Why Sales Processes Need to Change in Automotive and Industrial Distribution

In an extremely fragmented automotive and industrial distribution market with heavy competition and low switching costs, relying on traditional sales tactics and processes can be fatal.

In order to succeed in this new environment, distributors that still rely on low-tech, relationship-based sales processes will need to adopt modern commerce capabilities to meet today’s B2C-trained customers how and where they buy. With price transparency increasing and B2C buying behaviors rapidly spreading to the B2B world, distributors need to embrace modern digital commerce to meet their plans for higher revenue growth.

For distributors looking to change the sales processes, the question is where to start? Below are four quick tips for distributors to achieve success in this new selling world:

Solution selling = margin: Stop selling on price alone Distributors need to know their customers’ needs even better than they do. They need to target prospects when they are most in need, and approach them with cross-selling, channel selling and upselling opportunities.

Build trust: Emphasize product value and expertise The art of solutions selling is to focus on the perceived value of products and services, not just the price point. Value selling is, in part, a distributor’s ability to offer the best selling experience to customers, including product information, quick answers on availability and delivery great customer service. Essentially, customers want to work with a seller they can trust

The right deal at the right price: Adopt data-driven price optimization The power of data is that it reveals trends that allow distributors to deliver winning sales proposals. Through prescriptive selling actions, pricing and offer guidance, more of the right deals are converted at the right price. When data is science-driven, patterns provide actionable insights.

Lower your costs: Fully embrace sales and pricing technology Distributors need to embrace cloud-based sales and pricing technology innovations to reduce the complexity and cost of internal selling. The technology delivers a superior customer experience and captures maximum revenue by combining simplicity with data science throughout the buying process.

By following these four tips, distributors can start a methodology that leverages data, automation, technology and value. By doing so, they will better address today’s changing buying behaviors and serve automotive and industrial customers, improving customer loyalty and achieving ambitious growth objectives.

To get more details, download the tip sheet: Changing the Sales Paradigm: Four Essential Tips for Automotive and Industrial Distribution Success.

About the Author

Richard Blatcher

Richard Blatcher, Director, Industry Marketing & Business Intelligence at PROS, manages the global go-to-market strategy for PROS in its strategic industries. He has over 30 years’ experience in the industry originally based in Europe moving to the US in 2010. He spent the first part of his career in media, publishing and direct marketing managing the delivery of marketing and sales enablement services to many manufacturing and distribution blue-chip enterprises. He has also held EMEA and Global Marketing roles for $2Bn+ software company Autodesk including being responsible for launches of market disrupting SaaS software solutions into the market.

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