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Right Sized Technology Implementation for B2B Wholesalers

Updated: Apr 22, 2023

As was mentioned in the prior post, the major factors that interfere with small/medium wholesalers investing in technology are (1) time, (2) money, (3) energy and (4) lack of necessity (which often tends to be an external factor).

Depending on the size of the business and the capital that can be allocated for technology the best initial step might be to use a B2B wholesale marketplace. The key things to keep in mind while selecting a marketplace are:

Cost Effectiveness and Cost Scalability

You may not want to select marketplaces that provide basic functionalities at very low costs but provide additional functionalities at an incremental cost. This may be very attractive in the beginning but as your business grows the cost will too, often disproportionately.

Features and Functional Complexity

There are marketplaces that provide hundreds of functionalities, and the overall system configuration and usage is very complex. This also brings the incremental cost of training your employees to use the system and the cost may not be insignificant.

Implementation Strategy and Timeline

If your business is currently using emails, faxes, phone calls etc to receive orders, do not transition all your buyers into the new system at once. This can cause frustration on your side as well as your buyers’ side. Pick one or two smallest buyers and have them run the orders through the marketplace. This will help you to ensure that the system works for you as well as provide time to document all processes, which can then be repeated for the remaining buyers.

Exit Strategy

You may want an exit strategy for 2 main reasons (1) You do not like the marketplace due to one or more reasons or (2) You have outgrown the marketplace and you would like to implement your own CRM/ERP in-house system. It is important to make sure that you have an idea of how you will exit out of the marketplace when it is time. Thinking about it upfront can help you save a lot of time and money.


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