Complementing Your Direct to Consumer Strategy with Where to Buy Solutions
When it comes to discussing the integration of 'Where to Buy' solutions into a Direct to Consumer (D2C) sales model, we often encounter questions like, "How can Where to Buy work with our D2C strategy?" and "Won't implementing Where to Buy negatively impact our D2C business?" The truth is, the outcome varies depending on how it's approached. While it's possible to witness a decrease in D2C sales, this might actually be a result of customers choosing their preferred path to purchase, ultimately leading to an overall increase in sales.
In our view, the marriage of a 'Where to Buy' solution and a D2C business model is entirely feasible, and there are strategies you can employ to keep D2C sales as a priority:
Understanding the Basics:
Before diving in, let's clarify a few terms:
- Where to Buy: Often referred to as "WTB" or "Buy Now," this digital button can be seamlessly integrated into your brand's website and digital content. Its purpose is to instantly guide consumers to retailers and marketplaces where a specific product is available. This solution caters to online, offline, and online-to-offline (O2O) sales.
- Direct to Consumer (D2C): The D2C model involves selling products or services directly to consumers, bypassing traditional retail channels. D2C brands leverage digital marketing and e-commerce platforms to directly connect with their target audience.
The Power of 'Where to Buy' Solutions:
The D2C approach has undeniable strengths, but it also comes with limitations. By offering just one sales channel, you might inadvertently limit customer choice, potentially losing those who prefer buying from specific retailers or physical stores. This is where 'Where to Buy' solutions shine – by offering a more versatile customer journey that can lead to increased sales.
The good news is that this solution can be implemented on your brand site without a full transition to e-commerce. It guides customers to all available points of sale, including physical stores. Plus, if a customer opts for in-store pickup, an integrated store locator not only pinpoints the store's location but also provides a convenient route to get there.
Benefits of Integrating Where to Buy with Direct to Consumer:
For most brands, the lion's share of sales already comes from retailers and marketplaces. D2C sales typically contribute a smaller percentage.
- Enhanced Conversion Rates: A considerable portion of your customers prefer buying from retailers, especially established ones like Amazon, Walmart, and Target. The familiarity customers have with these platforms can enhance conversion rates.
- Reduced Friction: Forcing new customers to buy directly from your site can introduce unnecessary barriers. Customers already have their payment and shipping details saved on retail sites. If they can't find your product there, they might resort to Google searches, leading to potential losses to competitors.
- Lower Cost per Sale: Retailers invest significantly in customer service, shopping experiences, and distribution channels. Through retailers, customers access perks like fast shipping, curb-side pickup, and loyalty programs. By letting customers choose their path, you ensure they reach a satisfying purchase experience.
- Best of Both Worlds: Integrating 'Where to Buy' doesn't mean you abandon D2C. In fact, you can prioritize your store as the first buying option customers see. By controlling which retailers appear and in what order, you influence customer behaviors'.
Navigating D2C Challenges:
While the D2C model boasts strengths, it's not without challenges.
- Limited Scalability: Over time, D2C can hinder growth due to limited reach. Expanding to third-party sales channels becomes crucial to scaling your brand.
- Increasing Competition: D2C competition intensifies, raising advertising costs. The success of early adopters has driven up costs in various niches, affecting profitability.
- Accumulating Costs: D2C operations involve expenses in fulfilment, website maintenance, and customer service. Without reseller support, costs can escalate. Managing costs becomes crucial given thin margins.
Finding Harmony: D2C and 'Where to Buy':
The blend of D2C and WTB offers the best of both worlds – a multichannel solution spanning digital and physical sales. Enabling customers to choose between online purchase, Click & Collect, home delivery, and physical stores maximizes conversion rates. Displaying trusted retailers through Where to Buy fosters consumer recognition and confidence, ultimately driving purchases.
Additionally, WTB can be a great fit for specific products/ranges within your product line up and as a great backup for products that go out-of-stock direct
A promising future awaits Where to Buy solutions as potent tools for manufacturers and retailers. Their ability to enrich the customer journey, boost conversion rates, and facilitate purchases across multiple channels positions them as essential assets in the evolving sales landscape.
In conclusion, the integration of Where to Buy solutions with D2C strategies offers a potent means to enhance consumer experiences and elevate sales potential.