With so many brands tapping into the direct-to-consumer trend, it can be easy to overlook the mountain of e-commerce success stories that are happening as a result of wholesale distribution. Yet many of the world’s most successful manufacturers are driving enviable levels of sales and revenue by focusing specifically on online retailer relationships.
So, what distinguishes the best from the rest?
It all comes down to data.
When you’re not interacting directly with consumers, it can be tempting to feel e-commerce performance is beyond your realm of control. But that’s a misguided assumption. By focusing on retailer performance, brands can in fact be highly influential when it comes to strengthening online distribution. You just need the right approach — and the right analytics.
To understand how the retailer performance process works, let’s take a quick look at the methods being used by successful wholesale brands.
Why focus on retailer performance to help drive revenue?
Whether you rely solely on retailers to promote and sell your products online or incorporate retailer relationships into a larger e-commerce strategy, the result is the same:
Your retailers’ performance is your performance.
When your retailers’ sales are strong, you’ll see gains. When their revenue suffers, so does yours. Successful brands understand how important it is to help retailers perform, and are proactive about taking steps to optimize these channels. They monitor pricing changes, stay ahead of stock levels and watch for opportunities to assist with promotions.
When viewed through the lens of revenue potential, these and other retailer performance metrics can lead to many benefits including:
- Better margins: When sales are up, retailers are inclined to buy more inventory from you. They’re also less likely to negotiate prices, which in turn will lead to better margins.
- Increased market share: As your efforts lead to increased prominence and popularity of products across retailers, they’ll dominate more of the competitive landscape.
- Better brand image: By spending more time discussing your products with your retailers, you ensure they have everything they need to represent your brand accurately and persuasively.
What are the pillars of successful retailer performance?
By focusing on four key areas, brands can have a direct impact on retailer revenue. These include:
- Assortment and availability, which helps ensure the right products are sold on the right channels and are always in stock.
- Pricing and promotions, which influences how competitive and profitable each product can be.
- Search and digital shelf, which indicates how visible and easy-to-find your products are.
- Product pages, content and reviews, which have a direct influence on conversions and sales.
While you won’t be able to influence every aspect of retailer performance, you can have a direct impact on revenue by influencing these core areas. And for many brands, it happens all the time.
For example, by reviewing pricing and stock notifications daily, one baby brand was able to increase retailer revenue 20% without making any significant changes to product assortment or promotions. Another increased the number of retailer product URLs by 50.4%. And in one particularly notable brand analytics success story, a high-end beauty brand was able to monitor prices, customer reviews, stock issues and more across multiple teams and continents
We’ll be exploring each of these areas in more detail in upcoming posts. In the meantime, the most important takeaway to remember is that brands can (and should) take steps to optimize retailer channels directly. By using brand analytics to monitor retailer performance in several key areas, you can have a direct impact on sales and revenue. When done correctly, it won’t take up a lot of time or energy — and can lead to tremendous results.
Don’t miss the other instalments in this Retailer Performance series!