Selling goods or services in bulk to other businesses rather than individual consumers lies in the heart of a B2B (b to b, business to business) wholesale model. With a history dating back to Silk Road and Spice Routes, trade has always offered significant advantages, especially when wholesalers take the stage. And from those ancient times to the present day, every day of a wholesaler is filled with tackling diverse needs of their customers, changes in the industry and managing all kinds of varying relationships from governmental to financial.
Even with improvements on the technological front, running a B2B wholesale business requires a strong team energy with a solid strategy. Good news is that all the basics of being a successful B2B wholesaler in today’s world can be learned easily.
Dive into our article and get informed on the basics of B2B wholesale and learn how to run a successful operation in both online and offline:
B2B wholesale is all about businesses selling stuff to other businesses in bulk. It’s like a grand exchange, where wholesalers, manufacturers and suppliers provide goods and services at bulk prices to fellow businesses such as retailers and distributors.
In the B2B world, things are always massive. The negotiations over quantity of the products, prices and terms are all about meeting the special needs of businesses.
In a nutshell, B2B wholesale is all about bulk sales, solid relationships and a whole industry with a special glossary of its own.
B2B wholesale is a vibrant, dynamic industry that always has room for new players. From cabling to health and beauty, this array of real-world B2B wholesale businesses provide good examples of what’s possible in terms of goods & services.
The world of wholesale business is growing rapidly. Let’s take a closer look at some benefits of this vast industry:
The most important nature of B2B wholesale business is being an essential part of the supply chain industry. Whether specialised in an industry or offering diversified products on many industries, any B2B wholesaler, along with supply chain components such as retailers, businesses, and individuals, benefit significantly.
Selling in bulk means more overall sales volume especially through reordering from your customers.
Through time and successful deals, every B2B wholesaler eventually gains higher AOV in each transaction.
Marketing to your existing customers and reaching an entirely new audience are totally distinct challenges when it comes to B2B marketing and advertising.
However, by selling in bulk, B2B wholesalers enjoy the advantage of reduced marketing expenses and gain consistent access to new customers through each retailer in their growing customer base. That’s the number one factor which eventually leads to lower customer acquisition costs and increased brand awareness.
Low RRP (recommended retail price)
Wholesale customers are able to purchase products at lower than RRP because they bulk order them. This pricing structure incentivizes retailers, businesses, or individuals who require large quantities of products to opt for wholesale buying. And by purchasing in large quantities, wholesale customers not only benefit from lower prices but also enjoy greater discounts.
Whether your business is small or large, selling wholesale will consistently work to your advantage.
Whether you are new to the B2B wholesale world or a seasoned expert of this industry, it’s important to follow the latest rules and regulations. Always check with the appropriate licensing agency regularly for the required licences, permits & certifications and adhere to the rules while selling wholesale.
“So, why get into wholesale? Becoming a wholesaler is a great way to make money. Wholesalers with solid sales and business skills will score the best deals from manufacturers and good prices from buyers.”
From the book “Start Your Own Wholesale Distribution Business by The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc.”
B2B wholesale is a strategic business with a huge growth potential.
From volume to clearance sales, the most profitable way B2B wholesalers can follow include different strategies and components. Promoting membership or subscription fees, setting minimum order requirements to encourage larger purchases, exporting and international sales, cross selling and upselling, bulk purchase discounts are one of the many common ways to generate more income.
Just like any other business, B2B wholesalers must adapt to market dynamics, stay competitive, and continuously innovate for their customers.
In these ever changing times, every business faces challenges and it’s always better to be prepared for those in advance.
“Back In 2019, we needed an app to take orders from regions where sales reps couldn’t go. Simplisales came to the rescue and created a 24/7 online store, which tripled our online sales when the pandemic hit. With real-time stock information via ERP integration, Simplisales simplified our processes and achieved a smooth transition. We’re grateful for their help and look forward to new features and opportunities.”
Founder, Gima (UK)
One of our clients, Gima’s testimonial, tells the story of many. But in this one, a complex yet universal problem quickly turned into a 24/7 working app and website and a whole new ordering experience was created.
“Sometimes a simple affordable solution shows us how complicated our workday is. The Village Quality app created by Simplisales has been allowing our customers to place an order from any device, anytime and anywhere. Our workload has decreased and our customers’ positive reviews have been making our days since then.”
CEO, Village Quality Products
Without the right inventory management, no wholesale business can work wonders. Our other client Village Quality Products simply got more time in their hands because of the near real time ERP synchronisation – meaning their inventory is updated automatically.
Major challenges happen each day and they all come with a potential. From planning sales reps’ daily route to inventory management and supply chain problems, wholesale businesses need to adapt to changing situations in a fast manner if they want to grow exponentially.Proactively addressing business challenges requires a systematic approach. Gima & Village Quality Products gained an advantage by adopting cutting-edge technology a step ahead of the curve.
Did you know that e-commerce has become a strong force for B2B?
According to Statista, “In the United Kingdom, the sales revenue of business-to business (B2B) transactions of physical goods (e.g. car parts or electronics) was valued at 187 billion U.S. dollars in 2021, up from the previous years. Further growth is forecast by 2025, when the revenue from B2B e-commerce sales is expected to reach 301 billion U.S. dollars.”
As technology advances, numbers are increasing all around the world. Wholesale e-commerce is not just a channel for businesses to sell to each other; it has also evolved into an effective tool for B2B buyers to search for products and find the best deals.
All businesses can benefit from selling wholesale with the right tactics and strategy:
With the right tech investments and a proper B2B e-commerce platform, you can position your wholesale business for digital marketplace success.
Offering a range of products, brands, and categories is vital to engage new wholesale customers and keep your current ones. Always choose one or multiple products that cater to your target audience’s needs.
In the B2B e-commerce world, the more customer oriented you are the more you win. Start building your B2B wholesale online store to connect with customers, provide excellent service, and establish long-lasting business partnerships.
There are a lot of tips and tricks on how to manage all operations in a B2B e-commerce environment. Let’s have a look at them and gain a wider perspective.
To play the B2B wholesale e-commerce game right, you have to master each field of your business, accordingly. Let’s explore the key areas that demand top-tier management.
Think of the last item you’ve ordered from the Internet. From “order received emails” to “fulfilment tracking option”, any simple ordering action has hundreds of different scenarios and workflows in it and that’s not different in the B2B wholesale universe. A flawless order management is the easiest way to get positive reviews from your customers and to maintain strong business relationships with them in the long run.
You’ve done your marketing research and you deeply understand your target customers. Now, it’s time to focus on your product management which plays a big part in your business. It’s all about the development, promotion and sales of your offerings. Managing products effectively can help you gain an advantage over your competitors. Also, when done right, it can lead to increased customer satisfaction and higher sales.
An inventory is one of the critical components of any B2B wholesale business. That’s where keeping track of your stock begins. Selling wholesale is always a delicate act of balance – it’s having enough stock on your hand while minimising excess. When done right, it can save you money, reduce waste, and keep your customers happy.
Healthy profit levels are what most B2B wholesalers are looking for in today’s economy and price management is an essential step to achieve that.
What is important is that, price management and pricing strategy require careful consideration of many parameters simultaneously: What your costs are, who your customers are and what your competitors are doing with their pricing strategies. When done right with careful planning and regular adjustments, it creates an infinite flow of high customer satisfaction and more profit for your business.
A user-friendly online experience, 24/7 support, online learning & resources, and more… Being a “customer-centric” business means a lot of things. For starters, choosing a user-friendly wholesale e-commerce platform is the best investment you can do for your business. Deliver excellent customer experience and your customers will come back for more.
Every B2B wholesale business owner knows how important it is to have a loyal customer base. Account management is another muscle you have to work on if you want 100% customer satisfaction.
Are your customers happy with your products or services? Do they need support in their last order? Does your newest customer need your attention?
Acquiring new clients may be your target, but nurturing and expanding the relationships with the existing clients, building trust and delivering excellent service are the basis of your business success.
Payment management is about more than just processing transactions. It involves understanding various payment methods, complying with industry regulations, and accommodating customer preferences.
A well-toned payment management system keeps your cash flow in top condition and your B2B wholesale business financially stable.
When you get to know your team more and give them what they need; you save time, money and energy as a business owner. You can make sure your A-Team works effortlessly in every step of the e-commerce world with good team management tools. Also, from permissions to team analytics, team management requires insightful data from every team member activity.
There are many definitions of success, and while “high profit” might be the most favourite success indicator, there’s more to it in the B2B wholesale universe. Here are some success tips to cover the basics as well as the future of the industry.
Online has the superpowers no B2B business has dreamed of and according to a McKinsey report, and the future of B2B sales is hybrid. Use your offline business experience in the online realm to position your business strategically in both worlds.
“While buyers have clearly been willing and able to engage in an ever-expanding omnichannel ecosystem, sales organisations have often not kept pace, wondering whether or how much buyers would actually spend in a fully remote or fully hybrid model. The answer is many buyers are willing to spend big on a single transaction using a remote or self-service model. Seventy-one percent of buyers are willing to spend more than $50,000 in a single transaction, and 27 percent would spend $500,000 or more.”
Whether operating offline or online, B2B businesses have specific needs that demand talented and experienced individuals. Hiring the best ones in your industry will give you a competitive edge. Once you’ve established your online presence and selected the right tools, growing your sales exponentially will be just a matter of time.
Your customers and their behaviours can provide valuable insights about your business. From 24/7 support to ordering cycles, your customers are your most valuable source of data.
For instance, simply following the ordering cycles of your customers, you can get impressive insights. A McKinsey Report shows us that the correct tactics and strategy while dealing with your customers “first time purchases” can be beneficial for your business’ roadmap.
Also, don’t forget to attract customers with your content marketing on social media.
Is your online presence newly flourishing and you need more information about online B2B ordering? Take a look at Simplisales products and start selling now.
To create a stellar platform for B2B wholesalers, Team Simplisales covered all the bases at every step along the wholesale e-commerce journey. The first thing we focused on was the ordering process which we believed could be redesigned for greater efficiency. We thought, “Ordering should not be messy,” and we created Simplisales, an AI-powered B2B e-commerce solution, which eliminates the hassle of manually taking orders through phone calls, emails, or WhatsApp messages.
With the custom-branded Simplisales app & website, wholesalers’ customers can order 24/7 through their mobile phone, computer, or tablet. Behind the scenes, our seamless no-code ERP integration and advanced AI technology work together to ensure easy and effortless ordering for them.
To connect the dots for an omni-channel experience, we added new products, “Simplisales Marketing” & “Simplisales Dashboard” to our portfolio that can be used by any wholesale business from small-scale to enterprise.
All of our features were specifically designed to grow sales and facilitate smooth operations in all aspects related to ordering. Let’s take a brief look at them:
If you are a B2B decision-maker and about to start a B2B wholesale business online, there are things to consider before selecting the best platform to suit your business’ needs.
From efficient inventory management to marketing capabilities, Simplisales e-commerce platform has all the necessary features to help you achieve success in the long run.
Who comes to your mind when delegating tech savvy jobs in your team? Those are the ones who will need to be equipped well by the features of your chosen brand new online e-commerce platform. All the features in the Simplisales universe have been designed with your team in mind.
Also, the platform you will be using will have to be customer-friendly as you will need to be successful when meeting your customers’ needs. As a decision maker, checking the customisation and personalisation preferences before selecting your platform and making sure the platform is in line with your business needs is one of the essential things.
From payment to price and account management, B2B wholesale businesses have distinct requirements compared to B2C companies when doing business online. Simplisales products have all the B2B specific e-commerce features tailored to B2B buyers including inventory management, bulk ordering & reordering, account management, and support for multiple shipping and payment options.
We live in a 24/7/365 world and that’s where the importance of mobile compatibility for your business comes to the picture. Apart from the office hours, being flexible enough with a 24/7 open business model starts with mobile compatibility of your online B2B business. Also, a lot of B2B wholesale business operations are on the go and your employees need a reliable solution for their everyday tasks.
Prioritising a user-friendly mobile e-commerce experience for both of your employees and customers should be on top of your list.
All Simplisales features are there to help you get the most out of your wholesale business.
Please visit our features page for more information:
Thank you for taking the time to read our article. To successfully expand your B2B wholesale business, you need the right tools. If you’re a B2B wholesaler looking for the perfect, B2C-like, and affordable B2B e-commerce solution, request your own demo now at simpli.to/demo.
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