Which Sales Channel is the Best?

Like everything else in this world, there are often multiple choices that can be made. Selecting a sales channel is no different. I have listed below the more popular sales channels and a very high level advantage and disadvantage of each.

Channel                                                      Chief Advantage                        Chief Disadvantage

Direct Sales Force                                  Account Control                                   Can be expensive

     If you have complex products or services or your offerings required some “hand holding” then this might be one of your selections

Distribution/Resellers                            Extended sales force                            No account control

                Want an “instant” sales team with proven knowledge and potential customer base, then consider local or regional or national distributor/resellers or ISVs

Internet                                                       Vast reach                                        Relationship building

                Have limited resource (people and funds) then you can look and act like the corporate giants with reasonable investments

Independent Representatives             Know skills/cost                                  No account control

                Looking for highly skilled people with focus on your solutions with minimum investment?

Telemarketing                                           Leads/Leads                                       Can be expensive

                Leads are your primary focus or generating additional business within your current customer base and you want to argument the direct sales organization

Trade Shows/events                                 Leads/Awareness                                 Costly/events

                Opportunities for “gathering” leads and /or creating awareness about a new product/technology or service

Social Media                                               Vast reach/inexpensive               Currently an art vs. science

                Need to build awareness or creditability or gather feedback about people’s opinion regarding your enterprise?

The key takeaways are the following:

1-      There are many choices for sales distribution/channels.  In most cases you will use more than one to meet your objectives and goals.

2-      Mix of channels is probably the most important decision.  You need to consider your current environment, your offerings, your market position and what resource you have in deciding on the appropriate mix.

3-      After you have selected the channels and the correct mix make sure you are funded to implement  the programs to support and maintain the channels

RHL    7/20/10

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>