Throughout 2017, Indian River Consulting Group’s Insights blog kept you informed on the latest trends and events affecting the distribution industry. Certain topics caught your attention more than others; in case you missed them, here are 2017’s most-read posts:
By far the most popular among readers this year, this post outlines how many distributors are squandering the No. 1 tool at their disposal to improve supplier relationships: the distributor-manufacturer meeting. Read the post to learn to stop wasting time and start strengthening relationships.
A lot of distributors are worried about Amazon’s growing influence in B2B markets. Amazon Business’s announcement that it will extend free two-day shipping to its customers wasn’t great news for distributors, but not all products distributors sell are a match for Amazon’s self-service buying model. Read the post for more on Amazon’s strengths and weaknesses.
The ongoing shift to digital from the buyer’s perspective has necessitated changes to distributors’ field sales structures, but fear has prevented some distributors from making needed changes. Worried that their best sales reps will walk away, many have failed to make the transition. Read the post to learn why – despite the required cultural changes – the transition to digital is necessary.
To adapt to new market realities, many distribution sales models will need to change. After all, if you want your distribution sales team to sell shovels, but their comp plan incentivizes rakes, they’re going to sell rakes. That said, many distributors rush in. Consider the points outlined in this post before starting down this difficult path.
Many distributors are spending a ton of money on sales but almost nothing on marketing. Before you dismiss marketing as being tangential to your business, consider this: Many potential customers are nearly two-thirds of the way toward making a decision before they even talk to a salesperson. Read on to find out why investing more in marketing can save you time and money down the road.
Several of these posts were inspired by speaking engagements, webinars and other IRCG events in 2017. Connect with us in 2018 by attending one of our upcoming speaking engagements or by contacting us directly.