What is the first word which comes to your mind when you hear “2020”?
Uncertainty, Masks, Lockdowns! Right?
2020 will be remembered as a year about ensuring business continuity and survival of the fittest. However, a number of business owners/leaders have treated this chaos as a mnemonic for aligning their team with meaningful metrics. The idea they have is to create an ecosystem that looks beyond vanity metrics and with automatic data updates.
At OrderCircle, we became aware when we reached out to our existing customers and some who signed up for our demo sessions. We took this as an opportunity to understand the shift better and remained in continuous touch with a number of such leaders. We got on periodical calls to discuss the KPIs that they were focusing on and how they planned to use the existing wholesale ordering systems for the same.
So, here we are with the learnings. We have enlisted the top KPIs here which were widely discussed and considered as a must-have among our hundreds of users from diverse industries and geographies.
- Top Performing Sales Channels
For small businesses, there is often a FOMO attached to the new sales hacks in the market or channels which are making the news. Instead, a number of business leaders decided to avoid such distractions and focused their limited resources on the topmost performing channels historically. The goal was simple, try to have a positive growth figure from the sales channel every month. By breaking efforts into small periods & defining the goals better the path to achieving the same became a lot clearer.
- Inventory Turnover
Every kind of business wanted to mitigate the risks better. A number of businesses we interacted found having goods sitting on the shelves far most costlier than meeting on-demand orders. With “wholesale e-commerce” becoming the new norm and a number of organisation deploying wholesale order management, mapping this became super easy. An average inventory turnover ratio was identified for the last year and the same was compared to the last few months of uncertainty. A number of these leaders also focussed on identifying the turnover ratio as per the category as well to plan better.
- Average Revenue Per Customer and Order
A number of business leaders also started to brainstorm on ways to increase their customers’ spending capacity. This was one of the most challenging metrics to improve as market demands were low. The ways to do so were by offering combo discounts, minimising freight charges for additional purchases, and high credit periods.
The reason to do so was simple, investing heavily in customer acquisition looked a lot riskier so get the CPA routed here where the chances of conversions were higher.
- Exclusive Offers For Top 10 Accounts
One of the major worries for business owners during these uncertain times is to ensure that they have minimum churn and even if churn came it should only come from the low-value accounts. With wholesale order management software figuring this out based on the last few months was super easy. Once the list got identified, ensuring a great relationship became the focal point for the team.
- Hidden Operational Costs
While figuring out ways to ensure stability by continued businesses, looking at the existing cost structure was extremely important as well. What are the costs which can be controlled? Some of the ones identified were signing up for affordable wholesale order management software or integrating a payment gateway provider with seamless integration at a lower price.
“Trying to manage customer service when inventory management, sales processing and follow- up aren’t connected, you spend way too much time trying to develop that on your own.”
— David Blake, Founder, Blue-9 Pet Products
Wholesale businesses need to go digital
In the last few months, we have seen a rise in the product adoption and we understood that the reason was simple” a b2b e-commerce platform ensured the following:
- Use of time in productive work due to hiring freeze
- Minimised room for human errors
- Having real-time updates across all channels
- The need for better transparency between buyers and sellers
This prompted us to focus on the ecosystem. When we came with a 50% discount offer to help our customers get through the rough phase it was well accepted by everyone and the team loved it when they started getting more people on board.
We sincerely hope that every wholesale business starts understanding the value of KPIs and having a smart wholesale ordering system. These shouldn’t be just remembered during hours of distress. They make them operational by using simple to use platforms which automate processes and save them millions in a few years.
In case, you have some dilemma in mind, or have something interesting to discuss, reach out to us here.