To remain relevant in the changing business climate, distributors need to create a leading customer experience to improve their value proposition, according to Guy Blissett and Sanjay Agarwal in Wholesale Distribution Disrupted, Part 2: Engage to Combat Disruption. Simply meeting the needs of the customer isn't enough anymore.
Focusing on the long-term customer experience – rather than just the short-term service a customer receives – is key to effectively adjusting to the shift in customer behavior.
The traditional, foundational capabilities distributors have relied on (deep inventories, competitive pricing, superior fulfillment and responsive customer service) are still important, Blissett and Agarwal say.
However, "the future distributor’s value proposition will be driven by a suite of digitally enabled capabilities, such as content marketing, search engine marketing and mobile, that are refined and targeted to deliver a compelling B2B experience," they say.
It is also critical to use customer segmentation and analytics to deliver the desired experience to the right customer. Top distributors already understand "that delivering a superior customer experience is a highly quantitative exercise," Blissett and Agarwal say.
Read more about adjusting to shifting customer behavior in Wholesale Distribution Disrupted, Part 2: Engage to Combat Disruption.