Get ahead by understanding your customers and preparing your enterprise for a digital economy.
Planning for selling online is a different science and you have to go back to the beginning to ask yourself:
- What do your customers want, how do you find out and how do you keep their needs front of mind?
- Is selling online different from how you sell now?
- Considering the scope and opportunity that doing business online opens up; what can you realistically provide and what markets could you profitably serve?
You may already know what your customers like and you may have some idea of what they will want in the future. But one thing is for sure; opening up the internet as a route to market with the expected immediacy that this brings, can only mean that they are going to become more demanding overtime.
We like to help you discover your customers’ requirements so that you can define your business going forward. For instance, you might have a high street or other retail presence with causal and loyal customers. Adding the option for customers to buy online brings both opportunity and risk. Examples of both are that someone who buys from your physical outlets can enjoy the same brand experience online, but at the same time this may create its own stock management issues.
Once you know what your customers want and how you can best serve them via multiple channels, we can advise on creating the optimum strategy to deliver on this.
So how can we help you?
What is the landscape of the market you are entering online. You might know your offline route market like the back of your hand, but trading online may open you up to more established and agile competitors.
How you manage your product specifications, imagery, SKUs, descriptions, barcodes and the like, is perhaps the most challenging aspect of running a product based business. Add the complexity of trading online and you need to ensure that you create a synchronised database of accurate and reliable information that services all of your channels to market – including the internet.
We often see that because of the unstructured way that the internet is adopted by organisations, more and more people become employed in managing the disparate data systems whilst the data integrity of your business degrades, as it is stored in multiple locations and formats under different protocols with different owners. There comes a tipping point when it all becomes unmanageable.
We help by:
Auditing your product information then advising on systems and processes to optimise it’s structure and usefulness.
Things to consider are:
- Data governance and integrity. How is your data made available, maintained and accessed, when and by whom?
- How is the product information fed into to different channels e.g. your high street EPOS, printed collateral and online catalogue.
- How your product information is synchronised with your pricing, and invoicing systems.
Culture and change management
Culture is the personality of your business and different personalities adapt to change in different ways. The one thing that you can be sure about is that taking your organisation online is going to require disruptive change for long term gain.
We help by:
- Helping you recruit the right team. Including the creation of job specifications, selecting the right recruitment channels, then interviewing and assessing candidates.
- Identifying Key Performance Indicators and setting up the monitoring of these and producing relevant management information.
- Designing your incentivisation schemes linked to sales.
- Help decide what functions to what to keep in-house and which to outsource.
- Source, assess and agree the right outsource partners to complement your permanent staff.
How you price your products and services is of huge strategic importance. Whether you employ different pricing for different channels or you unify your pricing across all channels can create a significant challenge with huge implications.
We help by:
- Providing strategic pricing analysis and tools to help you hit the sweet spot for maximum profitability.
- Optimising prices by territory, country and region.
- Test different channels for price elasticity and sensitivity.
Customer identification, segmentation and categorisation
Some products and services sell better over the internet than others, whereas some sales require a higher level of human interaction. The correct approach to marketing analysis will bring valuable insights to maximise your marketing budget. Understanding your customers’ preferences and behaviour creates a frictionless experience for them, optimising your profitability.
We help by:
- Informing the selection of your products and services.
- How you present your proposition to the individual customers by their preferred entry point e.g. web, app, catalogue, store, affiliate, phone, etc.