Best Practices

Building e-Distribution: 5 Key Steps for Successful Launch

Gaurav Singh Rana
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Building e-Distribution: 5 Key Steps for Successful Launch

Constant growth in the revenue share of B2B eCommerce transactions and expectations of better B2B buying convenience has amplified the adoption of e-distribution among the manufacturers.

In the absence of the right knowledge, it is difficult to plan and strategise the implementation, so as to avoid any difficulties or possible customisations later. It is always better to strive for a perfect set-up, so that the intended work runs seamlessly right after you successfully launch your B2B e-distribution. It is always better if you do your homework first, so there are a few things that you can do before you start with the implementation process:

  1. List your expectations from the online B2B ordering portal e.g. Sales Productivity.
  2. Think how this platform will help your distributors and wholesale customers.
  3. Think about the integrations you might be requiring with your existing systems.

Before you choose your ready-to-use B2B eCommerce portal provider, check this blog to decide better: What to expect from SAAS Solution Provider

Let’s now discuss how to launch your e-distribution with the help of B2B eCommerce solution successfully.

Step 1: Establish Your e-Distribution Project Team

Setting up an e-distribution portal for your business can be a tedious task. In order to make it happen smoothly, there has to be a good understanding of operations, sales, and a few more fields as per the requirements of your business.

Most of the SaaS B2B eCommerce portal are ready-to-use. The right project team will ensure the successful implementation of the portal in your business. As we know that all skills are required to successfully launch and manage e-distribution, let’s discuss the main members for your team:

  1. Project Leader: This person could be from your IT team, or someone from sales or marketing who can coordinate and manage things within your organisation. Your project leader will be responsible to make the e-distribution implementation successful.
  2. Adoption Owner: This person is responsible for ensuring the customer registrations and initial usage of the B2B eCommerce portal. We recommend this person be from the sales side or specifically a sales leader who has the ability to incentivise the sales team to encourage the adoption of the B2B ordering portal among wholesale customers.
  3. Engagement Owner: The scope of branding and marketing increases leaps and bounds once you shift to an e-distribution with your B2B eCommerce portal. Typically from marketing, this person is responsible for the branding assets, product images, description etc. He will be also responsible for targeted messaging to wholesale customers to increase engagement.
  4. Data Specialist: This person should be either from the operation or IT team. The data specialist is responsible for data upload of your customers, product, pricing, schemes etc on the B2B eCommerce portal.

Step 2: Upload Your Data

As B2B companies function on a very personal level with their wholesale customers, their SaaS portal is also supposed to behave in that way. Each buyer must have a personalized experience to comfortably place the orders. Hence, the first thing you need to upload in your portal is the customer data, so that customers can login to experience personalized pricing, schemes, products and a few other required things.

Secondly, you need to upload and set the product-catalogue, which must contain all the required information to make ordering easy for the buyer.

Add-ons:

  1. Inventory Data: It is always better to provide the inventory details to the wholesale customers, so that they can choose and plan their purchase better.
  2. Order History: This feature is a boon for your company as well as the buyer. Your customer can easily repeat the order from the history to refill the stock.
  3. Information: You may put blogs or other forms of enriching content to help your targeted wholesale customers understand better. Testimonials, videos, images, etc are also very helpful for the buyers.

If you manage to make your B2B ordering portal perform impeccably with the correct information and up-to-date data at all times, it will reduce the customer-service cost and increase the re-ordering frequency.

Step 3: Incentivise And Drive B2B eCommerce Adoption

Once your B2B eCommerce portal is up and running, it is better that your wholesale customers start using it soon to make your e-distribution strategy successful. You can make them aware about your new B2B ordering portal by taking the following steps:

  1. Mention the new portal in all the communications with your customers.
  2. Attach a message about it in all the shipments.
  3. Send your sales representatives to introduce and train wholesale customers with your new B2B ordering portal. This blog will help you understand better: How B2B e-Commerce and Field Sales can work together
  4. Send emails/sms/push notifications regularly about it, along with its benefits.
  5. Run promotions and incentivise on ordering from the B2B portal.

Step 4: Experience The Marketing Potential

Now when your e-distribution setup is working fine along with all the required data and your wholesale customers are conveniently placing the orders, you may experiment with the marketing opportunities you received with this upgrade. Here are the few ways to do it:

  1. Make your B2B eCommerce platform the landing page for all the marketing campaigns. Make sure that the landing page is rich in information and guidance for the new visitor.
  2. Experiment with the targeted customer segments by sending them different types of messages through different marketing channels.
  3. Load your B2B ordering portal with videos, content e.g. New product launch to build awareness among your wholesale customers.

There is no end to the creativity in planning and running marketing campaigns. Keep experimenting and find out better ways to target and engage your wholesale customers.

Step 5: Measure Your eDistribution Performance

Performance measurement is the key to growth and success. Main KPIs, we recommend are:

  • Adoption Rate
  • Order Frequency
  • Average Order Value
  • Total Sales
  • Sales Rep Productivity

Supporting the project with the right team, prioritising awareness and adoption, and creating the right incentive structure to keep sales teams aligned with online sales strategies are key to ensuring e-Distribution has a lasting impact on your profits, sales efficiency, and overall customer engagement.

Edistera is one such platform that offers you everything that you can think of from the e-Distribution portal. With the cutting edge technology, we ensure seamless usage and transactions. Maintenance and update is our responsibility. All you need to do is to plug and play. If you are interested in knowing about the Edistera in detail, please feel free to contact us.

Last Updated :
November 5, 2020
Published :
25/7/2020

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