Canadian Electrical Wholesaler

Taylor Gerrie

By Taylor Gerrie

How can we make a customer successful and continue to grow? What can we do to help them win orders in their respective industries against their competition? Why should they do business with us?

For suppliers and distributors, these are very difficult questions because often customers believe that the answers to these questions can be “I need a better price.”

One of my negotiating experiences ended up becoming a price battle. Both parties haggled over the price until one party conceded (that was me). I sacrificed a large amount of margin to win that order, but at least I won it… right?

No. The issue that arose was that all other negotiations with this customer ended up being a fight over price because I set the standard and lowered my price on the first order. If a customer knows that you will do something to benefit them without giving anything in return, they will ask for something again because they know you will do it. This was a perfect example of winning the battle and losing the war.

One of the most challenging concepts in business is to influence a customer away from the concept of “price negotiating” towards “selling on value.” Lowest price is not always the best or lowest overall cost for the customer.

A competitive price, supported before, during and over the life of the project would be tough to challenge as not being truly valued. For companies that do not offer the lowest price, pricing negotiations can be awkward and dangerous to customer relationships. These types of negotiations often lead to win-lose outcomes and cannot sustain a long-term business strategy.

Talking about price causes anxiety for both parties and if there is only one winner it more likely to decrease your chances of repeat business. If the supplier wins then it may be safe to say that there will be no repeat project business and this could negatively impact their ability to continue operational business with that same customer. If the customer wins then the supplier may not want to offer their products and services to that customer, forcing the customer to find an alternative supplier. This is costly for either party: the supplier loses growth opportunity and the customer incurs labour costs in looking for a new trusted supplier.

The key is to show the customer how you can offer value that increases their productivity and efficiency while mitigating their risk. Valued suppliers build relationships to consultative levels, where you (the supplier) become a trusted advisor. Clients recognize and value both technical and commercial support they receive. This is further supported by having the right inventory, support resources and effectively responding to customers’ requirements.

By showing how you can help customers improve their operations and increase their overall bottom line, it becomes less of a concern for a customer to “get a better price.” For example, if a customer is requesting to purchase a product such as a drive, offer an unsolicited service like drive start-up assistance. This shows you can offer other value-added solutions to help them. By having a trained professional assist in the installation it will reduce the risk that a customer’s application will be installed incorrectly, will have the customer operating in a shorter time frame, and will allow the customer to efficiently allocate their technicians’ time to different projects. This can move the conversation away from the price to the scope of the project. You gain a lot of credibility, trust and loyalty from a customer if you can successfully have this type of conversation with them.

Taylor Gerrie is an Automation Specialist with Gerrie Electric Wholesale Limited. He has a BA (major in Finance) and is an Electrical Engineering Technology graduate.

Study

Technological change has often been the cause for major market disruption. Consumers tend to benefit from these kinds of disruptions through improved service levels or radically lower prices. Wholesalers and distributors, however, have fewer means to drive changes themselves.

 

Here in Part 3: successfully operating in added-value market segments. This requires applying a number of different levers, usually at each step of their sales channels. . . Read more 

 

 

 


By Shoynear Morrison

The importance of using the right tone within communications and marketing can be easily underestimated. Within these fields words are used to convey specific messages and meaning regarding a brand.

What does the word tone mean and how can understanding its meaning allow you to apply this literacy device?

Well... The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines the word tone as an “accent or inflection expressive of a mood or emotion, the pitch of a word often used to express differences of meaning.” Aka… tone, is the way we say something and creates emotion. 

 

Read more...

 

 

 

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Looking Back

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Canadian Electrical Wholesaler is surveying Canadian Electrical Industry Businesses. This short survey (5 multiple choice questions) will aid in determining the the state of Canadian electrical businesses and provide valuable insight into industry shifts. 

We thank you for your time in filling out this survey.

Take survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CEWbusinesssurvey

 

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