I currently own and run a wholesale business in Canada, selling imported beauty products. I would like to open a eCommerce for this business.
The issue i am having, is that do not want to steal my clients customers by selling them our products online. On the other hand, i would like to acquire new customers in places I do not have any clients.
So, the idea would be that my retail sales on my eCommerce site would have to pass through my current clients, if they are available in a certain region. If i do not have any clients in that specific region, i would make the sell myself.
I would also like to sell wholesale to my clients in a b2b manner, that regular clients could not have access to without a password or what not.
I know, my business plan seems flawed right now. That is why i am asking for help. I would like to know if any of you guys would have any advice on how to make this eCommerce work for my specific type of business.
Are there any sites that would be better for me to sign up on? Or would it be better to make it from scratch? (I do not have that much knowledge in this matter).
Thank you for your time!
Just use another name to open the online business and nobody will know who is selling...
I have exclusivity for these products in Canada, so it can't work.
But thank you for your reply.
Welcome to WebmasterWorld!
I had a client that had a similar issue. They implemented a distributor locator program. People entered a zip code and if they were within 25 miles of a wholesale client, they were given the contact info for that client. If they were outside of that range, they were allowed to purchase directly from my client. Distributors were encouraged to sign up because the website sent direct purchases to them.
Why not operate a drop ship service for your clients? Customs come to your website (or sent by your clients), enter their zip code to tie it. You could charge your current clients a fee for each order.
How big of area are your dealer agreements? Provincial? Metro? Other?
If you're dealing on a less than provincial level I suspect it could get quite messy, especially if you intend to price yourself competitively. If a dealer has rights to Vancouver proper and you sell to an online shopper to Surrey (part of Vancouver metro) at a lower cost, eventually one of your dealers will probably cry foul.
If you price yourself slightly above the real retail price, you might be able to disregard selling regions. If you're website price is $50 and your dealer sells all day long in Vancouver for $40 then either a) that customer is going to go to the dealer and buy for cheap or b) that customer would have never bought from the dealer to begin with.
IMO, regional exclusivity is slowly becoming a thing of the past as B2C is becoming a strategy of most manufacturers (or in your case, importer). Most dealers shouldn't have a problem with you selling online as long as you're not competing with them on price. Look at Apple. They open stores across the World which directly compete with their dealers and it works only because they're not undercutting other retailers.
b2b doesn't have to be an open website for the public, display your products and all info, but for pricing they have to enter their contact info....etc. You follow up with them 1 on 1 to assess needs and pricing.
can you sell different products on the website? ones that your clients don't sell.
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2:39 pm on Apr 4, 2014 (utc +1)