Distribution is all about getting products from the manufacturers or producers and getting them to retailers or final consumers. Distributors ensure that this process takes place smoothly; they act as the middlemen and agents that control all other aspects of distribution to ensure manufactured products get to their final destination.
The convenience store distribution industry is really competitive; therefore, distributors have to be at the top of their game by ensuring they transport quality, good customer service and products to their destination in timely manner. This is what makes those distributors successful and; thereby, surpassing their contemporary.
In a bid to satisfy customers, distributors may encounter certain challenges which must be effectively managed to keep customers satisfied and achieve success in the distribution industry:
#1. A common challenge encountered by working in the industry is the need to have large variety of products in stock. Convenience stores offer a wide variety of products ranging from packaged food to snack and drugs. Convenience stores are going to go for distributors that can offer them the most variety of goods of excellent quality and at an optimum price.
#2. Another common challenge is the distribution network or channel: Retail traders depend on fast and timely delivery of the right variety of products in order to keep their businesses running. However, distributors may sometimes encounter problems as regards transportation of products, and this may lead to having a dissatisfied customer.
#3. There may also encounter problems as regards to communication which may also affect various distribution plans and schedule. In developing the right distribution channel, having the right connections and network is paramount. This is because wrong information may lead to wrong stock, slow delivery and loss of profit.
#4. Situations where products are returned. Convenience stores deal in sales of perishable products among others. In a situation where a product is delivered damaged or spoiled, whether or not the distributor is aware, it is sure to be returned to the distributor. This kind of occurrence affects customer’s trust and loyalty.
#5. There’s also the problem of limited space. Sometimes the supply market may experience frenzy leading to increased demand of certain products. This means for a distributor you have to stock more. What happens then when your warehousing facility has reached it maximum capacity, but your customers have high demands? You need to be able to meet these demands to keep them.
#6. Inadequate record keeping may pose a major challenge. This issue is that of a two-sided coin. The advent of the internet has made things in this world easier for different people, distributors are no exception. It has made access to information and advertisement easier but has also made it difficult to keep track of all trades leading to poor records for some distributors.
Distributors face numerous challenges on a daily basis. How these problems are handled however is what determines whether a distributor stays at the top of the line or is thrown off the supply market.