What does digital transformation mean?

A recent survey of 2,000 businesses by Daisy Group found the number of businesses undertaking digital transformations doubled in the last year in an effort to overcome challenging market conditions.

Digital platforms such as ecommerce, customer self-service portals, mobile responsive websites and apps are at the forefront of these transformations as businesses attempt to emulate the online success seen by retailers over the past decade.

However, the wholesale, distribution and foodservice sectors have a long way to go when it comes to taking advantage of the full range of business opportunities which these digital platforms provide. Many continue to use traditional approaches to lead generation and sales because they perceive digital transformation as too expensive and time consuming to implement, or they don’t think it’s relevant to their customers.

A new white-paper titled “Digital transformation: a guide to help wholesalers, distributors and food service businesses successfully trade online” addresses these fears and promotes the long term benefits which digital platforms provide. It includes practical guidance on how to manage issues such as cost and integration, tips to future proof a digital transformation and a handy checklist for selecting the right technology partners.

It has been purposely written to address the unique digital needs of wholesalers, distributors and food services businesses. Useful examples of emerging consumer trends, based on research and wider sector statistics, are included throughout to demonstrate how digital platforms are having a profound impact on the ways wholesale customers now interact with suppliers.

So what is digital transformation? For businesses in the wholesale, distribution and food service sectors it’s essentially the application of technology to develop digital platforms which can streamline operations, reduce overhead costs and increase revenue. It’s about transforming the whole business, its culture, brand and its employees.

However, it’s important to remember that the sole implementation of technology is no longer enough to survive in ever-changing markets. To fulfil customers’ demands and maintain customer loyalty businesses must keep ahead of wider consumer trends and be able to provide added value services through digital platforms.

To get started businesses need to have in place a strategy of what they want to achieve and how they want to achieve it, otherwise it could end up being a costly process. Buy-in from management and support from employees is essential to ensure internal systems and processes are taken into account. A business analysis undertaken by technology suppliers at the beginning of any digital project can also help with developing well-defined workflows for the long-term.

Overall digital transformations are on the rise because the future is all about digitising data and logic to improve efficiency. Despite a number of perceived challenges, all types of businesses can take advantage of the benefits and opportunities digital platforms bring.

This guest post was brought to you by Oporteo.

Author: Shannon Elkins. Marketing Executive at Business Computer Projects Ltd

Founded in 1979, Business Computer Projects Ltd is a leading software solutions provider, specialising in the wholesale, retail distribution and food service sectors. Oporteo is a sophisticated ecommerce solution specially designed to give wholesalers an ecommerce platform.

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