Why you Need to Become a Checkstand Program Distribution Member
Today distribution is critical for the success of a convenience store as consumers trends change fast and too soon brands become old or some quality controversy may make it unacceptable for buyers. With growth of large stores like WalMart, Costco, 7/11 and others, small distributors are getting eliminated as these convenience stores are directly interacting with manufacturers of convenience products and convenience store brokers to pick up stocks directly.
By eliminating middleman distributor they are able to provide a more competitive price to the buyers and can afford to give competitive discounts for bulk purchases. But the importance of these small and large distributors cannot be denied as they service single stores in the most remote parts of every city and urban neighborhood unlike large stores which are located close to huge cities.
Importance of distributor in convenience store business –
Making goods available in small quantities – As a convenience store owner would not like to have a truckload of the same products, a food distributor, beverage distributor and other convenience product distributors break the bulk into small quantities and distribute it to various stores. They provide a vital connectivity to manufacturers into understanding requirements of convenience stores and grocery stores. They reduce delivery and supply problems between wholesalers and convenience stores when they replenish them with the required stocks.
Consolidated distribution – Buyers have the convenience of purchasing goods produced at various corners of the nation at one place thanks to the ability of distributors to bring them at one place. With growing pressure of work and travel, people have limited patience or time to roam around more than one store to buy goods they require. Convenience store owners and grocery store owners prefer to work with grocery store distributors which are in close proximity and can replenish their stocks at a convenient time when required.
Inventory planning and financing – Small manufacturers cannot afford to give long credit lines and discounts to wholesalers. At such times distributors come to their rescue as they buy goods in bulk at a lesser price and they can make complete payments since they know there is a steady demand for these products in the markets. Distributors have greater control over the products they deal in as they have their own transportation facilities which helps in management of health regulations.
Importance of becoming a c-store distributor – The best part about becoming a c-store distributor is the unlimited potential it provides to learn and develop skills in the expansion of product line and business. While manufacturers and wholesalers are forever thinking of new products to bring into the market, they are always dependent on a distributor’s expertise about how to get a product into c-store as they are well aware of the demand trends in the market. As a distributor you can make choices about who to sell the final produce from various channels available in the market like convenience stores, restaurants, snack bars, cinema shops and supermarkets.
Difference between an independent distributor and c-store distribution member – To start business as an independent food distributor or a beverage distributor you would have to do a detailed market study to understand which stores are working with distributors, products in demand, transportation and logistics. Whereas if you start business as a c-store distribution member you would have to work with a large wholesaler who will have a ready set of retail customers and large number of products in their catalogs. This option saves you the task of searching for clients to sell your products or worry about unsold inventory.
Though becoming a c-store distribution member seems like an easy and hassle free business plan it can become restrictive if you want to explore new geographical locations and try out new products. If you want to move away from food distribution to other convenience products like paper or cleaning materials, you may not be allowed to do it within a particular geographical area if there are other distributors of the wholesaler doing similar duties. As a member you will have the advantage of a dedicated marketing team which will carry out regular marketing and promotional campaigns to drive profits for manufacturers and retailers. While both distribution methods have their own advantages they have a few drawbacks too which can restrict a distributor’s growth potential and future plans.
Making the decision between independent distributorship and c-store distribution membership
If you already have some experience in distribution along with required resources and know the right people to approach for starting the business, then it is advisable to become an independent distributor to have greater flexibility. But if you are a novice and have no idea about this business then taking up a distribution membership is the best alternative as it will teach you tricks of the trade and the effort you would need to put to keep your retailers profitable. If you are working as a franchise distributor you will be protected as a member of a large association and will have the advantage of insurance plans which otherwise you have to pay for yourself.
As a member distributor you can take the help of warehouse distributors to understand the flow of market demand and how to manage distribution networks through an efficient network of transporters. After understanding the markets and roles of different individuals who play a crucial part in keeping the distribution from manufacturers to customers efficient you will gain enough confidence and exposure to start distributorship operations on your own. With experience about which products will have a demand in specific stores you can become a grocery wholesale distributor as it will let you know which manufacturer can give you the best product and price.
Procurement and timely distribution is crucial for the success of any large distribution firm and if you want to grow then have a plan with milestones which will help you achieve your final goal of become a nationwide convenience wholesale distributor within a specific period of time. Large superstore chains like Circuit City, Home Depot, BestBuy have grown on the strength of their strong distribution network which has ensured that they are able to provide quality products to customers at competitive price.