How to select the right channels if you are a B2B company
What steps should a B2B company follow to define its distribution strategy?
A first analysis is always an internal one: does the company have the resources available to implement a direct strategy? Or would it be better to rely on partners?
In the case of an export project, an SME specialising in semi-finished products for the automotive sector might choose this option, as it does not have sufficient size to support the start-up and maintenance of foreign branches.
In this case, identifying an integrated distributor can be an effective choice. It allows access to the foreign market through a partner who will reach out to wholesalers and retailers specialising in automotive components in the territory.
What has been described applies to an expansion project abroad, but this does not exclude that in its domestic market the company can rely on direct distribution channels.
We are therefore faced with a mixed distribution strategy, based on different channels depending on the area of action.
The factors influencing this choice are many, and as we mentioned, looking at the positioning of one’s own reality is essential.
To this analysis must be added another that takes into account the company’s external environment.
Executing the strategy: the importance of market analysis
Market analysis is the fruit of this study, and for B2B companies it plays a crucial role regardless of the chosen strategy.
Let us understand this better with an example still related to the automotive component company.
After deciding to find new distributors in the Czech Republic for its semi-finished aluminium products, the company starts doing a long series of online searches.
However, the sales department has to continue with its ordinary activities; thus, the mapping of foreign distributors proceeds slowly.
After more than a month, the staff seems to have found the right company: however, after contacting it, it turns out that the latter does not have an established relationship with the automotive sector.
Our company therefore finds itself back to square one. But how can this be made more efficient?
With an automated market analysis, such as the one that Matchplat’s Explore platform makes possible.
Starting from official data on more than 400 million companies, Explore uses Artificial Intelligence to analyse their online content in order to offer up-to-date information.
In this way, the semi-finished goods specialist could only identify Czech distributors active in the automotive sector, in a short time and without wasting resources.