Before we delve into the details of why there is a growing demand to track and analyze secondary sales trends, let’s understand "What is Secondary Sales in FMCG & similar industry?" In simple terms all business (Sales) transactions & inventory movement happening between Second Line [Distributor/Wholesaler] Sales Entities & Third Line [Dealer/Retailer] Sales Entities are considered as Secondary Sales.
Typically, Sales & Distribution Channel of a company in FMCG & similar industry comprises of Warehouses, Carrying & Forwarding (C & F) Agents, National Distributors, Super Stockists, Sub-Stockists, Distributors, Re-Distributors, Wholesalers, Dealers and Retailers. While overall structure remains similar across the vertical, nature of transaction between these players may slightly vary from company to company as per their policies. In majority of the cases, the company or the principal has direct access & control over the transactions & inventory movement happening at Warehouses, Carry & Forward (C & F) Agents, National Distributors & Super Stockists, however it remains on guesstimates when it comes to tracking Daily Sales/Return, actual stock movement, orders to be processed, payment collection, etc happening at Distributor/Wholesaler locations.
This may look very simple on paper and during board-room discussions but gives rise to multiple business challenges and at-times even hits hard on business survival.
Some of the core challenges faced by FMCG & Similar companies include:
• Limited ability to track sales beyond primary level
• Little or no visibility over daily secondary sales activities
• No means to get Actual order dispatch plans causing logistics mis-management
• No protocol to track & measure Sales reports
• Inability to forecast product's stock-out or over supply
• Increased Time to Market (TTM)
• Complicated & unsatisfactory sales return processes
• Non-availability of daily opening & closing stocks causing delayed decision making
• Longer inventory handling time causing revenue loss
• Delayed Stock replenishment causing opportunity & revenue loss
• Longer order-to-cash cycle due to delayed & improper sales information
• Complicated & longer partner on-boarding & de-boarding process
• Delayed dealer claim and scheme processing due to inaccurate & disparate sales data
Immediate benefits of Secondary Sales Tracking for FMCG & similar companies?
• Seamless visibility on daily product/stock movement including physical stock transfer, goods receipts and goods issued
• Accurate and real-time information on secondary sales order, billing, sales return, payment collection across the distribution channel
• Effective measurement of Target Vs Achievement
• Reduced overall sales realization & processing time (Shorter Order to cash cycle)
• Streamlined & satisfactory sales return and scheme settlement
• Strong Sales & Marketing activities based on actual market demand conditions
• Helps to build efficient production planning with the help of actual sales insights from the market
• Empowers implementation of measurable KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) to track sales performance based on region, area, sales person, SKUs, Brand, etc.
• Integrates sales data with C&F agents, stock keeping partners, suppliers, distributors, sub-distributors, dealers and retailers on a single platform and facilitates easy and on-time time sales information processing