AmazonSupply is growing rapidly, but that does not mean that your wholesale distribution business will lose customers. Competing with Amazon does require a deep understanding of Amazon’s business approach to the B2B market, and your own distribution business, products and customers.
Take a look at how you can strengthen your business in these areas:
1 – Local Market Knowledge
You know more about your customers and their requirements for products than Amazon. Detailed product knowledge is now less important in the age of the internet and Google where information about products can be found easily online by any buyer. The key factor to focus on is supply chain efficiency. How can your business and sales reps become experts at working with your customers to improve logistics and the integration between your companies? Work together to reduce the logistical costs of doing business with each other, and you will be able to keep you customers and perhaps gain more.
2 – Local Distribution
Your business already has local transportation and distribution in place. Amazon (unless they have a distribution center close to you) will not have those local contacts or contracts. If Amazon is not able to drive product over to a customer on a same day or next day basis, they will not be able to compete with your level of delivery service.
3 – Local Relationships
You already have established relationships with your customers. But don’t depend on those relationships lasting without making the effort to see your customers on a regular basis and find out more about their concerns, pain points and how you can perhaps solve their more recent challenges.
When you get out of the office and into the field you may discover opportunities for growth you were not aware of. Make certain that your ordering processes are easy to use and your customer service is keeping your customers happy. You can provide the upgraded care and attention that the faceless AmazonSupply cannot!
How can your MS Dynamics ERP system help you with this effort?
- Review your reporting on transportation costs and delivery times to customers. Where can you improve these metrics or reduce costs for you or your customers?
- Use your procurement module to review your transportation contracts coming up for renewal and renegotiate pricing.
- Dig into your Customer Relationship Management data and start going out to meet with core customers you may not have been in touch with for a while.
Don’t wait for AmazonSupply to start taking away business in your area. Jump in now to get ahead of the competition. In the next article of this 3 part series we will cover the details of Amazon’s approach to selling to the B2B market.
This article is Part 2 of a three part series. Read Part 1 and stay tuned for more ways that wholesale distributors can compete with Amazon.