May 17, 2021 | 02 min read
After over 1.5 years of disrupted supply chains, intermittent lockdowns, and changing consumer behavior, traditional supply chains have started showing the impact.
In an emerging market such as India, the FMCG market shrank by almost 16%, in April.
While the intermittent lockdowns brought about changes in consumption patterns, quite different from those of last year – a few things remained constant:
Market trends for the last 4-6 quarters and success stories from early adopters have convinced us, that every FMCG brand distributing in emerging markets needs to equip their distributors with the below stack, to be prepared for the subsequent waves of cases and the resulting supply chain impact.
While changing consumption patterns and quicker turnover of products across categories have reiterated the importance of the van sales/ready-stock model, the pandemic has taught us that time and data accuracy are paramount in today’s supply chains. Increased market demand and the need to service more outlets in a shorter window of time add additional pressure. This coupled with the fact that the margin of error needs to be close to 0, in order to maintain supply chain efficiency, demands a van sales solution that not only provides 100% visibility but also simplifies the sales process.
Retailer automation should be the frontrunner among your RTM tech stack. While the business landscape and execution models evolved last year it became all the more evident that online ordering for retailers and d2c powered by B2B commerce is no more for the future. It is already here and thriving. Ask the early adopters and they will tell you about the volume of orders they receive after midnight, the increase in repeat orders, and much more. In a time when your distributor salesmen struggle to go to market, enable their retailers to order online and retain consistent demand.
Sales reps who were earlier measured by “time spent in the market”, do not have the luxury of spending hours in the market anymore. Delivery teams too have a shorter window of operations today. It is important to implement an intelligent route optimization solution that creates smart routes based on location, outlet density, distance, order volume, etc. Manual beat creation is not only laborious, but it is also error-prone. With the added complexity of lockdowns, your distributors need to be able to automatically create journey plans for each geographic location.
Visibility into secondary sales and distributor inventory is crucial in distribution planning. While driving complete downstream automation may seem challenging, simple integrations are the right first step to the path of digitization. A robust integration tool like Bizom Connect lets you tap into your distributors’ systems effortlessly with minimal disruption while bringing critical analytics to the business by getting visibility into distributors’ sales, fill rate, and inventory data. What’s better? You can Identify leakages in promotional spending, improve utilization of distributor claims, and improve fill rates with low inventory alerts.
The above tools not only improve your RTM efficiency but lets you stand out from the competition and win at the point of sale. While it’s no more just a joke that covid is one of the biggest drivers of digital transformation, it is important that brands invest in tech that can be launched quickly and adopted easily. The nimble brands with quick decision-making thrived last year; however, it is also important to remember that investing in the wrong technology can negatively impact even category-leading businesses.
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