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eCommerce Websites for Wholesale Food Distribution

Rianna Greenfield
Monday, May 6, 2019
Table of Contents

You pride yourself on many things - a perfectly curated catalog of products at industry best prices, a sales team that gives each and every customer the personal touch, and a customer service team that thrives on answering customer questions and giving them an experience that makes their day.

That’s all great, but how do you share this story with the world? To succeed with the  modern wholesale food buyer, you need to keep doing everything you’re great at, but add a digital capability to your arsenal. Start with an amazing website that makes it easy for prospective customers to discover you, learn more about your history and offering, and reach out to start a relationship with you.

That said, it is important to point out that an informative website is only part of the solution. In order to have a truly successful digital presence, you need to offer your customers a wholesale B2B eCommerce Platform. Having a robust website with eCommerce capabilities is becoming an industry standard. In fact, 89% of B2B customers use the internet during the buying process, with even more wanting to complete the buying process digitally.

Now, what best-in-class features should your wholesale B2B eCommerce platform have to ensure your company stands out among the competition?

  • Native Mobile App & Web Platform: Let your customers order how they want, when they want, regardless of whether or not they have an internet connection
  • Digital e-Catalogs: Easily manage and update your catalog and showcase products with colorful photos and informative descriptions
  • Built-in CRM Platform: Better manage customer relationships and improve the buyer experience
  • In-App Messaging: Keep all customer communication in a central hub, eliminating the use of cross-platform channels (phone, text, email)
  • Digital Order Writing: Streamline the order entry process for reps in the field while ensuring order accuracy

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The Omnichannel Experience

Providing your customers with an omnichannel ordering experience should be a pillar of your company’s eCommerce strategy. This means you need to give your customers many options for ordering, including a mobile app, web portal website, and over the phone.

In a survey of 500 B2B buyers, only 20% said they offer their customers use of a mobile app (compare this to 72% of suppliers who only have mobile websites). Keep in mind, 85% of wholesale food buyers prefer mobile apps over mobile websites because of the flexibility and features they provide.

While native mobile apps are faster, more user-friendly, and more convenient than mobile websites, they shouldn’t be your company’s only ordering option. You can’t deny the power of in-person or over the phone conversations when it comes to nurturing new leads, and further developing relationships with current customers. B2B buyers may favor mobile apps over websites, but they still appreciate one-on-one attention from their sales rep.

B2B eCommerce and Lead Generation

Did you know, 73% of traffic to B2B websites comes through search engines like Google? Once you have your digital eCommerce solutions in place, you need to make sure they are optimized and discoverable to people searching for your business and the products you offer. It’s time to start thinking about search engine optimization and start learning about effective digital marketing strategies.

Before wholesale B2B eCommerce became an industry standard, distributors would generate leads by cold calling, sending reps door-to-door, and hoping that a potential customer would come across their company in the phonebook. Thanks to the internet, you don’t need to rely on these time consuming practices any more. Instead, smart wholesale suppliers are jumping at the opportunity to be listed in searchable online databases and directories.

When it comes to lead generation, trusted industry databases, like BlueCart’s Wholesale Supplier Directory, do the hard work for you. For instance, potential buyers can enter search terms like “wholesale bakery” or “best meat supplier” into the directory, and instantly be connected with your company. As you can imagine, this is incredibly beneficial, and a free way to generate hot leads for your business. Your sales reps are no longer wasting time and money pursuing cold leads, and can now focus their attention on converting sales-ready buyers who are interested in your company and the products you offer.