How the Right Channel Strategy Can Help You Sell Into U.S. Retail

How the Right Channel Strategy Can Help You Sell Into U.S. Retail

It doesn't matter how much funding you have, or how great your product is, if you're aren't ready to take your startup's hardware to market. Does your company have a channel or go-to-market strategy? Don't assume that you can just put something on a shelf and expect it to sell. In this expert-led webinar, we learned how to pick the right sales channels, why research matters in retail and the difference between sell-in and sell-through, among other important basics for developing a retail channel strategy. 

Top Takeaways

1. What is a Channel Strategy?

Basically, a detailed plan for selling effectively through a particular distribution channel or combination channels. In other words, it's how you go to market, and how your specific company takes your specific product to the specific channels in the specific market, that you want to reach. It answers the questions of who, what, when, where, why and how for your startup getting to market. 

2. What Elements Does Your Channel Strategy Need?

Your channel strategy needs to have a leader, goals, a timeline, channels that you actually want to reach, a good story and fitting channel and then an actual plan for execution. 

3. What are the Big Channels You Can Choose From?

The main channels you can use to get your hardware into the hands of consumers, include retail (brick and mortar), B2B (with sales ALWAYS conducted directly to another business or entity), wireless (stores dedicated to the sale of services, phones and accessories; technically also retail but operate differently), online (very low barrier to entry and largely dominated by Amazon) and distribution (the conduit between manufacturers and most channels). Don't feel you have to be stuck with one of these. You'll probably use many channels in your get-to-market plan.

4. Who Will Sell Your Product?

Your primary sales options include an internal salesforce, distribution reps or an outsourced sales groups. Every option has pros and cons, dependent upon your individual needs. 

5. Data is Important

The better data you have, the better a story you can tell, and the easier you can reach a market. Have data on how big the market is, its trends, the biggest players and how your product will fit in. Become an expert on this market. Also collect data on your competition. What are they doing right (or wrong)? Get data on your customer, too. Where can you get data? You can buy it, find it or collect it. 

6. Sell-In vs. Sell-Through

What's the difference? Sell-in reflects the inventory a retailer or reseller purchase. Sell-through, however, actually reflects how many units your consumers are buying and taking home. 

About The Speaker

Todd Word

Todd Word

Co-Founder, Principal, MarketReady

Todd Word is a Hardware Massive expert, an experience professional with sales and marketing experience developing and implementing retail and B2B sales strategies.

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