Grant Meadows, founder of Optimum Energy Products Ltd., of Calgary, Alberta, discusses his company’s path to steady growth and profitability by creating effective e-commerce sites and automated systems that help them deliver consistent, excellent customer service.
Their websites have become so successful that they no longer have any outside sales staff.
- Invest in technology. It is worth it! By automating the boring tasks you free up staff to spend time on more important things like personal service. Automation also ensures consistent follow-up, whereas relying on humans leaves much more room for error.
- With shrinking budgets to attend trade shows, online sales are growing in the B2B (business to business) world. Make sure you can be found!
- Provide information relevant to both the purchasing department and the end user. In B2B these may not be the same people.
- Open source software is a great starting point, but not the end. Recognize that it will need further programming to make it do what you need it to do.
- Make everything SEO (search engine optimization) friendly. That includes your catalogues, photos, videos and web pages.
- What B2B customers really want is: knowledgeable staff, speed, convenience, and a good flow of information between you and them.
One of our tenets in marketing early on has always been to make it easy for the customer to do business with us. So every page has toll-free numbers, email links, … whatever is convenient for them, we are happy to do it. – Grant Meadows
Do you know of any other Canadian companies doing well selling industrial products online? Tell me about them! I’d love to interview them.