Tips to Become a Successful Distributor
To be a successful distributor in the retail industry, you have to first study the distribution strategies of various distributor channels and understand their work techniques so you can adopt the one which is most suitable to the category of convenience goods you want to distribute. By developing a well thought out distribution strategy, you will be able to meet the requirements of customers in an efficient manner and grow the business despite the various challenges and competition. Taking up distributorship is a bankable business as long as you understand the profession well and follow the steps carefully.
Steps to start your own distributorship – Once you have made up your mind about becoming a convenience products distributor, you have to take the next step forward by deciding whether you want to become a grocery distributor, beverage distributor or want to distribute a variety of convenience products. The following steps can help you set up a successful distribution agency that can be started on a small scale and expanded gradually to other locations as your business expands.
Selection of products and area of business – For a distribution business to be successful you should select the product category with the same caution that you will use to select the locations where you intend to set-up your service. If you have experience in a particular type of industry like food distribution, then stick to that instead of trying out beverages or cigarettes or any other product that you are not familiar with. Carry out detailed market study to see how other distributors in the market in samecategory are earning their profits, if the market is too crowded for your category then try to explore other markets with lesser competition.
Buy a suitable warehouse – You will have to store products coming in from grocery wholesale distributors, beverage wholesalers and then distribute them either to stores directly or to convenience store brokers. The size of the warehouse should be sufficiently large and equipped to stock the kind of products you are planning to distribute. Besides being cool and dry the warehouse should also be safe from termites and rodents so your stock is safe until it reaches the rightful owner.
Install a robust inventory system – Before you start your convenience store business try to get a robust inventory software ready which will keep detailed records of products coming into your warehouse and leaving the premises. With an inventory system that tracks every commodity with number and bar code there will not be any chance of pilfering or theft.
Finding trustworthy manufacturers and dealers – To become a successful broker distributor you have to get agreements into place so that manufacturers or food wholesale suppliers sell the produce to you at a particular price for a specific period of time. This price should allow you to maintain a sizable profit before the products reach grocery stores or convenience stores. Talk to manufacturers about discounts that can be offered as you take delivery of a large quantity of stock unlike a retailer.
Marketing yourself – Once you have decided to start a distributorship, market it around the neighborhood business circles with online and offline marketing media like business magazines and directories. Become a member of the local distribution association and take tips from them about how to get products into c stores and maintain a cordial relationship with both small and large retailers. You have to understand the economics of distribution and price margins before you try to become a wholesale or retail distributor.
Tips for successful distributorship business
To become a successful distributor you have to get your products and services to customers in time and at a competitive price. A successful strategy adopted for distribution will help you maintain the right vendor manufacturers and food distributors so you can keep your retail clients satisfied with new and exciting products on a regular basis and also maintain reliable supply lines. You can ensure success in distributorship business by using the following tips:
Synchronizing the business model with a distribution strategy – When you have a distribution strategy in place the first thing you have to work out will be the business model on which this strategy will be applied. Iron out details about what products you will sell, distance between your manufacturers and retail clients, transportation structure and the image you want to create about your company. Study the distribution strategy well and carry out detailed research to understand how the business model should be applied, as lack of knowledge and education will cause losses which may be difficult for you to manage.
Seek out reliable business partners – While setting up your distribution network develop long term business relationship with reliable partners you can work in a profitable manner and grow gradually from a local or regional distributor to a wholesale grocery distributor with nationwide operations. Talk to retailers and manufacturers and find out their current distributors and why they prefer working with them and the terms of distribution and delivery with them. By selecting a reliable transporter for your distribution business you can be free of regular delivery issues which distributors with poor transporters face.
Managing costs and distribution margins – The common reason which drives up costs of distribution is the product type which has a large bearing on storage, transportation and delivery. If you are a wholesale food supplier distributing perishable products like fruits, vegetables, eggs, dairy products then you have to maintain cold storage or refrigerated trucks. The price point will vary depending on the quality of products delivered to retail customers and if the price does not cover transportation cost then your distribution strategy will become a failure.
Besides determining costs of operations and profits, you will have to factor in unrelated problems like natural calamities, political strife and riots which are unpredictable but can seriously erode the profits of your distribution business. It is necessary to protect your assets when you get into any form of business activity and you need to have an alternative backup plan to fall back on, if some problem arises with the existing one. Distribution business is fast becoming a specialized task where distributors use delivery firms to pick and drop their shipments which saves them from physically handling the products.