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Digital transformation for distributors: 7 ways to get started

In this paper, we’ll explore seven ways distributors can start their digital transformation. Each of these ways offers a chance for distributors to rethink the way they do business and adopt new, disruptive technologies and approaches to staying ahead of the competition. In this increasingly competitive environment, it’s more important than ever for wholesale distributors to evolve and adapt—lest they get left behind. It’s no longer enough to just understand your customers’ specific needs. You need to have the flexibility to adjust your business practices to meet those needs. And it’s not about offering the lowest prices. Instead, it’s about finding ways to differentiate your business in order to build customer loyalty and continue to grow. Combine this with finding ways to achieve global reach and streamlining your business practices to increase your margins, and you have the keys to survival and growth.

start thinking differently Digital transformation starts with a new approach to business. A report from Constellation Research says “Digital transformation begins with design thinking, a methodology that unlocks solutions to questions that have not been asked before.”1


Now is the time to plan a modernization strategy which ties together all seven of the entry points listed in this paper. A comprehensive plan will ensure that the various components are compatible and contribute to the high level objectives and priorities. With system-wide modernization in place, the organization can embark on building new customer-centric revenue streams, adding service offerings, and turning data into tools for growth and customer alignment. It is a new era for the distribution industry. Companies can embrace digital tactics or be left on the sidelines as the competition rushes past.

  • Embrace the change

  • Improve the customer experience

  • Fine tune supply and demand forecasting

  • Explore onshoring

  • Maximize equipment value

  • Streamline the collections process

  • Go for anytime, anywhere business


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