Expected to reach 22 billion by 2022, the CBD market is booming. As a result, CBD (Cannabidiol)—the non psychoactive compound in Cannabis—stores and products are practically everywhere, aiming to help it’s users deal with a wide variety of health ailments.
Because we’re living in the wild wild west of the growth of CBD, wholesalers and distributors are finding great success in selling to the online and retail stores that are taking advantage of the surge of interest in it.
In addition, President Trump signed a farm bill in December of 2018 that will allow American farmers to grow hemp—the kind of cannabis needed to extract CBD— reclassifying it as an agricultural product. Since it previously had to be grown and sourced outside of the US, this will likely strengthen CBD’s growth trajectory here as well.
Software for CBD Companies
To keep up with consumer demand, CBD wholesalers and distributors need the best technology and tools to sell a wide range of products to online and retail stores. As a result, the demand is high and so is the eCommerce bar.
Because the consumer demands it, your technology and tools need to help support you in making the customer the center of your company. Today, B2B buyers expect the same experience as consumers. If you miss the mark here, you’ll lose out quickly to a competitor that can provide a premium level of customer experience.
Below we’ll outline how CBD wholesale distributors can set up the technology foundation needed to succeed in this fast-paced industry.
Use a CRM to Focus on the Customer
While logistics and inventory management software are critical to successfully starting a wholesale distribution business that’s focused on CBD, equally important is the CRM (Customer Relationship Management) that you choose to centralize customer data.
A CRM does much more than simply help you maintain your relationship with customers. It can help you capture customer data and activity, forecast sales and communicate with prospects and customers via email and more. For example, a CRM can help you:
- Give your customer-facing teams the data they need
- Track sales opportunities
- Report on sales history, products, leads and more
- Use email marketing to launch promotional campaigns
How a B2B Portal Supports CBD Sales
Perhaps second most important factor for success is the ability to sell online as a CBD wholesale distributor. To support the launch or growth of your business as a CBD wholesale distributor, B2B eCommerce is necessary to survive and traditionally done through the creation of a B2B portal.
B2B eCommerce is one of the fastest growing segments of eCommerce. According to Forrester, “US B2B eCommerce will reach $1.8 trillion by 2023.” To capture your share of the market, your buyers expect to be able to log in to your B2B eCommerce portal to:
- View their customized pricing
- Place large grid orders
- View order history, pending orders and invoices
- Choose from multiple payment methods
- Get order and delivery status updates
Sell CBD in Multiple Channels and Marketplaces
Today’s successful wholesale distributors need to excel at more than just eCommerce via their own website. Ideally, any wholesale distributor will need an eCommerce platform that enables you to manage multiple channels of sale, whether they take place via your field sales representative or in your retail store.
This is also where your CRM comes in handy. By centralizing all customer activity onto the customer record, you get a 360 degree view of that customer’s preferences, activity and more. This 24/7 access to data empowers customer teams to give exceptional levels of customer service.
In addition to selling in multiple channels, it’s advantageous to sell on major marketplaces like eBay, Amazon or Etsy, in order to extend your brand awareness and enable you to generate new sales. Consider that Amazon alone generated $232 billion in net sales in 2018, according to Statista.
However, CBD wholesale distributors need more than just a robust B2B eCommerce portal and to sell in multiple channels and marketplaces, they need to use technology throughout their company, working towards constant digital transformation, which can make or break a business.
As a result, it’s important that software is used to drive operational excellence in the back office and warehouse as well.
Inventory Management Software for CBD Companies
Because today’s B2B buyer expects the consumer experience, operational excellence in your warehouse and back office is just as important. By using software to track inventory and orders in real-time, you’ll give customers what they want; the ability to see the quantity you have in stock.
Additionally, customers will want to view their shipping options and track the delivery of their order. This is where 3PL software, that integrates with your eCommerce platform, is helpful and critical in your ability to deliver on time to your customer, every time, which is ultimately what they want you to be able to do.
If you can harness the power of technology to help you better serve your customers, you’ll have an advantage over the companies that don’t.
Ready to use an inventory management system to grow your CBD wholesale distribution business?
Systum is the only software platform you need to succeed and win repeat customers as a wholesale distributor. If you’d like to learn how Systum’s eCommerce platform can help you centralize customer data via it’s integrated CRM and manage orders and inventory in real time, fill out the form below.