Channel Control

01/09/2020 0 By indiafreenotes

Channel management involves the marketing and sales strategies your company uses to reach and satisfy consumers, the techniques you use to support your partners who help with the distribution process, and how you manage vendors.

When establishing your channel management solutions, you must set clear goals for each channel. (A channel is how you intend to sell your goods or services to your target audience). In addition to clear goals for each channel, you want to:

  • Define the policies and procedures to manage your channels
  • Identify which products you offer that are suitable for a particular channel, and
  • Develop sales and marketing programs for each channel to meet the actual needs of your target customer, not what you think their needs are.

Identifying channel management solutions

When trying to identify a channel management solution that will complement your business, look at the big picture. Communication internally and externally is key to finding a solution that will help you meet your company’s goals.

How to choose the best vendor management software for your business?

As you search for a vendor management software solution, first identify your needs, then how the software can help you accomplish your goals, improve efficiency, and increase profits.

Next, evaluate the technology that your channel partners will be utilizing as well. Technology updates, communication and enterprise alignment are vital to success. View your company as a whole, and understand how each part interacts with the other, from the smallest purchase at the local office supply store to complex technology systems, and don’t lose sight of the most important aspect of your company, your customer.

Examples of channel management 

According to Simplicable, the main types of channel management include:

  1. Channel architecture

Channel architecture is the basic framework for your channel. It encompasses how the product is provided by the producer to the consumer.

  1. Channel strategy

This aspect involves your sales and distribution blueprint, such as how you plan to expand your market and what specific action plans you will put in place to improve your e-commerce channel.

  1. Channel design

How will you implement new channels? For instance, you may create an affiliate program to encourage certain types of people and companies to help sell and promote your product.

  1. Sales management

This aspect involves how you will manage sales and other partners. This could include things such as what incentives you will offer to drive sales.

  1. Channel conflict

How do you plan to address conflict between channels that are unfair to one party or counterproductive? For instance, if you are using an e-commerce solution that undercuts your affiliates, you must address this conflict. When designing channels, you must pay careful attention so one channel does not create a conflict for another channel.

  1. Relationship management

This aspect involves establishing and managing relationships with vendors, affiliates, etc., over time.

  1. Brand experience

How do you plan to develop a brand experience that is consistent across all channels, including if you sell online, through social media, etc., as well as physical locations such as stores, boutiques, and more? For instance, if your brand voice emphasizes making customers feel loved and appreciated, this should happen no matter where your customers go. For example, various beauty brands make their customers feel pampered. This is much easier to do in person, as this can allow you to massage, apply makeup, etc. Nevertheless, the online experience must also go above and beyond to give the same personal touch by using the right words, offering exclusive deals, etc.

  1. Pricing

This method involves using channel-based pricing strategies. For instance, a luxury bakery that only sells certain products in upscale areas is an example of pricing as channel management.

  1. Sales and operations planning

This method involves taking the time to match the goods or services you are producing with the general demand. For instance, if you have a product or service that is more popular during certain times of year (i.e., Christmas), you want to increase production in the spring or summer.

  1. Revenue management

How will you optimize revenue for your available inventory? For instance, a retail store may sell swimsuits at full price until near the end of the summer, at which time it would likely discount the inventory to make more room for fall and winter products.

  1. Distribution

This aspect is focused on how you will deliver on your obligations to both channel partners and customers. For example, this could include properly managing logistics, such as product exchanges and returns.