your business survive and thrive.