21/10/2020 Luke Goldsworthy

The Rise in Direct-to-Customer

The traditional supply chain of manufactures selling their products to customers via wholesalers, distributors and retailers is being either replaced or complemented by many manufacturers with a direct-to-customer (D2C) model. Driving this change are the growth in online sales, and the drop in the price of setting up a high-quality eCommerce website.

In the days of bricks-and-mortar dominance, using the traditional supply chain was the most effective way to sell your products – very few customers would turn up at your factory to make a purchase, and even then sales would be significantly limited by geography. Put simply, you needed wholesalers, distributors and retailers, so that your products could be within easy reach of your customers.

That was before eCommerce.

As we noted this month in encouraging businesses to take full advantage of the upcoming sales season, data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics found that online shopping had increased by 81.1% in just one year from August 2019 to 2020.

Now if you don’t have an eCommerce website, you’re being left behind.

Fortunately, it is easy for manufacturers to embrace D2C, cutting out middlemen, increasing their margin and giving more flexibility to compete on price. But D2C is not just about money, it also puts you in control of your brand, reputation and sales strategies, and enables you to better receive feedback directly from your customers. 

Embracing D2C does, of course, come with additional responsibilities – especially if you choose to retail exclusively through this channel. Fulfilment, marketing, customer service and more now falls to you, as does maintaining a high-quality eCommerce website. 

This can come as a big step for a manufacturer, but The Playhouse Group is here to help with the transition into the online world and the possibilities it holds. In recent blogs, we’ve also covered fulfilment, search engine optimisation (SEO), and embracing online reviews, as well as many other topics that can help you maximise your online performance.

Working in your favour is that customers generally prefer to research products on a manufacturer’s website, and over half prefer to purchase that way as well. With D2C those customers will be yours and not a third-party retailer’s, so you are in charge of who they are, how you build your relationship with them, and how you provide value. This direct connection enables your business to personalise your service and be agile in adapting to your customers’ changing needs. 

Now more than ever retail is shifting online, and D2C is increasingly part of it. Of course the growth in online sales is only of use to you if you have a high-quality eCommerce website developed to take advantage of the opportunity. In the past, this was often both expensive and time consuming to deploy. However, The Playhouse Group have created a Magento Accelerator product that is both affordable and quick, while still including the key features of the Magento 2 platform and the ability to scale and integrate more to your bespoke specifications.

Click the button below to set up an obligation-free consultation, and The Playhouse Group can have you online in 4-6 weeks, in time for Christmas. Getting online will not cost you an arm and a leg unless you aren’t online.

With decades of experience and as a certified Magento partner, The Playhouse Group can help your business maximise its online sales capabilities. Get in touch with our team and we can talk to you about this or any other other eCommerce questions you may have.