This information is based on an interview with Heath Pomerantz – Business Development Manager for Diamond Shine.
As a manufacturer, Diamond Shine often encounters customers looking to purchase chemical directly from us because they believe it to be the best option for their business. However, in most cases this does not hold true.
Distributors offer education, cost management, specialized service, and more, which is why we use distributors to better cater to our customers whenever we can. Here are five valuable reasons to consider buying through distribution.
Most distributors are educated on a wide span of products, both equipment and chemical. It’s what they sell and service day in and day out.
Often customers only see things through the lens of how their own wash operates, but distributors work with a wide variety of washes and help solve their problems every day. They can usually fix problems in half the time an operator can – and then pass their knowledge on for next time!
2. Cut Costs
Distributors have a clear focus: to help their customers’ washes operate efficiently and profitably. Meanwhile, operators must balance servicing customers, managing chemicals, overseeing employees, and more – each and every day.
In the long run, the distributor has a unique opportunity to help operators manage and reduce their costs. Once a distributor knows the parts and chemicals your wash needs they can efficiently offer routine support, secure supplier discounts, and offer training on cost saving best practices!
3. Specialized Service
When buying direct from the manufacturer, the manufacturer isn’t always set up to give customers the focus they require. For example, Heath was a territory manager for 13 states! There is no way for territory managers to offer individual support to every site in their region alone; they must partner with a reliable distribution network.
Local distributors provide a combination chemical and equipment service package. Their business is built around offering excellent support in their local market for the chemicals and equipment they sell. To distributors, you are a major priority because you are a service and chemical need customer. Win-win!
4. Familiarity with the Local Scene
Distributors are familiar with local issues. They understand your unique cleaning challenges, your specific market and how to help beat the competition. Because they’re local, you can also save on shipping costs. Local distributors take away the wash operator’s headache of having to stock extra parts and inventory, warehousing them close by so they’re just a call away.
5. Ability to Form a Relationship
Perhaps the most important part of working with a distributor is the ability to form a relationship. Once the distributor has an intimate knowledge of their customer, they are able to offer customized solutions. The distributor becomes a one-stop-shop.
Heath offers six best practices for choosing the best distributor for your business. Ask yourself these questions:
- Location – are they in close proximity to your wash?
- Service techs – do they have enough techs that you won’t need to wait for service?
- Parts – Do they stock your parts?
- Parts Stock – Do they stock enough of your parts?
- Chemicals – Do they stock your chemicals?
- Chemicals Stock – Do they stock enough of your chemicals?
Before choosing your distributor, be sure to visit their warehouse and find an answer to these questions to determine if they will be a good partner for you. Be sure to maintain open and honest conversation and ask questions up front.
Remember, a good distributor will be prepared to handle all of your wash issues, not just some. Any partner who can work with you on such a level is bound to be a huge asset to your business.