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Power Up Your Profits with Ecommerce for Industrial Supplies

Industrial supply brands have a huge opportunity to grow their profit margins with ecommerce.

By Miva | May 15, 2024

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The industrial supply industry is really shaking things up these days. Ecommerce is drastically changing how businesses get their hands on the equipment and materials they need. More and more industrial companies are hopping on the ecommerce train to attract new customers and make their operations run smoother. And it's not just about making things more convenient—there are plenty of other perks too. 

Ecommerce offers a hidden gem: the potential to significantly boost your profit margins.  

Cutting Costs and Saving Time 

In the fast-paced world of industrial supply, efficiency is vital. Every minute saved and dollar saved translates to a competitive edge. This section dives into how ecommerce can empower industrial supply sellers to streamline their operations, cut unnecessary costs, and free up valuable resources.  

From automating repetitive tasks to optimizing inventory management, ecommerce offers a powerful toolkit for industrial businesses to thrive:

  • Brick-and-Mortar Overhead: Going digital can be a smart move for your business. By switching to ecommerce, you can eliminate the costs of running a physical store, such as rent, utilities, and staff. This means you can put more resources towards other areas of your business. 
  • Streamline Like a Machine: Ecommerce platforms also offer automated order processing, which can save time and reduce the number of employees needed compared to manual systems. This way, your staff can focus on more valuable tasks. At the same time, you minimize the risk of costly errors. 
  • Inventory Zen: With ecommerce data, you can analyze sales trends and optimize inventory levels, which means you don't have to guess how much stock to keep on hand. This helps you reduce storage costs and minimize the risk of outdated products in your warehouse. 

Growing Revenue and Reaching New Customers 

While cost-saving measures are important, growing revenue plays a crucial role. Here are four ways ecommerce helps drive growth for industrial products companies: 

  • Cast a Wider Net: Establishing an online presence can give your business a national or even global reach . This means you can open your doors to a wider audience beyond your local area and attract more customers. 
  • Always Open for Business: Unlike a physical store, your online storefront is open 24/7, which means your customers can shop at their convenience. This availability can lead to more sales opportunities for your business. 
  • Empowered Customers, Higher Sales: When you provide detailed product descriptions, specifications, and tutorials on your website, customers can make informed decisions. This can increase sales by making customers feel confident about their purchases. 
  • The Upsell and Cross-Sell Advantage: You can use ecommerce platforms to suggest complementary products during checkout or recommend upgrades based on past purchases. This not only increases your average order value but also helps customers find everything they need in one place. 

By attracting a wider customer base and increasing sales volume, you can spread your fixed costs over a larger pool of products, ultimately driving a higher profit margin per unit sold. 

Boosting Your Margins Even Further 

Data: Data is crucial in today's business world. Website analytics can provide insight into customer behavior on your website. This data allows you to set optimal prices that will help you maximize your profit margins while remaining competitive. 

Imagine you sell industrial drill bits. Through website analytics provided by your ecommerce platform, you can see which drill bits are most frequently viewed together. This might reveal a trend of customers purchasing specific sizes in combination. By analyzing this data, you can create a "Combo Pack" containing these drill bits at a slightly discounted price. This strategy not only increases your average order value (more revenue per transaction) but also helps clear out less frequently purchased sizes, maximizing your profit margin on all the drill bits in the combo. 

Subscriptions: Subscription boxes are becoming increasingly popular. By offering regular deliveries of supplies to your customers, you can create recurring revenue while also fostering customer loyalty. Your customers will appreciate knowing that they can always rely on you for their needs. 

A company that sells industrial safety gear can leverage subscriptions to create a win-win situation. By offering a monthly "Safety Essentials Box" containing curated personal protective equipment (PPE) based on industry standards or customer needs, you guarantee recurring revenue. This allows you to potentially negotiate bulk discounts with suppliers, lowering your cost of goods sold and boosting your profit margin. Additionally, customers benefit from the convenience of automatic deliveries, ensuring they never run out of critical safety gear. 

Content: Valuable content can help you establish yourself as an industry thought leader. Provide your customers with buying guides, maintenance tips, or industry trends. This will showcase your expertise, attract new customers, and position you as a trusted resource.  

An industrial bearings supplier can create a series of informative blog posts on bearing selection and maintenance best practices. This valuable content positions you as an authority in the industry, attracting potential customers who may not have been aware of your company before. By showcasing your expertise, you can command a premium price for your bearings compared to competitors who lack such content. This establishes trust and positions you as a reliable source of high-quality products, leading to increased sales and improved margins. 

Can a B2B/B2C Platform Be a Margin Booster for Industrial Ecommerce? 

Now that we've explored the general benefits of ecommerce for industrial goods companies, let's delve into a specific platform option: B2B/B2C. This platform allows you to reach individual customers and businesses through a single platform, offering a range of benefits that can significantly enhance your business operations and profit margins. 

Imagine expanding your customer base to include both individual hobbyists and large industrial operations. A B2B/B2C platform allows you to showcase your products to a broader audience, potentially increasing your sales volume significantly. Additionally, you can cut down significantly on software subscriptions and maintenance fees by using a B2B/B2C platform. It can also streamline order processing, inventory management, and fulfillment across all customer segments, which can help you reduce your operational costs. 

Free Infographic - 5 Ways to Successfully Merge B2B and DTC Sales Online

However, before diving into a B2B/B2C platform, there are a few things you need to consider. B2B functionalities may add complexity to the user experience, so you should consider the needs of both B2B and B2C audiences to ensure the platform caters to both without overwhelming them.  

Also, keep in mind that your ecommerce marketing strategy needs to adapt to reach different customer segments. You should tailor your message to resonate with the specific needs and buying behaviors of B2B and B2C customers to be effective. 

The Verdict: It Depends on Your Strategy 

Whether a B2B/B2C platform ultimately boosts your margins depends on how you leverage its functionalities. Here's what can make the difference: 

  • Product Mix: If your product offerings cater to both businesses and individual buyers, you'll see a wider audience reach. Consider product bundles or special promotions for B2B purchases to incentivize larger orders. 
  • Order Fulfillment: A well-defined strategy for handling different order sizes and types can minimize fulfillment costs. 
  • Marketing Strategy: Targeted campaigns for B2B and B2C audiences will optimize customer acquisition and conversion rates, leading to higher sales volume. 

By carefully evaluating your needs and implementing a strategic approach, an ecommerce platform that handles B2B and B2C sales can be a powerful tool to expand your customer reach, streamline operations, and ultimately boost your profit margins. 

Ready to Power Up Your Profits? 

In the world of industrial supply sales, simply having an online store isn't enough. Just like the tools and equipment you provide, your industrial ecommerce platform needs to be robust, adaptable, and capable of growing alongside your business. That's where Miva comes in.  

Our ecommerce solutions are built to handle the unique demands of industrial suppliers. We offer a highly customizable platform that can accommodate extensive product catalogs, manage high volumes of online traffic, and seamlessly integrate with your existing business systems. As your business scales and your needs evolve, our platform scales with you, ensuring a smooth and efficient online sales experience for both you and your customers. 

So, what are you waiting for? Embrace ecommerce and watch your industrial supply business thrive. With reduced costs, increased revenue, and a data-driven approach, you'll be well on your way to a brighter future with higher profits. Take the first step today and explore how ecommerce can transform your company. 

 

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Author's Bio

Miva

Miva offers a flexible and adaptable ecommerce platform that evolves with businesses and allows them to drive sales, maximize average order value, cut overhead costs, and increase revenue. Miva has been helping businesses realize their ecommerce potential for over 20 years and empowering retail, wholesale, and direct-to-consumer sellers across all industries to transform their business through ecommerce.

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