Best Practices of the World’s Top Distributors
Posted on: September 28, 2016 | By: Craig Thompson | Acumatica, Wholesale Distribution
From a young age we have been conditioned to strive to be the best in whatever we worked at. Excellence has always been awarded, and while often the path to success is very clear, sometimes things can seem a little hazy. This can hold especially true for wholesale distributors. Because every business has their own unique way of operating, determining a singular method for success is tricky. Luckily there are some practices that consistently can be related to success in the wholesale distribution industry.
Practice 1 – Implement an automated ERP system
Choosing to implement an automated ERP system like Acumatica cloud ERP in your wholesale distribution organization can significantly benefit your business. Manual processing can make it extremely difficult for businesses to access and view the full picture of what’s going on in their organization. Sure, it is possible to manually maintain accurate and timely records without a modern ERP system however the time and money that you will save by focusing your employee’s attention on less tedious tasks is what separates the good distributors from the great. Automated Accounting software can allow you to access whatever information you need whenever and wherever you may be, making it even easier for your distribution business to thrive.
Practice 2 – When it comes to Inventory, always be prepared
One of the biggest pain points that many wholesale distributors struggle with is managing stocked inventory levels in their warehouses. Without having a clear and distinct picture of what your inventory levels look like at all times. That way, you won’t constantly be searching for inventory you have a record for but can’t locate, run out of stock unexpectedly or have to account for unforeseen rush orders. Automated ERP can predict sales trends based off of historical data and trends so that you are restocking when you need to and not losing money in your stocked inventory levels during holiday seasons, rush orders or naturally high/low sales trends. Successful wholesale distributors know just how important it is to be aware of their inventory levels at all times. You can never complete enough inventory counts, track incoming/outgoing inventory or coordinate too closely with demand fluctuation.
Practice 3 – Negotiate your shipping costs
Smart and successful wholesale distributors know the value of negotiating distribution shipping costs with vendors. While there are some prices that cannot be budged, often times there are ways to get around paying the hefty baseline shipping costs that are generally presented to new customers. Some of the best ways to lower distribution shipping costs for your wholesale distribution company are to effectively plan for inventory demand to help decrease the prices of rushed shipping, consider all of your fees before billing customers, seek out a discounted shipping partnership and negotiate prices to ensure that you are constantly getting the most bang for your buck. There are plenty of options available for those looking to save money in this area of business and the most successful distributors are those who are constantly striving to get the most bang for their buck.
Practice 4 – Prioritize customer service
One of the most crucial practices of successful wholesale distributors is their ability to prioritize customer service while their less successful counterparts may overlook it. Customers appreciate quality and efficient communication almost as much as they appreciate a high grade product. Making sure orders are delivered on time and in good condition will set you apart from the competition and help develop a loyal customer base. Something that is just as, if not more important than obtaining new clients. Loyal customers are something to be valued, so show them their appreciation by replying to customer complaints and requests in a timely manner and delivering an excellent product that they won’t want to switch distributors for.
While these certainly aren’t all of the practices that successful wholesale distributors practice, this is a great place to start. If you think that Acumatica’s Wholesale Distributor focused ERP software may help you stand out as one of the best distributors in the industry, contact Logan Consulting your Chicago based Acumatica Partners for a consultation.
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